For Written Answer on : 26/04/2022
Question Number(s): 947 Question Reference(s): 21049/22
Asked by: David Stanton T.D.
To ask the Minister for Education if she has considered reminding schools of circular letter prim 16/05 and the associated guidelines on the use of school buildings outside of school hours that was issued in October 2017; and if she will make a statement on the matter.
The policy of my Department is to support the use of school premises and facilities outside of school hours for community, recreational and education-related purposes. The 2017 guidance to which the Deputy refers, was developed in consultation with school authorities. This guidance provides information for schools considering requests for use of school buildings outside of school hours. A copy of this guidance is available on my Department’s website.
My Department plans to undertake a review of these guidelines in Q3 of 2022. As part of this review process my Department will consult with relevant stakeholders, including representatives of schools and other government Departments which engage with the community and voluntary sectors. As part of this review my Department intends to undertake a survey of a representative sample of schools as regards their experience in engaging with community and recreational groups seeking to use school property.
Following this review my Department in consultation with school authorities will update the guidelines. All schools will be notified of the updated guidelines.