Maura Hopkins Monksland roscommon mental health services Athlone Boundary

Senator Maura Hopkins welcomes allocation of Special Needs Assistants

Maura Hopkins Monksland roscommon mental health services Athlone Boundary

Fine Gael Senator Maura Hopkins has welcomed the announcement of 860 extra Special Needs Assistants by Minister for Education, Richard Bruton, adding that will benefit children within primary, post primary and special schools in Roscommon and Galway.

“These SNA positions will be available for allocation to schools over the period September to December 2016. This is good news for local children, but also good news for local people training to become an SNA who will be looking for a job.

“The additional 860 SNAs allocated, represent a 7% increase in number of SNAs nationally and this increase is happening in response to the level of need. It will bring the total number of Special Needs Assistants to 12,900, at a total gross annual cost of €425 million.

Senator Hopkins also stated “that the Government plans to carry out a comprehensive assessment of the SNA scheme under the National Council for Special Education (NCSE). This will be aimed at providing better outcomes for students with special educational needs and to ensure that we are making the best form of additional investment for children with special needs.”

“Fine Gael in Government is determined to ensure our recovering economy will pay dividends for all, particularly the most vulnerable people in society. This is why it is so important we invest wisely in our children’s futures. Today’s announcement reflects the Programme for Government commitment to ensure that all children with special needs can maximise their potential.”

Senator Maura Hopkins concluded by saying “The NCSE will notify schools of their SNA allocations for the coming 2016/17 school year and will publish details of these allocations on their website”