October 19, 2019
Department of Education needs to prepare for rapid growth in Irish Medium education – Maskey

Sinn Féin MP Paul Maskey has said the Department of Education needs to prepare and plan properly for the rapid growth in Irish Medium education.

The West Belfast MP said:

“I welcome news that Coláiste Feirste is to increase its enrolment from 600 to 910 pupils.

“But it is disappointing that the planned expansion into North Belfast to provide for the growth in that area on a separate site cannot proceed as no suitable site was found. 

“The North Belfast site would help cater for the increasing demand in Belfast for children who wish to continue their education in Irish after attending Irish medium primary schools.

“Coláiste Feirste will accommodate pupils in temporary classrooms at the existing school in west Belfast, but this is only a short-term fix.

“It is disappointing for the pupils, parents and staff of Coláiste Feirste that the Department of Education does not have a long-term strategy to meet this growth and fulfil their statutory obligations to encourage and facilitate Irish Medium. 

“Sinn Féin is calling on the Department of Education to prepare and plan properly for the rapid growth in Irish Medium Education.” 

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