Minister for Education Jan O'Sullivan has shelved plans to change the way teachers are allocated to children with special educational needs.

A new system of school allocation was due to be introduced in September 2015, but Ms O'Sullivan said the current model would be retained in order to allow for further consultation.

The National Council for Special Education, which designed the reformed model, had hoped that the new method of allocation would be more equitable.

In a statement, the minister said sufficient time had to be allowed for further consultation.

She said while there had been a broad welcome for the new model some concerns had yet to be fully addressed. 

Ms O'Sullivan said she has asked her department to design a pilot of the new model, which schools will be able to opt for on a voluntary basis.