Over 800 New Special Needs Assistants To Be Allocated To Schools

A total of 860 new Special Needs Assistants will be available for allocation to schools from September to December this year, an increase of 7%, the Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton has announced.

The new allocation will bring the total number of Special Needs Assistants to 12,900, at a total gross annual cost of €425 million. The increase reflects the growing participation of children with Special Needs and will support their full participation and progression within the educational system.

The Government also announced it is to proceed with a comprehensive assessment of the SNA Scheme, to be carried out by the National Council for Special Education.

Minister Bruton said: "The aim of this Government is to use our economic success to create a fair and compassionate society. In few areas is this more important than in making sure that children with special educational can fully participate in schools and maximising their chances of going on to other opportunities.

"That is why I am very happy to announce today that 860 additional Special Needs Assistants will be available to allocate to schools by the end of this year. That's a 7% increase to meet the level of stated demand.

"I am also requesting the National Council for Special Education to carry out a comprehensive assessment of the SNA scheme, aimed at providing better outcomes for students and ensuring that we are making the best additional investment for children with special educational needs. This Government is committed to providing the best possible results for the children and students in this area, and this process is the best way of ensuring that we deliver on that."


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