The school to which the Deputy refers applied to my Department in February last for the provision of one additional mainstream classroom and for additional ancillary staffing facilities.
As the Deputy will be aware, my Department's overriding objective is to prioritise available funding to meet demographic demand and to provide essential classroom accommodation where additional teachers are approved. In the case of the school referred to by the Deputy, my Department recognised the need for additional school accommodation to address its immediate needs and significant funding was allocated on a devolved basis to the school in question in 2011 for the provision of additional classroom accommodation. My Department accordingly advised the school that as it considered that the level of additional accommodation already provided was sufficient to meet the school's classroom needs, it was not prepared to agree to its application. My Department also advised the school concerned that it was not possible at this time to approve funding in respect of the ancillary accommodation also sought.
My Department is currently considering a request by the school to review its decision in this case and will contact the school authorities concerned when a decision is reached.