Written answers

Thursday, 16 May 2024

Department of Education and Skills

Educational Disadvantage

Photo of Mark WardMark Ward (Dublin Mid West, Sinn Fein)
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180. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills if funding is available for a secondary school student from a disadvantaged area to access the DBS International Soccer Academy Transition Year Programme 2024-25; if so, the way to apply for this funding; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [22263/24]

Photo of Norma FoleyNorma Foley (Kerry, Fianna Fail)
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Transition Year is a valuable programme for students that offers opportunities for life skills, personal, social and academic development and experience of adult and working life. Transition Year has a unique and important value in the life of students.

There is no specific funding source for schools aimed at a student's participation in a specific programme at Transition Year. A Transition Year grant is paid on a per capita basis, at a rate of €95 per annum per student.

The management authority of each school carries responsibility for making decisions regarding the Transition Year programme in that school. Each school designs its own Transition Year programme, within set guidelines, to suit the needs and interests of its students. In establishing its own distinctive programme content, the school takes into account the possibilities offered by local community interests.

If the school in question is a DEIS school they would receive a DEIS grant annually, which must be directed at those children and young people most at risk of educational disadvantage. The DEIS grant should be utilised to attain the targets set in the schools DEIS Action Plan for Improvement across the DEIS themes. When expending the DEIS grant schools need to assess and decide if the item/service is relevant to their DEIS action plan and whether there are any existing schemes or support programmes available before considering expenditure of funds under the DEIS grant.

The Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media has advised my Department that Sport Ireland is the statutory body with responsibility for the development of sport, increasing participation at all levels, and raising standards, including the allocation of funding across its various programmes. Sport Ireland channels funding through the relevant National Governing Body of sport. Funding for football is allocated to the Football Association of Ireland (FAI). It has also advised that students are recommended to engage with the FAI to discuss their individual needs and how they may be supported by the governing body.


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