Delays in supports for special needs children must be reduced

Delays in sanctioning supports for children with special needs is a issue that requires urgent attention a Cavan Monaghan TD has claimed.

Fianna Fáil TD, Brendan Smith called on the Minister for Education to address the problem. Deputy Smith said such delays should be eliminated as a matter of urgency.

The Fianna Fáil TD raised the subject in the Dáil through Parliamentary Questions. Commenting on the issue he said supports for children with special needs must be put in place in a timely manner and any delays in sanctioning posts should be reduced.

“There has been a welcome increase in the level of resources for special education and this progress needs to be continued,” Deputy Smith said, “In circumstances where changes occur during the school year there needs to be a quick response when additional supports are sought by a school in respect of a particular pupil or pupils. The exceptional review process is extremely important and needs to respond to the needs of the individual child in a timely manner.”

The Cavan and Monaghan deputy added: “The Minister in her response to my Parliamentary Question outlined that the allocation of SNA’s in 2021 has enabled the establishment of new special classes, creation of new places in special schools and support for children in mainstream classes for this school year.

“This significant increase in support is welcome and, of course, further improvements in the whole area of supports for children with special needs will enhance admirably school and learning provision,” concluded Deputy Brendan Smith.