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Thread: Is the Irish language standard for teachers being decided by social disadvanatge

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    Default Is the Irish language standard for teachers being decided by social disadvanatge

    An article in today's Indo suggests that the standard of Irish required from entrants to the teaching colleges is to be kept at a low level to avoid a situation where those from "disadvantaged area" are refused access to such courses.

    Since the Government is currently peddling the idea of a 20 Year Strategy for the Irish Language and since the first exposure to Irish is from teachers at school (for the vast majority of children) I think it is important that teachers would have a high standard of Irish - spoken Irish in particular.

    The point made by Aodhan O Riordain where he suggests that the teaching of Irish should be done in the Teaching Training college seems farcical. By that stage trainee teachers would have been exposed to Irish for 14 years - if they haven't got a grasp by then one has to ask whether they are capable of learning (and consequently teaching) the language.

    Any thoughts?

    Quinn is against plan to raise Irish level for teachers - Independent.ie

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    Politics.ie Member EoinMag's Avatar
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    You answer the question yourself:
    " By that stage trainee teachers would have been exposed to Irish for 14 years - if they haven't got a grasp by then one has to ask whether they are capable of learning (and consequently teaching) the language."

    If they can't speak the language by then no matter what the background then they have no chance. Disadvantaged background or not, why dumb it down to the lowest common denominator?
    “atheism is a belief system in the same way that not playing football is a sport.”

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    Dylan2010
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    why not have specific Irish teachers. In my kids school there are specific language teachers that take each others classes. The idea that all primary teachers should teach Irish seems to be aiming for mediocre. It would narrow the selection pool of good teachers if they all must have excellent Irish, youd end up with a lot of excellent Irish teachers that might not be good at teaching maths

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dylan2010 View Post
    why not have specific Irish teachers. In my kids school there are specific language teachers that take each others classes. The idea that all primary teachers should teach Irish seems to be aiming for mediocre. It would narrow the selection pool of good teachers if they all must have excellent Irish, youd end up with a lot of excellent Irish teachers that might not be good at teaching maths
    I have no problem with that idea but unfortunately it's not how the system operates at the moment (in general) in the primary system. It might not be practical in smaller schools.

    Personally, I believe that teachers should have excellent Maths, English and Irish since these are the core subjects in our system. Perhaps we should set a minimum standard for all three.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EoinMag View Post
    You answer the question yourself:
    " By that stage trainee teachers would have been exposed to Irish for 14 years - if they haven't got a grasp by then one has to ask whether they are capable of learning (and consequently teaching) the language."

    If they can't speak the language by then no matter what the background then they have no chance. Disadvantaged background or not, why dumb it down to the lowest common denominator?
    Probably because those who are resisting the setting of a minimum standard hope to gain politically from their stance.

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    Surely money would be better spent teaching kids skills that can actually make them employable? Learning an obscure language spoken by sheep farmers in the hills of Donegal, Galway and Kerry is not going to be of any use to a young person in Dublin who needs to get a job.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BrightDay View Post
    Any thoughts?
    Perhaps this would be the opportune time for some give and take: make Irish optional (at primary and secondary level), but allow the insistence on increased standards among the teachers who will actually teach it?

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    Politics.ie Member statsman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nermal View Post
    Perhaps this would be the opportune time for some give and take: make Irish optional (at primary and secondary level), but allow the insistence on increased standards among the teachers who will actually teach it?
    That's far to sensible an idea to ever be accepted. But you're right.
    Put a thief among honest men and they will eventually relieve him of his watch. Flann O'Brien

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    Politics.ie Member Schomberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nermal View Post
    Perhaps this would be the opportune time for some give and take: make Irish optional (at primary and secondary level), but allow the insistence on increased standards among the teachers who will actually teach it?
    That's the only sensible way forward, so no doubt you'd not find a lot of support.

    If this were the case you'd be left with a small but highly motivated group of students (some eventually becoming teachers) which surly is better in the longer term.

    Sense and the Irish language Brigade are complete strangers.
    What have British in Ireland contributed to Ireland? Nothing of the scale that the Irish have contributed to Britain. - Runswithwind.

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    Politics.ie Member RobertW's Avatar
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    I wouldn't consider a C in higher level Irish a low level to teach 4-12 year olds.

    This is being proposed by the useless Teaching Council to promote literacy. . . . They're obviously oblivious to the fact that the vast majority of people in this country do not have Irish as their mother tongue,

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