Wednesday, 13 May 2020

Questions (238)

Jim O'Callaghan


238. Deputy Jim O'Callaghan asked the Minister for Education and Skills the reason for the refusal of funding for the planned extension of a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [4772/20]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Education)

I am pleased to advise the Deputy that capital funding has been approved for the school in question to expand essential mainstream classroom accommodation, the project is currently devolved to the school authority. I can also confirm that my Department received an application in December 2019, to increase the size of an existing GP Hall, in the school.

The immediate priority of my Department is providing 20,000 new and replacement school places each year, to ensure that every child has access to a physical school place.

As the Deputy is aware, under the National Development Plan (NDP), increased funding has been provided for the school sector capital investment programme. This funding allows for a continued focus on the provision of new permanent school places to keep pace with demographic demand and also provides for an additional focus on the refurbishment of existing school buildings, to include the building and modernisation of PE facilities in post-primary schools.

Under Project Ireland 2040, we will invest €8.4 billion in primary and post primary school buildings. The government is committed to a PE Hall build and modernisation programme, starting in the second half of the Project Ireland 2040 period.

Therefore, the school's application to expand their GP Hall cannot be considered at this time, the school authority has been informed of this decision.