I welcome the Minister of State to the House. I would like to ask the Minister for Education and Skills for a comprehensive update on when a permanent structure for the Gaelscoil in Kinsale will be built. The school has been working out of prefabs since 2003. In this day and age, that is totally unacceptable. The prefabs have deteriorated rapidly in the past two years. One of the prefabs in the Gaelscoil was abandoned during the winter because of its condition. There was a leaking roof and water came into the toilet and the senior infants' room. In this day and age, it is totally unacceptable to have a school of prefabs in which the senior infants' classroom is abandoned because of the condition of the prefab. We need to get clarity on where the site will be. We need clarity on when the site will be developed.
We probably have two options. We could have a new site, the position of which is to be decided, or we could build on the original site where the prefabs are. The Department is working with Cork County Council on locating a site. The issue is urgent. An exceptionally expensive regime has been put in place to maintain a school of prefabs. We have seen that this year with one prefab being abandoned. We really need to see two things now. We need clarity on what the Department proposes to do. Does it propose to build on the original site where the prefabs are or will it work with the local authority to find another site to get zoned and built? That is the first step. We need clarity on where the site will be and when it will happen.
The other thing we need rapidly is a major financial programme to ensure the prefabs are brought into proper nick. It is a huge issue for us. The electrical, engineering and roofing contractors that are required to keep the school up and running is an expensive regime for the school. It has to be recognised. The board of management and particularly the parents' association have been trying to work with everyone to ensure the conditions in the school are appropriate. They are doing a fantastic job. We need the Department to help the school board of management with finances. It is unbelievable to think we have been waiting five, six or seven years to get the school up and running. There have been major improvements in schools throughout the country. Unfortunately this one has lagged behind. To have a school of prefabs is unacceptable. Clarity on the site is required. Financial support is required to help the board of management to ensure the conditions in the school can be improved.
Will the Minister of State talk to the Minister, Deputy Bruton, about the issue? There needs to be a meeting. The Department needs to meet with the school. There has to be a concerted effort at the local authority to find a suitable site and it must be fast-tracked. The site is the key to solving the issue.