Léim ar aghaidh chuig an bpríomhábhar

Dáil Éireann díospóireacht -
Thursday, 5 May 1966

Vol. 222 No. 8

Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Meath School.


asked the Minister for Education if a decision has yet been made on the proposal to erect another school at Knockcommon, Beauparc, County Meath.

Following a full investigation of all the relevant factors, I consider that the educational interests of the children from the Knockcommon area would best be catered for by closing the small two-teacher school there and conveying the pupils by transport service to Donore national school, which is situated in the same parish. My Department is in communication with the Reverend Manager in regard to this proposal.

Is the Minister aware that the Donore school which is situated on the Drogheda side of the parish will not accommodate the majority of the pupils who attend the Knockcommon school? Does he appreciate the fact that no matter what transport system is laid on at Donore, most of the pupils at present attending the Knockcommon school will attend the school closest to them which would be very far from Donore? Did he have full consultation with the local manager and teachers before this decision was taken?

I am not sure if I understand the first part of the Deputy's question. Is he saying that the Donore school would not be able to accommodate the children?

I am saying that the Donore school because of its situation will not be able to cater for them.

I do not quite follow the Deputy's reasoning. If transport is made available, it will cater for them.

Does the Minister appreciate the fact that a number of pupils attending this school come from the west, the north, and the south of Knockcommon, and have to travel a distance of two or three miles? The Donore school is four miles to the east of Knockcommon and will not cater for these children.

If transport is provided at the student's homes, or very near them, the amount of time involved would probably be less than it is at present. Certainly the length of time during which they would be under the weather would be very much less than it is at present. Our experience in cases such as this is that the efforts made to avail of the transport service are quite substantial.

I trust that the pupils going to this school will never be "under the weather". Is the Minister telling us that all the pupils at present attending the Knockcommon school who wish to go to Donore will have transport made available from their homes?

I said either from their homes or from a point very near their homes.

Can the Minister say what is "very near"?

It depends on the topography of the area. If they live in a house which is off the roads and where we would have to cross fields to get to them, we cannot provide transport over the fields.

There will be transport for them?

Within reason.