CPSMA Budget 2023 Statement
28th September 2022 | News
Free Primary Education Now Achievable – CPSMA welcomes budget cash injection for primary and special schools
Catholic Primary School Management Association (CPSMA) welcomes the funding increase of €0.4 billion for primary and special education secured by Minister Foley as a critical cash injection for struggling schools and as a welcome first step on the road to free primary education.
“School budgets are being battered by the cost of living crises” said Seamus Mulconry General Secretary CPSMA “the funding increases in this budget are critical to getting schools through what promises to be a very tough winter.”
CPSMA particularly welcomes the State investment of €47 million in a free books scheme for primary students. “This is an important first step in making the constitutional imperative of free primary education a reality rather than an aspiration, and will be a real tangible help to many young families next year.”
CPSMA also welcomes the cost of living adjusted capitation payment of €90 million for this year and expects that primary schools will get somewhere between 35% to 40% of this amount, equating to a one off increase in capitation of approximately 40%.
“While this is less than the 50% the primary management bodies were looking for, it is still a very welcome investment at a time when school budgets are being hit by the perfect storm of rapidly rising energy costs and price increases in paper and other teaching materials”.
CPSMA notes that this payment meant that, for the first time in years, schools were within shouting distance of the funds needed to properly run schools.
“I regret to say that we will still need parental support this year in form of voluntary contributions – but if this current payment were to be annualised, as it should be, we would be going a long way towards a properly funded primary school system, negating a requirement for voluntary contributions for once and for all”
CPSMA would like to thank the Taoiseach Michéal Martin, Minister Norma Foley, Minister Josepha Madigan and their officials for securing increased resources for the sector and urges the Government to build on this budget next year and finally deliver free primary education, as promised in the constitution.
CPSMA also welcomes the reduction the pupil teacher ratio and increased investment to support children with additional needs. Mr. Mulconry added that “this is a much needed investment that can’t come soon enough”