Deputy Charlie McConalogue says the Education Minister must clarify confusion over the selection process for DEIS schools.
His call comes following confirmation from the Department of Education & Skills that significant errors were made.
“It is unbelievable that the Education Minister has remained silent when such a substantial error in the DEIS selection process has emerged. Minister Bruton has been asked a number of times to explain the methodology behind the process, but to date, has failed to do so. I have been contacted by a number of principals here in Donegal who have expressed serious concerns with the process, but nobody has been able to get answers.”
He added the fact that no details about the qualifying criteria have been released raises serious questions.
“This lack of transparency goes against previous practice and runs completely contrary to the original DEIS process, which was extremely detailed. The revelations from Department officials that serious errors were made are very serious and suggest that the Minister rushed to announce the scheme without actually completing the groundwork first.
“I am very worried that schools in Donegal will be excluded from this scheme as the result of mistakes that were made in the Department. This would be deeply unfair. Minister Bruton must explain how these errors arose and what action is being taken to address them. He also needs to outline what methodology is being used to select schools.
“I have previously called for an independent review mechanism for DEIS appeals. The most recent revelations have seriously damaged the confidence in the system and it is imperative that the Minister moves to clarify the situation”.