Dáil Éireann - Volume 685 - 18 June, 2009
Written Answers. - Irish Language.
Deputy Richard Bruton Deputy Richard Bruton
Deputy Richard Bruton asked the Minister for Education and Science the number of school places in gaelscoileanna at primary and at secondary level; his estimate of the proportion of children in sixth class primary gaelscoileanna who go on to gaelscoil at second level; if he has surveyed the percentage of children who would prefer to continue learning through the medium of Irish; if he is satisfied that the system to facilitate the development of gaelscoileanna at second level is sufficiently flexible to meet the preferences of pupils and parents; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24195/09]
Deputy Batt O’Keeffe Deputy Batt O’Keeffe
Deputy Batt O’Keeffe: In the 2007/08 school year there were 32,831 pupils attending schools that stated Irish as their medium of instruction in the Annual Census of Primary Schools. Of these, 3,584 pupils were in sixth class. I will arrange that the Deputy be contacted directly regarding the numbers receiving tuition through the medium of Irish at second level.
The Commission on School Accommodation published a report in 2004 on the criteria and procedures for establishing and maintaining provision through the medium of Irish in second level schools or clusters of schools. As part of its examination of the issues the Technical Working Group of the Commission conducted an analysis of the transfer rates of pupils educated through Irish from primary to post-primary levels. That analysis showed that the national average of transfer rate from gaeltacht schools to second level Irish medium schools was 47% at that time. The national average transfer rate from gaelscoileanna to second level Irish medium schools was 40% at the time. The report noted however that there was a very wide range in the transfer rates across different schools and areas. The report also noted that the wide range in transfer rates reflected, as well as location factors, a wide spectrum of attitudes, beliefs and aims of parents regarding education through Irish at second level.
My Department is currently considering a range of policy issues in relation to patronage at second level, including issues regarding commencement of new schools. The further development of second level provision through the medium of Irish will be fully considered in this context.
Dáil Éireann 685 Written Answers. Irish Language.