Children attending primary and special schools are set to benefit from free school books from September, a local TD has said. Deputy Emer Higgins, TD for Dublin Mid West, was speaking following the launch of the scheme by Minister for Education Norma Foley at Scoil Áine Naofa, Lucan and outlined details of the hugely significant funding package which will eliminate the cost to families for all school books, workbooks and copybooks at all primary and special schools within the free education scheme.
“This is a landmark funding package, totalling €50 million, which was secured in Budget 2023 and fulfils government’s commitment to have a first class education system, which was contained in the Fine Gael 2020 General Election manifesto,” Deputy Higgins said. “I am delighted that the delivery on this promise to ease the burden of back to school costs for families has come to pass. The scheme will benefit more than 558,000 pupils nationally, who are attending approximately 3,230 primary schools, including over 130 special schools.
Deputy Higgins continued: “Closer to home, I’m very pleased that so many children and families in our local communities will benefit from this package, which gives parents and guardians one less back to school expense to worry about, as well as saving them the time that traditionally would be spent across the Summer going to suppliers to try to buy everything on the booklist.
“Grant payments are being made this week, which means schools will now have the funding required to cover the costs of providing all these items well in advance of the start of the next school year. It’s important to also acknowledge that this provision, as well as easing the Cost of Living burden of families, means that every child will be equal in the classroom, with access to all the required materials which can and will only enhance their educational experience,” Deputy Higgins concluded.