A decision is to be taken on Wednesday on whether 14 students in West Cork, who currently have no secondary school place for September, will be accommodated in a school in their nearest town.
In Clonakilty, 14 boys had applied to Clonakilty Community College for a first-year space in the school in September but failed to secure admission.
The boys had no other options in Clonakilty as there are no other boys' second-level schools in the area. The issue is to be discussed on Wednesday during a routine board of management meeting.
Local Fianna Fáil TD Christopher O’Sullivan said he awaited a decision from the board but said second-level capacity for Clonakilty needed to be examined, particularly as boys in the area only have the option of the community college.
The Convent of Mercy secondary school has been approved for a project to increase capacity there.
Meanwhile, in East Cork, a new 1,000-place community college building is being developed as part of the Carrigtwohill school campus, which will also incorporate two primary schools.
Fine Gael councillor Anthony Barry said he believed the school would be full “the minute it is opened”.
He said Carrigtwohill Community College in its temporary building was taking the pressure off other secondary schools in the East Cork region.
“Carrigtwohill is the fastest growing community in Cork and we have also taken in huge numbers [of students] from Midleton, Aghada, and Cobh," he said.
"What that is going to do is that any of their siblings will now have priority in the community college and there could be a situation in years to come where young lads in Carrigtwohill will not be able to get a place there.
A spokesman for the Department of Education said at a national level, first-year school place requirements were expected to decline gradually from this year onwards.
However, he accepted there could be localised pressure areas across the country.
He said a number of issues could help drive enrolment pressures on schools, including pupils applying for places in a number of schools, pupils coming from outside the local area, and areas having single-sex schools rather than mixed schools.
He pointed out that pupils may not be able to get a place in their preferred school but places could be available in other schools in their area.
He said the department was in close engagement with patrons and school authorities in the relevant pressure areas “with a view to establishing the true extent of any capacity issues and to put any required solutions in place to facilitate the provision of the requisite school places”.