Almost 1,000 schools across the country intend to run special summer programmes to help children make up for losses to learning and socialisation as a result of the school closures, preliminary figures from the Department of Education indicate.

968 schools have expressed an interest in running 1,346 schemes across a range of Department of Education-funded summer programmes.

It is expected that around 34,000 students will benefit.

The department said the figures represent an increase of 161% on uptake compared to last year.

But it said data on actual participation will only become known after the summer.

The programmes include schemes aimed at children with disabilities as well as children at greatest risk from educational disadvantage.

There is a separate scheme for home-based provision for children with complex needs. However, the department said data on take-up of this programme will only become available in the autumn.

11,000 children attending DEIS primary schools are expected to participate in literacy and numeracy camps, while almost 9,000 children in other schools will be able to attend similar programmes.

120 second-level schools intend to run programmes, to cater for almost 8,000 teenagers.

There will be 408 summer camps for children with complex needs, to cater for 6,482 young people.

The total funding available to this year's summer programme is up to €40 million, which is double last year’s allocation. This is the first year that all schools have been eligible to participate.

Prior to this expansion, summer programmes were only available to special schools and pupils in special classes in primary schools and in DEIS schools.