Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Questions (296)

Thomas P. Broughan


296. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Education and Skills further to Parliamentary Question No. 325 of 11 June 2013, if it was intended that siblings in a family receiving assistance under the July provision scheme would be of a similar ability so that only one tutor would be allocated to the family; and his plans to make changes to the application process for the scheme for families in which there are siblings of differing abilities applying to the scheme to allow for the restoration of additional educational provision for children in this situation. [30693/13]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

I previously advised the Deputy that the allocation of home based provision to siblings for July Provision is reflective of the school grouping principle. This is where one teacher is allocated to a class of six pupils at the appropriate educational level, primary or post primary. Accordingly it is considered appropriate, as in a school situation, that a tutor can provide tuition at the appropriate educational level to more than one sibling at that level simultaneously in the home. The school grouping principle does not purport to replicate or mirror all aspects of school based provision. The age or ability of siblings is reflected in their education level as determined by education and health professionals. In general where a child is receiving their education in a class setting with other children of mixed age and ability, this should carry through to their July Provision. However in recognition of the differing needs of some siblings, separate allocations will be considered on a case by case basis. Applications in this regard will require supporting documentation including professional reports from a psychologist or a letter from the principal of the school detailing the existing arrangements currently in place for the respective children and providing reasons why they cannot be tutored together in the home.