Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Ceisteanna (264)

Michael Healy-Rae

Ceist:

264. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Education and Skills the maximum allowable hours for a child that wishes to receive home tuition; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9864/18]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Education)

The purpose of the Home Tuition Grant Scheme is to provide funding towards the provision of a compensatory educational service for

1. Early educational intervention for children with autism who meet the schemes eligibility criteria

2. Students with special educational needs seeking an educational placement in a recognised school 

3. Students, enrolled in schools, with significant medical conditions which has caused, and is likely to continue to cause, major disruption to their attendance at school

The preferred approach is that children are educated in school settings where children may have access to fully qualified teachers, individualised education programmes, special needs assistants, school curriculum with the option, where possible and appropriate, of full or partial integration and interaction with other pupils.

Accordingly, Home Tuition is provided as an interim measure only for children for whom a placement in a recognised school is not available and should not be regarded as an optional alternative to a school placement. 

Each of the strands of the scheme prescribe the hours available for allocation. For children with Autism aged from 2.5 years to 3 years the number of tuition hours available is 10. From 3 years, for children with Autism for whom school placements are not available, the number of available tuition hours is 20 per week.

For children with special educational needs over 4 years for whom school placements are not available, the number of available tuition hours is 20 per week.

For children with medical conditions the hours granted are reflective of the time the child has been absent from school and these are listed in the Department's Home Tuition circular. 

I do not intend to make changes to the number of hours applicable under the 2017/18 Home Tuition scheme.

I have attached my Departments Circular 0050/2017, which sets out the number of hours applicable under each strand of the scheme.