Fine Gael TD for Mayo, Dep Michelle Mulherin, has welcomed the news that a number of Mayo schools have been given notice to proceed by the Department of Education and Skills to replace prefabs with permanent accommodation, including Behymore NS, Ballina; Scoil Cholmcille, Breaffy, Ballina; Cooneal NS, Ballina; SN Naomh Padraig, Currabaggan, Ballina; Richmond NS, Crossmolina; Ballyvary Central NS, Castlebar; SN Chomain Naofa, Roundfort; and Lankill NS, Liscarney.
Deputy Mulherin said: “I am delighted that these schools have been given notice to proceed with the replacement of prefabs with permanent accommodation. The decision is part of the Government’s plans to remove prefabs as a form of classroom accommodation in Irish schools.
“For far too long, prefabs have been regarded as the preferred way of addressing the shortage of accommodation in Irish schools. The one advantage prefabs have over permanent structures, speed of construction, is far outweighed by the many disadvantages and even over the medium term the rental and heating costs have proven to be burdensome on education budgets.
“The Government is committed to eliminating prefabs in Irish schools, and following the latest announcement 156 schools nationwide have been approved. This leaves only 32 schools that are still in discussion with the Department about their prefab replacement requirements. In addition to benefiting schools, the funding will provide a boost to the construction sector and there will be jobs created as a result of this.
“I am sure that all of the pupils, teachers, and parents and all involved in these schools will be delighted with this announcement. I have been working closely with the Minister for Education and Skills, Deputy Ruairi Quinn, for some time to secure funding for better facilities for schools. The new buildings will provide top class accommodation for students and staff alike and I am delighted to have been able to assist in whatever way I can.”