Capacity Crisis in our Schools – A consequence of boom time planning

Parents in Swords find themselves as victim of poor planning during the construction boom. It is a situation that is happening all over the country.

Lack of spaces at the Holy Family Junior National School in River Valley is forcing new pupils to seek alternative schooling arrangements in September. I have met parents who are faced with the prospect of splitting siblings between schools. This is both unacceptable and very unfair. Once again it is communities who are paying the price for poor planning decisions.

It is frankly unbelievable that when new estates were being built over the last decade no one thought it was a good idea to plan education provision. Poor planning and a lack of community based policies means that the people of River Valley, Boroimhe and Ridgewood are presented with the stress of finding school places for their children.

The response from the Department of Education and Skills has been less than forthcoming. They analysed enrolments in Swords and found that there was sufficient capacity so did not to sanction an additional teacher for Holy Family.

It’s no longer good enough that parents are faced with a school enrolment lottery. The situation in Swords needs to be addressed as a matter of urgency. Additional teaching resources are required for for the Holy Family primary school. Parents being left with having no choice but to delay starting their children’s education is not acceptable in a country that prides itself on the quality of its education system.

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