Carlow-Kilkenny TD Jennifer Murnane O’Connor has welcomed confirmation schools will return in September
Fianna Fáil TD for Carlow-Kilkenny Jennifer Murnane O’Connor has welcomed confirmation that primary and second level students will return to school this September.
Deputy Murnane O’Connor said the package of Government supports worth over €375 million will enable the return of one million students and 100,000.
The package includes plans for an additional 1,080 teaching posts at post-primary level at a cost of €53 million, to include 120 guidance posts to support student wellbeing, an initial allocation of over 600 posts to be made available to post-primary schools, and the remaining posts will be used to allow post-primary schools experiencing particular difficulties to reopen fully and adhere to physical distancing and class sizes.
“This will be welcomed by families across the country. Having such a prolonged break in education ran risks for the development of students, who have been home from school since early March. Remote learning has been difficult on students and their parents," Deputy Murnane O’Connor said.
“The funding will allow for adjusting the physical arrangements and layout of classrooms as necessary, implement enhanced cleaning and hygiene measures in line with public health requirements in all schools, and recruit additional staffing resources to support the safe and sustained reopening of schools in a Covid-19 context.
“Funding will also provide for psychologists to help vulnerable children re-adjust to school life and additional guidance counsellors in schools."
Deputy O’Connor also welcomed the return to school guidance issued by the Minister for Education Norma Foley to schools, which will facilitate the safe return of students to their classrooms. “Many students and parents will be eager to return to school following the unprecedented changes brought about by Covid-19. The comprehensive package from Government will allow this to safely happen,” added Deputy Murnane O’Connor.