independent

Tuesday 2 September 2014

Four new special needs classes start next month

CLASSES IN SWORDS, BALBRIGGAN AND DONABATE

JOHN MANNING

Published 28/08/2012 | 14:58

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SEPTEMBER will bring four new special needs classes in schools across Fingal as part of a nationwide provision of 91 new classes.

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Two of the classes will be in Holywell Educate Together Primary School in Swords and there will be one each at Bracken Educate Together in Balbriggan and a post-primary special needs class at Donabate Community College. Welcoming the news, Deputy Alan Farrell (FG) said: ' These classes have lower pupilteacher ratios than mainstream classes, ranging from one teacher for six pupils to one teacher for eleven pupils.

' These classes will enable students with special needs to transition from primary to post primary settings. While most of these classes have been allocated at primary level, there has been an increase in the number of special classes available at post-primary level.' Deputy Farrell added: ' Nationwide, there will be 91 new classes for children with special needs opening by the start of the school year. This is an increase from 33 in 2011. 'I would advise parents to contact the NCSE or their Special Needs Education Organiser in relation to places that may be available as a result of this announcement.' The Fine Gael TD said: ' This is a very important announcement for Dublin North.

We have growing population and therefore require extra provision for children with special needs to be educated and progress in a mainstream school along with their peers. ' These new classes have been sanctioned as a result of the dedication and work that has been carried out by the NCSE and the Government in relation to prioritising and investing in support for children with special needs.' Commenting on the announcement, The National Council for Special Education (NCSE) CEO, Ms Teresa Griffin, said: ' The NCSE, through its national network of Special Educational Needs Organisers (SENOs), has sanctioned these classes as part of its annual allocation of supports to schools.

' These classes will enable students with special needs to transition from primary to post primary settings. While most of these classes have been allocated at primary level, there has been an increase in the number of special classes available at post-primary level.' Ms Griffin added: 'We welcome the continued cooperation of schools in establishing these classes to support the education of children with significant special needs. We are delighted to be in a position to sanction these classes and that the Government continues to prioritise and invest in supports for children with special needs.'

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