Schools budget receives €80 million boost
The Minister of Education, Tiago Brandão Rodrigues, has announced that the nation’s schools budget is to receive a boost of €80 million from community funds and additional central government spending.
The Minister stressed that this new budget will allow 40 more schools to be refurbished, raising the total refurbishment spend to €735 million between 2016 and 2020.
The €80 million increase is made up of €69 million from the EC’s, ‘European Regional Development Fund’ (ERDF) and €11 million from the State Budget.
Rodrigues added that he has the go-ahead for 200 additional staff to support children with special educational needs (SEN) in pre-school education.
The Minister also highlighted the candidacy of 237 schools from 125 municipalities to join the Ciência Viva network, a project that carries an investment of around €3 million.
Schools are encouraged to establish partnerships with these Living Science centres, also with higher education institutions, companies, museums and other cultural institutions.
The Ciência Viva at School clubs aim to contribute to the scientific and technological literacy of students and the educational community as well as stimulate learning and enthusiasm for science.
Another objective of this project is to contribute to the modernisation of teaching models, namely through interdisciplinarity, practical and experimental work, explained the Minister.
Meanwhile, the teachers’ trade union considers that Tiago Brandão Rodrigues “is not up to the position he occupies.”
The Minister of Education has suggested that the Government has all year to begin negotiations with trade unions but the National Federation of Teachers (Fenprof) urged António Costa to replace the minister for deliberate delaying tactics.