Belfast Telegraph

IFA nets primary schools funding

By Stuart McKinley

The Irish FA has managed to save 30 jobs after securing £3million of funding from the Department of Education.

The future of the Primary Schools’ Curriculum Coaching Programme had been in jeopardy, with the Government cash that has backed the scheme since its induction three years ago in doubt.

Now, with further investment promised, the Schools’ Programme — which also sees 32 coaches employed via the GAA — will continue to run for another four years.

“My Department has to date made available around £5.2 million for the programme,” said Education Minister Caitriona Ruane as she announced the funding.

“The new funding of £1.5million per year will ensure that the IFA and GAA can continue this excellent work for four more years, ensuring that even more local children can improve their fundamental skills and keep active.”

Without Government funding, the IFA and GAA would have been unable to fund the programme independently.

“This is fantastic news not only for the Irish FA, but for the 15,000 children and 300 teachers that benefit from the Irish FA’s programme every week,” said IFA Head of Grassroots football Lee Carroll.

“We have a very dedicated group of specialist coaches who are doing a great job exposing young primary school children to a variety of innovative physical education lessons.”

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