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Written Answers - Schools Building Projects

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 760 No. 3

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 183.  Deputy Gerry Adams Information on Gerry Adams Zoom on Gerry Adams  asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn  the criteria used to establish which schools were included in the schools building programme which he recently announced. [16287/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn The Deputy will be aware of the demographic challenges that we are facing. Total enrolment in both primary and post-primary schools is expected to grow by almost 70,000 between now and 2018 — over 45,000 at primary level and 25,000 at post primary — and will continue to grow up to at least 2024 at post-primary level. As such enrolment increases are not uniformly distributed nationally, my Department has carried out a study of the country using data from the Central Statistics Office, the General Register Office and the Department of Social Protection in addition to recent schools’ enrolment data to identify the areas it is projected that there will be significant enrolment increases. For purposes of the 5 Year Plan, new school building projects as well as major extensions have been identified and prioritised on the basis of meeting demographic needs in areas where such needs have been identified. Other criteria that were taken into account included factors such as whether projects, already in the Department’s architectural process, were technically ready to proceed to tender and construction in the duration of the Plan. I also wish to advise the Deputy that where an immediate enrolment need in an area has been identified e.g. the appointment of an additional teacher and where school’s existing accommodation cannot provide for this growth, the Department will be prepared to consider applications by schools for capital funding for additional classrooms mainly on a devolved basis.

Question No. 184 answered with Question No. 168.

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