352. Deputy John Lahart asked the Minister for Education and Skills the schools being included in the trial of physical education being taught as a leaving certificate subject; the number of these schools that are fee paying; the number that are public; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 15357/18 asked on 17 Apr 2018 - Physical Education)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): Approximately 360 schools applied to participate in the Phase 1 roll-out of the Leaving Certificate Physical Education (LCPE) specification and/or the Senior Cycle Physical Education (SCPE) Framework from September 2018, with many applications being of high quality. 80 schools were selected for participation in Phase 1. It is my intention that all schools will be able to offer LCPE and/or SCPE from September 2020, with preparation for ...

397. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Education and Skills his plans to audit school physical education and sports facilities in order that capital provision may be made for upgrading and construction of new school sports halls and facilities in budget 2019 (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 15751/18 asked on 17 Apr 2018 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I wish to advise the Deputy that my Department is fully committed to providing that schools who wish to offer the new Leaving Certificate Physical Education Specification and the Senior Cycle Physical Education Framework (non-examinable) in the future will be able to do so.
The Deputy will be aware that under the National Development Plan (NDP), increased funding has been provided for the school sector capital investment programme.  This...

455. Deputy Jan O’Sullivan asked the Minister for Education and Skills if a request has been made by the LMETB for resources to develop playing pitches at a school (details supplied); when this work will commence; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 16391/18 asked on 17 Apr 2018 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): My Department has received an application from LMETB for funding to develop playing pitches at the school referred to by the Deputy.
The Deputy will be aware that my Department has already provided significant P.E. facilities at the education campus in question for the benefit of the primary and post-primary schools on the campus. This includes two general purpose rooms, three external ball courts and two Junior Play areas for the primar...

9. Deputy Alan Farrell asked the Minister for Education and Skills the way in which he will promote the importance of physical education in schools as part of a healthy living agenda; the steps he will take to support the construction of physical education facilities in schools; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 14278/18 asked on 29 Mar 2018 - Physical Education)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): My Department fully supports the promotion of healthy lifestyles in schools and has issued circulars to support and strengthen schools’ efforts in developing in young people the skills and attitudes needed to make informed decisions about their health. Through the curriculum students are taught the key skills and knowledge to enable them to make healthier life choices and to develop the resilience to reject negative options. This can b...

151. Deputy Margaret Murphy O’Mahony asked the Minister for Education and Skills the system in place for students who wish to avail of swimming lessons when the nearest facility is 50 km away (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11243/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Physical Education)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): At primary level, Physical Education is one of seven curriculum areas within the revised Primary School Curriculum which was introduced in 1999. A minimum of one hour of physical education per week is recommended for all primary school pupils. The curriculum has been structured so as to allow individual schools a high degree of flexibility and choice in the planning of a broad and balanced Physical Education programme for pupils, and inc...

198. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of an application by a school (details supplied) for a new sports hall in view of the fact that physical education is to be part of the leaving certificate curriculum. (Question 2842/18 asked on 23 Jan 2018 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): Two new physical education elements at senior cycle will be introduced to schools on a phased basis from September 2018:
1. Leaving Certificate Physical Education (an optional subject for examination in the Leaving Certificate);
2. A Senior Cycle Physical Education Framework (not for examination).
As part of the process of identifying schools to participate in Phase 1 of the implementation of Physical Education in Senior Cycle commencing...

326. Deputy Sean Sherlock asked the Minister for Education and Skills the capital funding he plans to put in place for schools to be able to effectively teach physical education as a leaving certificate subject. (Question 54520/17 asked on 16 Jan 2018 - Physical Education)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): Two new physical education elements at senior cycle will be introduced to schools on a phased basis from September 2018:
1. Leaving Certificate Physical Education (an optional subject for examination in the Leaving Certificate);
2. A Senior Cycle Physical Education Framework (not for examination).
As part of the process of identifying schools to participate in Phase 1 of the implementation of Physical Education in Senior Cycle commencing...

333. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Education and Skills when physical education facilities at a school (details supplied) will be reinstated; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 54596/17 asked on 16 Jan 2018 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I propose to take Questions Nos. 333 and 334 together.
As the Deputy is aware, a building project for the school to which he refers is included in my Department’s 6 Year Construction Programme.  
The process of acquiring a suitable site to facilitate the proposed building project has recently been completed.  The project brief is now being finalised with a view to progressing the project into architectural planning.
In addition, I wish t...

334. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Education and Skills when funding will be made available for a school building project (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 54597/17 asked on 16 Jan 2018 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I propose to take Questions Nos. 333 and 334 together.
As the Deputy is aware, a building project for the school to which he refers is included in my Department’s 6 Year Construction Programme.  
The process of acquiring a suitable site to facilitate the proposed building project has recently been completed.  The project brief is now being finalised with a view to progressing the project into architectural planning.
In addition, I wish t...

175. Deputy Thomas Byrne asked the Minister for Education and Skills the number of primary schools and second level schools that have been visited by a physical education inspector in each of the years 2013 to 2016 and to date in 2017; and the powers the physical education inspector has to enforce recommendations made regarding the provision of school physical education following a review. (Question 50134/17 asked on 28 Nov 2017 - Physical Education)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): Primary school inspectors are not recruited as subject specialists. Primary inspectors evaluate Physical Education lessons in the course of a wide range of evaluation models.  
At second level, post-primary inspectors visit Physical Education lessons within a number of inspection models. Specialist post-primary inspectors of Physical Education also conduct focused inspections of Physical Education and a number of follow-through inspect...

218. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Minister for Education and Skills if his attention has been drawn to concerns raised on behalf of an association (details supplied); the way in which he plans to address these concerns; if his attention has been further drawn to the fact that only 12% of young persons are meeting the guideline of 60 minutes of physical activity per day; his plans to address concerns on the optional nature of physical education at senior cycle for those not taking physical education for their leaving certificate; the timeframe for the implementation of leaving certificate physical education; the CPD facility development plans and teaching time allocation for leaving certificate physical education; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 50673/17 asked on 28 Nov 2017 - Physical Education)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): The specification for a new examinable Leaving Certificate Physical Education subject (the specification) and a new non-examinable Framework for Senior Cycle Physical Education (the Framework) were approved by me in February 2017, following development by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA). 
Implementation of Leaving Certificate PE as a subject has recently been re-emphasised as a Government priority, having been i...

43. Deputy James Browne asked the Minister for Education and Skills the position regarding the funding of indoor spaces for physical education in a primary school (details supplied) (Question 31771/17 asked on 06 Jul 2017 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I wish to advise the Deputy that my Department has no record of receiving an application from the school in question relating to the matter to which he refers. 
The Deputy will be aware that my Department provided significant capital funding to the school for the construction of 4 mainstream classrooms and resource rooms under my Department’s prefab replacement initiative and this building project was completed in 2014. 
The Deputy will ...

137. Deputy Carol Nolan asked the Minister for Education and Skills the position regarding the development of the senior cycle physical education framework; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 26133/17 asked on 31 May 2017 - Physical Education)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): A new Framework for Senior Cycle Physical Education (non-examinable) has recently been completed by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) and approved by me. 
The Framework will assist schools to design a P.E. programme for those students who may not choose to take P.E. as part of their Leaving Certificate examination.  The aim of the Framework is to encourage learners’ confident, enjoyable and informed participation ...

199. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Education and Skills further to Parliamentary Question No. 115 of 18 May 2017, the steps which will be taken to ensure adequate playing pitches and space for a secondary school built on the Harold’s Cross greyhound stadium site, in view of the fact that there are no such facilities in the local area. (Question 25800/17 asked on 30 May 2017 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): The Deputy will be aware that my Department has made an offer to the Irish Greyhound Board in respect of the Harold’s Cross Greyhound Stadium.  Subject to satisfactory completion of the acquisition, the development of the school accommodation brief would commence thereafter. The exact configuration of the school requirements has not been finalised at this point.
My Department’s design guidelines for schools include guidance in the provi...

1135. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Health his plans to roll out national initiatives to increase physical activity for children in schools as part of the national physical activity plan; if he will work with the Minister for Education and Skills to examine the need for physical activity and education to be part of the education syllabus from early childhood education to secondary level and to be part of teacher training; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20835/17 asked on 02 May 2017 - Physical Education)

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Marcella Corcoran Kennedy): Get Ireland Active! The National Physical Activity Plan for Ireland (NPAP) is one of the key developments arising from Healthy Ireland, the framework for improving health and wellbeing across the population. One of the most important aspects of Healthy Ireland is the recognition that no single Government Department, organisation or agency can make Ireland a healthier nation, but that all sectors of society and the...

123. Deputy Kevin O’Keeffe asked the Minister for Education and Skills the allocated hours for physical education in the curriculum at post primary schools. (Question 10602/17 asked on 01 Mar 2017 - Physical Education)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): Post-Primary schools are required to provide Physical Education for all students. The recommended time currently is two hours of Physical Education per week at all class levels.
 ...

184. Deputy Carol Nolan asked the Minister for Education and Skills if his Department has put in place a strategy to encourage children to be more physically active in schools; the resources that have been allocated to the plan; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 9251/17 asked on 23 Feb 2017 - Physical Education)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): All schools are required to deliver physical education as part of the curriculum. Primary schools are required to deliver a minimum of 1 hour per week while post primary schools are required to deliver a minimum of 2 hours per week.
Healthy Ireland, A Framework for Improved Health and Wellbeing 2013-2025 is the national framework for whole of Government and whole of society action to improve the health and well-being of people living in...

128. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Education and Skills the extent to which favourable consideration and support will be given to the provision of extended facilities at a school (details supplied) which might double for indoor recreational purposes; the extent to which the project continues to be examined in the relevant section of his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 35495/16 asked on 16 Nov 2016 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): The Deputy will be aware that my Department’s priority is to ensure that each child will have access to a physical school place. In October 2015, my Department advised the school in question that its application for a PE hall could not be grant-aided due to the need to prioritise the limited funding available for essential classroom accommodation to meet demographic demand.
Given the need to meet demographic growth, the delivery of new ...

139. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Education and Skills the extent to which he expects to be in a position to accede to the request for extra facilities, including a sports hall, at a school (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 23112/16 asked on 20 Jul 2016 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): The Deputy will be aware that my Department’s priority is to ensure that each child will have access to a physical school place. In October 2015, my Department advised the school in question that its application for a PE hall could not be grant-aided due to the need to prioritise the limited funding available for essential classroom accommodation to meet demographic demand.
The school has recently submitted a new application for capital...

28. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Education and Skills if and when he will audit all second-level schools which do not have a physical education hall on site. (Question 18186/16 asked on 28 Jun 2016 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I wish to assure the Deputy that I fully recognise the key role of physical education within the school experience. In our Programme for Partnership Government we have set out a commitment to introduce a new Leaving Certificate Physical Education syllabus. The National Council for Curriculum and Assessment has advanced this work. It will be a priority of my Government to ensure its implementation. When introduced, it will be on a par...

216. Deputy Alan Farrell asked the Minister for Education and Skills the action he will take in relation to a school (details supply) which urgently requires funding for a new floor in the physical education hall; if the provision of an adequate and usable physical activity facilities is of the utmost importance in terms of ensuring the health of children; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 17251/16 asked on 21 Jun 2016 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I wish to advise the Deputy that my Department has no record of receiving an application from the school in question for refurbishment of their PE hall facilities.
I also wish to advise the Deputy that the works in question are appropriate to the Summer Works Scheme, the purpose of which is to devolve funding to individual school authorities to facilitate carrying out small and medium scale capital works that will improve and upgrade exi...

56. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Education and Skills why his Department did not provide a physical education hall to a school (details supplied) from 1980 to 2012. (Question 15113/16 asked on 09 Jun 2016 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): The Deputy will be aware of the planning difficulties associated with this educational campus, related largely to the means of access to the site. Planning permission has been sought and refused for both a new primary school and a physical education hall for the existing post-primary school.
An Bord Pleanála has indicated that the matter of assessing alternative means of accessing these lands would benefit from a co-ordinated approach by...

194. Deputy Carol Nolan asked the Minister for Education and Skills his plans to undertake an audit of the physical education facilities of all secondary schools prior to the introduction of physical education as a leaving certificate subject; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 14557/16 asked on 08 Jun 2016 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): In our Programme for Partnership Government we have set out a commitment to introduce a new Leaving Certificate Physical Education syllabus. The National Council for Curriculum and Assessment has advanced this work. It will be a priority of my Government to ensure its implementation. When introduced, it will be on a par with English and History, for example. I wish to assure the Deputy that I fully recognise the key role of physical...

169. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Education and Skills to support and expedite the provision of a physical education hall in a school (details supplied). (Question 11487/16 asked on 24 May 2016 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I propose to take Questions Nos. 168 and 170 together.
In December 2012, outline planning permission in relation to the school development referred to by the Deputy was submitted to the relevant local authority but was refused on the grounds that the proposed means of access would endanger public safety by reason of traffic hazard or obstruction of road users. This was appealed by my Department to An Bord Pleanála but subsequently withd...

170. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Education and Skills to expedite the provision of a permanent building for a school (details supplied); and his Department’s efforts to date to secure this. (Question 11488/16 asked on 24 May 2016 - Physical Education Facilities)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I propose to take Questions Nos. 168 and 170 together.
In December 2012, outline planning permission in relation to the school development referred to by the Deputy was submitted to the relevant local authority but was refused on the grounds that the proposed means of access would endanger public safety by reason of traffic hazard or obstruction of road users. This was appealed by my Department to An Bord Pleanála but subsequently withd...