12 of the states 55 fee paying schools have opened talks with the Department of Education on becoming a state run school.
Enrollment numbers are falling at the schools as parents struggle to meet the fees.
According to today's Irish Independent the schools are also under pressure after the Department decided to reduce the number of teachers it pays for in private schools.
More than 25,000 school students are educated at a fee paying school.
However Fine Gael TD Mary Mitchell O'Connor says the state cannot afford to scrap fee paying schools.
She says the state will not be able to fund all 55 fee paying schools - if they become public.
Deputy Mitchell-O'Connor says it's simply not practical to suggest scrapping fee paying schools altogether and placing the burden on the state: