Written Answers. - RAPID Programme.

Jack Wall

Question:

624 Mr. Wall asked the Minister for Education and Science if his attention has been drawn to the dissatisfaction of the teaching profession with the recently announced RAPID programme (details supplied). [7654/01]

The selection process of areas for inclusion in the RAPID programme was led by my colleague the Minister of State at the Department of Tourism, Sport and Recreation, Deputy Eoin Ryan.

This selection was based on clear and objective criteria. The Trutz-Haase Deprivation Index was used to underpin the selection of the areas because it provided an objective basis to identify the relative levels of deprivation of district electoral divisions – DEDs. The areas selected are those which were identified as being within the category of the "5% most deprived" DEDs and by clustering such areas together as a nucleus it was possible to narrow the number of areas down to the required 25. The designation process was supported by data relating to significant incidences of rented local authority housing – more than 75% – and by the presence of designated disadvantaged schools as identified by my Department. Because the 25 most deprived areas are all located in the major urban centres, the Government has decided that there will be a second strand to this programme introduced in the next few months for rural areas and provincial towns. This new programme is currently being drawn up by the Departments of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development and the Environment and Local Government.