Written Answers - School Curriculum

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 757 No. 2

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  90.  Deputy Brendan Smith  Information on Brendan Smith  Zoom on Brendan Smith   asked the Minister for Education and Skills  Information on Ruairí Quinn  Zoom on Ruairí Quinn   if he will outline the progress made to date with regard to Project Maths; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11853/12]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn  Zoom on Ruairí Quinn  Project Maths is a major programme of reform of mathematics in second level schools. Project Maths began in 24 schools in September 2008. The purpose of the initial engagement with 24 schools was to learn from the experience in these project schools while using this period to work with the schools to develop materials and lesson plans and resource materials, which would then be available for mainstreaming. This phase of development has therefore been evolutionary in nature, with syllabuses and resources being developed and refined during the project phase.

Project Maths began in all schools in September 2010. As in the project schools is being implemented on a phased basis over 5 strands of mathematics as follows:

Project Maths has been examined in the 24 Project Schools in the Leaving Certificate 2010 and 2011, and in the Junior Certificate in 2011, and the results have been published by the State Examinations Commission. Mainstream schools will sit their first examination in Strands 1 and 2 of Project Maths in the Leaving Certificate in 2012.

The initiative is supported by comprehensive investment in professional development for teachers, at an average cost of €3.3m per annum. In addition, the Department has tendered for the development of a post graduate course for teachers who need more intensive support. A wide range of resources for the project are on www.projectmaths.ie. The support for teachers is supplemented by evening courses in the Education Centre network and by summer courses in the National Centre of Excellence for Maths and Science Teaching and Learning in the University of Limerick.

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