Dáil Éireann - Volume 542 - 24 October, 2001

Written Answers. - Community Employment Schemes.

284. Mr. Timmins asked the Minister for Education and Science the position regarding his agreement with the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment and FÁS; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25665/01]

Minister for Education and Science (Dr. Woods): I have recently secured the transfer of £46 million – 58,407,951 – per annum to my Department on a phased basis, as the FÁS school-based Community Employment schemes (CE) come to an end. In the discussions that took place in connection with the transfer of funding, I agreed with the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment and FÁS that all school based CE participants with a legitimate expectation of up to three years participation in a school based CE scheme will be facilitated to complete their full term. This adjustment to the phasing out of CE schemes in schools means that certain CE participants may be entitled to continue working on CE in schools up to and including 2004 depending on their individual circumstances and entitlements under CE. This adjustment should also ensure that the withdrawal of CE schemes takes place on a more gradual basis and therefore reduce the immediate impact on schools.

I am aware that FÁS has issued guidelines to its regional offices that reflect the agreement that I have referred to above. In the circumstances any participants on CE schemes who wish to clar[1736] ify their individual circumstances should do so by contacting their local FÁS office.