Friday, 30 July 2010

Four New Gaelscoileanna to Open
















The Irish Times reports that Minister of Education Caitríona Ruane has announced the opening of four new Irish-medium primaries, in Magherafelt, Kilkeel, Limavady and Ballymena.

Concern has been raised at the opening of new schools at a time when there are unfilled placed in existing institutions. The Blether Region does not know enough about that issue to comment.

However, Internet discussion on the decision has been extremely intemperate in nature, with some commentators appearing to assume that an Irish-medium school is there to indoctrinate rather than to provide a balanced education or that it caters for only one faith community. On Slugger O’Toole, Gaelscoileanna were referred to as "a new form of segregation" and even "Hiberno-madrassas".

The fact is that anyone can send their child to an Irish-medium school in the full expectation that the same standards in force elsewhere will apply, regardless of what brand of religion they practise, or even whether they have one.

Gaelscoileanna are not there to teach children to crack their eggs at one end or the other — merely to call it ubh when they do so.

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