Wednesday, 30 January 2019

Ceisteanna (112)

Pat Buckley

Ceist:

112. Deputy Pat Buckley asked the Minister for Education and Skills if the hours of an existing SNA can be reduced in cases in which new SNA allocations are awarded to a school which then operate at full hours; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [4485/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Education)

The National Council for Special Education (NCSE) is responsible for allocating a quantum of Special Needs Assistant (SNA) support for each school annually taking into account the assessed care needs of children qualifying for SNA support enrolled in the school.

The NCSE allocates SNA support to schools in accordance with the criteria set out in Department Circular 0030/2014, which is available on my Department's website at www.education.ie, in order that students who have care needs can access SNA support as and when it is needed.

In considering applications for SNA support for individual pupils, the NCSE take account of the pupils' needs and consider the resources available to the school to identify whether additionality is needed or whether the school might reasonably be expected to meet the needs of the pupils from its current level of resources.

SNAs are not allocated to individual children but to schools as a school based resource.

In general, the NCSE do not provide a specific breakdown of how the allocation of SNA support should be utilised within a school, however, such a determination can be made when it is in the interests of students concerned and where there is a particular rationale.