Friday, 6 September 2019

Questions (491)

Róisín Shortall


491. Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Education and Skills the estimated cost in the first year and in a full year for every one point reduction in the pupil-teacher ratio at primary level. [36750/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

Budget 2019 marks the third year of a major reinvestment in the education. In 2019, the budget for the Department of Education and Skills will increase by €674 million, a 6.7% increase on last year. In total, the Education budget will have increased by €1.7 billion compared to 2016.

Budget 2019 will see numbers employed in our schools reach the highest ever level. Over 1,300 additional posts in schools will be funded, including more than 370 teaching posts to cater for growth in student population and additional special classes.

The allocation of teachers to schools is on the basis of the whole school population. For the current school year, the staffing schedule at primary level operates on a general average of 26 pupils to every 1 teacher (26:1) which is historically the lowest ever allocation ratio at primary level.

Each 1 point adjustment to the primary staffing schedule is estimated to cost in the region of €4.7m in the first year and €14.4m for the full year.