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Varadkar accuses primary schools of fraud to mask his cuts – Brady

31 May, 2017 - by John Brady TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Social Protection John Brady TD has slammed claims made by Minister Varadkar linking cuts to the School Meals Programme currently being experienced by schools across the country to a misappropriation of funds.

Teachta Brady said:

“Today, during questions to the Minister, I raised, for the second time, cuts to the School Meals Programme and the fact that, from tomorrow, many schools are not in a position to provide meals to children.

“The schools that have contacted me are disadvantaged schools with DEIS status and therefore, cannot afford to cover school meals costs for June themselves.

“Despite this reality, Minister Varadkar announced today that no cuts have been made to the programme. This is absolutely incorrect and a blatant insult to the schools that did not have this problem last June and now have this year. If that is not a cut, what is?

“To add further insult, the Minister’s response to these cuts is that school principals are spending this funding on other things, a ‘misappropriation of funds’, and there are schools who ‘haven’t been able to manage their allocation’.

“Instead of turning this back on schools and disadvantaged schools at that, Minister Varadkar needs to take responsibility for the precarious position he has put schools in and that, from tomorrow, children will be hungry at school. This is hardly a glowing reference for a potential future leader of this country.” 

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