This week the Dáil debated a Labour Party motion during Private Members' Time which called for the doubling of the capitation grant to primary schools.
At the core of the motion is the value of education. We know how important primary education is to future learning yet this is not reflected in the Government's record in the primary school sector. We have seen a failure to provide adequate capitation grants for primary schools, the abandoning of the election promise to reduce class sizes, the axing of the summer grant scheme of special and emergency repairs and the long fingering of many school extension programmes.
These points have been raised time and time again by the Labour Party and again during the debate this week.
Writing to Local Authorities all over the country about his Right to Read campaign
During his term as Deputy Lord Mayor of Dublin, Councillor Aodhan O'Riordain initiated a campaign to tackle educational disadvantage and eradicating illiteracy in the community, the Right to Read campaign.
Cllr O'Riordain, a primary school teacher, said: "Research shows that 30 per cent of children in deprived areas have basic reading problems. Many of these children live in overcrowded council accommodation, in an area without a library service and come from communities where access to formal education has been limited through the generations.
"Since I began teaching in the North Inner City in March 2000, it has become clear to me that the Council needs to take responsibility for this problem.
Pat celebrating his 58th Birthday by blowing out the candles on his birthday cake with help from pre-school children, Hannah Brennan-Doyne and Ellie Manning during his visit to Mary Mother of Hope National School, Littlepace, Clonee.
Today marked the birthday of an important member of our team; the Party Leader, Pat who celebrated the day while canvassing with JoanBurton and JoannaTuffy.
On hand to help him blow out his candles were Hannah Brennan-Doyne and Ellie Manning during a visit to Mary Mother of Hope National School in Littlepace. Not only was it Pat's birthday and therefore cake all round for everyone but we also launched a major document on education .
At October's ploughing championships in Tullow about to be interviewed by RTE's Sharon Ní Bheoláin
Another day closer to the election and another positive poll for us. There have been five polls since the election was announced; we were up in four with no change on one so there is a definite and positive rising trend for us. The poll also confirms what we are hearing from people on the ground that there is an urge for change out there.
Labour has tabled a motion in the Dail calling on the Government to honour it's commitments to reduce class sizes for the under9s to under 20:1
As concerned parents all over the country pack out meetings on class sizes organised by the INTO in their 'Is your child being crowded out' campaign the Labour Party has tabled a motion on the issue to be discussed this evening and tomorrow night in the Dail (March 20/21st).
This is the second such motion to go before the Dail, the first was rejected by the Government.
This week marks the annual BT Young Scientist and Technology exhibition in the RDS, Dublin. Pat Rabbitte and Ruairi Quinn stopped by yesterday to chat with some of the 1,800+ competitors from the schools in 29 counties taking part in the competition. The event runs until Saturday afternoon.
The mix of projects, not to mention the research and presentation of the student's ideas was very impressive indeed. Pat and Ruairi learned about the effects of food on sleeping patterns, subliminal messages (could come in handy - vote Labour), a battle of the sexes fish style, among other interesting topics.