TD Mark Ward has called on the Government to address the shortfall in ASD secondary places in Dublin Mid-West. Teachta Ward met the newly formed Clondalkin Autism Parents Support Network who outlined the struggles they are facing in addressing their children’s educational needs.
Teachta Ward said “I met with the newly formed Clondalkin Autism Parents Support Network this morning and I listened as they outlined the problems that they are facing in addressing their children’s educational needs. “They raised a number of issues with me including the lack of primary and secondary schools in their area. “They also informed me of the need for a special educational school in the Clondalkin area.
“This is on top of the daily struggles as parents of children with additional needs in trying to access disability services. “Children with ASD are been failed by both the Department of Health and the Department of Education “The parents asked me to talk about the lack of ASD secondary school places in Dublin Mid West “Information the groups received from the National Council for Special Education tells me that we currently have 17 primary schools with 29 ASD classes in our area.
“That’s a total of 174 children in ASD primary school classes. “We have 5 secondary schools with 1.5 ASD classes that will accommodate 45 children. “Simple maths tells me that putting 174 children into 45 places simply does not go. “Whilst there are nowhere near enough ASD primary school places there is a complete lack of ASD secondary places and this is creating a bottleneck. “ I raised this matter with the Tainiste last week and called on him to provide an immediate solution