Wednesday, 10 October 2018

Questions (69)

Carol Nolan

Question:

69. Deputy Carol Nolan asked the Minister for Education and Skills if funding resources will be provided in budget 2019 to reduce class sizes in DEIS schools. [41418/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

My aim for Budget 2019, as it has been in previous years, is to progressively deliver on the commitments set out in the Action Plan for Education, in the Programme for a Partnership Government and in the Confidence and Supply Arrangement and to meet demographic and demand pressures, which can have significant resource implications. It is in that context that I will formulate my specific budgetary priorities.

I have set 4 key areas where I am seeking to make improvements in order to meet our objective to make the Irish Education and Training service the best in Europe: the quality of the learning experience; the capacity to meet the needs of those at a disadvantage or with special needs to fulfil their potential; the environment for schools to be innovative and continuously improve their capacity to serve their pupils' needs; and the collaboration and bridges which education and training institutions build with their wider communities to meet the changing needs of our country.

DEIS Plan 2017 allows for a reduced class size in Urban Band 1 primary schools to accommodate class size of 20:1 at junior classes and 24:1 at senior classes to support those students at the highest risk of educational disadvantage. Under DEIS Plan 2017, there is a commitment to evaluate the level of teaching resources for schools participating in the School Support Programme to inform future policy in this area and this evaluation is currently underway.