24 May 2017
By Elaine Murphy
Sinn Féin TD Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire, has criticised the Minister for Education for the failures of the Department of Education in delivering long promised Permanent, and Temporary Accomodation, for 2 Cork Schools
Deputy Ó Laoghaire was speaking during the course of a Topical issue debate, with the Minister for Education, Richard Bruton, last evening.
“Douglas/Rochestown, and Carrigaline, have significant growth in population in recent years. Consequently, and rightly, new schools have been planned for these areas, which I welcome.”
“However, 3 schools in particular, face significant difficulties due to the arrangements made, or more specifically, not made by Department of Education.”
“Gaelcholáiste Carrig Ui Leighin was opened, in September 2015, after a lengthy campaign by parents, and in the context of a very popular local Gaelscoil with nowhere to continue their Irish Language Schooling other than Cork City.”
“A site was secured in 2010, with a view to accommodating the Gaelcholáiste, a new site for the Gaelscoil, and Sonas Special Junior School. The Department is currently saying it will be ready for December 2019, 9 years on from purchase of site.
“The process has been deeply frustrating for all involved in the process – the cost appears to have increased, and timescales keep moving This is causing serious difficulties.”
“The Gaelscoil, expanded to three streams, on strength of belief of a campus being available – there are now 600 children on the site of a building initially developed for 200. This situation is farcical and very unfair on the schools involved.”
“The Department needs to deliver the Carrigaline Education Campus well before December 2019, and it can do so – It should be open for start of 2019 school year, in august at the very, very latest”
“Educate Together Secondary School are currently tenants in Nagle Community College. However, an interim building, was to be developed, in the vicinity, for September 2017, this was announced in November last.”
“However, it since became clear, due to the failures of the Department, that there was not the time allowed for Educate Together to construct a temporary building in time for September.”
“The School is soon to close for the year. They are operating out of 2 classrooms, and some nearby spaces for staff etc. The extension of this arrangement, with some additional rooms, beyond this first year is unfair on ETSS, and it is also unfair on Nagle Community College. It is a result of the Departments incompetence, and is unacceptable. A growing School will also need space for an ASD unit, and resource teaching rooms.”
“The Minister needs to assure the school deliver temporary accommodation for Educate Together Secondary School, can the Minister give a timeline for the delivery of the temporary building?
“It is an unacceptable situation that they are in.”