Dáil Éireann - Volume 550 - 20 March, 2002
Written Answers. - Services Supervision.
Mr. Penrose Mr. Penrose
73. Mr. Penrose asked the Minister for Education and Science the cost of his contingency plans for supervision and substitution in second-level schools for the week ending 8 March, 2002; the total number of supervisors employed; the budget allocation which has been made for this cost; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9235/02]
Dr. Woods Dr. Woods
Minister for Education and Science (Dr. Woods): Officials of my Department held discussions with the representatives of the managerial authorities in the second-level sector in order to ensure that schools would remain open when the ASTI directive to its members to withdraw from voluntary supervision and substitution duties took effect on 4 March 2002. Arising from these discussions a contingency plan was prepared and agreed between my Department and the managerial authorities. As part of the contingency arrangements, my Department undertook to resource schools so that they could employ staff to provide supervision and remain open. In addition, my Department undertook to recoup the cost to the management authorities in advertising for, recruiting and training appropriate personnel to provide supervision services in schools on a temporary contractual basis.
Supervisors who contracted for delivery of supervision services are being remunerated at a daily contract rate of €68.56, £54, based on a minimum of two hours supervision. Where further supervision above these two hours is required this is being remunerated at €34.28, £27, per additional hour. This is the equivalent to the hourly rate offered to teachers. To put schools in funds for the purposes of the contingency arrangements, an initial payment was made to schools by my Department on 28 February 2002, which was based upon six weeks of the annual grant, calculated on the basis of €1,270, £1,000, per whole time equivalent teacher post per annum, with a stipulation that further payments of the grant will be made to schools at the appropriate stages of the contingency. In addition, funding was provided to cover employers PRSI, holiday pay and administrative costs. In aggregate, the sum dispersed to schools was approximately €7 million, £5.5 million.
The contingency plan acknowledges that supplementary allocations may need to be made to some schools at a later stage if their approved outgoings are greater than the amount of the grant. Accordingly, the final costs are not yet  available. The joint managerial body placed advertisements on behalf of the managerial authorities in the national media over the weekend of 16 and 17 February. In addition, the JMB organised training on a regional basis and operated a telephone help-line for schools. My Department has recouped €114,258.47, £89,985.86, to the JMB to offset the cost of providing these services to date. Information concerning the number of supervisors employed is not readily available as these personnel are recruited directly by the school authorities.
Dáil Éireann 550 Written Answers. Services Supervision.