A gaelscoil (Plural: gaelscoileanna) is an Irish-speaking
school, often also co-educational, usually found in Ireland, but outside the Irish speaking Gaeltachtareas. Irish is the working language for these schools. Almost 10% of the schooling population in the Republic attend Irish medium schools. The Gaelscoil movement has been the biggest and most successful of any of the European lesser used languages immersion education programmes. The movement has also been successful in setting up schools in both urban and rural areas, for example in Dublin there are 30 Irish-medium primary schools and 8 secondary schools while in Cork there are 22 primary schools and 8 secondary schools. The Gaelscoil initiative has also inspired other similar language immersion projects in Europe such as the Scots-Gaelic, Manx-Gaelic, Basque, Occitan, Catalan and Breton schools.
The total number of Irish medium schools(both inside and outside the Gaeltacht) in Ireland is 368 primary and secondary schools.
*Within the Gaeltacht: 127 primary schools : 29 secondary schools.
*Outside the Gaeltacht: 169 primary schools: 43 secondary schools.
The "Naíonraí" Irish language preschool movement also has 227 creches across the country with almost 4,000 children attending them.
There are currently over 35,500 pupils attending gaelscoileanna, with 169 gaelscoileanna at primary level and 43 schools at post-primary level (gaelcholáistí), in the
Republic of Irelandand Northern Ireland. [http://www.gaelscoileanna.ie/index.php?page=about_us "About Us" on the Gaelscoileanna website] ] Gaelscoileanna account for 1% of the Northern Irish school system.Fact|date=February 2007 The largest gaelscoil in Belfastis Coláiste Feirste.Fact|date=February 2007 There is now at least one gaelscoil in all 32 traditional counties of Irelandand several in each of the bigger cities — for example Derryhas nine.
There are currently nine counties on the island of Ireland that do not have a second-level gaelscoil. These are: Laois, Offaly, Leitrim, Roscommon, Cavan, Sligo, Longford, Fermanagh and Down.
The gaelscoileanna originated at the turn of the 20th century during the
Gaelic Revival. Bilinguality from an early age is recommended by many linguists, as it helps children become more adept at learning additional languages. Some studies have shown that bilingual children have advantages over monoglot children in other subjects.cite book
last = Bialystok and Hakuta
title = In Other Words: The Science and Psychology of Second-Language Acquisition
date = 1994
location = New York
isbn = 0-465-03281-8 ]
Irish schools in the
Gaeltachtregions have always used the Irish language. However, the majority of schools outside these regions use English as this is the first language of the majority of people in non-Gaeltacht regions of Ireland (although (in the Republic of Ireland) even English-language schools teach Irish as a mandatory subject). Gaelscoileanna are Irish-language schools in areas where a majority of people speak English as a first language. There are both Irish-speaking primary and secondary schools, called "bunscoileanna" and "meánscoileanna" respectively; these are the lower two tiers of education in Ireland before college("coláiste") / university("ollscoil") - third level education.
A Gaelscoil is an Irish-medium primary school. A Gaelcholáiste is an Irish-medium secondary school.
Education in Ireland
Education in Northern Ireland
Medium of instruction
Gaelscoil Bhaile Brigín
Gaelic medium education- Scottish Gaelicequivalent in Scotland* [http://www.gaelscoileanna.ie/index.php?page=&lang=english&sid=&tid= Gaelscoileanna Teo.]
Diwan (school)- Breton medium education in Brittany
- Support organisation for Irish medium Schools
* [http://www.gaelscoilnacamoige.ie/ Gaelscoil na Camóige]
* [http://www.cogg.ie/downloads/Gaeltacht%20achoimre2.pdf Stats on Gaeltacht schools 2004]
* [http://188.8.131.52/search?q=cache:cXod7_k6L78J:ftp://ftp.naionrai.ie/foirm/TuarascailBhliantuil2007.doc+Gu%C3%ADm+gach+rath&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=7&gl=ie Naíonraí stats]
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