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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 183-194
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Applications
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Applications
 Header Item School Enrolments
 Header Item School Enrolments
 Header Item Schools Building Projects Status
 Header Item Youthreach Programme
 Header Item Vocational Training Opportunities Scheme Numbers
 Header Item Post-Leaving Certificate Courses
 Header Item EU Presidency Expenditure
 Header Item Seirbhísí Oideachais Leanúnaigh agus Scileanna
 Header Item FÁS Training Programmes

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 785 No. 1

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Written Answers Nos. 183-194

Student Grant Scheme Applications

 183. Deputy Tom Fleming Information on Tom Fleming Zoom on Tom Fleming asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn when a decision will issue in relation to a student grant application in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53784/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn Officials in my Department have confirmed with Student Universal Support Ireland that in the case of the student referred to by the Deputy, a grant has been awarded and an award letter issued on 3 December 2012.

Student Grant Scheme Applications

 184. Deputy Tom Fleming Information on Tom Fleming Zoom on Tom Fleming asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn when a decision will issue in relation to a student grant application in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53785/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn Officials in my Department have confirmed with Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) that in the case of the student referred by the Deputy, she appealed the decision in relation to the rate of grant awarded to the appeals officer in SUSI on 19 November 2012. SUSI aims to issue determinations on appeals as promptly as possible and within the specified timeframes defined in the Student Support Act 2011. If an individual applicant has had an appeal turned down, in writing, by SUSI, and remains of the view that SUSI has not interpreted the scheme correctly in his or her case, an appeal form outlining the position may be submitted by the applicant to the independent Student Grants Appeals Board.

School Enrolments

 185. Deputy Seamus Kirk Information on Seamus Kirk Zoom on Seamus Kirk asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn if he will outline the minimum and maximum number of pupils required in order for future second level schools to be built in a parish in the country; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53807/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn As the Deputy will be aware, in June 2011, I announced that 20 new post-primary schools would be established over the next six years. This announcement arose from the study undertaken by the Forward Planning Section in my Department, of the country to identify the areas, where, due to significant demographic changes, there would be a requirement for additional school accommodation. The decision to establish new schools in these areas arose from detailed analysis of child benefit data and enrolments in existing primary schools. In addition, an examination of the existing post-primary schools and their capacity to expand to cater for additional students was undertaken. The vast majority of new post-primary schools to be established over the next six years will be built to cater for between 750 and 1,000 pupils.

School Enrolments

 186. Deputy Seamus Kirk Information on Seamus Kirk Zoom on Seamus Kirk asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn if he will outline in detail the primary school population in the parish of Duleek/Bellewstown, County Meath, that is served by schools (details supplied); the current second level capacity that covers this catchment area and the projected growth in second level requirements over the coming years; if he envisages a necessity for a new second level school in the area to meet education needs; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53808/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn The total enrolment in the schools referred to by the Deputy for 2011-12 is 301 pupils, 279 pupils, 90 pupils, 99 pupils and 72 pupils respectively. The primary schools referred to are located in the Drogheda and Ashbourne post-primary feeder areas. The total post-primary enrolment for 2011-12 in the Drogheda feeder area was 4,283 pupils. The total enrolment in the Ashbourne feeder area for 2011-12 was 1,007 pupils. In June 2011, I announced that 20 new post-primary schools would be established over the next six years. This announcement included a new post-primary school for Drogheda and a new post-primary school for Ashbourne. It is not envisaged that any other new post-primary school will be required in this general area up to 2017.

Schools Building Projects Status

 187. Deputy Catherine Murphy Information on Catherine Murphy Zoom on Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn the position regarding the recent contract for completion of works at a school (details supplied) in County Kildare which was put out to tender; the date on which he expects the school to be ready for occupancy; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53887/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn The project to which the Deputy refers is currently out to tender. Subject to no issues arising, it is anticipated that work will commence on site early next year and will be ready for occupancy in quarter 2 of 2013.

Youthreach Programme

 188. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Information on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Zoom on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn the total number of Youthreach participants at year end 2010 and 2011; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53962/12]

Minister of State at the Department of Education and Skills (Deputy Ciarán Cannon): Information on Ciarán Cannon Zoom on Ciarán Cannon The Youthreach programme provides two years integrated education, training and work experience for unemployed early school leavers without any qualifications or vocational training who are generally between 15 and 20 years of age. It is provided by Vocational Education Committees (VECs) in Youthreach centres and by FÁS in Community Training Centres. The number of participants at year end on the VEC Youthreach programme was 3,367 in 2010 and 3,321 in 2011. The number of participants in FÁS Community Training Centres was 2,294 in 2010 and 2,290 in 2011.

Vocational Training Opportunities Scheme Numbers

 189. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Information on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Zoom on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn the total number of those pursuing the VTOS programme at year end 2010 and 2011; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53963/12]

Minister of State at the Department of Education and Skills (Deputy Ciarán Cannon): Information on Ciarán Cannon Zoom on Ciarán Cannon The number of participants on the VTOS programme was 5,702 in 2010 and 5,650 in 2011. The VTOS programme provides second chance education and training courses of up to two years duration leading to awards at levels three to five on the National Framework of Qualifications for people who are 21 years of age or over, and who have been unemployed for at least six months.

Post-Leaving Certificate Courses

 190. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Information on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Zoom on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn the total number of participants on PLC courses in 2010 and 2011; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53964/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn The number of participants on PLC courses in the 2010-11 academic year was 38,774 and in the 2011-12 academic year was 36,587. The PLC programme provides full-time courses at levels five and six on the National Framework of Qualifications for school leavers and adults returning to education. It provides successful participants with specific vocational skills to enhance their prospects of securing lasting, full-time employment, or progression to other studies.

EU Presidency Expenditure

 191. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Information on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Zoom on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn his plans to hold a conference, seminar or other event on further education and training policy in the context of the Irish Presidency of the European Union in 2013; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53965/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn The Directors General of Vocational Education and Training (DGVET) meet during each EU Presidency. Ireland will host a meeting of the DGVET on 20-21 May 2013 in Dublin Castle. The programme for this event is still under consideration. Also, a number of Irish Presidency conferences will address themes which cut across many sectors of education, including further education. These include the Irish Presidency Conference on Quality Assurance in Qualifications Frameworks, to take place in Dublin Castle on 12 and 13 March 2013 and the Conference on Better Assessment and Evaluation to Improve Teaching and Learning, which will be held on 19 and 20 March 2013 also in Dublin Castle.

Seirbhísí Oideachais Leanúnaigh agus Scileanna

 192. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Information on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Zoom on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn the timeline for the establishment of SOLAS; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53966/12]

Minister of State at the Department of Education and Skills (Deputy Ciarán Cannon): Information on Ciarán Cannon Zoom on Ciarán Cannon The passing of primary legislation is required for the establishment of SOLAS. The Heads of a Bill for the establishment of SOLAS were approved by the Government earlier this year. The Bill will, among other things, provide for the establishment of SOLAS, the dissolution of FÁS and the transfer of the FÁS training division to the newly formed Education and Training Boards. The Bill is being currently being drafted in the Office of the Attorney General. I expect to publish this legislation in the current Dáil session.

FÁS Training Programmes

 193. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Information on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Zoom on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn the location of all local training initiative funded projects; the total funding provided per project; the number of participants on each local scheme in 2011; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53967/12]

 194. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Information on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin Zoom on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn the number of participants on the local training initiative in 2011 who are under the age of 25 years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53968/12]

Minister of State at the Department of Education and Skills (Deputy Ciarán Cannon): Information on Ciarán Cannon Zoom on Ciarán Cannon I propose to take Questions Nos. 193 and 194 together.

  The information the Deputy sought is not readily available. I have asked FÁS to collate this data as soon as possible. When it has been received, I will forward it directly to the Deputy.


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