Written answers

Tuesday, 17 November 2020

Department of Education and Skills

Schools Building Projects

Duncan Smith (Dublin Fingal, Labour)
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462. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the provision of a new school (details supplied) in County Offaly; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [36197/20]

Norma Foley (Kerry, Fianna Fail)
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The major building project for the school referred to by the Deputy is included in my Department’s Construction Programme which is being delivered under the National Development Plan. The project is currently at Stage 1 of architectural planning which entails preliminary site surveys, location suitability and initial sketch scheme.

A review in 2019 of the demand for post-primary provision in the area resulted in an increase in the schedule of accommodation to cater for up to 1,300 pupils.

The Stage 1 report has recently been received by my Department. A meeting was convened last week between officials from my Department, the Board of Management and its Design Team to discuss the report and further information is to be provided by the Design Team. Once received and reviewed, my Department will be in contact with the school and its Design Team with regard to the further progression of the project.

Duncan Smith (Dublin Fingal, Labour)
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463. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the provision of a new school (details supplied) in County Kildare; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [36198/20]

Norma Foley (Kerry, Fianna Fail)
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I can confirm that the Department is currently finalising a site identification & deliverability exercise in order to technically appraise suitable sites within the relevant school planning areas, for the post primary school to which you refer. This exercise has been progressed during the past months, in line with restrictions in place due to the Covid-19 pandemic, nevertheless, my officials have progressed the exercise to the point where final site selection is imminent. Preliminary discussion has also commenced with landowners with a view to establishing availability and market expectations on selected lands, before a preferred choice can be fully assessed. Further announcements will be made when it becomes possible to do so.

Due to obvious commercial sensitivities, I cannot elaborate any further at this juncture but please rest assured that the project is being given due consideration and attention.

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