Thursday, 12 May 2022
Department of Education and Skills
75. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the way that the allocation to education and training boards for small second-level schools is determined; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [22657/22]
Teacher allocations to all second level schools are approved annually by my Department in accordance with established rules based on recognised pupil enrolment.
The Department provides a staffing allocation to each ETB based on the overall enrolment of the schools within the ETB. The distribution of this staffing allocation is a matter for the Chief Executive of the ETB based on the overall enrolment of the schools within the ETB.
The criteria for the allocation of posts are communicated to school managements annually and are available on the Department website (Circular 0024/2022). In addition to teacher allocations based on pupil teacher ratios, an ex-quota allocation teaching posts is also allocated to Island schools, schools in single catchment areas, and schools who teach through the medium of Irish. In accordance with the published staffing arrangements, each school management authority is required to organise its subject options within the limit of its approved teacher allocation.
A number of ETBs also receive posts on a historical basis which are described as small school posts. These posts were introduced in the 1988/89 school year in recognition to a sector which had a higher proportion of post primary small schools. The distribution of the small school posts or part thereof is a matter for the Chief Executive of the ETB schemes in question.
Where a school management authority is unable to meet its curricular commitments within its approved allocation, my Department considers applications for additional short term support i.e. curricular concessions. This concession is available as a short term support to enable essential curricular provision to continue.
The allocation processes also include appellate mechanisms under which schools and ETBs can appeal against the allocation due to them under the staffing schedules. The ETB can submit an appeal under certain criteria to an independent Appeal Board which was established specifically to adjudicate on appeals on staffing allocations in post-primary schools. The Post Primary Appeals Board operates independently of my Department.