€1,000 granted to every Gaeltacht school in Donegal

Each Gaeltacht school in Co Donegal is to receive a grant of €1,000.

The announcement comes as Government Chief Whip Minister Joe McHugh says investment in Gaeltacht education is to double next year.

The extra funding is part of the Policy on Gaeltacht Education.

One of the key actions in implementing the Policy is the Gaeltacht School Recognition Scheme, which invited schools in Gaeltacht areas to opt into becoming Irish-medium schools meaning full immersion in the Irish language. Almost 80% of primary schools in Gaeltacht regions opting into the Scheme and over 96% of post-primary schools.

Minister McHugh said the package includes:

  • A grant of €1,000 for the purchase of Irish-language teaching materials.
  • Additional language support hours, which will be equivalent to providing an extra 40 whole-time teachers in Gaeltacht schools
  • Additional professional development for teachers, with substitute cover, provided by COGG, and the opportunity to participate in a new part-time M.Ed. in Irish-medium and Gaeltacht Education
  • Extra advisory visits from School Inspectors
  • The opportunity to take part in a pilot project to link post-primary Gaeltacht schools digitally to extend subject choice through the medium of Irish

All remaining schools (28 primary and 1 post-primary) will be given another opportunity to participate in the Scheme in 2018/2019 and a package of initial supports will be available to schools who indicate that they would like to join.

The Minister secured additional funding of €1.3 million in Budget 2018, for the Policy on Gaeltacht Education, bringing the overall additional funding for Gaeltacht schools to €2.3 million.

Minister McHugh says the €1,000 grant will help purchase teaching materials and extra resources through teaching hours are also part of the scheme.