What are Irish-medium Schools?

Irish-medium schools are primary and post-primary schools functioning in accordance with the usual rules of the Department of Education. Irish is the language of instruction in these schools and the language of communication amongst teachers, children and management.

A high educational standard exists in all subjects, including English, and the usual programme set out by the Department of Education and Science is followed.

Irish is the living language of Irish-medium schools, both within the classroom and without. All pupils are welcome in Irish-medium schools regardless of linguistic background. Parents play a major role in the organisation of these schools.

By September 2006 there will be 163 gaelscoileanna at primary level and 36 at post-primary level (in the 32 counties, outside of the Gaeltacht) with approxiamtely 33,000 attending these schools.

Growth of Gaelscoileanna from 1972 – 2004


GAELSCOILEANNA is a voluntary national organisation, established in 1973 as Coiste Náisiúnta na Scoileanna Lán-Ghaeilge (the National Committee of Irish-medium Schools). GAELSCOILEANNA has been receiving grant support through Bord na Gaeilge since 1978 and currently through Foras na Gaeilge.