Monday, 4th March 2019
Press Statement by Hildegarde Naughton TD
Fine Gael, Galway West and South Mayo
Galway schools are set to benefit from a €50-million investment in ICT equipment such as laptops, tablets, cloud systems and projectors under Project Ireland 2040, according to a local TD.
Fine Gael Deputy Hildegarde Naughton said that all primary and post-primary schools would be allocated funding for new technology under the national scheme in accordance with their size.
The investment brings the Government’s spending from Project Ireland 2040’s Digital Strategy for Schools ICT Infrastructure Fund to €110 million in just three years.
Deputy Naughton said that funding for ICT equipment in schools would help to embed the use of digital technology in classrooms, and to transform students’ experiences.
“The role of digital technology in society is changing and growing rapidly, and we need to ensure that our schools keep in step with these developments,” said the Galway West TD, who chairs the Oireachtas Committee on Communications, Climate Action and Environment.
“The latest investment in classroom technology will provide primary and post-primary schools in Galway with practical, key ICT equipment to enhance the teaching and learning process.”
Deputy Naughton said that funding would be allocated to schools in accordance with their enrolment. At primary level, a 100-pupil school will receive around €5,900, while a 500-pupil school will get almost €22,000.
At post-primary level, a school with 500 students will receive almost €27,000, rising to around €52,000 for a 1,000-student school.
A further funding pot of €5 million is also being set aside to recognise and support schools’ efforts to engage with digital technology and digital learning planning.
“This is the latest funding support for technology in schools, following the Digital Learning Framework and Digital Learning Planning Resource, all of which aim to enable schools to embrace and embed new technology,” said Deputy Naughton, who is a qualified teacher.
“We want to encourage real innovation in teaching, learning and assessment in schools, and recognise efforts in this regard. The additional €5 million in funding will allow schools to apply for additional investment for the digital supports for their students.”
The funding can be spent by schools on equipment such as desktop PCs, laptops, tablets or hybrid devices. It can also be used to purchase projectors, cloud-based tools, software applications and learning platforms.
A total of €210 million will be invested by the Government under the Digital Strategy in Schools. The latest allocation is the third instalment since the scheme was launched.