All talk, no action from Minister Madigan on special school places

01 September 2022

Labour education spokesperson Aodhán Ó Ríordáin has today (Wednesday, 1st September) written to the Minister of State for Special Education and Inclusion, Deputy Josepha Madigan seeking an emergency meeting with education spokespeople of all opposition parties to discuss the situation of school places for children with special educational needs.

Deputy Ó Ríordáin said:

“The Milne family were forced to protest outside Leinster House again this morning as their children Ryan and Kyle still have no school place. The promises made to them have not been kept by the Minister and the Taoiseach’s apology to families in similar situations now rings completely hollow. We need to see less talk and more action.

The 1st of September, is a day that most families take for granted as the day their children return to or start school. Yet despite all the promises made to families with children with special educational needs that they would have a place this September, their plight remains as serious as ever.”

“The consistent lack of investment in autism services is eroding the chances of autistic people to thrive in our society. The reality is that every September we have a Department on the backfoot, firefighting to try and make sure that children have a place in school. It is not good enough. Families are exhausted. As it stands, Ireland has no coherent framework to address the unmet needs of people with autism in our communities and that needs to change.”

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