Tuesday, 10 October 1995
Dáil Éireann Debate
103. Mr. O'Dea asked the Minister for Education her views on whether the rate of truancy in Ireland is increasing steadily; the steps, if any, she proposes to take to rectify this situation; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [14504/95]
My Department does not currently have available detailed or reliable data on the incidence of truancy in Ireland during the years in question. In the absence of such data, it is not possible to comment with any assurance as to emerging trends in this area.
The Deputy will be aware that I published the report of my Department's working group on truancy in April, 1994. One of the issues highlighted in that report was the absence of adequate data on school attendance and the working group made a number of recommendations in relation to this matter.
In keeping with its commitment to address the problems of truancy and early drop-out, the Government appointed the Minister of State Deputy Austin Currie with special responsibility for this area. The Minister of State subsequently announced the establishment of a task force, the terms of reference of which are to examine the submissions received from interested parties in response to the report on truancy, and consider and make recommendations as to future action required to address the problem of truancy at first and second level.
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