Méid an Téacs

Pupils make history at Gaelcholáiste

Meán Fómhair 15, 2014

THE first intake ever of first years into an Irish language secondary school in Fingal is complete and the initial 26 students are settling down to their work at Coláiste Ghlór na Mara in Balbriggan.

After a six-year battle to open a Gaelcholáiste in the town for the first time, the school finally opened its doors in temporary accommodation at Ardgillan Community College last week.

Now that the dust has settled on that historic opening, students are getting down to work and enjoying their new surroundings, and no doubt proud of the fact that they belong to a small club of less than 30 students who will always be able to say they were the first to be educated through Irish at secondary level in Fingal.

At the helm of the new school is Aoife Elster, who spoke to the Fingal Independent as the new school opened its doors.

The Gaelcholáiste will consist of six classrooms, a science laboratory, a learning support unit, art room and a staff room as well as a general purpose area.

Aoife is joined by six other newly appointed teachers, who together will offer pupils an extensive curriculum and choice of subjects – all as Gaeilge.

Ms Elster said it felt ‘great’ to open the first Gaelcholáiste in Fingal. She said: ‘It’s great for the students and their parents and for the community that we can now continue the great work of local Gaelscoileanna here and local children don’t have to travel anymore to continue their education through Irish.’

The school principal said that it was also ‘exciting, on a personal level’ to be involved in the opening of the new school – the second time she has been involved in such a project, as a founder member of a similar school in Kildare.

In 2016, the Gaelcholáiste will move to a 1,000 pupil new build, which will be located adjacent to the new ring road, in order to cater for the 880 pupils already enrolled.

Fingal Independent