Call for HSE to fund full-time nurse for Kerry pupils with special needs

A full-time nurse is needed all day, every day, at special schools for students with life limiting conditions.

That’s according to principal of St Francis’ Special School in Beaufort, Liam Twomey, who says the HSE needs to urgently provide the necessary funding to meet the constitutional right of all children to an education.

Sinn Féin Cllr Damian Quigg raised the issue at the HSE South Health Forum citing a student who has to finish school at 1pm as funding does not cover a nurse for a full day at the school.

Principal Liam Twomey said prior to the summer break HSE funding only covered the provision of a nurse at St Francis’ Special School  for 10.5 hours per week.

This meant the nurse finished at 1pm on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays with no nurse on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Consequently a student at the school with life limiting conditions had no access to education two days per week and after 1pm three days per week.

This term, the Board of Management has provided funding at their own expense to provide a nurse at the school five days per week as an interim measure.

This still however limits said student who had to finish school early on a daily basis at 1pm.

Principal Twomey says this simply isn’t good enough.