As the Deputy is aware, I announced plans for the establishment of 42 new schools over the next four years (2019 to 2022). This announcement follows nationwide demographic exercises carried out by my Department into the future need for primary and post-primary schools across the country and the 4-year horizon will enable increased lead-in times for planning and delivery of the necessary infrastructure.
In addition to the new schools announced, there will be a need for further school accommodation in other areas in the future. Based on the current analysis, this need can be addressed through either planned capacity increases in existing schools or additional accommodation or extensions to existing schools.
I have highlighted that the requirement for new schools will be kept under on-going review and in particular would have regard for the increased rollout of housing provision as outlined in Project Ireland 2040.
While the announcement did not include a new post-primary school in the South Kildare school planning areas, additional capacity in the region of 1,700 school places will be provided when projects at the following four schools in this area are completed :
- St. Conleth's Community College, Newbridge;
- Athy Community College, Athy;
- Cross and Passion Secondary School, Kilcullen; and
- St Paul's Secondary School, Monasterevin.
A building project for the Patrician College Newbridge is also included in my Department's 6 Year Construction Programme.
However, in line with the ongoing review of school planning areas generally, I can confirm that my Department is currently reviewing the position in relation to post-primary provision for the South Kildare school planning areas.