The next Citizens' Assembly will likely examine issues around gender equality, according to Taoiseach Leo Varadkar who said the wider issue of equality between men and women will potentially be considered. 

Echoing Labour party leader Brendan Howlin's appreciation of the work done by the Citizens' Assembly, Mr Varadkar in the Dáil said it had been helpful to the political system in understanding the opinion of the public. 

He said while good work had been done recently in relation to domestic violence, issues such as gender pay, gender equality in pensions, and the number of women on corporate sector boards needed examination. 

Mr Howlin requested that the Citizens' Assembly look at the issue of school patronage.

He said the model of the Citizens' Assembly would be a good one to open a debate, so all sides could have input and be tested.

The Taoiseach said the Government believes in diversity and choice in relation to education and patronage. 

Mr Varadkar said diversity should include the Catholic Church and other religions, adding that he was not convinced the country should move from a model of diversity "to one that everything is the same".