Tuesday, 17 November 2009
Dáil Eireann Debate
487. Deputy Paul Connaughton asked the Minister for Education and Science the position regarding an application for a new school by a school (details supplied) in County Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [41787/09]
Minister for Education and Science (Deputy Batt O’Keeffe): In October 2000, architectural planning commenced for an extension project at the school to which the Deputy refers. The proposed project consisted of 3 mainstream classrooms, the conversion of the 3 existing mainstream classrooms into ancillary accommodation and a General Purpose Room. This school’s building project was selected to progress and announced under the Permanent Accommodation Scheme 2005. The school authority was offered funding in the amount of €300,000 to build two mainstream classrooms and two resource rooms. The school authority accepted this offer and proceeded with the planning of this project, while at the same time appealing the amount of the funding allocation under the scheme.
Subsequently, the school authority notified the Department that they had decided to withdraw from the 2005 Permanent Accommodation Scheme and requested that the project be considered for inclusion for delivery under the major capital works programme. At that point, prior to the further progression of a building project at this school, it was deemed necessary to review the long term projected staffing (LTPS). A school’s future accommodation need is determined by the projected staffing levels and ensures that capital funding being provided is sufficient to meet the future need. It was determined that the LTPS should be Principal +8 assistant mainstream class teachers. This was notified to the school authorities in January 2007.
Following a site visit to the school, it was decided that the existing school site could not accommodate a new 8 classroom school and that a new school is required. The Patron has advised that Parish land to the rear of the existing school site will be made available to accommodate the provision of the new 8 classroom school. The progression of all large scale building projects, including this project, from initial design stage through to construction will be considered in the context of my Department’s multi-annual School Building and Modernisation Programme. However, in light of the current competing demands on the capital budget, it is not possible to give an indicative timeframe for the progression of the project at this time.
488. Deputy Fergus O’Dowd asked the Minister for Education and Science the position regarding a proposed extension for a school (details supplied) in County Meath; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [41793/09]
Minister for Education and Science (Deputy Batt O’Keeffe): The school to which the Deputy refers has applied to my Department for large scale capital funding for an extension project. The application has been assessed in accordance with published prioritisation criteria for large scale projects and assigned a band 1 rating. The progression of all large scale projects, including this project, from initial design stage through to construction phase will be considered in the context of the Department’s multi-annual School Building and Modernisation Programme. However, in light of current competing demands on the Department’s capital budget, it is not possible to give an indicative timeframe for the progression of the project at this time.
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