Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Ceisteanna (98)

Catherine Martin

Ceist:

98. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Education and Skills his plans to establish the minor works grant on a permanent basis in view of the uncertainty experienced by schools with the minor works grant being announced at a later date each year; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21520/18]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Education)

The Minor Works Grant was first introduced in 1997 and since then has issued to primary schools each school year with the exception of the school year 2012/2013. The grant most recently issued to all primary schools last December in respect of the school year 2017/2018. The payment of the Minor Works Grant is not confined to any particular date and can be issued during any month of the school year. For the 2002/2003 school year, part of the grant was paid in May 2003, with the balance in October 2003.

With regards to the Minor Works Grant 2018/2019, it is intended that the grant will issue no later than January 2019.

My Department recognises the importance of the Minor Works Grant to primary schools. The National Development Plan 2018-2027 signals a gradual ramping up in capital expenditure in the schools sector over the coming years. In that context, and as part of our longer term infrastructural planning, my Department would intend to put the Minor Works Grant on an annual footing and to provide greater certainty to schools on the timing of payment.