Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Questions (87)

Thomas P. Broughan

Question:

87. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Education and Skills the level of information, resources and training that will be provided to schools in order to bring forward proposed changes to the new junior cycle before its implementation. [21736/14]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

Resources are currently targetted at providing Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in advance of implementation. The Junior Cycle for Teachers (JCT) has been established by my Department to provide effective support to schools in the context of their implementation of the new Framework for Junior Cycle. A comprehensive and long-term national programme of CPD for school leaders and teachers commenced in October 2013. CPD will be provided on a rolling basis as each new subject specification is implemented, throughout the duration of the implementation phases of A Framework for Junior Cycle. A minimum of 4.5 days CPD will be available to all teachers of English and a minimum of 4 days CPD will be available to teachers of all other subjects. Additional supplementary CPD in particular areas of interest will also be made available e.g. workshops on teaching film and drama for teachers of English. All schools will also have one day whole-school in-service per year for each year of the roll-out of the JCSA and approval is given for schools to close, subject to Board of Management approval, to facilitate this CPD for all staff. The website www.juniorcycle.ie is a collaboration between the NCCA and JCT and is an integral part of the support structures for schools and hosts information and materials aimed at supporting the implementation of the reformed Junior Cycle in schools. The Government is investing heavily in measures to support teachers and schools as they implement the Junior Cycle Framework with up to €4.8m being made available in 2014. Actual expenditure for the year depends on a range of factors including level of attendance at CPD and uptake of substitution and so on.