SNA Allocations

Notification to School Management Authorities

Deferral to 2021/22 of the full implementation of the new frontloading model for the allocation of Special Needs Assistants for students in mainstream classes in primary and post-primary schools

In light of the ongoing Covid-19 crisis the new Frontloaded Allocation Model for Special Needs Assistants, for students in mainstream classes in primary and post -primary schools has been deferred until the beginning of the 2021/22 school year.

The regional information and briefing sessions that the Department intended to run before the end of this school year will also be deferred.

These sessions are key to helping school leaders and teachers in their planning for the introduction of the new model and their engagement with parents. They will be rescheduled for an appropriate future date.

It is now too late to run the traditional applications-based process for the allocation of the SNAs for 2020/21 school year. Special arrangements are being put in place that will facilitate continuity and certainty for schools, SNAs and parents.

The following arrangements will apply for the school year 2020/2021 :

  • All mainstream class SNA allocations that apply currently to schools will be frozen and will automatically rollover into the 2020/21 school year. 
  • No school will receive an allocation less than what they have currently and existing SNAs currently in mainstream settings can continue in post for the next school year in the normal way.
  • Applications for additional SNA support submitted to the NCSE prior to 3 April 2020 for the 2019/20 school year will be processed, and determinations made, under the current scheme. However, no further applications for the 2019/20 school year can be accepted. (amended 14/5/2020).

New Circular to be published week commencing 20 April:

A new circular 0030/2020 covering the allocation of SNAs for 2020/21 will issue to schools during the week beginning 20 April 2020. The circular outlines:

  • the detail of the rollover of SNA mainstream allocations,
  • the procedures for dealing with new/additional care needs presenting in schools, appeals

SNA allocations for special classes and special schools are not affected by this arrangement.

The new circular outlines the next steps for the full implementation of the Frontloading Model from September 2021.

Circular 0030/2020: Special Needs Assistant Allocations for the 2020/21 School Year for Mainstream Classes in Primary and Post Primary Schools