Plans are in the pipeline to develop a new special school in the Glanmire area.
A site has been identified for the development of the school and the Department of Education has confirmed that engagement is underway with a landowner in relation to the acquisition of the site.
The details were revealed in response to a parliamentary question from Cork TD Padraig O’Sullivan who had asked the Minister for Education if her Department had identified a site in Glanmire for a new special school.
In her response, the Minister said: “Officials in my Department have been working towards the acquisition of a permanent site to meet the needs of a new special school and have engaged with officials in Cork City Council in that respect.
“A suitable site has been identified and engagement with the landowner is ongoing with a view to reaching agreement in principle as soon as possible.
“I can assure the Deputy that my Department is working to advance the site acquisition process for the school in question as quickly as possible, however, due to the commercially sensitive nature of site acquisitions generally, it is not possible to comment further at this stage.”
Deputy O’Sullivan has welcomed the news and said that the provision of additional special education places in the future is important.
“Cork was behind nationally for the provision of special education needs places- that’s well documented. The opening of the new school in Carrigaline [this year] has taken off some of the pressure but at the same time, we are forecasting that there will still be significant issues in Cork in the coming years,” he said.
The Cork TD said now that a site has been identified it will take a number of years to work through design to the provision of the school, but that it was important that progress is being made.