Written answers

Thursday, 15 October 2020

Department of Education and Skills

Special Educational Needs Staff

Photo of Joe O'BrienJoe O'Brien (Dublin Fingal, Green Party)
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196. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills her plans to invest in special needs assistants as committed to in the programme for Government; and if there have been allocations in budget 2021 to progress this aim. [30810/20]

Photo of Josepha MadiganJosepha Madigan (Dublin Rathdown, Fine Gael)
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The provision of education for children with special needs is an ongoing priority for Government.

The numbers of special classes, special education teachers and Special Needs Assistants are at unprecedented levels.

My Department will spend approximately €2 Billion, or over 20% of its total educational budget on making additional provision for children with special educational needs in 2021.

This represents an increase of over 50% in total expenditure since 2011, at which point €1.247 Billion per annum was provided.

Following Budget 2021, there are 18,000 Special Needs Assistant (SNA) posts will be allocated to primary, post primary and special schools for next year.

This will represent an increase of increase of 70% in the number of SNAs provided since 2011 at which point 10,575 SNAs were available.

There are currently 16,969 Special Needs Assistants allocated to schools.


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