Tuesday, 27 May 1986
Dáil Eireann Debate
Mr. Gregory-Independent: asked the Minister for Education if he will take steps to provide adequate security at the Central Model School, Marlborough Street, Dublin 1, where classrooms are being vandalised at night-time; if security wire can be placed on the perimeter wall; if a caretaker can be provided; and his plans for the overall modernisation of the school.
Mr. Keating: asked the Minister for Education the present position with regard to the redevelopment of the all-Irish school in Marlborough Street, Dublin 1; and whether he will consider the tarmacadaming of the area adjacent to the school to create a play area for the children attending the school.
Minister for Education (Mr. Cooney): I propose to answer Questions Nos. 168 and 169 together. There are three primary schools at Marlborough Street, Dublin 1, on sites which adjoin my Department's offices at the same address. The school buildings, being on State property, are maintained by the Office of Public Works.
The all-Irish school is housed in a permanent building which was recently the subject of substantial improvement works which included the provision of additional facilities. The site of this school, including its hard-surfaced play area, is well defined and enclosed for most of its perimeter by railings. My Department is at present considering, in consultation with the Office of Public  Works, a proposal to develop additional play-space for the schools in the Marlborough Street complex on space which has become available consequent on the demolition of derelict buildings. The development would not necessarily be for the exclusive use of the all-Irish school.
With regard to the other two schools on the Marlborough Street complex, namely the Boys' Central Model School and the Infants'/Girls' Central Model School, and the matter of their security, my Department has had under consideration, again in consultation with the Office of Public Works, the provision of additional perimeter security works. The works in question are intended to benefit the entire Marlborough Street complex. This complex already has a twenty-four hours per day security presence and is regularly patrolled, and accordingly it is not proposed to provide a caretaker specifically for the schools.
The Boys' School and the Infants'/ Girls' School are at present accommodated in prefabricated classrooms and my Department is considering a feasibility study for the replacement of this prefab accommodation by a permanent building. A number of options is being examined and costed, including that of restoring the school's former permanent building which was extensively damaged by fire some years ago. No definitive plan has as yet been decided upon, but my Department hopes at an early date to complete its study and to decide on a positive course of action.
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