Thursday, 15 October 2020
Ceisteanna ar Reachtaíocht a Gealladh - Questions on Promised Legislation
Aodhán Ó Ríordáin (Dublin Bay North, Labour)
The change in the pupil-teacher ratio announced on Tuesday was very welcome. I am sure the Tánaiste will agree that the power and funding of the Department of Education and Skills would be best channelled to infants in disadvantaged schools. The anomaly we have now is that no disadvantaged primary school with infants will benefit from the change in the pupil-teacher ratio because the staffing schedule for DEIS schools is different from that for mainstream schools. I ask for a change to be made as soon as possible. I am sure the Tánaiste will agree that if mainstream schools can benefit from a change in the pupil-teacher ratio from 26:1 to 25:1 it would be rather remarkable that disadvantaged schools dealing with infants only or vertical schools with infants in them would not benefit from the same change in class sizes or the pupil-teacher ratio. It is an anomaly and I am sure it is an oversight but it is deeply unfair. Will the Government correct this anomaly and ensure every school benefits from the change in the pupil-teacher ratio?