Dáil Éireann - Volume 630 - 31 January, 2007

Written Answers. - School Enrolments.

Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Education and Science the number of children attending each of the schools, primary and post-primary in the town of Naas, County Kildare; the number of school places available at the schools; the size of the classes in each case; her proposals to meet the future accommodation needs in each case; if she has satisfied herself that sufficient preparation is being made to provide in full for all the accommodation needs for the foreseeable future in view of the expansion in the population; [1082] and if she will make a statement on the matter. [2287/07]

Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Education and Science the degree, in respect of each of the schools within the town of Naas, County Kildare, primary and post-primary, to which she proposes to provide adequate school places, having regard to the requirements as set out by the respective school authorities; if she will implement a plan to address overcrowded classrooms, insufficiency of accommodation or other attendant facilities relative to the primary and post-primary sector; her proposals to deal with these issues within the next 12 months; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [3021/07]

  Ms Hanafin: I propose to take Questions Nos. 1672 and 1742 together.

I am aware that Naas like many areas located within close proximity to Dublin, continues to experience population growth, a position that almost inevitably places some strain on existing educational provision. I am pleased to inform the Deputy that a range of significant measures has been undertaken by the Department to address the current and future need for pupil places in the area.

In the Naas locality, at primary level, an entire new school has been provided at Killashee while temporary accommodation has been provided at Scoil Corbain, St. Conleth’s & St Mary’s NS and St. Conleth’s Naofa. Temporary accommodation has also been approved at Caragh NS, Gaelscoil Nás na Ríogh and Scoil Naomh Brighde.

A brand new state of the art sixteen classroom school together with a double autistic unit was also opened in September 2005 in Naas town. Another brand new sixteen classroom school is planned for Gaelscoil Nás na Ríogh. This project commenced architectural planning this year. Additionally, there are proposals to improve accommodation at St. David’s National School and Two Mile House National School. The long term accommodation needs of the national schools at Ballycane, Caragh and the Convent of Mercy are also currently being assessed.

The indications are that, between them, these developments will be sufficient to meet the needs of the area into the future, however, as with all areas experiencing significant population growth, the Department will be keeping the situation under review. It is open to the school authorities to apply for additional accommodation where necessary.