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Bruton, Richard

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. Nbr.


Schools Building Contractors

Was asked: if he has received the supplementary tender report regarding a school (details supplied); if final approval has now issued to sign contracts for construction of the new school; when construction wi...More Button

The Supplementary Tender Report for the project referred to by the Deputy has been approved and subject to no issues arising the project is due to commence construction before the end of this month...More Button

School Accommodation Provision

Was asked: the precise steps that have been taken to secure accommodation for a school (details supplied) in County Kildare, in view of the fact that it is due to open in 2019.More Button

Maynooth Community College opened in 2014 with an Irish-medium Aonad and it was stated that should the Aonad demonstrate sufficient viability after four years from its date of establishment, a Gael...More Button

The new schools which will open in 2017 and 2018 to cater for increased demographic demand nationwide were announced in November 2015. As part of that announcement, and in view of the continued ...More Button

In the interim, my Department will continue to work closely with the Education and Training Board and An Foras Pátrúnachta in relation to the provision of appropriate accommodation for the establ...More Button

Was asked: the status of the provision of accommodation at a school (details supplied) in County Donegal; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I can confirm to you Deputy that a project for the school in question was included in the Department's 6 Year Capital Programme announced in November 2015 to proceed to the tender and construction ...More Button

My Department is currently finalising the project brief and once this process is complete, my Department will be in further contact with the school. The project will be progressed into the archi...More Button

School Funding

Was asked: the reason for the delay in considering a request for capital funding for a school (details supplied); when the school authorities will receive a substantive response to their application; and if h...More Button

I wish to advise the Deputy that the Patron of the school referred to has withdrawn the application for capital funding.More Button

Schools Building Projects

Was asked: if the design team for a school (details supplied) have submitted the stage 2b submission including review arising from changes in public work contracts; and if he will make a statement on the matt...More Button

I can confirm for the Deputy that the school and its design team have not yet submitted the report to my Department. More Button

Was asked: if he has received the tender documents and stage 2b documentation for a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Stage 2b documents for the school referred to by the Deputy are awaited from the school and its Design Team. Upon receipt and review of the Stage 2(b) report my Department will revert to the s...More Button

Schools Building Projects Status

Was asked: the status of an application for a new school (details supplied) in County Wexford; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Deputy will be aware that a building project for the school in question is included in my Department's 6 Year Construction Programme (2019/21).

  In line with the Memorandum ...More Button

Was asked: if he will ensure a new school (details supplied) in County Cavan is prioritised by his Department; the reason it is not being treated as urgent; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The building project to which the Deputy refers is at an advanced stage of architectural planning, Stage 2(b) detailed design stage, which includes the application for statutory approvals and the p...More Button

The Design Team are currently completing the Stage 2(b) submission which the Board of Management will submit to my Department for review.  When the Stage 2(b) has been reviewed my Department will...More Button

Scrúduithe Stáit

Le feidhm ó Mheán Fómhair 2017, beidh dhá shonraíocht (siollabais) nua i gceist le soláthar na sraithe sóisearaí don Ghaeilge i scoileanna agus suíomhanna iar-bhunscoile. Tá an tsonraíocht T1 díri...More Button

Leagann sonraíochtaí nua na Sraithe Sóisearaí don Ghaeilge (T1 agus T2 araon) béim láidir ar theanga labhartha. Aibhsítear í seo go háirithe i bpríomhshnáithe na sonraíochtaí – Cumas Cumarsáide. ...More Button

Bainfear úsáid as cineál éagsúil de mhodheolaíocht measúnaithe do scileanna teanga labhartha (agus scileanna eile) i sonraíocht Ghaeilge nua na Sraithe Sóisearaí. Go dtí seo, bhí triail teanga la...More Button

Faoin bPolasaí don Oideachas Gaeltachta 2017-2022, tabharfar cuireadh do scoileanna sa Ghaeltacht in Earrach na bliana 2017 aitheantas a lorg mar scoil Ghaeltachta i gcomhréir le critéir theanga-...More Button

Departmental Correspondence

Was asked: his views on the points raised in a letter (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

As the Deputy will be aware I ran a public consultation process from 24 January to 20 March 2017 on the role of denominational religion in the school admission process and possible approaches for m...More Button

I believe that it is unfair that preference is given by publicly-funded religious schools to children of their own religion who might live some distance away, ahead of children of a different rel...More Button

I also believe that it is unfair that parents, who might otherwise not do so, feel pressure to baptise their children in order to gain admission to the local school and I intend to reform the sch...More Button

In the Consultation paper I set out four possible approaches for dealing with the issue, in primary schools in the first instance, including:More Button

- A catchment area approach, prohibiting religious schools from giving preference to children of their own religion who live outside the catchment area ahead of non-religious children who live ins...More Button

- A ‘nearest school rule’, allowing religious schools to give preference to a religious child only where it is that child’s nearest school of that particular religion;More Button

- A quota system, which would allow a religious school give preference to children of its own religion in respect of only a certain proportion of places, meaning that the remaining places would be...More Button

- An outright prohibition on religious schools using religion as a factor in admissions, meaning that all places would be allocated based on other factors. Within this approach, there is capacity ...More Button

I am mindful of the need to avoid possible pitfalls and unintended consequences with each of these approaches, including possible impacts on minority religions and on the wishes of Protestant, Je...More Button

Other possible consequences to be avoided include possible breaches of the constitution, technical and administrative difficulties impacting on the capacity to effectively run the system of over ...More Button

The 8 week phase of receiving written submissions is part of the broader 12 week consultation process which will include additional steps, including any follow-up consultation that is required, c...More Button

My Department has begun the process of examining the submissions, which includes a submission from the board of management of the school in question, and formulating next steps. Clearly I will no...More Button

DEIS Status

Was asked: the reason a school (details supplied) did not receive DEIS status; his plans to award DEIS status to this school; if he has put an appeals process in place for schools such as this to appeal the r...More Button

DEIS is my Department's main policy initiative to tackle educational disadvantage. The DEIS Plan for 2017 sets out our vision for future intervention in the critical area of education policy.
<...More Button

Summer Works Scheme Applications

Was asked: if a school (details supplied) will be granted funding under the summer works scheme; his plans to announce the beneficiaries of the summer works scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matt...More Button

I wish to advise the Deputy that my Department is in receipt of a Category 6 application, Roof Project, under the Summer Works Scheme (2016-2017) from the school to which he refers.

 ...More Button

School Staff

Was asked: the cost of a proposal to allow small schools (details supplied) a 12-month stay to recover numbers before the loss of a teacher; if the proposal will be considered in the context of budget 2018; a...More Button

The criteria used for the allocation of teachers to primary schools is published annually on the website of the Department of Education and Skills. The key factor for determining the level of staf...More Button

Budget 2012 increased the appointment and retention ratios for small schools (i.e., schools with up to four classroom teachers). Improvements to the staffing of these schools were announced for ...More Button

In addition, Budget 2016 announced a 1 point improvement to the primary staffing schedule. The improved staffing schedule which is available on the Department website will be implemented for the...More Button

Following a review of the staffing allocation for Small Primary Schools, Budget 2017 announced two adjustments in relation to one teacher schools. Where the school is the sole primary school on ...More Button

The cost of restoring the 2011/12 staffing schedule for small schools would be approximately €7.5m. More Button

Proposals for Budget 2018 will be considered near Autumn of this year. More Button

Was asked: if the teacher numbers can be reviewed to take into account changes in numbers of pupils attending a school (details supplied) since the commencement of the 2016 to 2017 school year; if these numbe...More Button

The criteria used for the allocation of teaching posts for the 2017/2018 school year is set out in the Staffing Schedule (Circular 0017/2017) which is available on the Department website. The key ...More Button

The school referred to by the Deputy had an enrolment of 51 on 30 September 2016. This allows for a mainstream staffing of 2 teachers – Principal and 1 classroom teacher - for the 2017/18 school...More Button

The staffing schedule also includes an appeals mechanism for schools to submit an appeal under certain criteria to an independent Appeals Board. More Button

An application for consideration by the Appeals Board for an additional classroom teaching post under Criterion E – Small Schools appeals has been received for submission to the April meeting of ...More Button

The Primary Staffing Appeals Board operates independently of the Department and its decision is final.More Button

School Transport Provision

Was asked: his plans to introduce a school bus service from Dooradoyle to Mungret for persons attending a school (details supplied) which is being relocated from its current location in Dooradoyle to Mungret;...More Button

Education and Training Boards Administration

Was asked: if he will liaise with the Cork Education and Training Board, ETB, with a view to ensuring the specific courses are being held at a college (details supplied) for 2017 to 2018; if his attention has...More Button

Was asked: if his attention has been drawn to a case of alleged misappropriation of funds by a national provider contracted to provide training courses through service level agreements with local education an...More Button

SOLAS Training and Education Programmes Expenditure

Was asked: the estimated cost of restoring the cuts to the SOLAS training allowance; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

School Admissions

Was asked: the consultation process on the role of denominational religion in the school admissions system; the possible approaches for making changes; the number of submissions received; if he will provide a...More Button

As the Deputy will be aware I ran a public consultation process from 24 January to 20 March 2017 on the role of denominational religion in the school admission process and possible approaches for m...More Button

Approximately one thousand written submissions were received. As this is a public consultation, submissions may be published in due course on my Department’s website subject to the requirements o...More Button

My Department has begun the process of examining the submissions and formulating next steps. Clearly I will not make any decisions around next steps until such time as all of the submissions hav...More Button

Was asked: if he will consider changes to the consultation process on the role of denominational religion in school admissions following the census 2016 figures announced on 6 April 2017 (details supplied); a...More Button

As the Deputy will be aware I ran a public consultation process from 24 January to 20 March 2017 on the role of denominational religion in the school admission process and possible approaches for m...More Button

I believe that it is unfair that preference is given by publicly-funded religious schools to children of their own religion who might live some distance away, ahead of children of a different rel...More Button

I also believe that it is unfair that parents, who might otherwise not do so, feel pressure to baptise their children in order to gain admission to the local school and I intend to reform the sch...More Button

When launching this consultation I stated that one of the most complex and challenging elements of this is how we deal with school ethos and religious and moral education, an area where beliefs a...More Button

In the Consultation paper I set out four possible approaches for dealing with the issue, in primary schools in the first instance, including:More Button

A catchment area approach, prohibiting religious schools from giving preference to children of their own religion who live outside the catchment area ahead of non-religious children who live insi...More Button

A ‘nearest school rule’, allowing religious schools to give preference to a religious child only where it is that child’s nearest school of that particular religion;More Button

A quota system, which would allow a religious school give preference to children of its own religion in respect of only a certain proportion of places, meaning that the remaining places would be ...More Button

An outright prohibition on religious schools using religion as a factor in admissions, meaning that all places would be allocated based on other factors. Within this approach, there is capacity ...More Button

I am mindful of the need to avoid possible pitfalls and unintended consequences with each of these approaches, including possible impacts on minority religions and on the wishes of Protestant, Je...More Button

Other possible consequences to be avoided include possible breaches of the constitution, technical and administrative difficulties impacting on the capacity to effectively run the system of over ...More Button

The 8 week phase of receiving written submissions has now closed and this is part of the broader 12 week consultation process which will include additional steps, including any follow-up consulta...More Button

My Department has begun the process of examining the submissions and formulating next steps. Clearly I will not make any decisions around next steps until such time as all of the submissions hav...More Button

Youthreach Programme Review

Was asked: the details of the review of the Youthreach programme; the terms of reference and timescale for the review; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Special Educational Needs Data

Was asked: the average cost of establishing a special class or an autism unit in an existing school; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I wish to confirm to the Deputy that under my Department’s Additional Accommodation Scheme, it is open to schools to submit applications for devolved funding in respect of NCSE approved special cla...More Button

The average cost of establishing special needs accommodation in an existing school will vary depending on the need, if any, to undertake work within the school building, the nature of such works,...More Button

Was asked: the cap in place for special needs assistants, SNAs; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the NCSE will provide an SNA only in cases in which there is an assessed need; the number of SN...More Button

The purpose of the Special Needs Assistant (SNA) scheme is to provide schools with additional adult support staff who can assist children with special educational needs who also have additional and...More Button

Was asked: the number of special needs assistants, SNAs, and the budgetary allocation for SNAs over each of the past ten years, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Funding for special education provision in 2017 will amount to some €1.68 billion, which is equivalent to approximately 19% of the gross overall current allocation for education and training and re...More Button

Was asked: the cost of hiring ten additional special needs organisers; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The National Council for Special Education (NCSE) is the statutory body with particular functions including planning and co-ordinating the provision of education and support services to children wi...More Button

The National Council for Special Education (NCSE), through its network of local Special Educational Needs Organisers (SENOs), is responsible for the provision of a range of educational services a...More Button

SENO responsibility includes planning and co-ordinating the provision of education and support services to children with special educational needs. Each SENO works in an assigned local area with...More Button

The cost of appointing 10 additional SENOs would be in the region of €540,000 per annum.More Button

A new Regional Support Service has been established within the National Council for Special Education was announced to assist schools in supporting children with special education needs. This se...More Button

The service includes the Special Education Support Service (SESS), the National Behaviour Support Service (NBSS) and the Visiting Teacher Service for children who are deaf/hard of hearing and for...More Button

Considerations with regard to the full staffing implications which may arise from the amalgamation of these bodies and the incorporation of the new Regional Support Service within the existing NC...More Button

Consideration regarding new recruitments and the filling of any vacancies will form part of this process. However, a fully comprehensive service will continue to be in place for the new school y...More Button

Was asked: the budgetary allocation for special educational equipment such as assistive technology over each of the past five years, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

My Department provides funding to schools towards the cost of assistive technology, for educational purposes, to assist children with special educational needs in Primary, Post Primary and Special ...More Button

Was asked: the level of grant funding allocated to a group over each of the past ten years; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I wish to advise the Deputy that my Department provides a range of resources for pupils with Specific Learning Disabilities (SLD), of which Dyslexia is one such SLD.

  My Departm...More Button

Literacy Programmes

Was asked: the budgetary allocation to each scheme which provides education and training places to persons with literacy problems and learning difficulties; the number of places available on each scheme, in t...More Button

Was asked: the total budgetary allocation to adult literacy programmes over each of the past ten years, in tabular form; the average cost per participant; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Teachers' Professional Development

Was asked: the budgetary allocation to the employee assistance programme for teachers; the details of the support services provided under the scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

My Department has also put in place an Occupational Health Strategy as a supportive resource for teachers and special needs assistants (SNAs), to promote their health in the workplace, with a focus...More Button

The Employee Assistance and Wellbeing Programme is a confidential service accessible by means of a freephone telephone helpline available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, providing counselling on...More Button

The Employee Assistance and Wellbeing Programme is currently provided at a total cost of €395,512 (ex VAT) per annum.More Button

School Costs

Was asked: the estimated cost of implementing the joint Oireachtas committee report on school costs as published in 2013; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Joint Oireachtas Report on school costs was published in 2013.

  "Irish educational policy must return to the value of free education, an ideal which must drive educati...More Button

Was asked: the amount allocated to schools in ICT grants over each of the past ten years; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

As the Deputy may be aware, the ICT in Schools Programme addresses four broad areas, namely:

  - the provision of essential ICT infrastructure and networking within schools
<...More Button

Post-Leaving Certificate Courses Fees

Was asked: the estimated cost of abolishing PLC and apprenticeship fees; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

School Transport Data

Was asked: the amount allocated to the school transport scheme over each of the past ten years; the total revenue generated each year in charges; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Special Educational Needs Service Provision

Was asked: the cost of extending the July provision to all children with special educational needs; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the cost of extending the July provision to all children with a low incidence disability; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 151 and 152 together.

  The Deputy will be aware that the Programme for a Partnership Government includes a commitment to examine the adequacy of...More Button

Was asked: the circumstances in which schools will be able to secure additional resources from the NCSE; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the details of the 519 schools that have appealed their allocations under the new resource allocation model by county; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 178 and 179 together.

  I wish to advise the Deputy that DES Circular 0013/2017 for primary schools and 0014/2017 for post primary schools were p...More Button

Home Tuition Scheme

Was asked: if there is a cap in place for the number of hours that can be accessed by a child under the home tuition scheme; the savings from such a cap; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The purpose of the Home Tuition Grant Scheme is to provide funding towards the provision of a compensatory educational service for

  1. Early educational intervention for child...More Button

Education Grants

Was asked: the rate of ancillary grant over each of the past ten years; if the 5% reduction in budget 2011 has been restored to schools; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The ancillary grant is paid to primary schools.  The table sets out the information requested by the Deputy in respect of the rate of ancillary grants for primary schools from 2007 to 2017.
More Button

Teacher Recruitment

Was asked: if there is a cap in place for language support teachers; the way in which the current number differs from 2008 to 2009 levels; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

There is no cap in place for language support teachers. The level of extra teaching support provided in respect of language support to schools is determined by the numbers of eligible pupils enroll...More Button

Reforms introduced in the 2012/13 school year created s single simplified allocation process for both learning and language support.  At primary level, learning/language support hours are allocat...More Button

On the post primary side, with effect from the 2012/13 school year, learning support and language support has been combined into a single allocation process.  More Button

Further additional temporary EAL support is also provided, as necessary, to schools that have high concentrations of pupils that require language (EAL) support. At primary level, these allocatio...More Button

Earlier this year, I announced that a new model for allocating Special Education Teaching Resources to mainstream primary and post primary schools will be introduced from September 2017. The new...More Button

Early Start Programme

Was asked: the budgetary allocation and participation rates for the early start programme over each of the past ten years; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Early Start programme has centres in 40 DEIS primary schools in Ireland.  In terms of the budgetary allocation to Early Start, my Department pays capitation grants at the rate of €95.23 per enr...More Button

Broadband Service Provision

Was asked: the costs of providing 100Mbps broadband to all primary and post-primary schools; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Digital Strategy for Schools 2015-2020 Enhancing Teaching Learning and Assessment, published in October 2015, sets out the Department's vision for embedding ICT in teaching learning and assessm...More Button

Currently at least 95% of schools are connected to the Department's Broadband Access Programme. At primary level, the Department has upgraded more than 1,000 Primary school connections to fibre ...More Button

All post-primary schools are provided with 100Mbp/s connectivity. The 100Mb/s Post Primary project was a joint venture between the Department of Education and Skills (DES) and the Department of ...More Button

The total annual cost of the Schools Broadband Access Scheme for Primary and Post-Primary is some €14m. More Button

The Strategy recognises the issues schools face in relation to ICT infrastructure, and funding of €210m is committed to address these requirements over the period of the Strategy. The first tran...More Button

Languages Programme

Was asked: the costs of implementing the initial teacher elements of the 20-year Irish strategy; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The 20 year Strategy for the Irish Language 2010 -2030 contains a number of actions relating to initial teacher education (ITE) including the introduction of a new specialisation in Irish-medium pr...More Button

A number of actions have been progressed including changes to the Gaeltacht placement, which has been lengthened to two periods of two weeks for all primary ITE students. Initial teacher educati...More Button

My Department’s Policy on Gaeltacht Education 2017-2022 (the Policy), published in October 2016, contains measures which will support the implementation of the teacher education elements of the 2...More Button

This Government is committed to supporting the overall thrust of the 20 Year Strategy for the Irish Language 2010-2030 and will deliver on the achievable goals and targets proposed in line with a...More Button

Education Schemes

Was asked: the budgetary allocation and participation rates in post-leaving certificate, PLC, courses over each of the past ten years; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the budgetary allocation and participation rates in VTOS courses over each of the past ten years; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the budgetary allocation and participation rates in Youthreach courses for each of the past ten years; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Education Funding

Was asked: the budgetary allocation and the number of guidance posts for further and higher education over each of the past ten years; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

My Department allocates recurrent funding to the Higher Education Authority (HEA) for direct disbursement to the HEA institutions. The HEA allocates this as a block grant to institutions to cover ...More Button

Supplementary information has been requested from the HEA in relation to the number of guidance posts and budgetary allocation and my officials will revert to the Deputy directly as soon as this ...More Button

Was asked: the allocation to the strategic innovation fund over each of the past ten years; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Strategic Innovation Fund was established in 2006 with the emphasis on promoting inter-institutional collaboration in bringing about substantial change, reform and quality improvement within th...More Button

Third Level Funding

Was asked: the allocation to third level research and development over each of the past ten years; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

My Department allocated funding over the past 10 years for third level research and development. The details of the funding per year over the last 10 years are as follows:

  - ...More Button

Student Grant Scheme

Was asked: the savings that could be achieved if a capital means test was introduced for the student grant with a cut-off point for assets over €500,000, €750,000 and €1,000,000, excluding the family home, wo...More Button

The Deputy will be aware that capital assets do not form part of the means assessment for a SUSI grant and as such, SUSI does not collect data on the capital assets of the persons whose income form...More Button

Was asked: the estimated annual cost of making jobseeker's transitional payment and the SUSI grant payable to lone parents regardless of the age of the youngest child or whether the family is in receipt of re...More Button

Under the Student Grant Scheme, grant assistance is available to eligible students attending an approved course in an approved institution who meet the terms and conditions of funding, including th...More Button

Under the Student Grant Scheme, the Jobseekers Transitional payment is an eligible payment for the special rate of maintenance grant and an income disregard (where paid to the applicant). Rent S...More Button

The Jobseeker’s Transitional payment is administered by the Department of Social Protection. I understand that this payment is a special arrangement under the Jobseekers Allowance scheme that aim...More Button

SUSI does not hold data on the age of children linked to the Jobseekers Transition payment. Also, I understand that persons in receipt of this payment may subsequently move onto other eligible l...More Button

It is therefore not possible to cost this proposal.More Button

Departmental Expenditure

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 505 of 16 September 2016, if he will provide a breakdown of the spend in the same areas for 2016 and to date in 2017; and if he will make a statement on the ma...More Button

The information sought by the Deputy is provided in the following table:

CAPITAL EXPENDITURE JANUARY TO DECEMBER 2016 AND JANUARY TO 31 MARCH 2017

(identified under specific head...More Button

Education and Training Boards

Was asked: the details of developments concerning the Longford and Westmeath Educational Training Board taking over Columb Barracks.More Button

My Department is very supportive of better quality infrastructure for schools and further education and training provision and/or Head Office moves where such developments have the potential to fac...More Button

The potential for educational use of Columb Barracks site has been re-examined in the light of the opportunities which were recently set out.  More Button

Unfortunately, the cost of acquisition and the significant investment that would be required for repurposing of the site rendered such a repurposing unaffordable given the competing demands for a...More Button

Of course, it remains open to the Education and Training Board to submit further material supporting the case that savings would accrue from the purchase of Columb Barracks or to explore any alte...More Button

School Patronage

Was asked: when a new patron for the new primary school planned for Dún Laoghaire to open in September 2017 will be announced; the school planning area it is designated for; the engagement his Department has ...More Button

On 28 November, 2016 applications were invited for the patronage of four new primary schools to be established in 2017 and 2018, including the school to serve the Dún Laoghaire school planning area...More Button

The assessment process is detailed and rigorous. The final assessment reports will be forwarded for the consideration of the New Schools Establishment Group (NSEG), which will submit a report wi...More Button

It is expected that the assessment process will be completed and that a determination in relation to the patronage of the new schools will be made in the coming weeks.  The assessment reports and...More Button

Officials in my Department are working closely with officials from Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council under the Memorandum of Understanding in relation to the identification and acquisition of...More Button

The building project for the school in question is included in my Department's 6 year construction programme that was announced last November.  The school will open in September 2017 in suitable ...More Button

Special Educational Needs Staff

Was asked: when a special needs assistant will be assigned to a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The SNA scheme provides recognised schools with additional adult support staff to cater for the care needs of pupils with disabilities in an educational context, where the nature of these care need...More Button

The National Council for Special Education (NCSE) is responsible, through its network of Special Educational Needs Organisers (SENOs), for processing applications from schools for special educati...More Button

Responsibility for deciding on the quantum of educational supports and resources to be allocated to schools to support individual pupils rests with the NCSE.  In making allocations to schools, th...More Button

It is a matter for the individual Principal/Board of Management of the school to allocate SNA support as required, and on the basis of individual need, which allows schools flexibility in how the...More Button

The NCSE has informed my Department that the SENO has considered the level of SNA support available to the school and has informed the school that the pupil in question can be supported from with...More Button

The level of SNA support allocated to all schools can change from year to year, as students with care needs leave the school, as new students with care needs enrol, or as students develop more in...More Button

Where a school wishes to appeal the level of SNA support which has been made to their school, they may do so via the appeal process which is available at: www.ncse.ie.More Button

A major building project for the school to which the Deputy refers was included on the 6 year Construction Programme (2019-21).  Officials in my Department are working closely with officials from...More Button

My Department’s main responsibility is to ensure that schools in an area can, between them, cater for all pupils seeking places, in this regard, my Department is currently reviewing the demograph...More Button

School Transport

Was asked: his views on the ongoing industrial action in Bus Éireann that will affect school transport; his plans to address this concern in view of upcoming exams; and if he will make a statement on the matt...More Button

Was asked: the reason a bus route (details supplied) was downgraded from a 58 seater to a 40 seater; the number of children previously travelling on the route that no longer have a seat; the length of time ea...More Button

State Examinations

Was asked: the estimated cost of providing the junior certificate oral exam in every school; the cost of providing sufficient state examiners to assess the orals; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The State Examinations Commission has statutory responsibility for operational matters relating to the certificate examinations.

  In view of this I have forwarded your query to...More Button

School Management

Was asked: if there is legislation in place preventing teachers from changing a person's clothes in the event of an accident or injury; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Under the provisions of the Education Act 1998 the Board of Management is responsible for the governance of a school.More Button

Accordingly, the Board is responsible for ensuring that it has in place appropriate policies and practices to deal with the school’s day to day activities. More Button

A school’s policy or practice in relation to managing instances where a pupil may require a change of clothes (as a result of a fall or for any other reason) is a matter for the school itself, ha...More Button

There is no specific legislation governing the issue of school staff changing pupils’ clothes.  This is a matter to be decided by each individual school.  However, Children First: National Guidan...More Button

Early Childhood Care and Education

Was asked: his plans to extend the early start programme; the locations of each of the early start programmes that are in operation; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Early Start programme is located in 40 DEIS schools in areas of urban disadvantage.  A full list of centres and their location is attached.  In the intervening period since the establishment of...More Button

School Curriculum

Was asked: the estimated cost of providing a one-hour workshop in all primary and post-primary schools; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Education in relation to areas such as awareness of LGBT issues is provided in an age-appropriate manner at both primary and post-primary level, through the subject Social, Personal and Health Educ...More Button

At post primary level, all schools are required to provide a Relationships and Sexuality Education (RSE) programme as part of SPHE for all students from First Year to Sixth Year, and to teach all...More Button

While gender and orientation are not explicitly designated topics in the SPHE syllabuses, those syllabuses do provide opportunities for teachers to explore such issues at an age-appropriate level...More Button

The SPHE Support Service has worked collaboratively with bodies including GLEN and BelongTo and the HSE to develop a resource, “Growing up lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender” for use by RSE c...More Button

In relation to primary curriculum provision, the SPHE course is designed to foster in the child a sense of care and respect for himself/herself and others, an understanding of his/her sexuality, ...More Button

School Transport Eligibility

Was asked: if his office will contact a person (details supplied) regarding school transport; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

National Training Fund

Was asked: the way in which proposals to increase the National Training Fund levy, such as those in his Department's consultation paper on the employer's contribution to further and higher education, will be ...More Button

DEIS Scheme

Was asked: his plans to remove schools from DEIS that no longer meet the criteria; the number of schools that would be affected; if the criteria would be based on educational performance or on socioeconomic i...More Button

As I have previously informed the Deputy, the key data sources are the DES Primary Online Database (POD) and Post-Primary Online (PPOD) Databases as populated by schools and the CSO Small Area of P...More Button

In terms of the process to date, as I have previously explained to the Deputy, the measure I took on 13th February last to extend DEIS supports to schools with the highest levels of concentrated ...More Button

The application of the new model has identified that some schools, currently included in DEIS, have a level of disadvantage within their school populations which is much lower than that identifie...More Button

As noted in the DEIS Plan, the implementation of a new objective central data-based model of identifying levels of disadvantage within school populations will be followed by a further programme o...More Button

The outcome of this further programme of work will inform future decision-making on resource allocation to all schools. More Button

I wish to assure the Deputy that I aim to take a prudent approach to managing the future allocation of supports under DEIS, as provided for in DEIS Plan 2017.More Button