Dáil debates

Wednesday, 22 September 2021

Ceisteanna ar Reachtaíocht a Gealladh - Questions on Promised Legislation


12:40 pm

Photo of Brendan GriffinBrendan Griffin (Kerry, Fine Gael) | Oireachtas source

I want to raise with the Minister the Right to Read Campaign by Children's Books Ireland. This is a campaign to restore the school library fund. The budget previously included a grant to help schools stock their school libraries but this was cut in 2008. It has not been restored since. There is a great opportunity now with the forthcoming budget to restore that grant. It is very important.

Reading really does matter to children. It is hugely important in their lives. I say that as a father of two young readers, as someone who has written books for children and someone who has taught children. It really makes a difference.

Approximately €5.6 million would allocate €10 in respect of every primary school child in the country and the Minister really would be bringing the books to the children. We have great public libraries but they do not catch all children. This is a great opportunity for a relatively small amount and I ask the Minister to give it serious consideration in the context of the forthcoming budget.


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