Updated: 14/04/18 : 09:41:07
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Govt's schools PR announcement ignores Sligo...again

Sligo-Leitrim TD, Marc MacSharry has said that the Government’s school building announcement has once again ignored the needs of school children in Sligo and the Northwest in the pursuit of quick headlines.

Deputy MacSharry was commenting after the Government announced 44 new schools at primary and secondary level in the Greater Dublin Area. See link below.

“No one is denying that these new school building projects are needed. The demographic growth is clear but what I do oppose is the decision by Fine Gael to ignore the needs of existing schools in Sligo and our area.

“Our schools face a very bleak future unless the Government sees sense and moves to fund existing applications from schools instead of grabbing headlines with more empty promises.

“There are 575 schools across the country awaiting approval for extensions or refurbishments. Minister Bruton’s PR announcement today has put paid, in my opinion, to any hope of progress on these schools in the short term."

The Sligo based TD continued, “In Sligo, two of the largest schools in the country, Summerhill Boys School and the Ursuline Girls College, are in desperate need of extension and refurbishments. I am deeply concerned that Minister Bruton’s announcement this morning means their needs are being put on the back burner.

“There is also a shortage of badly needed autism units across mainstream schools in the county. Many schools have submitted applications to the Department for funding to establish them, but alas, there is little hope for them.

“This Government’s propensity to make announcements and then never follow through knows no bounds. It seems that despite the SCU being disbanded, its influence is still being felt in the Department of Education.

“An additional capital budget allocation is needed from Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe if these new schools are to be built, let alone fund the desperately needed refurbishments and extensions to schools in Sligo.

"Tangible progress must be prioritized for the Ursuline College and Summerhill College in Sligo together with the other 573 on the list nationwide,” concluded Deputy MacSharry.

Link: Sligo Today 13/4/2018