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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 176-92
 Header Item School Accommodation
 Header Item Schools Building Projects Status
 Header Item Special Educational Needs Services Provision
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Payments
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Application Numbers
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Applications
 Header Item School Accommodation
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Payments
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Payments
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Delays
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Application Numbers
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Application Numbers
 Header Item Public Services Provision
 Header Item Anti-Racism Measures
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Payments
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Applications
 Header Item Student Grant Scheme Applications

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 786 No. 1

First Page Previous Page Page of 109 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 176-92

School Accommodation

 176. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn his plans to deal with the fact that Prefab 15 in a school (details supplied) has again, despite repairs, been leaking to the extent that the children have had to be moved to the PE hall, denying that facility to the entire school. [55286/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn The matter referred to by the Deputy has been notified to my Department by the school in question. The school have advised that an architect's report on the roof is awaited which they will forward to the Department. Upon receipt of this report, the Department will liaise with the school directly.

Schools Building Projects Status

 177. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn when the decision not to award a permanent building to Rush and Lusk Educate Together was made, in contradiction to previous commitments; by whom was the decision made; and the reason for same. [55297/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn A rapid construction building similar to permanent school buildings supplied elsewhere was provided in 2008 on the site that is currently occupied by the school, referred to by the Deputy.

As the Deputy is aware, the building project for this school was included in the 5 Year Construction programme announced earlier this year. In the context of prioritising projects for inclusion in the Plan, the Planning and Building Unit in my Department made the decision that the school's long term accommodation needs can be met by extending the school on its current site. The project is currently being progressed through the architectural planning process and is intended to proceed to construction in 2015/16.

I am aware that Department officials recently met with the Board of Management of the school in relation to the project.

Special Educational Needs Services Provision

 178. Deputy Derek Keating Information on Derek Keating Zoom on Derek Keating asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn the plans in place to provide for the needs of children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder as they progress from primary school to secondary school in the Dublin West area in 2013/2014 and beyond (details supplied). [55298/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn The Deputy will be aware that the establishment of a network of autism-specific special classes in schools across the country to cater for children with autism has been a key educational priority in recent years.

The National Council for Special Education (NCSE), through its network of local special educational needs organisers (SENOs), is responsible for processing applications from primary and post primary schools for special educational needs supports, including the establishment of special classes in various geographical areas as required. The NCSE operates within my Department's criteria in allocating such support.

My Department strives to ensure that a continuum of special education provision is available as required for children with special educational needs. In line with this approach the policy is to promote a child-centred approach to education of all children with special educational needs including those with autism. As each child with autism is unique they should have access to a range of different approaches to meet their individual needs.

Children with autism present with a wide range of needs. Some children are capable of being fully integrated into mainstream schools without additional teaching or care supports. Others are able to attend mainstream schools but need additional teaching and/or care assistance. Many are best enrolled in autism-specific classes where more intensive and supportive interventions are required. Some may move from one setting to another as they get older and differing needs/strengths/abilities emerge.

I have arranged for the matters raised by the Deputy to be forwarded to the NCSE for their direct reply.

Student Grant Scheme Payments

 179. Deputy Michael P. Kitt Information on Michael Kitt Zoom on Michael Kitt asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn when a Student Universal Support Ireland grant will be processed in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [55307/12]

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 already been awarded and an award letter issued on 4 December 2012.

Student Grant Scheme Application Numbers

 180. Deputy Jonathan O'Brien Information on Jonathan O'Brien Zoom on Jonathan O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn if he will provide an updated list, in tabular form, from 3 December 2012 of the numbers of students on a county basis who have received from Student Universal Support Ireland payment of their third level grant or notification of when it is to be paid. [55308/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn The following table provides a breakdown on a county basis of the number of students who have been awarded a student grant and the numbers who received payment of their student maintenance grants as at 10 December, 2012 from Student Universal Support Ireland. The data has been supplied to my Department by SUSI.



Breakdown by County of student maintenance grants awarded/paid as at 10th December, 2012
County
Awarded *
Maintenance Payments
Carlow
328
125
Cavan
422
210
Clare
576
271
Cork
1999
820
Donegal
1055
492
Dublin
3673
1451
Galway
1334
526
Kerry
788
351
Kildare
810
342
Kilkenny
454
171
Laois
354
168
Leitrim
193
85
Limerick
903
368
Longford
236
97
Louth
696
304
Mayo
801
336
Meath
782
346
Monaghan
368
166
Offaly
453
200
Roscommon
380
173
Sligo
351
124
Tipperary
868
396
Waterford
639
255
Westmeath
569
273
Wexford
850
415
Wicklow
605
275
Outside of Ireland
99
29
Total
20586 **
8769#
* Includes some 2,329 provisionally awarded awaiting final course acceptance forms

** Does not include grants awarded but currently under appeal

# This figure does not include some 3,782 students awarded a "fees only" grant (either the student contribution or fees) - these payments are being made directly to the relevant institution

SUSI is continuing to make payments on a weekly basis to ensure students can get paid their grant as expeditiously as possible, once they have been awarded a grant. All new student grants approved for this academic year will be paid by electronic funds transfer on a monthly basis directly to students' bank accounts, rather than by cheque to the relevant college. Those awarded a grant

must supply bank account details and confirmation of registration must be received from the institution in order for the first instalment to be paid.

Student Grant Scheme Applications

 181. Deputy John Perry Information on John Perry Zoom on John Perry asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn the position regarding a grant in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Sligo; if he will expedite same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [55311/12]

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 further documentation was received from the student referred to by the Deputy on 8 December 2012 and this documentation is currently awaiting review. The student will be notified directly of the outcome.

School Accommodation

 182. Deputy Seán Ó Fearghaíl Information on Seán Ó Fearghaíl Zoom on Seán Ó Fearghaíl asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn if, in view of the recent survey by his Department officials of primary school sites in Monasterevin, County Kildare, he will be bringing forward proposals to meet the accommodation needs of the primary sector in Monasterevin; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [55313/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn I can confirm to the Deputy that officials from my Department recently carried out an examination of the existing primary school buildings in the area to which he refers and a report will now be prepared. As the Deputy will be aware, my Department's attention is primarily focused on identifying and securing a suitable site for a new post primary school building in the area and my Department is working closely with the relevant Local Authority in relation to this matter.

Student Grant Scheme Payments

 183. Deputy Róisín Shortall Information on Róisín Shortall Zoom on Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn when a person (details supplied) in Dublin 11 may expect a decision on an application for a student grant. [55369/12]

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 already been awarded and an award letter issued on 4 December 2012.

Student Grant Scheme Payments

 184. Deputy Paudie Coffey Information on Paudie Coffey Zoom on Paudie Coffey asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn if a student grant that was awarded to a person (details supplied) and subsequently withdrawn will have their grant reinstated; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [55376/12]

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 already been awarded and an award letter issued on 26 October 2012.

Student Grant Scheme Delays

 185. Deputy Mary Lou McDonald Information on Mary Lou McDonald Zoom on Mary Lou McDonald asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the Student Universal Support Ireland dedicated phone-line for Oireachtas members as provided by him on the 5 of November 2011 is no longer answering calls or responding to voicemails left my members; and the action he will take to remedy the matter. [55405/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn The Oireachtas email and dedicated phone line were set up by Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) so that Oireachtas members could contact SUSI directly with queries rather than contacting the SUSI Helpdesk. I understand from SUSI that although the phone-line and email facility are fully operational there have been some delays with responses due to the recent increase in the volume of calls received. However, I am assured by SUSI that this situation has now been addressed.

Student Grant Scheme Application Numbers

 186. 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 the total number of applications for renewal of third level grants to Kerry County Council, County Kerry Vocational Education Committee and the total number of applications completed to date by each; the number of completed applications by each awarded a grant; the number refused by each; the number currently being processed by each; the third level institutions that grant applicants are attending, renewals and new students; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [55408/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn In total Kerry County Council, as at 30 November 2012 has received some 836 renewal applications. Of these 823 have been awarded, 2 applications have been refused and 1 application cancelled. 10 applications are awaiting further documentation from the student. This data has been provided to my Department by

Kerry County Council.

  In total Kerry VEC, as at 30 November 2012 has received some 861 third level renewal applications. Of these 811 have been awarded and 7 applications have been cancelled. 43 applications are awaiting further documentation from the student. This data has been provided to my Department by County Kerry VEC.

  The migration of the new applications to SUSI has enabled the 66 grant awarding authorities to process renewal applications on a more efficient basis - these are generally more straightforward and require significantly less documentary evidence.

  The Data requested by the Deputy in relation to the third level institutions that grant applicants are attending is not available to my Department for renewal grant applications as the grant awarding authorities do not collate this data on an institutional basis.

  This data is available from Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) in respect of new students and is provided on the following table.

Educational Institution
Numbers awarded
Aberystwyth, University Wales
4
All Hallows College
21
Anglia Ruskin University
1
Athlone Institute of Technology
573
Bangor University
2
Birmingham City University
2
Buckinghamshire New University
3
Canterbury Christ Church University
5
Cardiff Metropolitian University
2
Cardiff University
2
Carlow College
84
Central Saint Martins 
1
Church of Ireland College of Education
3
City University
1
College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise
8
Comenius Univeristy 
1
Coventry University
2
Crawford College of Art & Design
27
DIT Adelaide Road
1
DIT Aungier Street
211
DIT Bolton Street
216
DIT Cathal Brugha Street
192
DIT Kevin Street
169
DIT Mountjoy Square
75
DIT Rathmines (Arts)
48
Dublin City University
634
Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design & Technology
144
Dundalk Institute of Technology
448
Edinburgh Napier University
10
Eniskillen college, Levaghy, E
2
Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology
627
Gdansk University of Technology
1
Glasgow Caledonian University
3
Goldsmiths, University of London
1
Harper Adams University College
2
Heriot-Watt University Edinburgh
1
Institute of Technology Blanchardstown
238
Institute of Technology Carlow
451
Institute of Technology Cork
661
Institute of Technology, Sligo
500
Institute of Technology, Tallaght
277
Institute of Technology, Tralee
304
King's College London
1
Kingston University
2
Law Society of Ireland
55
Leeds Trinity University College
1
Letterkenny Institute of Technology
475
Limerick Institute of Technology
571
LIT - Tipperary
1
Liverpool Hope University
1
Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts
1
Liverpool John Moores University
3
Manchester Metropolitan University
2
Marino Institute of Education
26
Mary Immaculate College
187
Mater Dei Institute of Education
31
Middlesex University
13
Myerscough College
1
National College of Art & Design
70
National College of Ireland
160
National University of Ireland, Galway
1053
National University of Ireland, Maynooth
682
NHTV University of Applied Sciences
1
North West College, Derry
5
Northbrook College Sussex
1
Northumbria University
1
Pontifical University, St Patrick's College
21
Queen Margaret University College, Edinburgh
5
Queen's University Belfast
16
Robert Gordon University
6
Roehampton University
2
Royal College of Surgeons Ireland
8
Shannon College of Hotel Management
10
Sheffield Hallam University
1
South West College
1
Southhampton Solent University
1
St Angela's College
42
St Mary's University College, Twickenham
1
St Nicholas Montessori College Ireland
13
St. George's, University of London
1
St. Patricks College, Drumcondra
149
St. Patricks College, Thurles
19
Staffordshire University
1
Swansea Metropolitan (UWTSD)
2
Szent Istvan University
2
The Honourable Society of King's Inns
7
The University of Liverpool
1
The University of Manchester
2
The University of Strathclyde
2
Trinity College
525
University College Cork (NUI)
934
University College Dublin(NUI)
839
University of Aberdeen
3
University of Abertay Dundee
6
University of Arts London
1
University of Bedfordshire
2
University of Brighton
2
University of East London
3
University of Edinburgh
2
University of Essex
2
University of Exeter
1
University of Glamorgan, Cardiff and Pontypridd
3
University of Gloucestershire
1
University of Hertfordshire
4
University of Leeds
1
University of Limerick
722
University of Plymouth
1
University of Portsmouth
1
University of Southampton
2
University of Stirling
3
University of Sunderland
2
University of Teesside
1
University of the West of Scotland
2
University of Ulster
44
University of Wales Institute of Cardiff (now know
1
University of West London
3
University of Wolverhampton
3
Waterford Institute of Technology
827

Student Grant Scheme Application Numbers

 187. 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 the total number of applicants for third level education grants to each of the three grants agencies countrywide, Student Universal Support Ireland, vocational education committees and local authorities, in tabular form; the total by each agency; the number of applications to each agency; the number of applications completed to date by each agency; the number of completed applications by each agency awarded a grant; the number refused by each agency; the number of applications currently being processed by each agency; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [55409/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn The first table provides a breakdown of the status of student grant renewal applications received by the Vocational Education Committees and the local authorities as at 30 November, 2012. It gives the position for student grant applications for attendance at higher education. This data has been provided to my Department by the 66 grant awarding authorities.

  The second table provides a breakdown of the status of the student grant applications received by Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI). The data provided is at close of business on 9 December, 2012. It gives the position for student grant applications for attendance at both further and higher education. This data has been provided to my Department by SUSI.

  The migration of the new applications to SUSI has enabled the 66 grant awarding authorities to process renewal applications on a more efficient basis - these are generally more straightforward and require significantly less documentary evidence.

Local Authorities - Processing Position as at week ending 30/11/2012
Local Authorities
Number of Renewals
Awarded
Refused
Ongoing / Further Information or Documentation Requested
Cancelled / Withdrawn
Yet to be Processed
Higher Education
23,103
19,747
937
1,478
387
554
VEC - Processing Position as at week ending 30/11/2012
VEC 
Number of Renewals
Awarded
Refused
Ongoing / Further Information or Documentation Requested
Cancelled / Withdrawn
Yet to be Processed
Higher Education
18,059
15,416
371
1,515
722
35
SUSI Applications - Processing position
Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI)
Total Applications
Awarded
Refused/ Cancelled
With SUSI for processing 
Awaiting documentation from students 
Total
66,891
20,859*
13,077
8,254
24,701


* This figure includes some 2,338 provisionally awarding awaiting final course acceptance forms.

Public Services Provision

 188. Deputy Mary Lou McDonald Information on Mary Lou McDonald Zoom on Mary Lou McDonald asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn further to Parliamentary Question No. 237 of 4 December 2012, if he will provide a list of all new services across his Department that have been tested for external service delivery since March 2011. [55429/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn The external delivery of services is one of the key areas highlighted in the Government's Public Service Reform Plan published in November 2011. Arising from a Government Decision in July, Departments are required, when evaluating any proposed new service, to include an appraisal of the costs and benefits of delivering the service using external providers. While, to date, no proposal for a new Department service has been considered under this provision, my Department is addressing the issue of external service delivery in the context of other initiatives underway across the Education sector, such as the use of aggregated procurement and shared services.

The work of my Department and of the wider Education and Training sector already includes the use of a diverse range of outsourcing arrangements relating to such areas as the school building programme, education and training courses at various levels, services provided for teachers and special needs assistants and a range of corporate functions for education providers such as ICT support, payroll, HR, waste management, cleaning and security.

Anti-Racism Measures

 189. Deputy Michael P. Kitt Information on Michael Kitt Zoom on Michael Kitt asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn the position regarding the implementation of the yellow flag programme on diversity and anti-racism in schools; the actions he has taken; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [55455/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn My Department has not provided support for the programme referred to by the Deputy, which I understand was run as a pilot project in some schools. In view of the current economic climate, funding for new programmes, including this programme, cannot be considered at this time.

Student Grant Scheme Payments

 190. Deputy Michael P. Kitt Information on Michael Kitt Zoom on Michael Kitt asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn when a Student Universal Support Ireland grant payment will be processed in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [55515/12]

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 already been awarded and an award letter issued on 22 November 2012.

Student Grant Scheme Applications

 191. Deputy Michael P. Kitt Information on Michael Kitt Zoom on Michael Kitt asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn when a Student Universal Support Ireland grant payment will be processed in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [55516/12]

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 further documentation was received from the student referred to by the Deputy on 21 November 2012 and this documentation is currently under review. The student will be notified directly of the outcome.

Student Grant Scheme Applications

 192. Deputy Michael P. Kitt Information on Michael Kitt Zoom on Michael Kitt asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn when a Student Universal Support Ireland grant payment will be processed in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [55517/12]

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 on the 23 November, 2012 a request for further documentation was issued to the student referred to by the Deputy. When the requested documentation is returned the student will be notified directly of the outcome.


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