131 additional SNAs for Cork

Tim Lombard

CORK children will benefit from 131 extra Special Needs Assistants (SNAs) in our local schools. This allocation is part of a national provision of 975 additional SNAs that will become available to schools over the period September to December 2017.

Senator Tim Lombard said: “This increase has been made to meet the level of assessed demand here in Cork, and reflects the growing participation of children with special educational needs in our local schools. It will help support full participation, progression within the educational system and fulfilment of potential for all our students.

I have been in communication with my Fine Gael colleague, Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton, highlighting the need for extra supports for children with additional educational needs here in Cork.

The extra SNA posts nationwide are illustrative of this Government’s continued support for special education. Even during the worst years of the economic crash, when the public purse was significantly reduced, investment in special education was not only protected and prioritised but significantly increased.

And now, in 2017 €1.68 billion will be invested in special education, almost one fifth of the entire education budget. It is essential that we continue to provide in this way for children with special educational needs so they can reach their full potential.

Fine Gael measures success in this area by looking at the number of children with Special Educational Needs that are fully participating and progressing through the school system. More children with SEN are participating than ever before and the investment announced today is indicative of Fine Gale’s continued support for this initiative.”