Léim ar aghaidh chuig an bpríomhábhar

Dáil Éireann díospóireacht -
Wednesday, 3 Dec 1997

Vol. 484 No. 1

Written Answers. - Remedial Teachers.

Ivor Callely


116 Mr. Callely asked the Minister for Education and Science if he has satisfied himself with the number of remedial teachers in the system; the likely developments, if any, in this regard; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21637/97]

Ivor Callely


117 Mr. Callely asked the Minister for Education and Science the number of schools that have requested but been refused remedial teachers; if he will give a breakdown for each constituency area; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21638/97]

I propose to take Questions Nos. 116 and 117 together.

The Government's An Action Programme for the Millennium attaches particular priority to the remedial education area through its commitment to equal opportunity and the priority it attaches to the provision of remedial teachers and resources for children with special learning difficulties. It is my intention to honour this commitment in the years ahead.

At present, there is a total of 1,242 remedial teachers in the primary system and a further 350 in the second level system. These posts have been allocated on the basis of priority of need.

An initial survey of the remedial service by my Department's inspectorate demonstrated a need to reorganise existing provision to achieve a more effective targeting of resources. It also identified a need to place much greater emphasis on preventive strategies in schools, including early identification strategies and differentiated teaching.
In order to address these matters, my Department, in consultation with the education partners, has now commenced a thorough remedial education study. The study is focusing on the numbers of pupils receiving a remedial service; the criteria for inclusion in and withdrawal from remedial classes; the organisation of remedial teaching in schools; the development and implementation of policy on remedial teaching in schools; record keeping and reporting.
The outcome of the study will be of value in the context of the future development of the remedial service and in determining the optimum level for the remedial service.
I am also reviewing provision across the entire special needs area, including the remedial area, to ensure that all resources which become available are utilised to maximum effect.
I regret that the information requested by the Deputy in relation to the number of schools in each constituency which have requested and been refused a remedial service is not readily available in my Department.