Text size

Closing date for NCCA consultation approaching

November 29, 2013

The National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) will accept submissions regarding the background paper for the review of Irish on the Junior Certificate until 20 December 2013.

Major reform for the Junior Certificate was announced by the Department of Education last October and it is planned that the new structure will be implemented on a phased basis from 2014 and the reformed examination will be taken for the first time in 2017.
Under the new system, students will take between 8 and 10 subjects from a wide range of traditional exam subjects and ‘short courses’ including subjects such as Chinese, Physical Education and Digital Media Literacy. Individual schools will devise a program of subjects from which students will choose.
Schools will be expected to put together a program that will develop the ability and thinking of students with subjects that meet the needs of that particular school body. It is hoped that the new Junior Certificate will see students rather than examinations at the centre of the new approach to assessment.
Irish, English and Mathematics will remain core subjects and 2016 will see Science introduced to this group.
Irish is one of the Phase 2 subjects, along with Business Studies and Science, to be introduced to first year students in the autumn of 2015 as part of the junior cycle developments.
English, the only Phase 1 subject, will have been introduced the previous year. The new specification for Irish will be published in autumn, 2014, a year in advance of its introduction.
Participants are asked to send submissions to consultation@ncca.ie or to take part in the process by filling in either a short survey or a full survey on the NCCA website by 20 December 2013.

All documents relating to the consultation process are available here.

Foilsithe ar Gaelport.com

Minister Quinn announces 70 major school building projects as part of €2bn five year plan

November 29, 2013

Projects to provide over 27,500 permanent school places and 3,800 jobs
The Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairí Quinn, T.D., is announcing the 70 school projects which are scheduled for construction in 2014.
A €2 billion five-year capital investment programme, launched by Minister Quinn in March 2012, gave details of 275 new major school building projects to begin over the period 2012-2016.
The new school buildings and major extensions which are being announced today are part of the five year plan.
Some €470 million will be spent on primary and post-primary infrastructure next year, with a projected expenditure on large scale projects of over €320 million.
The 70 major projects scheduled to proceed to construction in 2014 are:
22 new schools at primary level
12 extensions at primary level
12 new schools at second-level
20 extensions at second-level
3 new special schools and 1 major special school extension
These school projects will deliver over 27,500 permanent school places and of these over 21,000 are additional places. The remainder will be the replacement of temporary or unsatisfactory accommodation.
Together with the school projects already announced in July last under the “Jobs and Investment” package and other ongoing projects from 2013, this means that a total of 168 major school projects will be on site next year.
In addition, the Minister confirmed that a total of 44 major school projects have now reached substantial completion in 2013.
Announcing details of the 2014 building programme Minister Quinn said, “I am delighted to confirm today the major school projects which will be built next year.”
“Not only will quality permanent school places be built for 27,500 pupils across the country, but this significant investment will support 3,200 direct jobs and 640 indirect jobs in 2014.”
Minister Quinn continued, “Despite our economic difficulties, we have a pressing need to provide new schools and major extensions to continue to meet the accommodation requirements of our growing school going population.
“We are facing massive increases in the number of school going children in the coming years. Total enrolment in both primary and post-primary schools is expected to grow by over 70,000 between now and 2017 – over 45,000 at primary level and 25,000 at post primary – and will continue to grow up to at least 2024 at second level.”
“My primary aim is to ensure that every child growing up in Ireland can access a place in a classroom when they go to school,” Minister Quinn concluded.
Today’s announcement is part of the Government’s plan to provide more than 100,000 permanent school places over the course of the five year plan.
As 2014 progresses, projects scheduled to begin building in 2015/16 will be assessed to see if they are ready to go to construction earlier than planned, and if there is financial scope to do so.
Details of the progress of all major projects listed in the Five Year Plan will continue to be maintained and updated on the Department’s website, www.education.ie


Three new schools for Cork

November 29, 2013

TWO of Cork’s biggest boom towns will get three new secondary schools by 2016 — with two schools planned for Carrigaline and one for Midleton/Carrigtwohill.

Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn has just confirmed patronage for the schools, which will cater for 1,200 students in Carrigaline and 1,000 students in the Midleton/Carrigtwohill area. Rapid population growth in these towns during the boom period has left the existing school structures creaking at the seams.
Carrigaline is to get a 600-student “Catholic school” modelled along the ethos of the historic Christian Brothers College in thecity, but it will be a non-fee paying and co-educational. The satellite town will also get a new multi-denominational Educate Together school, catering for a further 600 students.
These school developments will be entirely separate to an existing plan in Carrigaline for a 24-classroom Gaelscoil, a 500-pupil Gaelcholáiste and a seven classroom Sonas Special School. In the Midleton area, the Cork Education and Training Board, along with the Bishop of Cloyne, will oversee a new 1,000-student secondary school.
Minister Simon Coveney said the discussion now would be on the selection of sites.
“We hope to see this process fast tracked as quickly as possible. This is a real investment in education but also an investment in choice and diversity in education.”
Minister for State in the Department of Education and Skills, Seán Sherlock, said:
“These are schools that have been requested by the parents of the area, and the Department is responding to the needs and demands of the parents.”
“I look forward to the next step in the process, which includes securing specific sites.”
East Cork TD David Stanton welcomed the new schools for the Midleton area, saying:
“There has been significant population growth in the Midleton/Carrigtohill area in recent years, meaning this new school is badly needed. It will provide a high quality and modern education setting for thousands of teenagers in the years ahead.”


Gaeltachtaí Mhaigh Eo: Bás nó Fás?

November 28, 2013

Sorry, this entry is only available in Irish.

Request for submissions

November 28, 2013

Galway and Roscommon Education and Training Board (GRETB)is seeking public opinion in relation to the services provided to customers through Irish.

GRETB now wishes to invite representations from any interested parties in relation to the preparation of the first draft language scheme in accordance with the Official Languages Act 2003 (Section 11). The primary objective of the Act is to ensure better availability and a higher standard of public services through Irish.

Submissions can be made electronically by email: fiosruithe@gretb.ie or by post:
‘Scéim Teanga’
Galway and Roscommon Education and Training Board
An Coiléar Bán
Co. Galway.

The latest date for receipt of submissions is 5.00 p.m. on Friday, 20 December 2013.
Information in relation to the and services provided to the public by Galway and Roscommon Education and Training Board is available on www.countygalwayvec.ie, www.cgvec.ie and www.roscommonvec.ie.


The consultation process is of utmost importance to ensuring that public companies meet the public’s expectations in relation services provided to the public bilingually. Should you wish to recommend way in which to improve services through Irish from public companies, you can send your views to eolas@gaelport.com or send a submission to the public company in question during the consultation process. The most common recommendations made to public companies are the following:
• Current bilingual ability of the public body
• Active availability/offer and maintaining demand of services through Irish
• Recruitment policy
• Access to documentation/Application Form
• Irish language signs
• Public Meetings
• Language requirements of An Ghaeltacht
• Company Website
• Evaluating/Assessing the language scheme’s aims
• Monitoring and documenting developments made
• Publicising/Advertising the Language Scheme and its contents

Foilsithe ar Gaelport.com

Assessing school league tables

November 28, 2013

Sir, – Given that so many Irish-language schools are at the top of the league table for entrants to third-level education, what is the justification for the 10 per cent bonus marks given for answering certain Leaving Cert papers through Irish?

The old idea was that since studying through Irish resulted in students acquiring less knowledge, that their marks should be topped up to sustain them in that challenging activity. Clearly that’s nonsense. So why does the Department of Education continue this practice, an obvious corruption of the examination marking system? The 10 per cent is an example of the sort of institutionalised favouritism to select groups which was the hallmark of governments in the past. Now it should be ended. – Yours, etc,
Breffni Terrace,
Co Dublin.


Ceiliúradh ar shiopa Green’s

November 28, 2013

Sorry, this entry is only available in Irish.

Minister Quinn announces patronage of 9 new Post-Primary schools to be established in 2015 and 2016

November 28, 2013

The Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairí Quinn T.D., today announced the patrons for nine new post-primary schools which will open in 2015 and 2016.

These new schools will provide additional places for up to 7,300 students in areas of Cork, Cavan, Dublin and North Wicklow which have seen their populations expand in recent years.

The new schools include five which will cater for up to 1,000 students each.

Four of the new schools will be under the patronage of Educate Together, two will be run by the local Education and Training Board (ETB), one by the Edmund Rice Schools Trust (ERST), one jointly by the local ETB and Educate Together and the final school will be managed by the local ETB with involvement of the Catholic Bishop of Cloyne (see table below).

Minister Quinn said, “The fact that the new patrons include those of multi-denominational and those of a Catholic ethos clearly demonstrates that the Department and I are committed to providing diversity of ethos in our schools and respecting the demands of parents.”

“I am very pleased to see that Educate Together will be sole patron in four schools and joint patron in a fifth school, particularly as ET was formally recognised as a second level patron body by me just two years ago.”

“I am confident that these new schools, alongside the existing schools in each area, will mean that parents and students have real choice when it comes to deciding which school most reflects their own ethos.”

Today’s announcement is the culmination of the process which began in June 2011 when the Minister announced that 20 new post-primary schools were to be established up to 2017 to cater for increasing student numbers.

Minister Quinn said, “We are experiencing significant increases in our school-going population. The establishment of these new schools is an essential part of our actions to ensure that the school infrastructure is in place in time to ensure every single student has a quality place at second level over the coming years.”

At that time the Minister also announced new criteria and arrangements for the recognition of the new schools. The arrangements included the establishment of an independent advisory group, the New Schools Establishment Group, to advise the Minister on the patronage of the new schools following its consideration of a report prepared by Department officials.

The New Schools Establishment Group reported to the Minister earlier this month. Minister Quinn has accepted the group’s recommendations in full.

Prospective patrons were asked to provide evidence of parental demand when making applications for patronage of the new schools. In addition, the criteria used in deciding on patronage included how the proposed schools under the respective patrons would provide for extending or strengthening diversity of school ethos in each area, having regard to the views of parents.

The Minister expressed his thanks to the members of the New Schools Establishment Group for their valuable input to the process. Minister Quinn said, “I initiated the revised system for the establishment of new schools and the appointment of the school patron so that it would be an objective and transparent process. The role of the New Schools Establishment Group is critical to achieving these aims and I want to thank them for their work in this area.”

Department officials will shortly contact each of the patron bodies in regard to the logistics of the establishment of these new schools.

County Area Recommended Patron Body No. of students
Cavan Kingscourt Cavan and Monaghan ETB 400
Cork Cork South Suburbs/Carrigaline 2 Schools:
Educate Together & Edmund Rice Schools Trust
600 each
Cork Midleton/Carrigtohill Cork ETB (involving the Catholic Bishop of Cloyne) 1,000
Dublin Balbriggan Educate Together 700
Dublin Ballinteer/Stepaside Educate Together 1,000
Dublin Kingswood, Tallaght Dublin and Dun Laoghaire ETB 1,000
Kildare Celbridge Jointly Educate Together and Kildare and Wicklow ETB (subject to confirmation of sufficient parental support) Up to 1,000
Wicklow North Wicklow Educate Together 1,000


Information evening for parents will take place in Gaelscoil Mhic Aodha on Thursday November 28th at 7pm

November 27, 2013

Everyone’s welcome! The school is located in Tower View, Kildare Town, Co. Kildare.


045 535588

‘Fáilte isteach i mo shaol’

November 27, 2013

Sorry, this entry is only available in Irish.

Next Page »