Student Grant Scheme Appeals

Questions (141)

Finian McGrath

Question:

141. Deputy Finian McGrath asked the Minister for Education and Skills the position regarding a Student Universal Support Ireland appeal in respect of a person (details supplied). [10549/13]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

Officials in my Department have confirmed with Student Universal Support Ireland that the student in question appealed the original decision on his grant application to the appeals officer in SUSI and the original decision was overturned.

The grant application was reassessed and a letter issued to the student on 6th February 2013 requesting further documentation. When the requested documentation is returned the student will be notified directly of the outcome.

Student Grant Scheme Eligibility

Questions (142)

Frank Feighan

Question:

142. Deputy Frank Feighan asked the Minister for Education and Skills if a student on back to school allowance is entitled to apply to Student Universal Support Ireland for grant assistance and is there any other scheme were such a student can apply for assistance with fees. [10650/13]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

Students in receipt of the Back to Education Allowance (BTEA) can apply to have their eligibility assessed under the student grant scheme to the Student Universal Support Ireland before their closing in the relevant academic year in respect of the cost of the student contribution and where applicable tuition fees.

While the closing date for student grant applications for the 2012/13 academic year expired on 31st January 2013, if an individual has had a change of circumstance since that date which is likely to be permanent e.g. parent or spouse was made redundant, they should contact SUSI for advice on how to make an application to have their eligibility for a grant assessed.

In addition to the student grant tax relief at the standard rate of tax may be claimed in respect of tuition fees paid for approved courses at approved colleges of higher education. Further information on this tax relief is available from the Revenue Commissioners on www.revenue.ie.

School Accommodation

Questions (143)

Micheál Martin

Question:

143. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Education and Skills when action will be taken in respect of the future accommodation needs of a school (details supplied) in Dublin 24; if he appreciates the local concerns in the matter; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10674/13]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

I wish to advise the Deputy that my Department is aware that the accommodation in the school to which he refers is not satisfactory. The provision of improved accommodation for the school entails the identification of a suitable site. This process is currently in train and my Department will be in further contact with the school authority as soon as there are developments in this regard.

School Transport Provision

Questions (144)

Micheál Martin

Question:

144. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Education and Skills the action he will take to ensure that Bus Éireann provides an adequate school bus service from Knocksedan to Swords Manor taking into account that there are 27 children within the estate who require this service; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10675/13]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

Under the terms of my Department's Primary School Transport Scheme, children are eligible for transport where they reside not less than 3.2 kms from and are attending their nearest national school as determined by the Department/Bus Éireann, having regard to ethos and language.

Bus Éireann, which operates the scheme on behalf of my Department, is responsible for the planning and timetabling of school transport routes. Bus Éireann endeavours, within available resources, to ensure that each eligible child has a reasonable level of school transport service in the context of the Scheme nationally.

Where practicable, and subject to considerations of cost and logistics, routes are planned to avoid an eligible child having to travel more than 2.4 kms to or from a pick up/set down point.

In this regard Bus Éireann has advised that the transport service in question is operating within the above guidelines and no eligible child has to travel more than 2.3kms to the pick up point.

Parents are responsible for ensuring that children are brought safely to and collected safely from Bus Éireann designated pick up and set down points.

Student Grant Scheme Payments

Questions (145)

James Bannon

Question:

145. Deputy James Bannon asked the Minister for Education and Skills when a third level student grant will issue in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Longford; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10693/13]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

Grant payments in respect of maintenance were made to the student in question on the 30th January and the 20th February 2013.

Departmental Staff Data

Questions (146, 148)

Seán Fleming

Question:

146. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Education and Skills the number of agency and contract staff currently employed under the aegis of his Department; the mechanism in place for monitoring and managing the associated costs; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10981/13]

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Clare Daly

Question:

148. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will outline the numbers and cost of agency staff under the aegis of his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11061/13]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 146 and 148 together.

My Department has contracted one temporary Administrative Officer who has been assigned to the International Section of my Department for the duration of the European Union Presidency. In addition to this my Department has a long term contract for services with the National Council for the Blind for the provision of two telephonists.

The following tabular statement gives details of agency/contract staff at bodies under the aegis of my Department.

Monitoring and managing the associated costs is a matter for the respective lines sections at my Department or the relevant body under its aegis.

Bodies under the aegis of the Department of Education & Skills with contract/agency staff as at the 27th, February 2013.

BODY

CONTRACT

AGENCY

Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse

4

0

Residential Institutions Redress Board

1

0

Residential Institutions Redress Review Committee

1

0

Education Finance Board

2

0

National Council for Guidance in Education

2

0

State Examinations Commission

0

0.5

Higher Education Authority

0

1

Foras Áiseanna Saothair (FAS)

0

2

Departmental Staff Rehiring

Question No. 148 answered with Question No. 146.

Questions (147)

Joan Collins

Question:

147. Deputy Joan Collins asked the Minister for Education and Skills the number of public sector workers who have retired in the last three years within his Department or any office or body under his aegis that have been re-instated; if he will provide details on the pay rates they are receiving; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10993/13]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

No members of staff who retired in the last three years have been re-instated to their former positions or to any other positions within my Department.

From time to time, my Department engages retired staff to carry out specific tasks. Such engagements are for once-off or short-duration projects where it is more cost-effective to re-engage retired staff who already have the relevant expertise and experience. As appropriate, re-engagements of retired staff are subject to the abatement principle.

With regard to bodies under the aegis of my Department, matters relating to recruitment and pensions are an administrative matter for the bodies themselves.

Question No. 148 answered with Question No. 146.