Tuesday, 3 February 2004

Questions (199, 200)

Seán Crowe


324 Mr. Crowe asked the Minister for Education and Science the length of time it takes his Department to process a minor works grant request; and if it has received requests from Donabate-Portrane Educate Together school; and the status of such requests. [2920/04]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Education and Science)

Donabate-Portrane Educate Together national school does not have permanent recognition from my Department, therefore, it is not eligible for capital grant aid for either small or large-scale works. However, my Department is aware that the school will require temporary accommodation in September 2004. When an application has been received in this regard, it will be processed as expeditiously as possible.

Joan Burton


325 Ms Burton asked the Minister for Education and Science the arrangements that have been made in respect of the provision of a second ABA unit in the Rathfarnham-Bohernabreena area; and the position regarding the provision of a replacement for a person (details supplied) in Dublin 15 who has been on the waiting list for saplings for over a year. [2922/04]

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I am most anxious that all children, including children with autistic spectrum disorders receive education appropriate to their needs. I understand from my officials that the pupil in question is currently enrolled in a special class for autism in a mainstream school in north Dublin. This class has a pupil teacher ratio of 6:1 and has the support of two special needs assistants. I further understand that ten hours home tuition per week has been sanctioned for the pupil in question until the end of the current school year.

My Department is actively considering an application from Saplings, Kildare, for autistic provision in south County Dublin. My officials are liaising with my Department's inspectorate and the national educational psychological service, NEPS, in this regard. A response will issue to the applicants as quickly as possible.

I understand that the pupil referred to by the Deputy is on a waiting list for the Saplings facility. Applications for enrolment in the Saplings project are a matter for the management of the facility.