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Education Minister opens new units in Armagh

2 December, 2009




Education Minister, Caitríona Ruane, has opened the Autistic Spectrum Disorder Learning Support Centre and Irish Medium Nursery School in Armagh.

Speaking at the opening in Christian Brothers' Primary School, the Minister said: "Improving provision for autism across the North is vitally important to enhance the quality of life for children, young people and adults.

"My Department will be developing a strategic plan which will identify a clear pathway for the development of autism services. This will build on much of the excellent work to date in the delivery of autism services in the education sector, ensuring we continue to strive to deliver an education system that enables children on the autistic spectrum to reach their full potential.

"The Centre for Autism, at Middletown, will have a key role in the future delivery of services for children with autism. The vision is that the centre will become a true centre of excellence for children across the whole of Ireland."

Ag labhairt di ag oscailt na Naíscoile nua, dúirt an tAire Oideachais: "Ba mhaith liom moladh a thabhairt don naíscoil seo freisin. Aithnítear go forleathan luach an infheistithe i luathbhlianta shaol an pháiste agus léiríonn taighde go mbíonn páistí, a mbíonn eispéireas réamhscoile d’ardchaighdeán acu, níos ullmhaithe don bhunscoil agus go mbíonn siad ag foghlaim níos gaiste.

Speaking about the opening of the new Irish Medium Nursery School, the Education Minister said: "I would also like to commend this Irish Medium nursery school. The value of investing in the earliest years of a child’s life is well recognised and research tells us that children who have a high quality pre-school experience are better prepared for primary school and learn more quickly.

"Tugtar ardtosaíocht do Ghaelscolaíocht i mo Roinn, agus tá lúcháir orm a fheiceáil go bhfuil páistí ag baint taitnimh as a dtimpeallacht foghlama, go háirithe ós rud é gur suíomh Gaeilge é.

"Irish Medium Education is given a high priority by my Department, and I welcome the opportunity to see at first hand children enjoying their learning environment, particularly when it is an Irish language setting.

"Tá an Roinn ag obair ar fhorfheidhmiú an Athbhreithnithe ar Ghaelscolaíocht a chur i gcrích. Tríd seo a dhéanamh, cinnteoimid go gcuirfear an Ghaelscolaíocht san áireamh agus polasaithe ábhartha ag gach leibhéal á mbreithniú agus á gcur i bhfeidhm, lena n-áirítear ag leibhéal na réamhscoile."

"The Department is currently taking forward the implementation of the Review of Irish Medium Education. In doing so we will ensure that Irish Medium Education is mainstreamed in the consideration and application of all relevant policies, at all levels, not least pre-school."

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