A total of 65 Laois schools will receive a Minor Works Grant payment over the coming days for small scale works and improvements.
This is according to the Minister for Justice & Equality and Laois TD, Charlie Flanagan.
All primary schools are to receive a flat rate Minor Works Grant of €5,500 plus €18.50 per mainstream pupil and €74 per special needs pupil attending a special school or special class.
The grant is worth €6,425 for a 50 pupil school and over €11,000 for a 300 pupil school.
Minister Flanagan said the Department of Education is advising all school authorities to use the grant to prioritise fire safety prevention works.
The Laois TD said: “I am delighted this grant will be paid to 65 schools across Laois over the next number of days.
“While schools have discretion under the Minor Works Grant Scheme in relation to the nature of small scale works and improvements to be carried out to their school buildings, the Department is advising all school authorities to use the grant in the first instance to prioritise fire safety prevention works.
This follows fire safety assessments on 55 schools initiated last year.
It highlighted the need for a strengthened focus on fire safety housekeeping, maintenance and, where necessary, remedial works.
“The Department will be developing guidance for all primary and post-primary schools on the key issues identified from the fire safety assessment programme.
“This will focus on the importance of managing and prioritising fire safety – particularly in the context of funding provided under the Minor Works Grant to all primary schools.
“It is envisaged that this guidance will be provided to schools in Q1 2019 and the Department will be consulting with the school management bodies before finalising the guidance,” he concluded.