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Full steam ahead for Carryduff Gaelscoil

Paid Ó Cianáin from Taca presents a cheque for £2,500 to Eibhlin Bhreathnach, Ryan Carlin, Odhran Nic Giolla Fhinnein and Mairead Nic Giolla Fhinnein from Naíscoil Aodha Dhuibh Paid Ó Cianáin from Taca presents a cheque for £2,500 to Eibhlin Bhreathnach, Ryan Carlin, Odhran Nic Giolla Fhinnein and Mairead Nic Giolla Fhinnein from Naíscoil Aodha Dhuibh
By Michael Jackson

THE committee of a new Irish-medium nursery school in Carryduff has said it is confident it will open its doors as planned despite losing out on a proposed school building.

The new naíscoil is expected to open in September this year and will pave the way for an Irish-medium primary in the area in 2020.

Gaelscoil an Aodha Dhuibh faced a setback recently after a lease on the proposed nursery site fell through. However, committee member Suzanne Warring said she is confident it will open as planned.

“We’re looking at everything that is available in the whole postcode,” she said.

“There are very few commercial properties in the area, but we have seen everything that there is, so we’re reaching out to everyone to make sure we get an appropriate site.

“At this stage we are still confident we will be opening in September. My daughter is one of the ones who will be going to the school in September and we certainly expect that to happen. Over the next couple of weeks we hope to get the building secured and then we will have enough time to prepare. Because we have the money in place and all of the groundwork has been done in advance, we should be able to open as planned.”

According to Ms Warring, the naíscoil has already had an unprecedented amount of applications, which are indicative of a growing demand for Irish-medium education in the area.
“It is massively encouraging,” she enthused.

“To think that your kids can go to a local naíscoil, bunscoil, or meánscoil in the future is fantastic. It really shows how much things have changed here. The naiscoil is the start and we hope to build on that. We’re trying to build a community around it. There are a lot more Irish speakers in the area than we would have known and it will create a place for those people, and for those who just want to learn.”

She continued: “Because of the non-denominational ethos of Irish medium education, we welcome applications from everyone in the community and the inclusive, child-centred nature of Irish medium is exactly what the area needs.

“We had an amazing turnout at The Ivanhoe in December for our information morning. Many parents don’t have Irish themselves but we know from the success of our existing Gaelscoileanna that this is not an issue.

“The momentum is there and the funding is ready to go.

“The committee is working diligently to secure suitable premises to open the doors in September 2019 as planned. We would welcome input from anyone with suitable premises or sites to get in touch so that we can make this vision a reality. Pop us an email at gaelscoilaodhadhuibh@gmail.com or contact us via our Facebook page.”

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