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Should Irish be made optional at schools.

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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 14,319 ✭✭✭✭Arghus


    I don't know if it should be made optional but there should be a serious reassessment of how it's taught. The current situation where a lot of people leave school with barely the ability to string a functional sentence of the language together, after 12 years with it on their curriculum, is an absolute disgrace.

    They should focus solely on the nuts and bolts of teaching like they would any other language; in exactly the same manner they teach French, German etc, etc. Once people go to secondary school learning Irish becomes as much about all this other nonsense - bealeoidas, Diarmuid agus Grainne, seanfhocals etc,etc - and the systematic teaching of people in how to speak, write and understand it loses its primary focus in the curriculum. That's a total mistake and a sure fire way to condemn the language to a slow and unloved death. It's a common remark that people know more of whatever foreign language they've studied after five years in secondary school, than they do of Irish after over a decade of it - Irish isn't taught properly in schools.


  • Registered Users Posts: 16,500 ✭✭✭✭DEFTLEFTHAND


    After the Junior Cert it should be an option subject for senior cycle.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,115 ✭✭✭ironictoaster


    I learned more Irish 2 weeks prior to my Irish oral exam than my previous 14 years of "studying" Irish. It needs to be treated like a foreign language to allow it to have a chance flourish.

    It's madness to force students to study An Triail when they can barely have a conversation in Irish.


  • Registered Users Posts: 19,473 ✭✭✭✭Super-Rush


    Fvck sake not this again.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,495 ✭✭✭✭eviltwin


    It's a disgrace that it's allowed to continue being taught in it's current form resulting in most people studying the language for 14 years and not being able to speak a word.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 15,712 ✭✭✭✭whisky_galore


    Mutant z wrote: »
    Exactly why waste such an obscene amout of resources when it could be put into something else like the health service perhaps.

    Putting it into the health service is one sure fire way of p*ssing away money...that's one fcuking black hole for cash.


  • Registered Users Posts: 16,500 ✭✭✭✭DEFTLEFTHAND


    I learned more Irish 2 weeks prior to my Irish oral exam than my previous 14 years of "studying" Irish. It needs to be treated like a foreign language to allow it to have a chance flourish.

    It's madness to force students to study An Triail when they can barely have a conversation in Irish.
    I spent time in the Gaeltacht and became semi fluent over the 3 week immersion. Once out of that environment and back into the classroom my level regressed quickly.


  • Registered Users Posts: 16,452 ✭✭✭✭astrofool


    As both a teacher and a Gaeilgeoir, passionate about the language, I would support it being made optional for the leaving cert. However, I would want English to also be optional so that both languages are treated with equal importance.

    Irish is the only compulsory subject on the curriculum, and really only because the NUI have it as a requirement, if the NUI didn't require, a lot of kids would drop it like a hot potato, even though "technically" they wouldn't pass their leaving certificate without it. Foreign students applying to NUI don't have to have it, mature students don't need it, BAC Laureate students (including Irish students) don't need it, only Irish public school students need it for application to NUI education.


  • Registered Users Posts: 16,452 ✭✭✭✭astrofool


    Arghus wrote: »
    I don't know if it should be made optional but there should be a serious reassament of how it's taught. The current situation where a lot of people leave school with barely the ability to string a functional sentence of the language together, after 12 years with it on their curriculum, is an absolute disgrace.

    This comes up again and again, the teachers of Irish are no worse or better than the teachers of other languages or subjects, changing the courses won't make people more able to speak it as they are apathetic about it in the first place (and this is because those who speak Irish a subset of those who speak English fluently anyway, so it offers no advantage in daily life).

    It's not like studying Shakespeare results in a high drop out rate and hatred for English compared to the numbers complaining about An Triail. it isn't taught like French as most people should have 8 years of learning it every day, whereas most students only first learn French in first year of secondary school (and the same primary teachers were able to teach their students English/Maths/History/Geography without much issue during Primary level).


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,813 ✭✭✭Noveight


    This is hammered out 2-3 times a year on AH and I'm pretty sure every angle has been covered.

    There's a huge struggle to find Irish teachers atm.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 6,237 ✭✭✭Damien360


    Would it not be a whole lot better to teach conversational Irish instead of the perfect Irish we are attempting to teach. To hell with conjugate the verbs, you will correct it in conversation. If you want perfect Irish then go to 3rd level for that.

    I help my kids occasionally in Irish and it hasn't changed how it was taught in 30 years. I suffered Peig and have a hatred of it that continues. Even Nuacht readers sound like Arabic readers and we were encouraged to watch it.

    We have been saying change or die for years and it survives but with more people getting exemptions for various reasons it may well come to an end when it is too late to revive it.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 9,046 ✭✭✭Berserker


    It's an important part of our heritage.

    It's not really. People would speak the language, if it was an important part of your heritage.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,857 ✭✭✭TheQuietFella


    Quite an amount of Gaelscoils have opened over the years so we'll see where this leads over the coming years!


  • Registered Users Posts: 307 ✭✭kevin7


    Berserker wrote: »
    It's not really. People would speak the language, if it was an important part of your heritage.

    I think that sums it up better than all the other posts here.
    Its struggling to put out its last short struggling gasps of breath before death.

    I love the idea of the language, and I'd love it to survive, but its dying.

    Its just an artificial game now, not a live language.

    Teach it to Junior Cert, and let it go then. The more interested can keep studying for academic purposes after that, and good luck to them.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,048 ✭✭✭Rumpy Pumpy


    Quite an amount of Gaelscoils have opened over the years so we'll see where this leads over the coming years!

    It will lead to an increasing amount of parents sending their kids to these schools in an attempt to maximise the amount of points the children can get in the LC. Nothing to do with some innate love of the language.

    I was listening to a piece on Newstalk recently about the future of Irish. One academic summarised it nicely when he suggested that it was the most flourishing dead language in Europe. The Kerry, Cork, and Donegal Gaeltachts are in trouble, and the Galway one is only surviving because of a 3rd level educational system in the city that actively discriminates in favour of the language. There's no one being born in Ireland at the moment who will grow up in an area where the language is spoken on a daily basis as the native tongue.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 502 ✭✭✭Pero_Bueno


    2Mad2BeMad wrote: »
    Don't forget to account for the people who think they class themselves in the catagory of being able to speak Irish but only know a few sentences
    Unless I am wrong seen as I can string together a few sentences well then that number is shot by at least 1.
    I reckon there is less then a million genuine fluent Irish speakers in this country.

    less than a million ?

    Less than a THOUSAND ...


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,379 ✭✭✭donegaLroad


    there are a lot of Polish children who have learned the language, I know one guy who achieved high grades in Irish, who is living here since he was 6 years old. He also as fluent Polish and English... and speaks with a Donegal accent :)


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 12,898 ✭✭✭✭Ken.


    Mod-Poll added. Results hidden till poll closes in 15 days.


  • Registered Users Posts: 513 ✭✭✭waterfaerie


    astrofool wrote: »
    Irish is the only compulsory subject on the curriculum, and really only because the NUI have it as a requirement, if the NUI didn't require, a lot of kids would drop it like a hot potato, even though "technically" they wouldn't pass their leaving certificate without it. Foreign students applying to NUI don't have to have it, mature students don't need it, BAC Laureate students (including Irish students) don't need it, only Irish public school students need it for application to NUI education.

    Can you get into university without English and maths?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 418 ✭✭cycle4fun


    Fact 1. We spend / waste billions on the dead old language.

    "It is estimated that we spend something around €1bn a year just teaching Irish. Other programmes add to that cost. Foras na Gaeilge supports 19 Irish promotion organisations with state funding. Add the money spent on translating things in to Irish, printing government signs and publications in to two languages etc."

    Fact 2. Only 8,068 Irish language forms were completed in the last Census, 2016, in the whole country - that tells you how many people use Irish.


    Wouldn't it be cheaper just to give a few hundred thousand euro a year to each Irish speaker in the country, tell them to get lost and we could then spend the rest of the money saved on housing, health, real education etc


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,667 ✭✭✭Hector Bellend


    How about we teach kids skills that are required by the economy.


  • Registered Users Posts: 19,802 ✭✭✭✭suicide_circus


    cycle4fun wrote: »
    Only 8,068 Irish language forms were completed in the last Census, 2016, in the whole country

    That is a stunning statistic


  • Registered Users Posts: 677 ✭✭✭al87987


    I detested learning Irish, yes it's badly taught but it is also completely irrelevant in terms of practical real-life use.

    I have always begrudged the fact that we were not taught a 2nd valid language in primary school. I think it completely hampers you in the international job market not to be fluent in a 2nd language.

    12 years of Irish and I couldn't say a word. Waste of time, resources and money.

    Choose to learn it by all means but don't force-feed an almost extinct language down peoples throats for 12 years


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 418 ✭✭cycle4fun


    That is a stunning statistic

    And is true too, and easily verified.

    It is down slightly on the previous census, as you would expect.

    What a waste of time and money. Let those who want to speak it and learn it do so, but do not try to force it on everyone else in the country, at great expense.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 418 ✭✭cycle4fun


    al87987 wrote: »
    I have always begrudged the fact that we were not taught a 2nd valid language in primary school. I think it completely hampers you in the international job market not to be fluent in a 2nd language.

    Indeed practically none of our hotel staff or tourism providers can converse with non-English speaking customers. Shameful.


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,712 ✭✭✭✭whisky_galore


    Think there's a certain amount of whistling past the graveyard and hoping that the Gaelscoils will bolster numbers of Irish speakers in years to come.
    When those kids move on, most of them will drop the language like a hot potato as they won't need to use it any longer. Of course there will be those that will use it as a 'hobby' language or they'll join the Irish language mini industry as a teacher or translator.


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,363 ✭✭✭✭Del.Monte


    It should be optional at school and a lot of the State nonsense of printing bilingual information material should also be stopped. The amount of money wasted on the language down the years is comparable with the TB eradication scheme.

    As an aside it was never part of our heritage, just the majority community, and less so with every passing day as the flow of emigrants continues. It was inflicted on me at secondary school but I was able to avoid it for the Leaving Certificate. That said, I'm interested in Irish place names and their meanings but go out of my way to find that information for myself - as anybody else can.


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,712 ✭✭✭✭whisky_galore


    cycle4fun wrote: »
    Indeed practically none of our hotel staff or tourism providers can converse with non-English speaking customers. Shameful.

    Think you'll find many hotel staff here aren't Irish anyway...


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,565 ✭✭✭RandomName2


    Mutant z wrote: »
    I think the time has come to make Irish a choice subject as opposed to the compulsory one it currently is whats the point in teaching it when many students are leaving school with barely 2 words of Irish the whole thing seems a complete waste of time. Whats the point putting so much money into a subject which has little relevance to everyday life it would be better spent on PE

    School is for learning. PE is (or should be) extra-curricular. Have it there, fine, but the most important thing is for people to get an education.

    Having said that Irish is one of the least important subjects for people to get an education in. Okay, there are less important subjects, but none that I can think of that is compulsory.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 39,022 ✭✭✭✭Permabear


    This post has been deleted.


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