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Funding for Special Educational Needs at Tola’s

CLARE TD Cathal Crowe has said that confirmation has been received of funding to build a two-classroom Special Educational Needs base at St Tola’s National School.

He said that Education Minister Normal Foley has signed off on the project, which will play a part in addressing the shortage of such facilities around the county.

“I’m delighted to have received the confirmation today that funding has officially been approved for this project at St Tola’s NS,” said Deputy Crowe.

“This will see two brand new SEN base classrooms constructed there, which will help bolster the existing SEN resources serving Shannon and its surrounding hinterlands.

“There was a time up to the mid-90s where SEN kids weren’t properly catered for but thankfully that all changed with the Educational Act and various other pieces of legislation.

“As a teacher who has taught many kids with special educational needs, I’m all too aware that the legislation is only worthwhile if the resources and supports are actually in place to cater for those children’s needs.“St Aidan’s NS, just around the corner, has also been approved funding in recent weeks for emergency electrical works so it’s all looking positive for school kids in Shannon at present.”

He said that the pandemic has made things particularly difficult for children with special needs and that he was hopeful of an end to such problems. “The past few weeks have been tough on children with special educational needs and for their families and hopefully with the agreement struck now to return to classrooms there is an end in sight to that.

“I am aware, too, that there is significant concern in Shannon and its surrounding areas about the lack of facilities for second-level SEN pupils and I continue to engage with Minister Foley with a view to finding a solution to that.”

St Tola’s has been open since 1978 and currently has an enrollment of 211 students.

Owen Ryan

About Owen Ryan

Owen Ryan has been a journalist with the Clare Champion since 2007, having previously worked for a number of other regional titles in Limerick, Galway and Cork.
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