Unanimous support for pupils in St Rose’s school

By Mary Dennehy

LOCAL councillors this week expressed their unanimous support for St Rose’s National School, after a national progress report questioned the need for reading schools.

Established in 1995, St Rose’s is a school for children with specific reading difficulties and is one of three ‘reading schools’ in Dublin.

st roses compressor

St Roses’s is located on the Scoileanna Aonghusa campus in Castle Park

Part of the Scoileanna Aonghusa campus in Castle Park, Tallaght, St Rose’s currently has 63 children, aged between eight and 12 years, who attend from right across the county.

Pupils attend for two years before returning to mainstream.

However, a recent progress report by the NCSE (National Council for Special Needs) created uncertainty for families, after it questioned the need for schools like St Rose’s – redirecting these resources into main stream schools.

Councillor Emma Murphy tabled a motion on the issue in council chambers this week.

The Fianna Fail councillor asked that members recognise the need for continued support of St Rose’s, the one school in the county for children with specific reading difficulties/dyslexia .

She also asked that the council writes to the Minister for Education and Skills conveying ‘the disappointment’ of members that the NCSE in a recent progress report would question the need for this resource.

Cllr Murphy’s motion was passed unanimously by members.

Speaking with The Echo after the meeting, Cllr Murphy said: “This is a very pressing issue for the parents and the school.

“These additional resources give kids with dyslexia a two-year leg up… and from meeting with parents, the impact [of St Rose’s] on children is massive.”

She added: “Diagnosis of dyslexia is becoming more and more prevalent.

“We are diagnosing dyslexia earlier and earlier and training teachers to recognise dyslexia earlier and earlier.

“This is why resources like St Rose’s are here.

“[The council] will issue a letter to the Minister of Education asking him for a full look at existing resources …and asking that they are kept.”

When contacted by The Echo, Anne Marie Kealy, the Principal of St Rose’s, thanked the members of South Dublin County Council for their support.

“All of the staff and parents appreciate the support”, Ms Kealy said.

“St Rose’s fits into the Department’s consortium of supports for children with specific learning difficulties/dyslexia.”

The Echo contacted the Department of Education for comment.

However, a response was not received in time for print.

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