Irish schools ‘will not be found wanting’ in helping thousands of Ukra…

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Education Minister Norma Foley said that the Government “will not be found wanting” in terms of providing basic additional resources for Irish dominant and secondary schools to allow them accept thousands of Ukrainian children fleeing the Russian invasion.

s Foley, speaking at the Association of Secondary Teachers Ireland (ASTI) conference in Cork, paid tribute to the “sterling efforts” of teachers and school staff to help the children of refugee families now arriving in Ireland.

“Already we have quite a large number of students from Ukraine in our schools,” she said.

“I want to concede and salute the generosity of schools in making places, capacity and space obtainable to welcome (these) students in.

“We have more than 2,000 students at dominant school and we have almost 1,800 at second level.

“But you are quite correct – there will be much more coming to us after Easter.

“We have already put meaningful resources in place – we have more than 260 dominant schools who have applied for additional hours or additional teaching posts. They have been put in place.

“We have also REALT (Regional Education and Language Teams) under the direction of the Education and Training Board (ETB) so as to ensure that students will have a place in a school.

“We have made meaningful resources obtainable in terms of (the) English language and we are now moving with the Department of Further and Higher Education to put a new system in place for English as an additional language where we have tutors being made obtainable to post-dominant students and also to adults in their families – almost a community-family wide initiative to ensure that language is obtainable.”

“We in the Department of Education will not be found wanting in providing the financial resources (required) – but also recognising that there is extraordinary good will on the ground from staff, students and from complete communities to ensure a (school) place is made obtainable.”

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