Written Answers. - Schools Building Projects.

Willie Penrose

Question:

980 Mr. Penrose asked the Minister for Education and Science if he will provide an update on progress for the construction of a new school at Coláiste Cionn Torc, Castlepollard, County Westmeath; the amount of funding allocated by his Department to permit construction commence in 1999; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1571/99]

The extension project at Coláiste Cionn Torc is currently at stage two, outline sketch scheme, of my Department's design team procedures. The stage two submission was evaluated by officials in the planning and building unit of my Department and additional information sought from the vocational education committee has recently been received and is currently being considered. The Deputy can be assured that it is my intention that this project will proceed to construction when all stages of the design process have been successfully completed. It is the policy of my Department not to divulge information in relation to costings in advance of tendering as to do so may compromise the tendering procedure. I would, however, point out that the provision of almost £60 million for post-primary school build ing projects in this year's Estimates, in comparison with £30 million in the 1997 budget, will enable me to proceed with a significantly increased number of projects.