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Ruane praises cross-border collaboration on Special Educational Needs

21 May, 2008

Sinn Féin Education Minister, Caitríona Ruane, today attended the closing of the conference "Across Borders - Across Communities" in Bundoran, Co. Donegal.

The conference is part of the Special Educational Needs (SEN) Cross-Border Parent, Community and School Partnership Programme. The project aims to establish local networks with schools, parents and their communities in assisting with the development of home-to-school programmes.

As part of the event three themed resources were launched to assist teachers and parents in helping young people in the development of both social, educational and employment skills.

Ms Ruane said:

"All too often decisions about education are left to policy makers, however, I believe teachers, communities and, of course, parents have much to contribute to the debate. I am greatly impressed to see the level of collaboration involved in this project. Today I have met teachers, principals and parents from both North and South, all of whom want to make a positive change to the education of all our children.

"In recent years there have been increases in both the numbers and proportion of Special Needs pupils. This has been coupled with an increase in the complexity of Special Educational Needs. The timing of the launch of these new resources is therefore invaluable and I want to congratulate all involved." ENDS


  • In total 22 schools participated in the SEN - Cross-Border Parent, Community and School Partnership Programme.
  • There are three elements to the programme: Children with Autism - A Home-to-School Support Programme entitled "Coping with the Change from Home to School"; Hard to Help Young people - A Home-to-School Virtual Link entitled "Through the School Gate"; A portable Language and Communication Programme entitled "See My Word Tree Grow".

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