Written Answers. - School Staffing.

Jan O'Sullivan

Ceist:

194 Ms O'Sullivan asked the Minister for Education and Science the schools which will lose concessionary teachers as a result of the cut of 300 in the number of concessionary teacher posts in second level schools; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19148/03]

Teacher allocations for second level schools are approved by my Department on an annual basis in accordance with generally applied rules relating to recognised pupil enrolment. Each school management authority is required to organise its curriculum, teaching timetable and subject options having regard to pupils' needs within the limits of its approved teacher allocation. The rules for allocating teaching posts provide that where a school management authority is unable to meet essential curricular commitments, my Department will consider applications for additional short-term support.

For the first time this year, an independent appeals committee has been in place to consider appeals from schools in relation to their curricular concession allocations.

A total of approximately 700 whole time equivalent teacher posts have been allocated to schools to meet their curricular needs for the coming school year. This includes an allocation of 66 whole time equivalent posts approved by the appeals committee. The number of such posts allocated for the current school year was approximately 870. Because of annual changes in enrolments and programmes at individual school level, comparisons between allocations year on year can be misleading.
Allocations of concessionary teacher posts represent only one element of overall teacher allocations at second level. For the forthcoming school year, it is estimated that the overall teacher allocation to the second level system will be in excess of 25,500 and will involve an increase of approximately 300 over the current year's allocation.
A list of the individual schools affected by adjustments in curricular concession allocations is being prepared and will be forwarded to the Deputy as soon as possible.