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Dundalk

Parents threaten High Court action against school over reduction of subjects taught in Irish

The board has said teacher shortages led to the decision to have most subjects taught in English.

PARENTS OF PUPILS at a school in Dundalk, Co Louth, have threatened High Court action over a decision to reduce the number of subjects taught through Irish.

Last week students at Coláiste Lú staged a walk-out over the decision.

Coláiste Lú is an aonad at Coláiste Chú Chulainn, which is an English medium school. It has about 60 pupils. 

An aonad caters for students who wish to be educated mainly through Irish in areas where it is not feasible to have a stand-alone Irish medium secondary school. 

Today parents of pupils attending Coláiste Lú said they have been “left with no choice but to file an application to the High Court to fight for the rights of students”. 

They said they were contacted by the school’s patron body, Louth Meath Education and Training Board (LMETB) after they sent the board a High Court warning letter this week and expect a meeting early next week. 

Aidan Kinsella, Coláise Lú parents council secretary, said a decision was taken last week that no further protests or walk-outs would take place to give “breathing space” to meetings organised by TDs in relation to the issue. 

“The current disruption to our children’s education should not be exacerbated by missing school days protesting. This, however, is contingent on genuine and honest engagement by LMETB and [the] principal to swiftly provide the necessary resources to re-establish the aonad as it used to be run.”

The LMETB has said teacher shortages led to the decision this year to have most subjects taught through English. 

Teachers at Irish medium units are drawn from the main school’s allocation. 

Last week LMETB said it was not in a position to commit resources sanctioned for other students to meet expectations of the parents of pupils at the aonad. 

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