Written Answers. - Youth Services.

Wednesday, 1 December 1999

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 512 No. 1

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  41.  Ms Clune  Information on Deirdre Clune  Zoom on Deirdre Clune   asked the Minister for Education and Science  Information on Micheál Martin  Zoom on Micheál Martin   the plans, if any, he has to expand the Mol an Óige project in County Tipperary on a nationwide basis; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25405/99]

Minister for Education and Science (Mr. Martin): Information on Micheál Martin  Zoom on Micheál Martin  Mol an Óige is a youthstart project funded by the youthstart strand of the European Union human resources initiative on employment. Approval and funding came from the Department of Enterprise Trade and Employment. The main involvement of my Department is the participation of an inspector in the project's steering committee. The project, as planned, will come to an end on 31 March 2000.

I am aware that excellent work is being done by those engaged in the project. I understand that a final report will issue after the completion of the project. I expect that its findings will be of considerable interest in the context of the initiatives which I have put in place to deal with the issues of low achievement, early school leaving and disadvantage. These include the eight to 15 year old early school leavers initiative, breaking the cycle, the home-school community liaison scheme and the stay in school initiative.

The objectives of Mol an Óige and the use of action planning as a means of achieving those objectives are entirely in harmony with my Department's initiatives in this area and also with the aims and methodology of the school development planning initiative. Already, my Department has sought information and advice from the project organisers in relation to the model of action planning developed by Mol an Óige.

Mol an Oige is making a worthwhile contribution to our understanding of a number of important aspects of education. I look forward to studying the final report in detail in due course.

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