Wednesday, 9 May 2012
Martin Conway (Fine Gael)
I welcome the Minister of State, Deputy Ciarán Cannon, to the House. Some weeks ago a group of students from Killaloe visited Leinster House on their own initiative. While such groups are often invited by Members and other public representatives to visit the Houses of the Oireachtas, these children took it upon themselves to write to the Superintendent requesting a tour. During my meeting with them, those from the Clonlara area who are attending St. Anne's community college in Killaloe expressed concern that the bus service which traditionally brings students from that area to and from Killaloe is to be discontinued next year, if not for all students then at least for those commencing at St. Anne's next September.
Most schools in Limerick city, especially in the Clonlara area, are suffering severe overcrowding. As a consequence, many families send their children to Killaloe, which is quite close to the city, where they have a chance to partake of their education in an uncrowded environment. That practice has been customary in this area of south-east Clare for many years. I ask the Minister of State to be flexible in his assessment of the school transport arrangements in respect of St. Anne's community college in Killaloe next year and to take into consideration local customs that have continued for many years. The Minister of State is very accommodating in general and always endeavours to find common sense solutions, as I am sure he will do in this case.