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(Ireland) Secondary schools need to DOUBLE number of special classes

Mar 15, 2023, Irish Examiner: Post-primary special classes to double over next three years
The number of new special classes at post-primary level will need to double over the next three years, according to the Minister for Special Education.
If the recent growth in the need for special classes continues, the National Council for Special Education (NCSE) expects a similar level of new special classes will be needed for primary as has been provided over the last three years, Josepha Madigan said.
“At post-primary level, however, it is expected that we will need to double the number of new special classes being provided over the next three years as compared to the last three years," she said.

“The NCSE has advised my Department that it continues to work with schools to ensure that there are sufficient places available in special classes to meet the needs of children….

Ms Madigan made the comments in response to a recent parliamentary question from Independent TD for Tipperary Michael Lowry.

The Department of Education is engaging intensely with the NCSE in relation to the forward planning of new special classes for the next school year 2023/2024, she added. …

"These initiatives are bearing fruit with over 600 new special classes sanctioned at primary level, almost 300 new special classes sanctioned at post-primary level and five new special schools established over the last three years."

Last year, Ms Madigan contacted all post-primary schools to advise that in the next three to five years it will be necessary to have special classes in all post-primary schools.

Under Section 37A of the Education Act, the minister has the power to legally compel a school to open a special class.

Minister of State for Special Education and Inclusion Josepha Madigan TD.


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