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Written Answers. - Disadvantaged Status.

Wednesday, 27 March 2002

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 551 No. 3

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 247. Mr. Gregory Information on Tony Gregory Zoom on Tony Gregory  asked the Minister for Education and Science Information on Michael Woods Zoom on Michael Woods  his views on the concerns raised in correspondence (details supplied) from the board of management of O'Connell CBS Primary School, Dublin 1; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10428/02]

Minister for Education and Science (Dr. Woods): Information on Michael Woods Zoom on Michael Woods My Department provides funding towards ancillary services in schools in the form of assistance to schools towards the cost of secretarial and caretaking services. In line with a PPF commitment to mainstream certain essential services provided under CE, I recently secured the transfer of €58,407,951, £46 million per annum to my Department on a phased basis between now and 2003, as the FÁS school-based community employment schemes (CE) come to [891] an end. The availability of this funding has enabled me to make significant progress in relation to the provision of secretarial and caretaking services to schools by putting in place an equitable system of funding for ancillary services throughout the free education school sector. My Department will receive a total of €40,631,618, £32 million in this school year.

The grant has been increased to €102, £80 per pupil with effect from January of this year. In line with the new arrangements, an amount of €20,604 was lodged to the school's bank account recently towards the cost of ancillary services.

The Deputy is aware of the major new disadvantage programme, “Giving Children An Even Break” which I launched in January 2001, to deal with educational disadvantage in primary schools. There are separate urban and rural dimensions to “Giving Children An Even Break”. The school in question has been included in the urban dimension and is eligible to receive €4,027 in respect of the current school year, towards providing additional educational supports for the children concerned.

Schools already in receipt of additional resources under the breaking the cycle pilot project, including the school in question, retain their entitlements under that scheme, and also receive extra funding. Under breaking the cycle, the school in question is benefiting from the services of a disadvantaged concessionary teacher and a shared home-school-community liaison teacher. The school also qualifies for special supplementary capitation funding at the rate of €38.09 per pupil, a refund of the television licence fee, a grant of €5,079 per annum for out of school activities and a grant of €3,809 per annum for materials and equipment. The school is also participating in the support teacher project and benefits from the services of a support teacher who caters for pupils with disruptive, disturbed or withdrawn behaviour. Any claims for extra allowances for teachers who are teaching in disadvantaged areas should be made to the teachers' conciliation council.

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