29 May 2022

Longford and Westmeath ETB to lead regional education response to those fleeing Ukraine

Longford and Westmeath ETB to lead regional education response to those fleeing Ukraine

Longford and Westmeath ETB to lead regional education response to those fleeing Ukraine Picture: Katie Godowski

Longford & Westmeath Education and Training Board (LWETB) is coordinating a multi-agency Regional Education and Language Team (REALT), responding to the local need for English Language classes and preparing to deploy laptops and tablets to support schools providing places for Ukrainian children.

Regional Education and Language Teams, which include professionals and representatives from Tusla’s Education Support Service, school psychological services, special education needs specialists and school management bodies, are being established in each of Ireland’s sixteen Education and Training Board regions, including LWETB.

ETB’s also have;
• A dedicated Coordinator to support each Regional Education and Language Team
• A dedicated school support email and phone number
• A dedicated register of ICT devices (laptops, notebooks, tablets, and other mobile devices) to facilitate eLearning.

While schools continue to be the primary contact point for Ukrainian families seeking places for their children, the Regional Education and Language Team will assist those schools in terms of supporting capacity, sharing information and resources including those for ESOL (English Speakers of Other Languages).

LWETB’s Further Education & Training (FET) service will play a key role in the delivery of ESOL providing;
• A single point of contact for ESOL provision through their Adult Education Officer
• Access to nationwide network of adult guidance services
• A Family Learning ESOL toolkit.

Welcoming these developments, General Secretary of Education and Training Boards Ireland, Paddy Lavelle stated: “Because of our nationwide locations and in-house administrative supports, Education & Training Boards, including LWETB, are ideally placed to co-ordinate this response in collaboration with our partners across the entire school sector.

"We are all focussed on making the initial entry into our education system as stress-free as possible for our Ukrainian arrivals. ETBI has also appointed a designated lead to support ETBs and we are liaising closely with the Department of Education and the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science.”

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