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Irish Schools need certainty over funding

31 October, 2006

Sinn Féin Education Spokesperson, West Tyrone MLA Barry McElduff has said that schools in the Irish Medium Sector require a greater degree of certainty about future funding after Iontaobhas na Gaelscolaiochtas revealed that many new schools will struggle to survive and that future development may be halted because it does not have sufficient funds.

Mr McElduff said:

"The situation is very serious and the many emerging schools that have yet to met the criteria developed by former Education Minister Martin McGuinness are facing uncertainty.

"Over the past five years the number of children in Irish Medium Education has doubled. This shows that the sector is thriving and the Department of Education must move quickly to ensure that Iontaobhas na Gaelscolaiochtas has the resources it needs to continue to support the development of new Irish language schools.

"Sinn Féin have consistently challenged the minimalist approach of the British government to the Irish language. We now need to see the department move beyond its commitment to provide extra funding and we need to see exactly what money is being made available." ENDS

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