Dáil Éireann - Volume 522 - 29 June, 2000

Written Answers. - School Staffing.

307. Mr. S. Ryan asked the Minister for Education and Science if he will respond favourably to the application from Rush national school for a resource teacher from September 2000 to enable a dyslexic-SLD class to be formed and thereby meet the needs of the students and the objectives of the parents' support group. [19111/00]

Minister for Education and Science (Dr. Woods): I am aware of the application in question.

The educational needs of pupils with specific learning disability, including dyslexia, are gener[1304] ally capable of being met within the ordinary school system, with the assistance, where appropriate, of the remedial teacher service.

Fully qualified primary school teachers are trained to deal with a variety of reading problems, including those which are accompanied by perceptual difficulties. In addition, the special training programme for remedial teachers includes a module on specific learning disability.

Where more serious cases of difficulty arise, the provision is made in one of four special schools and 11 special classes dedicated to such children. These special facilities operate at a reduced pupil teacher ratio of 11:1.

My Department's inspectorate is currently examining the application for teaching support from the school referred to by the Deputy to cater for the needs of the pupils in question.

When this investigation is completed officials in my Department will be in contact with the school authorities.