Weir must rectify exclusion of Irish Language from education resources

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Sinn Fein MLA for Foyle Karen Mullan.

Sinn Féin representatives Karen Mullan MLA and Senator Niall Ó Donnghaile have called on Minister Peter Weir to address and rectify the exclusion of the Irish language from Education Authority education resource packs which are available in eleven other languages.

Speaking today Ms. Mullan said: “I have written to the Minister seeking an urgent meeting to discuss how this overt failure was allowed to take place. 

“At a time when educational resources are of massive importance and use, it beggars belief that the Education Authority would publish these resources and not include the Irish language. 

“Multilingualism within the department is welcome and encouraging, every parent should have the right to know that the linguistic and educational needs of their children are being met; there are of course many children from minority ethnic and language backgrounds who are also being educated through Irish Medium Education.”

Seanadóir Ó Donnghaile said: “The department of education has a statutory obligation to promote the Irish language. The Minister also has an obligation to ensure that the educational needs of our children are met. 

“The community will not tolerate any steps back which disrespects or disregards the Irish language and those who speak it.

“Over 7,000 children are currently going through Irish Medium Education in the north and are as worthy of resourcing and supporting as those within any other sector or language. 

“The Minister and his department must live up to their statutory responsibility.”

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