Departmental Staff Data

Questions (168, 169, 170)

John Lahart

Question:

168. Deputy John Lahart asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the number of women and men, respectively, employed in his Department and in the agencies under the remit of his Department in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52060/18]

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John Lahart

Question:

169. Deputy John Lahart asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the various grades in which males and females are employed in his Department and the agencies under the remit of his Department in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52077/18]

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John Lahart

Question:

170. Deputy John Lahart asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the ratio of males to females employed in his Department and the agencies under the remit of his Department in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52094/18]

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Written answers (Question to Public)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 168 to 170, inclusive, together.

The following tables set out details of the various grades at which staff are employed in my Department and the bodies under its aegis. These tables provide a breakdown of the numbers of males and females employed at each grade together with the approximate ratio of males to females which have also been expressed as percentages.

Department of Public Expenditure and Reform

Grade

Female

Male

Secretary General

0

1

Assistant Secretary

1

4

Director Level

2

0

Chief Information Officer

0

1

Chief Medical Officer

0

1

Special Advisor

1

0

Principal Officer

18

20

Assistant Principal

64

67

Higher Executive Officer

53

45

Administrative Officer

29

37

Executive Officer

31

18

Clerical Officer

30

9

Occupational Physician

2

1

Occupational Health Nurse

2

0

Civilian Driver

0

4

Temporary Clerical Officer

1

0

Intern

1

1

Total

235

209

Approximate Ratio

1

1

Percentage

53%

47%

Office of Government Procurement

Grade

Female

Male

Assistant Secretary

0

1

Principal Officer

7

8

Assistant Principal Officer

22

32

Higher Executive Officer

33

44

Executive Officer

21

29

Clerical Officer

13

17

Total

96

131

Approximate Ratio

2

3

Percentage

42%

58%

Institute of Public Administration

Grade

Female

Male

Assistant Secretary

1

1

Grade 1

2

2

Grade 2

2

5

Grade 3

9

8 + 1 Acting G3

Grade 4

9 + 1 Acting G4

5

Grade 5

10 + 1 Acting G5

1

Grade 6

6

4

Grade 7

15

4

Total

56

31

Approximate Ratio

2

1

Percentage

64%

36%

Office of the Regulator of the National Lottery

Grade

Female

Male

Director

1

0

Principal Officer

0

1

Assistant Principal Officer

1

1

Accountant

0

1

Higher Executive Officer

1

0

Total

3

3

Ratio

1

1

Percentage

50%

50%

Public Appointments Service

Grade

Female

Male

CEO

1

0

Principal Officer

3

1

Principal Psychologist

0

1

Senior Psychologist

1

0

Assistant Principal Officer

6

2

Psychologist

4

0

Professional Accountant

0

1

Higher Executive Officer

21

4

Translator

0

1

Administrative Officer

2

1

Executive Officer

37

15

Clerical Officer

50

34

Temporary Clerical Officer

2

4

Head Service Officer

0

2

Service Officer

0

1

Total

127

67

Approximate Ratio

2

1

Percentage

65%

35%

Economic and Social Research Institute

Grade

Female

Male

Intern

3

1

Clerical Officer

8

2

Executive Officer

6

1

Services Officer

1

0

Administrative Officer

23

26

Higher Executive Officer

4

1

Assistant Principal

3

0

Principal Officer

1

1

Research Analyst

0

1

Research Officer

10

7

Senior Research Officer

6

2

Associate Research Professor

5

3

Research Professor

3

2

Director

0

1

Subtotal

73

48

Approximate Ratio

3

2

Percentage

60%

40%

Office of the Ombudsman

Grade

Female

Male

Assistant Secretary

1

0

Principal Officer

4

5

Assistant Principal

25

22

Higher Executive Officer

4

9

Administrative Officer

6

2

Executive Officer

16

12

Clerical Officer

15

10

Service Officer

0

2

Total

71

62

Approximate Ratio

1

1

Percentage

53%

47%

State Laboratory

Grade

Female

Male

State Chemist

1

0

Principal Chemist

2

0

Senior Chemist

5

2

Assistant Principal

2

0

Chemist 11

8

4

Technical Information Manager

0

1

Chemist

12

9

Senior Laboratory Analyst

7

4

Laboratory Analyst

14

9

Higher Executive Officer

2

1

Executive Officer

1

3

Clerical Officer

3

1

Head Laboratory Attendant

0

1

Storekeeper

0

1

Laboratory Attendant

2

1

Total

59

37

Approximate Ratio

3

2

Percentage

61%

39%

National Shared Services Office

Grade

Female

Male

Deputy Secretary

1

0

Assistant Secretary

2

0

Principal Officer

6

5

Assistant Principal

27

15

Executive Officer

118

50

Higher Executive Officer

43

40

Clerical Officer

294

178

Temporary Clerical Officer

18

9

Grand Total

509

297

Approximate Ratio

3

2

Percentage

63%

37%

Special EU Programmes Body

SEUPB Grade

Equivalent Irish Civil Service Grade

Females

Males

CEO

No Equivalent

1

0

Director

Principal

1

2

Programme Manager

Assistant Principal

4

8

Programme Officer

Combination of HEO and EO (Std)

20

10

Clerical Supervisor

Staff Officer

10

2

Clerical Officer

Clerical Officer (Std)

1

2

Clerical Assistant

No Equivalent

1

0

Total

38

24

Approximate Ratio

3

2

Percentage

61%

39%

Office of Public Works

The Office of Public Works will respond directly to the Deputy.

Government Expenditure

Questions (171)

Barry Cowen

Question:

171. Deputy Barry Cowen asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform if the Irish Government Economic Evaluation Service will review its demographic projections for public expenditure in view of latest CSO data; if the review will be published and integrated into calculations of the fiscal stance; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52098/18]

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Written answers (Question to Public)

The demographic projections used to inform medium-term expenditure planning in the context of Budget 2019 are broadly based on the figures set out in the IGEES paper ‘Budgetary Impact of Changing Demographics 2017 – 2027.’ This paper sets out the likely additional costs over the next decade relating to increased demands in the areas of health, education and social protection. While Ireland currently has a relatively young demographic profile in comparison with other countries, as our population gets larger and older in the coming years there will be increased pressure on expenditure and the public finances. The size and structure of the population influences the demand for public services, particularly in the front-line areas mentioned above.

Demographic projections are subject to consideration and updating in light of emerging data. Some demographic allocations were re-examined and updated as part of Spending Review 2018, for example in the area of Primary and Second Level Education.  Work is currently ongoing in selecting topics for Spending Review 2019. While the list of topics has not been finalised, it is likely that demographics will be an element of the Spending Review process.

Appointments to State Boards

Questions (172)

Thomas P. Broughan

Question:

172. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the public bodies and other entities under the aegis of his Department for which he is responsible for making all or some appointments which are not subject to the guidelines on appointments to State boards, in that the recruitment and selection process is undertaken by his Department and not through the Public Appointments Service; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52182/18]

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Written answers (Question to Public)

In response to the Deputy's question, I can confirm that in respect of the public bodies and other entities under the aegis of my Department, the recruitment and selection process for board members is not undertaken directly by my Department.

Equality Proofing of Budgets

Questions (173)

Thomas P. Broughan

Question:

173. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the membership, terms of reference and work programme for the Equality Budgeting Expert Advisory Group; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52183/18]

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Written answers (Question to Public)

The ongoing work regarding Equality Budgeting in Ireland follows the Programme for a Partnership Government commitment to ‘develop the process of budget and policy proofing as a means of advancing equality, reducing poverty and strengthening economic and social rights’. The Programme also includes a commitment to ‘ensure the institutional arrangements are in place to support equality and gender proofing within key government departments’. The National Strategy for Women and Girls 2017-2020 contains a further commitment to ‘take measures to build capacity within the Civil and Public Service with regard to gender mainstreaming and gender budgeting’.

 A pilot initiative for Equality Budgeting was announced in Budget 2018 and as I announced in my Budget 2019 speech I am expanding Equality Budgeting to further develop the gender budgeting elements, and to broaden its scope to other dimensions of equality including poverty, socioeconomic inequality and disability. The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform is committed to working with other Departments and Agencies, and with experts and advocacy groups, in order to advance the Equality Budgeting initiative.

Against this background, an Equality Budgeting Expert Advisory Group has now been established to assist in the further development and roll-out of Equality Budgeting in Ireland. The more specific role and objectives of the Group are:

- to provide constructive, critical feedback on the Equality Budgeting initiative to date;

- to provide expert guidance and informed insights on the future direction and areas of focus for Equality Budgeting, including in light of international experience, lessons from other policy areas and from academia;

- to promote a coherent, cross-government approach to Equality Budgeting, to maximise equality impacts and avoid duplication of effort across various policy areas; and

- to identify existing strengths of the Irish policy-making system which can be leveraged in support of Equality Budgeting, along with potential shortcomings that need to be addressed in this regard.

The Expert Group will meet approximately every two to three months. Officials from the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform will act as secretariat to the Group. Topics which the Expert Group wish to be examined will be discussed with the secretariat and arrangements will be made for appropriate departments and agencies to attend meetings.

The Group, which is chaired by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, includes representation from the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection, the Department of Finance and the Department of Justice and Equality. In addition to the representatives from these Government Departments, the Group includes: Helen Johnston, National Economic and Social Council; Jennifer McCarthy Flynn, National Women's Council of Ireland; Helen Russell, the Economic and Social Research Institute; Seamus Taylor, Maynooth University; and representatives from the Central Statistics Office and the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission.

Language Schools

Questions (174)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

174. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Education and Skills if language schools will be required to provide evidence of financial viability to ensure that closures such as that of a college (details supplied) is not allowed to happen again in view of the fact that non-EU students applying for visas to study English here must produce bank accounts and evidence of financial viability; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52190/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

English language schools in Ireland seeking to recruit non-EEA students are required to have the relevant education programmes listed on the Interim List of Eligible Programmes (ILEP).  The ILEP, which is operated and maintained by the Department of Justice and Equality, is a list of education programmes considered to justify the granting of permission to non-EEA students to live and work in Ireland.  The regulations governing the operation of the ILEP specify that English language schools must be tax compliant and in good financial standing.

Irish immigration regulations oblige students in certain countries to pay fees to an English language school before they apply for a visa to allow them to come to Ireland to study.  These regulations stipulate that schools are obliged to safeguard such payments in a holding account and that they are obliged to return the payments within 20 working days in the case of a visa refusal.  I understand that the Department of Justice and Equality is investigating the specific case referred to by the Deputy.

My Department is also taking steps to strengthen regulation of the English language sector. The Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) (Amendment) Bill 2018 is currently before the Seanad.  The new Bill will establish the International Education Mark (IEM) and a Protection for Enrolled Learners (PEL) Fund.

The IEM is a core component of the Government's policy for the English language sector and will provide a full quality framework for the provision of education to international learners in the future.  Only those providers who meet the robust quality assurance procedures of Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI) will be allowed to carry the Mark. 

Once fully implemented, providers must gain authorisation from QQI to use the IEM in order to be eligible to recruit international students. The IEM is a tool to further enhance and sustain the quality of our education system. It also provides learners, or potential learners, with the necessary confidence that providers with the IEM have been quality assured by QQI. 

The Bill also contains provisions to provide QQI with additional statutory powers to examine a provider’s financial sustainability.  These provisions will enable QQI to examine the bona fides of a provider in addition to assessing that the provider has the capacity and capability to implement the quality assurance processes and provide programmes of education and training consistent with the requirements of the Act. Providers will have to satisfy QQI in relation to issues such as the legal personality, ownership and corporate governance arrangements in addition to examining that adequate financial resources are in place to ensure the viability of these businesses.

Upon enactment, the Bill will also empower QQI to establish a fund for the protection of enrolled learners (PEL). This fund will be resourced by an annual charge from those providers covered by it. The fund will be used to ‘teach out’ a programme in the event that a provider fails to provide a programme. Should this not be possible, the fund will be used to reimburse students for the most recent fees that have been paid.

Language Schools

Questions (175)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

175. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Education and Skills the measures being considered to ensure jobs in the lucrative English language teaching sector are not precarious (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52222/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

There is an existing legislative framework in place to protect employment rights in the English language education sector.  This includes the Protection of Employment (Fixed-Term Work) Act 2003 and the Workplace Relations Act 2015.  There is also a comprehensive industrial relations machinery in place for dealing with workplace relations issues including collective bargaining issues at firm level and at sectoral level.  If individuals consider that their employment rights have been infringed under these Acts then it is open to them to take a case before the Workplace Relations Commission.

The Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection is currently progressing a new piece of legislation through the Oireachtas which will further strengthen the regulatory framework in this area. The Employment (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2017 includes requirements that employers provide employees with certain terms of employment within a certain period after commencing employment; to impose sanctions for certain offences; to further provide for a minimum payment due to employees in certain circumstances; to prohibit contracts specifying zero as the contract hours in certain circumstances and to provide for the introduction of banded contract hours; to further provide for prohibition of penalisation and for those purposes to amend the Terms of Employment (Information) Act 1994 and the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997; to amend the Workplace Relations Act 2015.

In addition, the Deputy may be aware that legislation is also being progressed by my Department which will strengthen the regulation of the English language sector. The Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) (Amendment) Bill 2018 is currently before the Seanad.  This new Bill will establish the International Education Mark (IEM).  The IEM is a core component of the Government's policy for the English language sector and will provide a full quality framework for the provision of education to international learners in the future.  Only those providers who meet the robust quality assurance procedures of Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI) will be allowed to carry the Mark. 

The Bill also contains provisions to provide QQI with additional statutory powers to examine a provider’s financial sustainability and to evaluate a provider’s corporate fitness.  These provisions will enable QQI to examine the bona fides of a provider in addition to assessing that the provider has the capacity and capability to implement the quality assurance processes and provide programmes of education and training consistent with the requirements of the Act.  All providers, including English language providers, will have to satisfy QQI in relation to issues such as the legal personality, ownership and corporate governance arrangements in addition to examining that adequate financial resources are in place to ensure the viability of these businesses.

At Committee Stage reading of the Bill which was initiated on 5th December 2018 Minister Mitchell O’Connor announced her intention to appoint an experienced mediator to meet with bodies representing employers and employees in the English language education sector to explore the potential for a Registered Employment Agreement to be developed for workers in the English language sector.  The necessary arrangements for the appointment of this mediator are being progressed by my Department.

Special Educational Needs Service Provision

Questions (176)

Catherine Murphy

Question:

176. Deputy Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for Education and Skills the way in which demands for second level school places in 2019 in special education units in Celbridge, County Kildare will be met; the options being considered for pupils (details supplied); if a third class is being considered in the school; if a unit is being considered for other schools in the area; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51535/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

My Department's policy is to provide for the inclusive education of children with special educational needs, including Autism (ASD), in mainstream school settings, unless such a placement would not be in the best interests of the child concerned, or the children with whom they will be educated.

The National Council for Special Education (NCSE) is responsible, through its network of Special Needs Organisers (SENOs), for the development and delivery and co-ordination of education services to children with Special Educational Needs, including the establishment of special class and special school placements.

Since 2011, the NCSE has increased the number of special classes from 548 in 2011 to 1,459 across the country now, of which 1,196 are Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) special classes. There are currently 4 special schools and 75 special classes in mainstream schools in Co. Kildare, including 6 Early Intervention classes, 46 ASD special classes at primary level and 15 ASD special classes at post primary level. Details of all special classes for children with special educational needs are available on www.ncse.ie.

The NCSE is aware of emerging need from year to year, and where special provision, including special class provision, is required, it is planned and established to meet that need. This process is ongoing.

While it is not always possible or practical that a special class placement would be available in a child’s local school, the NCSE has informed my Department that, in general, they are satisfied that there are sufficient ASD special class placements to meet existing demand nationally. From time to time, the NCSE identifies local areas where additional provision is required. In those circumstances, SENOs work with the schools and families concerned to resolve the issues involved.

Where parents have been unsuccessful in enrolling their child in a school placement they should update their local SENO to inform the planning process.

My Department is aware that the establishment of special class provision in some schools and communities can be challenging.

The Education (Admission to Schools) Act 2018 when commenced will assist in addressing this issue in areas where the NCSE is of the opinion that there is insufficient education provision for children with special educational needs.

Section 8 of the Act, which commenced Monday 3rd December 2018, will provide the Minister with a power, after a process of consultation with the NCSE, the Board of Management and the Patron of the school, to compel a school to make additional provision for the education of children with special educational needs.

I have arranged for the Deputy's question on emerging need in the Kildare area to be forwarded to the NCSE for their attention and direct reply. My Department has no role in making determinations in this area.

Teaching Qualifications

Questions (177)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

177. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Education and Skills the procedure in cases in which a person (details supplied) wishes to become a primary school teacher if they have to resit their mathematics examination when they have already sat the exam in 2012; if the applicant for primary teaching will be exempt from the new requirements; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51538/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

The changes to the minimum entry requirements for entry to primary Initial Teacher Education programmes, as announced in October 2017, are as follows:

Entry 2018 - Irish: H5, English: H7/O5, Maths: H7/O6

Entry 2019 and beyond - Irish: H4, English: H7/O4, Maths: H7/O4.

(For information on the new Leaving Certificate Grading Scheme, see http://transition.ie/files/2015/Leaflet%20for%20Students%20-%20Revised%20Common%20Points%20Scale.pdf)  

The changes introduced took account of advice provided by the Teaching Council, which had engaged in a consultation process around a number of matters relating to entry to initial teacher education. Many of the issues identified were complex and the Council commissioned the ESRI (Economic and Social Research Institute) to carry out research to inform its deliberations.

The changes also had regard to the Department’s policy “Supporting a Better Transition from Second Level to Higher Education – Implementation and Next Steps” (2015).

Having relatively high minimum entry requirements in core subject areas of Irish, English and Mathematics is one of the key policy levers that help ensure quality teaching and learning in primary schools.  The 2011 Literacy and Numeracy Strategy and subsequent review identified the need to raise standards of achievement and included plans to raise the entry requirements in the core subjects over time.

In recognition of the fact that not all applicants will meet the minimum entry requirements in Irish, English and Maths at the first attempt, there is no requirement that these minimum grades be achieved in one sitting of the Leaving Cert. Furthermore, there are a number of alternative qualifications that can take the place of the relevant Leaving Cert grade.  The list of alternative qualifications in the subject(s) concerned are outlined in the published Entry Requirements and Procedures for 2018 and available on my Department's website  (see www.education.ie). 

The Department has received a number of submissions regarding the changes which were introduced, which are currently under consideration.

Ministerial Correspondence

Questions (178)

Charlie McConalogue

Question:

178. Deputy Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Education and Skills when a reply will issue to an interim reply (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51550/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

The final response to the representation referred to by the Deputy was issued on the 25th October 2018.  The response has now been reissued.  If there are any further queries in relation to this matter then my office can be contacted directly.

State Examinations Commission

Questions (179)

Timmy Dooley

Question:

179. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Education and Skills if all honours mathematics leaving certificate examination correctors for the leaving certificate in 2018 were qualified honours mathematics teachers; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51567/18]

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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.

State Examinations

Questions (180)

Timmy Dooley

Question:

180. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Education and Skills his plans to ensure that the case of a person (details supplied) is resolved in a similar manner in order to ensure fairness and equity in the third level education sector in view of a recent case at another college; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51572/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

Universities in Ireland are statutorily independent institutions.  Admission is a matter for each individual institution and my Department does not have the authority to intervene in the admissions process.  The higher education institutions have delegated to the Central Applications Office (CAO) the task of processing applications to their first year undergraduate courses. The decision to offer a place is made by the HEI in question and not the CAO.  

In the event that a student becomes eligible for a course following the result of a re-check of Leaving Certificate results then the student will generally be offered a place, subject to the availability of spaces on that course. Where a place is not available then the student is generally offered a place for the following year.  This is, however, a matter for the institution in question.  

On the 1st of November this year my Department announced significant changes to the Leaving Certificate examination appeals process from 2019. The changes will mean that, in future, students who appeal the results of the Leaving Certificate will be informed by the State Examinations Commission (SEC) of the outcome of their appeals much earlier than has previously been possible.

School Accommodation Provision

Questions (181)

James Browne

Question:

181. Deputy James Browne asked the Minister for Education and Skills if consideration will be given to a school (details supplied) in County Wexford seeking grants for a new classroom which opened in September 2018; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51624/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

The school referred to by the Deputy was established in September 2015 under the patronage divesting process.  In order to facilitate the opening of the school, its initial establishment, as with most new schools, has been in interim start-up accommodation, pending a permanent school becoming available. 

In order to cater for the school's growing enrolment numbers, additional interim accommodation was required and in this regard, my Department devolved the delivery of this additional interim accommodation to the school patron body.

I understand from the school patron that delivery of the additional temporary accommodation is currently being procured and will be installed once the necessary statutory approvals have been received.

Officials from my Department have recently received an application for the relevant grants in this regard and payment will be made to the school authorities in due course.

School Funding

Questions (182)

Michael Moynihan

Question:

182. Deputy Michael Moynihan asked the Minister for Education and Skills if funding is available to primary schools for the installation of acoustic panels which absorb background noise to assist children with cochlear implants; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51654/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

I wish to inform the Deputy that all new school buildings are built in accordance with my Department's Technical Guidance documents. Included in these documents is specific information regarding measures to be undertaken in relation to the management of the acoustics of the building.

In the case of older school buildings, should the school authority identify issues with the acoustics they can apply for funding under my Departments Emergency Works Scheme to carry out minimum works necessary to address the matter.  The Emergency Works application form and circular are both available on my Department's website: www.education.ie

Schools Establishment

Questions (183)

Thomas Byrne

Question:

183. Deputy Thomas Byrne asked the Minister for Education and Skills his views on the proposed new second level school in County Wicklow in view of the fact that there is at least one other school that has the capacity to meet the demographic needs of the community; and if he is satisfied with the level of consultation with existing schools in the area prior to the decision to the establish a new school. [51662/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

In April 2018, the Government announced plans for the establishment of 42 new schools over the next four years (2019 to 2022). This announcement follows nationwide demographic exercises carried out by my Department into the future need for primary and post-primary schools across the country and the 4-year horizon will enable increased lead-in times for planning and delivery of the necessary infrastructure. Considering the level of need in the area in question, a new 600 pupil post-primary school will be established in 2019 to serve the demograpahic need in Wicklow school planning area. The new school will also facilitate any further expansion that may be required in the area in the future.

Emergency Works Scheme Applications

Questions (184)

Mattie McGrath

Question:

184. Deputy Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the emergency working scheme application received from a school (details supplied) in County Tipperary; if the application will be expedited; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51665/18]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

The school to which the Deputy refers recently made an application under my Department's Emergency Works Scheme for the works in question.  However, as this application is related to an additional accommodation project already approved for the school, the issues raised in the applicaton will be considered by officials within my Department responsible for that project. A decision in the matter will issue directly to the schoool authority once it is made.

School Management

Questions (185)

Michael Fitzmaurice

Question:

185. Deputy Michael Fitzmaurice asked the Minister for Education and Skills if the governance manual 2015-2019 and the Education Act 1998 is the only legislation in place governing the removal of persons by a patron from a primary school board of management; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51709/18]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

In accordance with the provisions of the Education Act, 1998, the appointment of a Board of Management of a school is a matter for the relevant school patron.

The mechanisms under which a Board of Management member may be removed are as follows:

Section 16 of the Education Act provides that a patron may, with the consent of the Minister, for good and valid reasons stated in writing to a member of a board of management remove that member from that office, or if satisfied that the functions of a board are not being effectively discharged, dissolve that board.

Section 7 of the Governance Manual for Primary Schools 2015 - 2019 sets out the circumstances in which Board members may be removed or membership of a board of management shall cease.

Summer Works Scheme Applications

Questions (186)

James Lawless

Question:

186. Deputy James Lawless asked the Minister for Education and Skills if an application for the summer works scheme by a school (details supplied) will be approved; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51714/18]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

I can confirm that my Department is in receipt of an application under the Summer Works Scheme for a Category 10 - external environment project.

The Summer Works Scheme (SWS) 2016 -2017 was applied on a multi-annual basis.  The Deputy will be aware that nearly 50% of schools applied for inclusion under the scheme which reflects a very high demand. 

Almost €80 million has been approved to date under the SWS, in respect of over 640 school projects in categories 1 - 6. Details of the successful school applicants are published on my Department's website www.education.ie.  The applications in categories 7-10 remain available for consideration for funding.

As the Deputy will be aware, Project Ireland 2040 included an announcement of a major package of investment in education for the next decade with the school building budget increasing by 70%.  This investment will provide for the continued increase in demographics while also allowing for a greater focus on refurbishment and upgrading of existing school stock.