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Research shows DEIS is working in primary schools according to Minister

Posted by SchoolDays Newshound on 16/12/2013. Research shows DEIS is working in primary schools according to MinisterTags: Education And Politics Teachers

The Educational Research Centre (ERC) has released a new report on the evaluation of the DEIS (Delivering Equality of Opportunity in Schools) programme in primary schools. The ERC has been carrying out an evaluation of DEIS in its most intensive form (i.e., the School Support Programme or SSP) since it was introduced by the Department of Education and Skills in 2007 as a response to addressing the needs of students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The recent findings indicate that reading and mathematics levels have continued to improve significantly in participating schools since the programme began

The main findings are :

* Test scores at all grade levels where testing took place (2nd, 3rd, 5th & 6th) increased significantly between the collection of baseline data in 2007 and follow-up testing in 2010.

* Outcomes from the most recent round of testing in spring of 2013 indicated that, not only were the initial gains maintained, they were built on between 2010 and 2013.

* Gains are particularly evident in the junior grades and in schools that have high levels of disadvantage.

* While there has been a striking reduction in low-scorers (i.e. at or below the 10th percentile) in both reading and mathematics, the percentage of high achievers in both subject areas has been maintained or increased.

* Levels of pupil absence has also fallen from 10.8% in 2007 to 7.1% in 2013

Commenting on the Report, The Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairí Quinn T.D., said, “These results from the ERC on DEIS in primary schools are very encouraging. They show that the significant investment that we make in these schools is paying off and pupils’ reading and mathematics test scores are consistently improving.”

The ERC is expected to publish further reports on DEIS in the near future, including a report on DEIS at post-primary level. The Minister also announced that the Department and the ERC will host a research seminar on DEIS in the Spring of next year. “This seminar will bring together DEIS programme practitioners, other educationalists and policy makers and give them the opportunity to discuss the findings of reports such as these. I also hope that the event will inform future policy options in relation to educational disadvantage,” Minister Quinn concluded.

The report on DEIS schools is available on the ERC’s website at


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