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President of Ireland shows support for ESG

November 26, 2013

Michael D. Higgins has said that he is happy to support the work of Gaelscoileanna and ESG to encourage excellence from evidence.

‘From evidence to excellence’ was the theme of this year’s Eagraíocht na Scoileanna Gaeltachta Teo. (ESG) & Gaelscoileanna Teo. conference which held in Enfield, Co. Meath at the weekend.

This annual conference is open to anybody associated with Irish medium education, teachers and principals from both primary and secondary levels in particular, and a series of lectures, focus groups and workshops takes place over the weekend.

This year saw Gaelscoileanna celebrating 40 years of work and President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins attended the official opening of the conference on Friday as part of the celebrations.

ESG launched a template for Irish language policy in Gaeltacht primary schools at the weekend, a resource which will assist in the drafting of language policy.

Speaking at the conference, President Michael D. Higgins recognised the important role of Gaeltacht schools in supporting Irish as a spoken language in the Gaeltacht.

The Board of Directors of ESG made the decision in September to wind up the organisation as a result of the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht decision not to provide funding to the from the beginning of next year.

ESG, based in Baile Bhuirne, Co. Cork was established in 2006 as an umbrella body for primary and secondary schools in the Gaeltacht areas. ESG and Gaelscoileanna Teoranta have been in talks towards amalgamating the two organisations for over two years, but while certain progress was made in this regard, the failure of both funders – Foras na Gaeilge and the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht – to come to a solution in relation to future funding caused an insurmountable obstacle to the progression of the merge.

The Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht claim it would have been inappropriate to get involved in talks relating to the amalgamation of two voluntary organisations while this process was still underway.

ESG Deputy Chairperson Anna Ní Chartúir said that the strong support shown by President Higgins for the work of ESG, and his understanding of the importance of that work is grounds for hope.

©Foilsithe ar Gaelport.com 26 Samhain 2013