Fianna Fáil TD for Cavan-Monaghan Niamh Smyth has expressed her frustration with the lack of progress by the Department of Education on the Holy Family School building project.

“More than 2 years after funding for the works was approved, we are still waiting on the design team to complete its pre-qualification assessment.  According to Minister Bruton, this process will be completed “shortly” but he failed to give any concrete deadlines”, said Deputy Smyth.

“There has been no sense of urgency from the Department of Education to progress this important project.  Around 160 students attend The Holy Family School, which caters for pupils with learning disabilities and autism.  For the past number of years they have been taught in appalling conditions.  Classes are being taught in hallways and in converted storages spaces.  The building is cramped and dilapidated and is in urgent need of an overhaul.

“I am extremely frustrated by the lack of progress on this project and have been raising it with Minister Bruton over the past number of months.  His latest reply is less than encouraging.  If the current pace of the project is maintained, it will be another two years before the new building is anywhere near the construction phase.  This is not good enough.

“This school is so important for the children who attend it, and their families.  The existing conditions are simply not acceptable and I would like to see some sense of urgency from the Minister and his Department to ensure this project proceeds without any further delays”, concluded Deputy Smyth.