Direct Grants to Primary Schools
Ireland’s education system has greatly suffered from budget cuts, forcing schools to increase class sizes, cut teachers, and make do with their existing resources. This leaves no funds for integrating technology into the classroom or even for purchasing science materials. Since two of Ireland’s largest educational priorities are development of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) subjects and improvements in literacy, the Partnership provides small grants of $1,500-$2,500 directly to schools to help them buy science materials and build their libraries. For particularly disadvantaged schools, these grants are repeated annually. In the predominantly small, rural schools that these funds go to, a little money goes an incredibly long way.
There is no one more appreciative of these grants than the rural school teachers and students, who regard these checks not only as a means to upgrade their literacy materials or science supplies, but as an affirmation of their hard work and dedication. The Partnership uses a variety of factors to determine direct grant recipients, including DEIS classification, recommendations from community leaders, site visits by local Board members, and consultations with key stakeholders in Irish education.