Thursday, 17 October 2019

Questions (15)

Aindrias Moynihan


15. Deputy Aindrias Moynihan asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the brief for a redevelopment project at a school (details supplied); the most recent contacts with the school patron in this regard; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [42601/19]

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Oral answers (3 contributions) (Question to Education)

A commitment was given to provide a new school for Coachford college almost four years ago. As a member of the board of management, I am in a position to state that there has been little progress as we have waited for the Department to give a further approval along the way. The population in the area has continued to grow and all we have seen are plans to put in place temporary accommodation that would be classroom-based. This is despite the fact that there is a high demand for practical subjects at Coachford college and that laboratories, woodwork rooms and so on would be require as a result. A solution involving temporary accommodation will not relieve the significant pressure that exists. Given that there has been such a long delay, can the Minister prioritise Coachford college? Will he outline where the project stands and what the next steps will be in order that we can get on to building the new school?

Can we have a 30-second reply from the Minister?

We are into injury time, extra time and, possibly, penalties. I am pleased to inform the Deputy that the building project for the school to which he refers is being devolved for delivery to Cork Education and Training Board, CETB.

My Department has been in ongoing contact with the patron of the school in question relating to the proposed building project and the brief for same. The most recent contact took place last week in that respect.

The execution of a service level agreement, SLA, between my Department and CETB, which is currently being arranged, will be the next and last step in finalising this brief. Once the SLA is in place, the ETB will procure a design team for the project to design the buildings, obtain the necessary statutory planning permissions, and move the project onward to tender and construction in due course.

Written Answers are published on the Oireachtas Website.