'Gaeilge Barrier' for Gaelscoil admission a function of dismal Gaelscoil Provision - Peadar Tóibín TD
Sinn Féin spokesperson on the Irish language, Peadar Tóibín TD has said that proposals that have come from the Department of Education - that in the case of over-subscription to a Gaelscoil, children should be interviewed to ascertain if they are being raised in Irish, is a clear sign that the government have failed in the provision of sufficient Gaelscoil places.
An Teachta Tóibín said:
“The figures are clear. 23% of parents seek Gaelscoil education and only 5% of children are receiving Gaelscoil Education. Tens of thousands of children in Ireland are not being educated in their preferred language.
"What is worse is that there is no clear plan to matched supply of places with demand. 55 Gaelscoileanna said they could not meet with demand in the school year 2015/2016.
“There has been a media storm around an amendment to the Schools Admissions Bill which will strives to ensure that children with Irish are given priority when enrolling to their Gaelscoil.
"This would amount to a tiny 3% of places reserved for such children.
“Naturally the solution to the problem would be to increase the number of Gaelscoileanna but the Department won’t do it – and are refusing even to draw up a plan for the future of Gaelscoil education.
“As such it’s only fair that children who have been brought up with Irish, or those who attend naíonraí and have some Irish, be allowed to attend a Gaelscoil.
"Surely it should be a basic right for those families who have chosen to raise their children with Irish to continue their education through their mother tongue?”