Thursday 18 October 2018

Molaga's room crisis needs urgent action

Senator takes party spokesperson on children to visit St Molaga's SNS

Senator Lorraine Clifford Lee with her party's Justice, Children and Youth Affairs spokesperson Thomas Byrne.
Senator Lorraine Clifford Lee with her party's Justice, Children and Youth Affairs spokesperson Thomas Byrne.

John Manning

A time-line for the construction of a new school building at St Molaga's Senior National School must be brought forward by the Government to bring to an end the 17-year scandal that has seen over half the school's population housed in 'temporary' accommodation.

The plight of the school was raised by two local senators, Senator James Reilly (FG) and Senator Lorraine Clifford Lee (FF), in the Seanad recently and following that debate, Senator Lorraine Clifford Lee has visited the school along with her party's spokesperson on Justice, Children and Youth Affairs, Thomas Byrne TD.

Speaking after the visit to the school, Senator Clifford-Lee said: 'Years on since the need for essential building works at St Molaga's was first raised, over half of pupils are being educated in unsuitable and poor standard prefab accommodation. This was originally flagged as a 'temporary solution'.

'Almost two decades on, a greater population and a rising demand for the upgrading of the school building and no progress has been made to support the school's growing numbers.'

Senator Clifford Lee added: 'I felt it was particularly important for Deputy Thomas Byrne to visit the school with me this week, for him to gain an insight into the poor quality conditions being endured by so many staff and students on a daily basis. We were both glad to have the opportunity to meet with school principal Pauline Costello, teachers and parents to hear about further problems that are coming down the track.'

The Fianna Fáil senator said: 'A time-line for construction must be urgently drawn up for development to get underway in the immediate future and put an end to the detrimental impact being felt by the whole school community in St Molaga's. I raised the matter directly with the Minister for Education, Richard Bruton during debate in Seanad Éireann late last month and I will continue to press on the issue.'

She said she would keep in touch with the school authorities to 'progress this urgent situation'.

Fingal Independent