Written answers

Wednesday, 31 January 2007

Department of Education and Science

Special Educational Needs

8:00 am

Photo of M J NolanM J Nolan (Carlow-Kilkenny, Fianna Fail)
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Question 1695: To ask the Minister for Education and Science the position in relation to an application by a national school (details supplied) in County Carlow for the provision of special language classes for national school pupils with speech and language difficulties; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [2426/07]

Photo of Mary HanafinMary Hanafin (Minister, Department of Education and Science; Dún Laoghaire, Fianna Fail)
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As you may be aware, the National Council for Special Education (NCSE), through the local special educational needs organisers (SENOs), is responsible for processing applications from primary and post primary schools for special needs supports, including applications for the establishment of special classes. Responsibility for enrolment to these classes rests with the individual school authority. A speech and language class can cater for up to 7 children and the children in the class have access to a speech and language therapist.

The position relating to the application referred to by the Deputy is that the local SENO was approached by the Health Service Executive (HSE) in the context of identifying a suitable school that is willing to host a special class for speech and language disorders in County Carlow. A school has been identified. The provision of speech and language therapy to the class is a matter for the HSE and funding is provided to the HSE for such purposes. The SENO is currently awaiting clarification on the availability of speech and language therapy support to the class.

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