Written answers

Wednesday, 19 December 2018

Department of Education and Skills

School Enrolments Data

Photo of Thomas ByrneThomas Byrne (Meath East, Fianna Fail)
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232. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the number of children who have been assigned a school place as a result of not having secured a place in primary school before six years of age between 2011 and November 2018, by county in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [54019/18]

Photo of Joe McHughJoe McHugh (Donegal, Fine Gael)
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The selection and enrolment of pupils is the responsibility of the management authorities in each individual school. My Department's main responsibility is to ensure that schools in an area can, between them, cater for all pupils seeking places in an area. However, this may result in some pupils not obtaining a place in the school of their first choice. As schools may not have a place for every applicant, a selection process may be necessary. This selection process and the enrolment policy on which it is based must be non-discriminatory and must be applied fairly in respect of all applicants.

Under Section 29 of the Education Act, 1998 where a school board of management makes a decision to refuse enrolment, a parent/guardian can appeal that decision to the Secretary General of my Department. Only where an appeal under Section 29 is upheld can the Secretary General of my Department direct a school to enrol a pupil.

While my Department does not record data on Section 29 appeals in the format requested by the Deputy, the following table sets out data on the total number of Section 29 appeals in relation to refusal to enrol in the primary school sector between 2011 and November 2018 and includes data on the numbers/percentage of those appeals which were upheld.

SECTION 29 APPEALS (Refusal to enrol at Primary School level) 2011 - 2018

YearCategory of AppealNumber of appealsWent to hearingAs a % of all appealsUpheldAs a % of appeals that went to hearingNot upheldAs a % of appeals that went to hearing
Total # refusal to enrol27014654%6847%7853%
2011of which primary894348%2251%2149%
Total # refusal to enrol24412049%4033%8067%
2012of which primary853440%1544%1956%
Total # refusal to enrol32214244%5136%9164%
2013of which primary1305945%3051%2949%
Total # refusal to enrol34517551%5934%11666%
2014of which primary1315844%1933%3967%
Total # refusal to enrol31117155%6136%11064%
2015of which primary1437653%2938%4762%
Total # refusal to enrol31315349%6945%8455%
2016of which primary1285039%2142%2958%
Total # refusal to enrol28212645%5241%7459%
2017of which primary1234738%2043%2757%
Total # refusal to enrol34918453%8747%9753%
Jan-Nov 2018of which primary1979046%4651%4449%


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