I wish to inform the Deputy that schools are not required to make an application for inclusion in the DEIS programme, as all schools both Primary and Post Primary are assessed using a new uniform identification model.
As previously referenced in the Topical Issue Debate, the DEIS identification process uses data from a number of sources to improve accuracy regarding the socio-demographic profile of schools resulting from the new identification model. This will have an impact not only on the assessment of schools for inclusion in the programme but also on the scaling of resources to allow for more graduated levels of support. This in turn allows for the ultimate objective of allocating resources to best meet the identified need of individual schools.
In order to achieve this, the current identification model needs to be as accurate as possible and this will be facilitated by the use of Eircode to ensure correct inputting of addresses. Further analysis is also required to examine other variables known to be strong predictors of educational disadvantage in the context of resource allocation.
In order to ensure the quality of the address data and conduct further analysis, it has been decided to conduct further quality assurance on the model before extending these envisaged uses of the model. Therefore, it is not intended to extend the DEIS programme to any further schools until this work is complete.