Thursday, 17 October 2019

Questions (50)

Thomas P. Broughan


50. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Education and Skills if his Department receives feedback from principals of secondary schools regarding the need for special education classes, including those schools already taking students from ASD schools at primary level; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [41411/19]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

The National Council for Special Education (NCSE) has a statutory function to plan and co-ordinate the provision of education and support services to children with special educational needs.

This includes the establishment of special class and special school placements in various geographical areas where the NCSE identifies need.

The NCSE have well established structures to consult with school Principals to ensure that advance planning is in place so that schools in an area can, between them, cater for all children who have been identified as needing special class placements. Planning covers both primarty and post primary levels.

The NCSE team of locally based Special Education Needs Organisers (SENOs) are available to assist and advise school Principals to plan for special class provision and to address issues in provision that may arise from time in time at local levels.  

In deciding where to establish a special class in an area, the NCSE take account of the current and projected demand and the available school accommodation both current and planned.

In this regard, the NCSE local SENO will consult with the Principals of individual schools in areas where special classes will be required to enable the timely planning of special class provision in the area.

The NCSE also hosts annual CPD events for the Principals of schools with new and established special classes.

Guidelines for Boards of Management and Principals of Primary and Post Primary schools contain information on setting up and organising special classes, including information on resources which may be provided to schools to establish special classes are available to download from