Questions must be answered about DEIS school funding
Labour education spokesperson Aodhán Ó Ríordáin has called on the Minister to outline the specific rationale used for the DEIS school funding announced by the Department yesterday.
Deputy Ó Ríordáin said:
“At a briefing for Education spokespeople yesterday, a considerable amount of time was spent on explaining the DEIS identification model which has been used to draw up the new DEIS school list.
“There was little detail at the meeting on how decisions were made as to where to draw the lines within the model, or how they decided to distribute allocations within the model. We have no detail on what the output of the model was and no transparency on the criteria for schools to be included or excluded.
“For example, changes within the last number of years were not taken into account when updating the DEIS funding, including demographic changes and social housing provision. Indeed, it does not take the HAP payment received by families into account.
“It is hard to explain how two schools in the same town with, seemingly, the same catchment area and profile can be awarded different DEIS status.
“I am calling on the Minister to clarify the exact methodology used in providing this funding and explain the rationale for this.
“Investing in education is the key to eradicating child poverty. This risk of poverty affects one in four children growing up in Ireland today. Any attempt to give children a fair start in life is welcome, but we need to ensure that funding is fairly dispersed throughout the country.
“Political decisions should not appear to be to the forefront when it comes to investment decisions for children’s education.”