Written answers

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Department of Education and Science

School Attendance

11:00 am

Photo of Paul GogartyPaul Gogarty (Dublin Mid West, Green Party)
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Question 12: To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Education and Skills the action that has taken place following the statement by her predecessor that schools closed by the bad winter weather in January would have to make up the days missed; if an audit has been carried out and if any schools opened later as a result; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [45817/10]

Photo of Paul GogartyPaul Gogarty (Dublin Mid West, Green Party)
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Question 13: To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Education and Skills the position regarding schools that have closed during the recent cold spell of ice and snow at the end of November-early December and if specific days have been mentioned to catch up on missed hours of education; the way this can be enforced; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [45818/10]

Photo of Mary CoughlanMary Coughlan (Tánaiste; Minister, Department of Education and Science; Donegal South West, Fianna Fail)
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I propose to take Questions Nos. 12 and 13 together.

Following the bad weather last January, officials from my Department met with the relevant education partners. The main focus of those discussions was to ensure that any impact of the school closures on teaching and learning was addressed in an appropriate and sensible manner. The critical issue was to ensure courses were completed and that at second level the position of examination classes was given particular priority.

The position in relation to the recent weather conditions will vary from school to school. My Department's approach during exceptional and widespread adverse weather conditions is that schools should make all reasonable efforts to make up for lost time due to unforeseen school closures.

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