Interdepartmental Working Groups

Question No. 359 answered with Question No. 357.

Questions (358)

Mattie McGrath

Question:

358. Deputy Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Education and Skills the working groups currently established in his Department; the focus of their work; the membership composition of each; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13564/19]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

The information requested by the Deputy is not readily available. Officials in my Department will collate the information and revert in due course.

Question No. 359 answered with Question No. 357.

Schools Building Projects Status

Question No. 361 answered with Question No. 307.

Questions (360)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

360. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the position regarding a new school building for a school (details supplied); the stage at which the project is at; when construction will commence on the school; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13613/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

The major building project referred to by the Deputy is at an advanced stage of architectural planning, Stage 2(b) - Detailed Design, which includes the application for statutory approvals and the preparation of tender documents. All statutory approvals have been secured.

Following the appointment of a replacement consultant architect, the Design Team has reviewed the previous Stage 2(b) documentation and is currently upgrading the design to ensure that the new school building is a Near Zero Energy Building (NZEB) in compliance with the 2017 amendment to Part L of the current Building Regulations.

Upon receipt and review of the Stage 2(b) submission, my Department will revert to the Board of Management regarding the progression of the project.

Question No. 361 answered with Question No. 307.

Home Tuition Scheme Provision

Questions (362)

Jan O'Sullivan

Question:

362. Deputy Jan O'Sullivan asked the Minister for Education and Skills if a three year old child who has been diagnosed with ASD can be allocated home tuition hours even if there is a place available in an early intervention or ASD setting; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13630/19]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

ASD Early intervention classes are intended to provide early support for children with ASD before they start school. Following early intervention, children will attend a mainstream class unless there is professional guidance that they require a special class or a placement in a special school.

ASD Early intervention classes are available for children between 3 and 4 years of age with an ASD diagnosis and children over 4 years of age with an ASD diagnosis and a recommendation for an early intervention placement (who will not reach the age of 6 during the school year).

The National Council for Special Education (NCSE) team of locally based Special Education Needs Organisers (SENOs) are available to assist and advise parents and identify available placements.

Where the NCSE confirm that an Early intervention class placement is not available, my Department’s Home tuition grant scheme provides funding towards a compensatory educational service, as an interim measure, until a placement is available.

Home Tuition should not be regarded as an optional alternative to a school placement.

My Department’s preferred approach is that children are educated in school settings where children may have access to fully qualified teachers, individualised education programmes, special needs assistants, school curriculum with the option, where possible and appropriate, of full or partial integration and interaction with other students.

Home Tuition is not available where the NCSE confirm that an Early intervention class placement has been identified.

Failure to enrol a child in an identified placement will not give rise to eligibility under the scheme. Similarly, the child will not be eligible to participate in my Department’s July provision Scheme.

School Accommodation Provision

Questions (363)

David Cullinane

Question:

363. Deputy David Cullinane asked the Minister for Education and Skills if his attention has been drawn to issues affecting a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13649/19]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

I can confirm to the Deputy that an application for Additional School Accommodation has recently been submitted to my Department.

The application will be assessed and a decision conveyed to the school authority as soon as the assessment process has been completed.

Schools Building Projects

Questions (364)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

364. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills if the extension and refurbishment of a school (details supplied) will proceed to the tender and build stage without further delay by granting the school rapid build status; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13674/19]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

As the Deputy may be aware, the project to which he refers has been devolved for delivery to the local Education & Training Board (DDLETB). DDLETB, in consultation with the Department, is progressing the project as quickly as possible. There are no plans to change the method for delivering the project in that context.

Schools Building Projects Status

Questions (365)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

365. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the provision of a new school building project for a school (details supplied); if the acquisition of a new site for the school has been completed; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13675/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

As the Deputy is aware the building project for the school in question is included on my Department's capital programme.

Officials in my Department have contacted officials in Fingal County Council for assistance under the Memorandum of Understanding in relation to the identification and acquisition of a suitable site. Negotiations with relevant landowners in respect of the potential acquisition of the zoned post primary school site at that location is currently underway.

Officials in both my Department and the Council are working to progress matters as quickly as possible, in cognisance of the school’s current accommodation constraints.

It is difficult to indicate a timeline for the completion of the acquisition of a site for the school in question as it is dependent on the outcome of current negotiations and also on the complexity of the conveyancing process.

Due to the commercially sensitive nature of site acquisitions, it is not possible to comment further at this stage.

Schools Building Projects Status

Questions (366, 367)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

366. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the refurbishment and provision of an extension for a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13676/19]

View answer

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

367. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the start date for prefab replacement for a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13677/19]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 366 and 367 together.

A building project for the school referred to by the Deputy is included in my Department’s 6 year Construction Programme.

A project brief has been finalised and the project will be delivered via the ADAPT programme which is an innovative delivery programme first introduced by my Department in 2016. It uses a professional external Project Manager to coordinate and drive the respective design teams on each project.

In this regard, a tender competition is in train to establish a Project Manager framework which is expected to be in place shortly. Once the framework is in place a tender competition to appoint the Project Manager for the ADAPT programme will commence.

Prefabs currently in use at the school in question will be replaced with permanent accommodation as part of the major project.

My Department will be contacting the school shortly to provide an update on the status of the project.

Schools Building Projects Status

Questions (368)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

368. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of progress for the delivery of a new school for a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13678/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

The Deputy will be aware that a building project to provide a permanent school building for the school in question is included in my Department's 6-year Construction Programme.

A site is required for this purpose and the acquisition of a proposed site is currently at an advanced stage. In tandem with this, a schedule of accommodation for the proposed new school has been devised and shared with the school authority. My Department is seeking to advance the project into the architectural planning process and will be in contact with the school authority in this regard in due course.

Schools Building Projects Status

Questions (369)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

369. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the position regarding the progress on a permanent school building project for a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13679/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

The major building project for the school referred to by the Deputy is currently at an advanced stage of Architectural Planning, Stage 2b - Detailed Design, which includes the application for statutory approval and the preparation of tender documents. All statutory applications have been secured.

Following the appointment of a replacement consultant architect, the Design Team has reviewed the previous Stage 2(b) documentation and is currently upgrading the design to ensure that the new school building is a Near Zero Energy Building (NZEB) in compliance with the 2017 amendment to Part L of the Building Regulations.

The Design Team is also finalising the detail in relation to the provision of temporary accommodation and playground facilities during the construction of the new school building.

The Design Team will then complete the tender documents and submit the Stage 2b report to my Department. Upon receipt and review of the Stage 2(b) submission, my Department will revert to the Board of Management regarding the further progression of the project to tender stage.

Schools Building Projects Status

Questions (370, 371)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

370. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the provision of a new secondary school for the Swords area of County Dublin as announced in November 2015; if he has identified locations for the proposed school; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13680/19]

View answer

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

371. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the provision of a new secondary school for the Swords area of County Dublin as announced in November 2015; if he has identified locations for the proposed school; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13681/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 370 and 371 together.

My Department has secured planning permission for a Post-Primary school (Swords Community College RN 76475D) on the Mooretown site in North Swords. A tender competition has taken place to appoint a building contractor to provide permanent accommodation on that site.

The Letter of Intent to the successful contractor has issued. When the documentation requested in the letter of Intent is received a letter of Acceptance will then issue and the project will then proceed to construction.

The school opened in September 2018 within existing school accommodation.

Schools Site Acquisitions

Questions (372)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

372. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the provision of a permanent site for a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13682/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

As the Deputy is aware, with the assistance of officials in Fingal County Council, agreement in principle has been reached with the landowner in respect to the acquisition of a permanent site at Broomfield, Malahide to accommodate the school to which he refers.

The project to deliver the permanent accommodation for this school at this location is on my Department's Design and Build Programme and is currently at architectural planning stage.

In the interim my officials continue to work to complete the transfer of the site into my ownership.

Schools Site Acquisitions

Questions (373)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

373. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the provision of a new site for a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13683/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

The lands at the school referred to by the Deputy were purchased by the St Laurence O'Toole Diocesan Trust, on behalf of the Board of Management for the school.

An initial site adjacent to the school, was procured from Fingal County Council and transferred ownership on 1st June 2017.

The second site was purchased from a private vendor and ownership transferred on 18th October 2017.

My Department received copies of the deeds of transfer in November 2017.

Schools Building Projects Status

Questions (374)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

374. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the position regarding the progress on a new school building project for a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13684/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

As the Deputy is aware the building project for the school in question is included on my Department's capital programme.

Officials in my Department have contacted officials in Fingal County Council for assistance under the Memorandum of Understanding in relation to the identification and acquisition of a suitable site. Negotiations with relevant landowners in respect of the potential acquisition of the zoned post primary school site at that location is currently underway.

Officials in both my Department and the Council are working to progress matters as quickly as possible, in cognisance of the school’s current accommodation constraints.

It is difficult to indicate a timeline for the completion of the acquisition of a site for the school in question as it is dependent on the outcome of current negotiations and also on the complexity of the conveyancing process.

Due to the commercially sensitive nature of site acquisitions, it is not possible to comment further at this stage.

Schools Site Acquisitions

Questions (375)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

375. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the provision of a new site for a school (details supplied) as announced in November 2015; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13685/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

As the Deputy may be aware, agreement in principle has been reached in respect to the acquisition of a permanent site to accommodate the school to which he refers.

My officials are currently working to complete the transfer of the site into my ownership.

Due to the commercially sensitive nature of site acquisitions, it is unfortunately not possible to comment further at this stage.

Schools Building Projects Status

Questions (376)

Darragh O'Brien

Question:

376. Deputy Darragh O'Brien asked the Minister for Education and Skills if the works to provide a new school building for a school (details supplied) in addition to the associated refurbishment works will commence as a matter of urgent priority; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13686/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

A building project for the school referred to by the Deputy is included in my Department’s 6 year Construction Programme.

A project brief has been finalised and the project will be delivered via the ADAPT programme which is an innovative delivery programme first introduced by my Department in 2016. It uses a professional external Project Manager to coordinate and drive the respective design teams on each project.

In this regard, a tender competition is in train to establish a Project Manager framework which is expected to be in place shortly. Tenders have been returned and are currently being evaluated.

Whilst the Department must adhere to the Public Procurement rules for the appointment of consultant Design Teams the Building Unit will expedite this process in so far as possible.

My Department issued a letter dated 19th March 2019 to the school in order to provide an update on the status of the project.

Schools Building Projects Status

Questions (377)

Michael McGrath

Question:

377. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the tender process for the main contract and for the mechanical and electrical contract in respect of an education campus development (details supplied) in County Cork; when he expects the main contract to be signed off; when he expects construction work to commence on site; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13694/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

The project to which the Deputy refers has been devolved for delivery to Cork Education & Training Board.

The project has been tendered and the relevant tender reports have been sent to my Department for review. This review should be completed soon. The project can be expected to proceed to construction shortly thereafter.

Departmental Properties

Questions (378)

Michael McGrath

Question:

378. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Education and Skills when a school building (details supplied) was completed; the final price paid; the body that is the owner of the building; the site it sits on; his plans for the building when the school moves to a new location; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13697/19]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

The school to which the Deputy refers is currently located in a property which is in my ownership. This school building was completed in the early 2000's at a cost in excess of €2.4m. Department officials are currently actively considering the potential future use of this property once it is vacated by the school in question.