Tuesday, 10 June 2014

Questions (222, 250)

John McGuinness

Question:

222. Deputy John McGuinness asked the Minister for Education and Skills if the concessionary amalgamation post sanctioned for a school (details supplied) in County Kilkenny will be approved for retention beyond September 2014; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24319/14]

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Paudie Coffey

Question:

250. Deputy Paudie Coffey asked the Minister for Education and Skills if there will be a provision of additional teachers at a school (details supplied) in County Kilkenny; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24654/14]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 222 and 250 together.

Where schools are amalgamating there is a provision for the allocation of a concessionary mainstream teaching post in cases where the approved number of mainstream teachers serving in the schools at the time the amalgamation takes place exceeds the number of mainstream posts warranted by the total enrolment on the basis of the staffing schedule. The continued allocation of the concessionary post is dependent on the teachers concerned remaining on the staff of the school and the appropriate enrolment figures being maintained.

The school referred to by the Deputies, Bunscoil McAuley Rice, was allocated a concessionary mainstream teaching post upon amalgamation in 2007. This was allocated on the basis of the school operating on a split site and the school was informed that the post would remain in place until the school moved to a new building, on one site. This arrangement remains in place. However as the school is moving to its new building in September 2014 the concessionary post will be removed for the coming 2014/15 school year.

The staffing arrangements for the 2014/15 school year (Circular 0007/2014) were published on 24 January, 2014. The staffing process includes an appeals mechanism for schools to submit an appeal under certain criteria to an independent Appeals Board. The Appeals Board operates independently of the Department and its decision is final.

The key factor for determining the level of staffing resources provided at individual school level is the staffing schedule for the relevant school year and pupil enrolments on the previous 30 September. The staffing arrangements also include the provision whereby schools experiencing rapid increases in enrolment can apply for additional permanent mainstream posts on developing grounds, using projected enrolment for September 2014. The school referred to has been provisionally approved for a developing school post for the 14/15 school year pending confirmation of its enrolment at 30 September 2014.