School Waiting Lists

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The next year of school may not be starting until September, but already waiting lists are full and parents are worried their children may not obtain a place at their local secondary school.

Nearly 6 months before the next school year is set to start some parents are finding it difficult to get their children enrolled in their local secondary school. Wexford is one example of a town where the problems are taking place. All five secondary schools in the town are over subscribed, more are attempting to enrol than there are places available in them. Other places that have had similar problems with waiting lists include Newbridge, Co Kildare and suburbs of both Dublin and Galway.

The problems appear to be caused by a combination of the population growth outpacing school development and admission rules that prioritise the children of past students, all of which is causing stress to fall not only on the parents but also the children that stand to lose out. On the other hand parents who apply to multiple schools at once inflates the numbers, according to the Department of Education.

With the population still increasing as time goes by more schools will inevitably need to be constructed across the country and current schools need to be expanded. While many political parties like FIne Gael and Labour have commented on and made promises regarding education, Fianna Fail appears to be the most vocal on this particular issue.

It’s estimated that Wexford is short 500 places for students while Newbrdige is short 160, less than Wexford but still a large issue in its own right. There are plans for new schools, though these will do little to comfort those struggling at the moment who are under pressure just to ensure that their children have access to second level education.

Image source: Irish Times.

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