Tax Yield

Questions (225)

Pearse Doherty

Question:

225. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Finance the revenue that could be raised for the Exchequer if DIRT was raised by the following; 2%, 3%, 4%, 5%. [30648/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

I am advised by the Revenue Commissioners that the estimated yield to the Exchequer from increasing the Deposit Interest Retention Tax (DIRT) rate from 33% by 2%, 3%, 4% and 5% would be of the order of €35 million, €52 million, €69 million and €87 million respectively in a full year. This projection assumes no significant behavioural change by depositors or a change in interest rates applied by financial institutions to savings.

The figure given for the yield from a 2% increase in the DIRT rate is a downward revision of a figure provided in reply to a previous related question, No. 68 on 25 April last (ref PQ 19659/13). The revision was necessitated by a revision to the basic data becoming available in the interim.

Tax Code

Questions (226)

Pearse Doherty

Question:

226. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Finance if he has considered the proposal to introduce a fizzy drink tax; and if so, the amount of revenue such a tax has the potential to raise. [30649/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

The Deputy will be aware that the Minister for Health established a Special Action Group on Obesity (SAGO) to examine and progress a number of issues to address the problem of overweight and obesity, particularly in children. I understand that SAGO are calling for consideration to be given to taxation measures being applied to all foods and drinks high in fat and sugar. A detailed assessment would need to be carried out prior to the introduction of a fizzy drink tax. This assessment would need to consider the possible impact a tax of this nature would have on employment, the less well off, cross border trading in the absence of a similar measure being introduced in the UK. In the absence of this assessment I am unable to advise the Deputy the revenue that would be raised for the Exchequer if one were to be introduced.

Revenue Commissioners Investigations

Questions (227)

Pearse Doherty

Question:

227. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Finance following a submission by the Revenue Commissioners to the comprehensive expenditure review, which set out that increased audit activity could raise in the region of €100 million for the State, if any steps have been taken to increase the number of Revenue officers deployed to this task or to fulfil any other of the Revenue Commissioners' proposals. [30650/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

I am advised by the Revenue Commissioners that they have not been in a position to assign additional staff to audit, investigation and compliance tasks since 2011. In accordance with Government policy on public sector numbers the Revenue Commissioners are subject to the Employment Control Framework staffing reductions imposed since 2009. Revenue’s overall staffing levels have reduced from a total of 6,581 full time equivalents (FTE) at the end of 2008, to 5,962 (FTE) at the end of 2011, to its current level of 5,767 (FTE). Notwithstanding this reduction of 814 (FTE), the level of staff resources assigned to audit, investigation and compliance activities overall have been maintained by Revenue at around 2,000. I am advised by Revenue that they have accorded a very high priority to compliance activity and are committed to ensuring that resourcing of this work will continue to be prioritised to the greatest extent possible.

Banking Sector Issues

Questions (228, 229, 230, 231)

Damien English

Question:

228. Deputy Damien English asked the Minister for Finance his views on the decision by Irish banks not to implement the business to business aspect of SEPA for February 2014; if he has discussed the implications of this for business with the Central Bank; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30702/13]

View answer

Damien English

Question:

229. Deputy Damien English asked the Minister for Finance the conditions under SEPA in which a business can seek a refund of a direct debit within eight weeks from the date on which the amount was debited from the account of the debtor; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30704/13]

View answer

Damien English

Question:

230. Deputy Damien English asked the Minister for Finance the conditions under SEPA in which a business can seek a refund of an unauthorised transaction within 13 months from the date on which the amount was debited from the account of the debtor; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30705/13]

View answer

Damien English

Question:

231. Deputy Damien English asked the Minister for Finance if he has any concerns regarding the availability of credit for business following the changes being introduced by SEPA and the non-implementation of the business to business element; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30706/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Finance)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 228 to 231, inclusive, together.

The aim of the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) project is to create a single market for euro-denominated retail payments. SEPA is an EU initiative that will change the way that these payments are processed across Europe. SEPA will allow payment systems users to make euro-denominated retail electronic payments to payees located in any of the participating countries, using a single payment account and a single set of payment instruments (the participating countries are the EU member states, together with Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland and Monaco).

SEPA comes into full effect on 1 February 2014 and businesses will need to ensure that payroll, direct debit and accounting systems are SEPA-ready. SEPA will introduce new business rules in relation to retail electronic payments and implement common standards in all participating countries for issuing and executing the underlying payment instructions. SEPA will deliver tangible benefits to businesses, for example by allowing faster settlement and simplified processing will improve cash flow and reduce costs.

The implementation of SEPA within Ireland is overseen by the National Payments Plan (NPP) Steering Committee, which was established in 2012 to modernise the way payments are made in Ireland. In this regard, an NPP-SEPA sub-group has been formed, consisting of representatives of consumers, businesses, Government and banks. This sub group provides an avenue for the discussion of any issues that arise in the process of migrating to SEPA.

The SEPA Direct Debit Scheme exists in two forms – the ‘core’ scheme and the ‘B2B’ (Business to Business) scheme. Both scheme forms allow creditors to collect funds directly from a debtor’s bank account, provided that a valid mandate has been given by the debtor to the creditor. The key difference is that in the B2B Scheme the payer is not entitled to obtain a refund in respect of an authorised transaction (in contrast with the rights afforded to the payer in the in the core SDD scheme).

Adherence to the core scheme by banks is mandatory, but provision of the B2B scheme is optional; thus far only two Irish banks are in a position to offer the SDD ‘B2B’ service. The remaining banks are currently focussed on the migration of their business customers to the SEPA ‘core’ scheme in advance of the 1 February 2014 end-date. Once this objective has been achieved, the possibility of offering the ‘B2B’ scheme will be examined by these banks; this issue is currently the subject of ongoing discussion between the banks concerned and the Central Bank of Ireland.

In terms of the refund rights available to payers under SEPA, these are laid down in the Payment Services Directive 2009 (the PSD) as transposed by S.I. 383 of 2009, and in the SEPA Direct Debit (SDD) scheme rulebook published by the European Payments Council (the owner of the SDD scheme).

The PSD grants consumers refund rights in three situations – for overcharging, unauthorised debits and incorrect processing. For unauthorised debits and incorrect processing, the payer has a right to an immediate refund as long as they notify their bank as soon as possible, and no later than 13 months after the debit date.

In cases of overcharging, if the payer has authorised payment without the amount having been stated in advance (e.g., through a direct debit or a card payment) and the amount debited is not what could reasonably have been expected, the payer is be entitled to challenge the debit by contacting their payment services provider within eight weeks. The payment services provider is then obliged to reimburse the payer within ten days or justify its refusal to do so.

In addition to the protections available under the PSD, the SDD ‘core’ scheme rules grant payers a 'no-questions-asked' refund right during the eight weeks following the debiting of a their account. During this time, any funds collected via the SDD ‘core’ scheme will be credited back to the payer's account upon request.

FÁS Training Programmes

Questions (232)

Michael Lowry

Question:

232. Deputy Michael Lowry asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will allow a person (details supplied) in County Tipperary to complete an apprenticeship with FÁS outside this jurisdiction; if he will recognise their work outside the State for the purposes of their apprenticeship; if his attention has been drawn to the person who cannot complete their apprenticeship within the State; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30214/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

I understand that the FÁS Standards Based Apprenticeship system requires an apprentice to undertake seven alternating phases of training and work experience with a company that is based in the Republic of Ireland and that is approved to train apprentices. There is no mechanism to approve companies outside of this jurisdiction. One of the reasons for this is that FÁS is charged with monitoring the system to ensure that employers are compliant with current Apprenticeship Rules and that apprentices are afforded an opportunity of a reasonable range of work experience. A number of new initiatives have been implemented by FÁS to progress redundant apprentices. The temporary Redundant Apprentice Placement Scheme (RAPS) provides supports for redundant apprentices to be placed with an employer to complete the minimum duration necessary to complete the on-the-job phases at Phase 3/5/7. Employers can apply to FÁS to participate in RAPS subject to meeting the eligibility criteria. FÁS has also introduced a Competency Determination Mechanism (CDM). This mechanism will provide redundant apprentices who have a time deficit in their apprenticeship with the opportunity to demonstrate their skills and knowledge against the occupational standard for the specified trade over a number of days in a FÁS Training Centre.

Unemployment Statistics

Questions (233)

Pearse Doherty

Question:

233. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Education and Skills the amount, as a percentage and as a figure, of Ireland's total both EU and Government part-funding ESF spending in the past seven years that was spent specifically on youth unemployment initiatives or youth only programmes. [30377/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

The European Social Fund (ESF) is administered in Ireland through the Human Capital Investment Operational Programme 2007-2013 (HCI OP), an agreement between Ireland and the EU. The Programme comprises a €751 million plan that addresses Ireland's labour market and human capital development needs for the period 2007-2013. The Programme consists of twelve distinct areas of investment which contribute to the Programme's overall objectives. These are shown on the following Table. All of the Activities funded within the HCI OP support youth (i.e. persons aged below 25 years), but they vary depending on the objectives of the individual Activity. Three of the Activities provide services that are 100% youth orientated; these are Youthreach, and two Garda Youth Diversion Programmes. A number of others provide services that are over 80% focussed on youth or attended by youth; these are Undergraduate Skills and Third Level Access (which is comprised of two separate funds namely the Student Assistance Fund and the Fund for Students with Disabilities). The remaining Activities vary between 8% and approx 50%. See table below. During the year 2012, the total number of persons supported by the HCI OP was 155,210. The total number of youth for the same period was 52,999, or 34% of the total number of persons.

The total cumulative expenditure for the HCI OP for the years 2007 to 2012 is €446.68 million. Approximately 30% of all the persons supported under the HCI OP during the years 2007-12 are youth. Therefore, the corresponding expenditure amount spent on youth during the 2007-2012 period is €134 million.

HCI OP total expenditure for the years 2007 to 2012

Activities

ESF

Public match funding

Total Expenditure

Percentage % for youth 2012

YOUTH ONLY

-

-

-

-

YouthReach and Travellers

 € 31,176,912

 € 31,176,912

 €62,353,824

100

Garda Youth Diversion - IT Skills/Per Dev

 € 397,920

 € 397,920

 € 795,840

100

Garda Youth Diversion - Additional Workers

 €7,183,588

 €7,183,588

 € 14,367,176

100

OTHER ACTIVITIES – INCLUDES YOUTH

-

-

-

-

Undergraduate Skills

 €  15,699,342

 €  15,699,342

 €31,398,684

88

Third Level Access

 € 10,185,488

 € 10,185,488

 € 20,370,976

81

Labour Market Activation Fund

 € 6,625,000

 € 6,625,000

 €13,250,000

54

Skills Training for the unemployed

 €  85,215,666

 €  85,215,666

 € 170,431,332

40

Integration of Migrants

 €500,421

 €500,421

 € 1,000,842

35

Disability Activation Project

 € 468,867

 € 468,867

 € 937,734

17

Back to Education Initiative

 €  15,534,004

 €  15,534,004

 € 31,068,008

15

Equality Mainstreaming

 €1,204,696

 €1,204,696

 € 2,409,392

10

Positive Actions to Promote Gender Equality

 € 2,758,100

 € 2,758,100

 € 5,516,200

10

Adult Literacy

 €45,476,628

 €45,476,628

 €90,953,256

8

Technical Assistance for OP

 €  652,912

 €   652,912

 €  1,305,824

0

Technical Assistance for Positive Actions

 € 260,023

 €  260,023

 €   520,046

0

TOTAL expenditure for HCI OP 2007 to 2012

 €223,339,567

 €223,339,567

 €446,679,134

-

-

-

-

-

Average % for  2007 to 2012

Total for Youth (under 25 years) for 2007-2012

      €67,001,870

 € 67,001,870

   €134,003,740

30%

1. Transnational – this refers to transnational and interregional actions between Member States through the sharing of information, experiences, results and good practices, and through developing complementary approaches and coordinated or joint action.

2. The new Labour Market Education and Training Fund programme is the Momentum Programme, which commenced in early 2013. The Programme will provide training and education courses to approx. 6,500 unemployed persons, of which 1,000 places are reserved for youth (under 25’s). Currently, the percentage of youth registered for Momentum courses is 31.7%.

3. Technical Assistance is utilised to support the management of the HCI OP.

4. Technical Assistance for Positive Actions is providing support to the operation of the Gender Equality projects.

Youth Services Funding

Questions (234)

Pearse Doherty

Question:

234. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Education and Skills the amount, as a percentage and as a figure, of Ireland's total both EU and Government part-funding ESF spending in the past seven years that was spent on programmes from which young persons are excluded for example community employment. [30378/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

None of the Activities under the Human Capital Investment Operational Programme 2007-2013 (HCI OP) excludes youth, (i.e. persons aged below 25 years). All of the Activities are open to young persons. Community employment is not part of the HCI Operational Programme and is not co-financed by the ESF.

School Transport Eligibility

Questions (235)

Michael McCarthy

Question:

235. Deputy Michael McCarthy asked the Minister for Education and Skills the position regarding an application for concessionary school transport in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Cork; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30626/13]

View answer

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 my Department/Bus Éireann, having regard to ethos and language.

Children who are not eligible for school transport may apply to Bus Éireann for transport on a concessionary basis subject to a number of conditions which are detailed in the scheme.

Where the number of applications for transport on a concessionary basis exceeds the number of spare seats available, Bus Éireann will determine the allocation of the tickets; this exercise, when needed, is normally carried out in the early weeks of August. In this regard, the family in question should continue to liaise with their local Bus Éireann office.

FÁS Local Training Initiatives Eligibility

Questions (236)

Michael Lowry

Question:

236. Deputy Michael Lowry asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will review the criteria in place for qualification for a named FÁS course (details supplied), if his attention has been drawn to the fact that at present a person must be living in the State for two years to avail of this scheme; his views on whether this is fair; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30660/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

I understand that the two year issue involved in this case relates to Garda Vetting procedures. FÁS operates the Garda vetting process in line with Irish law, Garda Policy and procedure and FÁS policy and procedures. The overriding principle applied is child safety first.

The FÁS Garda Vetting Policy and Guidelines (2009) that are currently in place state the following: Garda Vetting applies to adults, i.e. 18 years or older who as part of their respective programme will have substantive unsupervised access to children and/ or vulnerable adults.

Individuals who lived outside the Island of Ireland for 2 or more continuous years within the last 5 years are not eligible for relevant programmes. This restriction also applies to Irish nationals living outside the Island of Ireland for 2 or more continuous years within the last 5 years.

I am informed that The FÁS Garda Vetting Policy and Guidelines are currently undergoing a general review and will be aligned to meet the requirements of the recently enacted National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Act 2012. The purpose of this Act is to provide a legislative basis for the vetting of persons who seek positions of employment relating to children or vulnerable persons. It is expected that these new guidelines will be put in place later in the year.

Education and Training Provision

Questions (237)

Joe Carey

Question:

237. Deputy Joe Carey asked the Minister for Education and Skills in view of the success of a programme (details supplied) if he will consider introducing same on a national basis; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30011/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

As part of their role, Education Centres develop and provide a range of programmes for teachers, school management, and parents. These programmes are designed in part to respond to locally identified needs while also providing the opportunity to test new approaches. The Parental Guidance Programme for Primary Schools was run through Tralee Education Centre in 2006. Its aim was to build and enhance the capacity of parents to guide and support their children in Primary School so as to enrich their learning experiences at school. It contained modules around Bullying, Positive Discipline and Behaviour Management. At a national level, my Department provides funds a range of programmes dealing with these matters. My Department also provides significant funding to the National Parents Council (Primary) for the provision of training to parents. The National Parents Council (Primary) has also been advised that as part of the Action Plan on Bullying, we are seeking to agree a coordinated training plan for boards of management and parents and have asked them to submit proposals for anti-bullying training for consideration. I should emphasise that, in the current financial climate, our ability to allocate funding for any programmes or initiatives in the area of training, additional to current activities being already undertaken by my Department is limited.

SUPPORT PROGRAMME FOR PARENTS

This Programme aims to build and enhance the capacity of Parents to guide and support their children during their time in Primary school and thereby to maximise their potential for positive participation within school, home and the wider community contexts.

This course is aimed at Parents, Teachers, Home school liaison Officers and members of school parent Boards of Management.

Each session will focus on a different topic -

- Enhancing self-esteem for 5-12 year olds

- Positive discipline and behaviour management for 5-12 year olds

- Forming identity for 5-12 year olds

- Educating your child in relationship and sexuality for 5-12 year olds

Why such a Programme?

- Changing structure of Irish society

- Parents need support to define or redefine our value system

- Early intervention and prevention particularly for students at risk, can make a difference to overall personal development and academic performance

- Empowering the primary care givers with confidence and self-esteem is part of the process of re-educating Parents

- Keeping up to date on issues such as child protection, Internet usage, health and safety and understanding boundaries

Course details are as follows:

04th October – Building self esteem and forming identity

11th October – Positive Discipline and Behaviour Management for 5-12 year olds

18th October – Educating your child in relationships and sexuality for 5-12 year olds

Venue – The Education Centre, Dromtacker, Tralee

Phone – 066 7195000

Time – 10.00am – 12.30pm or 7.00 -9.30pm

NDP CLAIM ________ (Period Jan - June 2006______ (Year)

Organisation: ___________________ The Education Centre, Tralee ______________________

File No:

Title of Course

DATES

PAY

NON-PAY

TOTAL

Participants

Participants

Participants

Total

Total

Pay + Non Pay

primary

primary

P/Primary

P/Primary

Final

Course

Participants

male

female

Male

Female

Total

Hours

Hours

PIRATES

31-May

234.96

182.19

417.15

0

13

13

2.5

32.5

STRATEGIC PLAN - TRALEE PRIMARY AREA

23-May

0

220.25

220.25

9

1

10

2.5

25

PRIMARY PRINCIPALS TRALEE

22/02 &26/4

0

68.58

68.58

15

3

18

2.5

45

INFANT TEACHERS NETWORK

19-Jan

0

213.31

213.31

1

26

0

0

27

2.5

67.5

POST-PIRMARY PRINCIPALS

21/02 & 13/06

0

238.46

238.46

0

0

20

0

20

2.5

50

DOWN SYNDROME

30-May

0

283.54

283.54

40

40

80

2.5

200

SUBJECT ASSOCIATIONS

Jan-June

123.32

1424.18

1547.5

1

0

111

221

333

2.5

832.5

TOTAL

358.28

2630.51

2988.79

66

43

131

261

501

17.5

1252.5

COURSE INCOME FEES: 0

Other Information required:-

Percentage satisfaction rating (A random sampling approach is satisfactory for this purpose).

VERY HELPFUL_______ HELPFUL_________ UNHELPFUL______________

NDP CLAIM ________ (Period July - Dec 2006______ (Year)

Organisation: ___________________ The Education Centre, Tralee ______________________

File No:

Title of Course

DATES

PAY

NON-PAY

TOTAL

Participants

Participants

-

-

Participants

Total

Total

Pay +

primary

primary

P/Primary

P/Primary

Final

Course

Participants

Summer Courses

Non Pay

male

female

Male

Female

Total

Hours

Hours

Environmental & Oganic Gardening

3-7 July

812.60

1381.42

2194.02

3

11

14

20

280

P.E.

3-7 July

819.51

2428.79

3248.30

3

15

18

20

360

Effective Teaching

3-7 July

703.30

2787.00

3490.30

4

19

23

20

460

Exploring the Theme of Sea Thro' Music & V.A.

3-7 July

899.96

3077.85

3977.81

3

17

20

20

400

RSE

3-7 July

854.96

1384.74

2239.70

2

7

9

20

180

Autism

3-7 July

741.50

1787.70

2529.20

0

17

17

20

340

Inclusive Education

3-7 July

899.95

1716.82

2616.77

1

9

10

20

200

Exploring Music - A Thematic Approach

3-7 July

829.01

2694.98

3523.99

1

20

21

20

420

Environmental & Oganic Gardening

21-25 Augt

812.60

1381.42

2194.02

0

16

16

20

320

Obesity Intervention

21-25 Augt

899.95

1002.67

1902.62

1

9

10

20

200

Teaching in the Early Childhood Setting

21-25 Augt

1799.90

3180.71

4980.61

1

15

16

20

320

Curriculum Planning- Scoil Realt na Maidne

3-7 July

179.33

334.24

513.57

9

9

20

180

Walk Tall

21-25th August

0.00

0.00

0.00

2

8

10

20

200

TOTAL

10252.57

23158.34

33410.91

21

172

0

0

193

260

3860

Intercultural Education

28/09 & 19/10

0.00

321.98

321.98

1

8

0

0

9

5

45

Aspergers Syndrome

23-Oct

89.99

324.72

414.71

1

45

4

10

60

2.5

150

Parental Guidance

28/09, 5/12/19 Oct

421.13

2100.14

2521.27

12

100

0

0

112

10

1120

Strategic Plan - Primary Principals Meetings

28/29/30 Nov, 5th Dec

0.00

449.04

449.04

7

3

0

0

10

10

100

Primary Principals - Tralee

22-Nov

0.00

34.29

34.29

7

2

0

0

9

2.5

22.5

Infant Teachers

5th Oct & 9th Nov

0.00

410.10

410.10

1

54

0

0

55

5

275

Post-Primary Principals

Oct & Nov

676.34

1855.02

2531.36

0

0

44

27

71

2.5

177.5

Cert in Primary Science

0.00

4459.80

4459.80

Multi-class Project

0.00

322.20

322.20

Folk Dance

29th Nov

0.00

37.06

37.06

0

7

0

0

7

2.5

17.5

Special Education Network -IATSE Conf

0.00

366.84

366.84

Down Syndrome

5th Dec

0

170.41

170.41

0

36

0

6

42

2.5

105

Steer

14th Nov

0

170.41

170.41

2

30

0

0

32

2.5

80

Genetic Testing - Biology TDT

22/29 Nov & 6/13 Dec

0

981.61

981.61

0

0

12

32

44

10

440

Subject Associations

Sept - Dec

111.92

899.33

1011.25

0

0

53

93

146

20

2920

Certificate in Primary Science

Spring 2006

0.00

4459.80

4459.80

2

2

0

0

4

NDP CLAIM ________ (Period July - Dec 2006______ (Year)

Organisation: ___________________ The Education Centre, Tralee ______________________

File No:

Title of Course

DATES

PAY

NON-PAY

TOTAL

Participants

Participants

Participants

Total

Total

Pay + Non Pay

primary

primary

P/Primary

P/Primary

Final

Course

Participants

male

female

Male

Female

Total

Hours

Hours

Tarbert Education Centre

176.33

554.64

730.97

Ionad Oideachais Chorca Dhuibhne

110.21

730.00

840.21

Ceol-Pleanáil's practiciúil

7

61

68

2.5

170

Stair Áitiúil sa rang

4

23

27

2.5

67.5

Tac Foghlama sa rang

3

21

24

2.5

60

TOTAL

1585.92

18647.39

20233.31

47

392

113

168

720

75

5690

SUMMER COURSES

10252.57

23158.34

33410.91

21

172

0

0

193

260

3860

AUTUMN PROGRAMME

1585.92

18647.39

20233.31

47

392

113

168

720

82.50

5622.50

TOTAL

11838.49

41805.73

53644.22

68

564

113

168

913

342.5

9482.5

COURSE INCOME FEES:

8700.00

720.00

Other Information required:-

Percentage satisfaction rating (A random sampling approach is satisfactory for this purpose).

VERY HELPFUL_______ HELPFUL_________ UNHELPFUL______________

PLEASE NOTE:

SCHOOL-BASED INSERVICE PAYMENTS RE. 2006 WILL NOT BE PAID UNTIL EARLY 2007

WE ARE STILL AWAITNG PARTICIPANT NUMBERS FROM OUR PART-TIME CENTRES AND WILL FORWARD THEM ASAP

Title of Course

DATES

PAY

NON-PAY

TOTAL

Participants

Participants

Participants

Total

Total

Pay + Non Pay

primary

primary

P/Primary

P/Primary

Final

Course

Participants

male

female

Male

Female

Total

Hours

Hours

SPRING PROGRAMME

358.28

2630.51

2988.79

66

43

131

261

501

17.5

1252.5

AUTUMN PROGRAMME

1585.92

18647.39

20233.31

47

392

113

168

720

82.50

5622.50

1944.2

21277.9

23222.1

113

435

244

429

1221

100

6875

NDP CLAIM ________ (Period July - Dec 2006______ (Year)

Organisation: ___________________ The Education Centre, Tralee ______________________

File No:

Title of Course

DATES

PAY

NON-PAY

TOTAL

Participants

Participants

-

-

Participants

Total

Total

Pay +

primary

primary

P/Primary

P/Primary

Final

Course

Participants

Summer Courses

Non Pay

male

female

Male

Female

Total

Hours

Hours

Environmental & Oganic Gardening

3-7 July

812.60

1381.42

2194.02

3

11

14

20

280

P.E.

3-7 July

819.51

2428.79

3248.30

3

15

18

20

360

Effective Teaching

3-7 July

703.30

2787.00

3490.30

4

19

23

20

460

Exploring the Theme of Sea Thro' Music & V.A.

3-7 July

899.96

3077.85

3977.81

3

17

20

20

400

RSE

3-7 July

854.96

1384.74

2239.70

2

7

9

20

180

Autism

3-7 July

741.50

1787.70

2529.20

0

17

17

20

340

Inclusive Education

3-7 July

899.95

1716.82

2616.77

1

9

10

20

200

Exploring Music - A Thematic Approach

3-7 July

829.01

2694.98

3523.99

1

20

21

20

420

Environmental & Oganic Gardening

21-25 Augt

812.60

1381.42

2194.02

0

16

16

20

320

Obesity Intervention

21-25 Augt

899.95

1002.67

1902.62

1

9

10

20

200

Teaching in the Early Childhood Setting

21-25 Augt

1799.90

3180.71

4980.61

1

15

16

20

320

Curriculum Planning- Scoil Realt na Maidne

3-7 July

179.33

334.24

513.57

9

9

20

180

Walk Tall

21-25th August

0.00

0.00

0.00

2

8

10

20

200

TOTAL

10252.57

23158.34

33410.91

21

172

0

0

193

260

3860

Intercultural Education

28/09 & 19/10

0.00

321.98

321.98

1

8

0

0

9

5

45

Aspergers Syndrome

23-Oct

89.99

324.72

414.71

1

45

4

10

60

2.5

150

Parental Guidance

28/09, 5/12/19 Oct

421.13

2100.14

2521.27

12

100

0

0

112

10

1120

Strategic Plan - Primary Principals Meetings

28/29/30 Nov, 5th Dec

0.00

449.04

449.04

7

3

0

0

10

10

100

Primary Principals - Tralee

22-Nov

0.00

34.29

34.29

7

2

0

0

9

2.5

22.5

Infant Teachers

5th Oct & 9th Nov

0.00

410.10

410.10

1

54

0

0

55

5

275

Post-Primary Principals

Oct & Nov

676.34

1855.02

2531.36

0

0

44

27

71

2.5

177.5

Cert in Primary Science

0.00

4459.80

4459.80

Multi-class Project

0.00

322.20

322.20

Folk Dance

29th Nov

0.00

37.06

37.06

0

7

0

0

7

2.5

17.5

Special Education Network -IATSE Conf

0.00

366.84

366.84

Down Syndrome

5th Dec

0

170.41

170.41

0

36

0

6

42

2.5

105

Steer

14th Nov

0

170.41

170.41

2

30

0

0

32

2.5

80

Genetic Testing - Biology TDT

22/29 Nov & 6/13 Dec

0

981.61

981.61

0

0

12

32

44

10

440

Subject Associations

Sept - Dec

111.92

899.33

1011.25

0

0

53

93

146

20

2920

Certificate in Primary Science

Spring 2006

0.00

4459.80

4459.80

2

2

0

0

4

Pupil-Teacher Ratio

Questions (238)

Eamonn Maloney

Question:

238. Deputy Eamonn Maloney asked the Minister for Education and Skills the position regarding smaller one-teacher to four-teacher primary schools; the number of teaching posts lost in September 2012 and projected to be lost in September 2013 due to the changes in the appointment schedule; the number of schools which appealed the loss of a teacher in 2012 and 2013; the number and proportion of appeals which were successful in each year; the number of such schools which were closed or amalgamated in 2012 and as projected for this year; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30070/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

73 small primary schools were originally due to lose a classroom teacher in September 2012 as a result of the budget measure to increase the relevant pupil thresholds. The affected schools were given the right of appeal to the Primary Staffing Appeal Board in the event that they could show that their Projected enrolments for September 2012 were sufficient to allow them retain their classroom teacher over the longer term. 63 of these schools submitted an appeal. 20 were refused, 43 were provisionally upheld of which 14 subsequently lost their posts as projected enrolment did not materialise.

55 small primary schools are due to lose a classroom teacher in September 2013 as a result of the budget measure. The allocation process for the 2013/14 school year is currently underway in my Department. Under the staffing appeals process small schools will not lose their classroom post if they are projecting sustainable increased enrolments in September 2013 that would be sufficient to allow them to retain their existing classroom posts over the longer term. The final staffing position for all schools will not be known until later in the year when the allocation process will be fully completed and all appeals to the Staffing Appeal Board have been considered.

There were 8 primary school closures in 2012. In the case of all 8 schools the staffing was 2 teachers or less. There were 12 primary schools amalgamated in 2012 to become 6 primary schools. Of the 12 schools amalgamated 3 schools had a staffing of 4 teachers or less at the time of amalgamation.

Special Educational Needs Services Provision

Questions (239)

Nicky McFadden

Question:

239. Deputy Nicky McFadden asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will clarify the position for families with more than one child needing access to the July provision scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30087/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

The Deputy will be aware that the July Education Programme is available to all special schools and mainstream primary schools with special classes catering for children with autism that choose to extend their education services through the month of July. My Department also provides for a July Programme for pupils with a severe/profound general learning disability. Where school based provision is not feasible, home based provision may be grant aided. 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.

State Examinations Issues

Questions (240)

Pat Deering

Question:

240. Deputy Pat Deering asked the Minister for Education and Skills the allowances made for students who sat honours mathematics in this year's leaving certificate due to a mistake on question eight of paper two; if the allowances will be extended throughout the paper due to time spent on one mistaken question. [30101/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

The State Examinations Commission has statutory responsibility for operational matters relating to the certificate examinations. In view of this I have forwarded your query to the State Examinations Commission for direct reply to you.

School Textbooks

Questions (241)

Clare Daly

Question:

241. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will investigate the claims of a company (details supplied) that it can publish schoolbooks at considerably cheaper prices, with particular attention to the terms and conditions of employment of its workforce. [30113/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

I am very conscious that the cost of textbooks is a considerable burden on families. Since becoming Minister for Education and Skills, I have attempted to take steps to reduce the burden on families. Shortly after coming into office I met with members of the Irish Educational Publishers' Association and impressed on them the need to limit the cost of textbooks. I have also stressed to them the real need to avoid placing schools and families in a position where textbooks are altered unnecessarily. The Association responded positively to my approaches and agreed a voluntary Code of Practice among their members. The Code commits the publishers to limit the publication of new editions and to maintaining editions of books in print unchanged for at least six years. The publishers have also given assurances to me that they will sell textbooks to schools at discounts so that schools can purchase textbooks in bulk to stock textbook rental schemes. All these developments are welcome, and I look forward to seeing the members of the Association implement these commitments. The Department provided approximately €15m in total to first and second level schools by way of book grants in 2012 and the same level of funding will be provided in 2013. As the Deputy may be aware I launched new "Guidelines for Developing Textbook Rental Schemes in Schools" on the 28th January last. These Guidelines provide practical advice to primary and post-primary schools on how rental schemes can be established and operated. The aim of the Guidelines is to help as many schools as possible to start such book rental programmes. The publication of these Guidelines follows a survey of schools by the Department, and which I published in May 2012. This had a 99% response rate at primary level, and showed that 76% of primary schools operate a book rental scheme. At second level, the response rate was lower, at 44%. Of those which did respond, 88% of those in the VEC sector and 73% of those in the Community & Comprehensive sector operated a book rental scheme. I believe these results show that we have a good foundation to build on across the country. I hope that schools that are not yet operating book rental schemes will be encouraged to use the Guidelines to introduce them. If they do, it will result in substantial savings for parents. Schools which already have rental schemes can save parents up to 80% of the cost of buying new books. A special "Guide for Parents" was also published, to inform them of how the schemes operate and how parents can help schools to establish and run them. I have been very clear in my support for book rental schemes. All of us who are parents know how expensive textbooks can be and what a burden it places on already hard pressed families at the start of every school year.

I am pleased to see the high level of book rental schemes in operation at primary level and I believe that these Guidelines will encourage this practice across all schools in our education landscape. I also published a Report on Textbook Rental Schemes in Schools and the Allocation of Textbook Grants by the Department of Education & Skills in May 2012. This report presented four policy options to encourage schools to establish textbook rental schemes. None of the options are ideal, each one involves a trade-off of advantages and disadvantages. I will continue to monitor the number of schools operating book rental schemes, and if it proves necessary consider further steps to encourage schools to do so. Educational book publishers are independent private companies not under the direct control of my Department. Apart from a small number of prescribed texts at second-level, mainly in the case of language subjects, decisions on textbooks are taken at school level. Individual schools need to adopt a more cost-conscious approach to the selection of books in their classes.

Schools Building Projects Status

Questions (242)

Gerald Nash

Question:

242. Deputy Gerald Nash asked the Minister for Education and Skills his plans for the development of a school (details supplied) in County Louth; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30118/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

The Major Building Project referred to by the Deputy is currently at an early Stage of Architectural Planning. The Department is currently awaiting submission by the Board of Management and its Design team of an addendum to the Stage 2a report. Following review of this addendum report, and subject to no further issues arising, the project will be authorised to proceed to apply for planning permission and statutory approvals. Due to competing demands on my Department's capital budget, imposed by the need to prioritise the limited funding available for the provision of additional school accommodation to meet increasing demographic requirements, it was not possible to include this project in the construction programme.

School building projects, including this project, which have not been included in the construction programme, but which were previously initiated will continue to be progressed to final planning stages in anticipation of the possibility of further funds being available to the Department in the future.

Student Grant Scheme Design

Questions (243)

Pádraig MacLochlainn

Question:

243. Deputy Pádraig Mac Lochlainn asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will assess the land of farming families as an asset to be considered under the application process for a student grant. [30127/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

The Deputy will be aware that, following agreement in principle by the Government to broaden the current means testing arrangements for student grants by way of inclusion of the value of capital assets, I set up a dedicated implementation group to bring forward detailed proposals. I have received a draft report from the implementation group. This is currently under consideration and I will be consulting further with my cabinet colleagues. The Deputy will appreciate that, until a collective Cabinet decision has been taken, it is not possible to say what assets may be included in any new means testing arrangements for student grants.