Written Answers. - Languages Programme.

Paudge Connolly

Question:

52 Mr. Connolly asked the Minister for Education and Science the additional services available to provide crash courses in the Irish language to nine year old children of immigrants to Ireland who have not previously studied Irish and for whom the study of Irish is mandatory. [21694/02]

Schools and teachers are advised to provide for pupils of varying abilities and competencies through curriculum differentiation, and the curriculum in Irish lends itself to such differentiation. In addition, a school may arrange for a pupil to be taught with pupils at a lower level of proficiency in an appropriate lower class. An arrangement of this kind could be of benefit to a pupil in acquiring initial competence in Irish. I would not therefore consider there is a need for the crash courses to which the Deputy refers.