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O’Brien calls on Government to stop the cuts to DEIS schools

13 December, 2011 - by Jonathan O'Brien TD

Speaking in the Dáil today, Sinn Féin TD for Cork North Central, Deputy Jonathan O’Brien called on the Government to stop the cuts to DEIS schools.

Deputy O’Brien said;

“I am asking the government to support these schools and recognise the good that they do, not only for the children that attend them, but also for the communities. Two of my children attend DEIS schools so I’m familiar with the work that they do with their pupils. They play a vital role in children’s education and are a part of the social fabric of the communities. For these children, DEIS schools are essential to meeting the educational needs of those children.

“Some of the children in attendance have specific needs that only DEIS schools, with their current range of support structures and staffing levels, can address. They were intended to introduce fairness to an education system that had previously ignored disadvantaged children.

“Withdrawing staff is going to have a massive impact on these children. I have spoken to teachers from 12 schools who are going to lose 41 staff, and we are still waiting for more figures. The impact of the loss of additional supports will be huge. The Minister is not prioritising frontline services. This measure decimates frontline services in our most disadvantaged communities. It beggars belief that the Minister can say that increased pupil-teacher ratio will benefit from school.

“We aren’t just talking about money here, this is about people’s opportunities. These cuts cannot be allowed to go ahead.”


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