Léim ar aghaidh chuig an bpríomhábhar

Dáil Éireann díospóireacht -
Wednesday, 30 Jun 1999

Vol. 507 No. 3

Written Answers. - Special Educational Needs.

Jim O'Keeffe


205 Mr. J. O'Keeffe asked the Minister for Education and Science if his attention has been drawn to concerns in relation to the remedial service proposed for Rathbarry national school in west Cork where his proposal is to sanction only two hours of remedial teaching per week; if his attention has been drawn to the difficulty of finding a fully qualified national school teacher able and prepared to take up part-time remedial duty involving two hours per week; and if this situation will be re-examined with a view to having a satisfactory remedial teaching arrangement put in place. [16965/99]

The concerns to which the Deputy refers have not been brought to my Department's attention.

The school in question is one of several hundred primary school to which the remedial teacher service is being extended from September next as part of an arrangement which will bring the service to all primary schools in the country.

In most instances, this extension of service involves the allocation of full-time remedial teacher posts to individual schools or to groups of schools on a shared basis. However, in some instances, including the case to which the Deputy refers, it has not been possible to accommodate particular schools in a sharing arrangement with other schools. In such cases, a specific allocation of remedial support is made to the school in question.

The level of remedial teacher support allocated to each school or group of schools in the context of this extension of service was based on the assessment of my Department's inspectorate and had regard to the recommendations of the special education review committee in relation to remedial coverage in primary schools. The allocation to the school in question reflected the fact that the school has an overall enrolment of 13 pupils.

Paul Bradford


206 Mr. Bradford asked the Minister for Education and Science if children with specific learning difficulties will continue to receive special arrangements in the marking of their examination papers; his views on whether these students would not receive a fair result without the special arrangements; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16968/99]

Students with specific learning difficulties will continue to have special arrangements made for them at the certificate examinations. The precise nature of the arrangements that will operate in future years is under review at present. The review is being conducted by the advisory group on the certificate examinations.

As part of the process of comprehensively reviewing our whole approach to special arrange ments, the advisory group has invited submissions from interested parties. When these have been carefully considered, I expect to receive a final report from the group in the autumn. It is my intention that any changes in this difficult and complex area will be soundly based and command full public support. The present review which is the first such open public discussion of its kind, is designed to meet these key requirements.