Gaelic education helps reverse language decline

Bòrd na Gàidhlig has published its Annual Report for the 2013/14 financial year.

And as well as demonstrating a positive and productive year for the Bòrd, it also highlights the growth of Gaelic education in the early years, primary and secondary sectors.

Growth of Gaelic Medium education

Gaelic-medium education has seen a growth of 6.1% at primary school level with the number of children entering into primary one rising by 13% to 486 entrants.

The number of pupils also doing Gaelic-medium education at secondary level rose by 7% totalling 1181.

Further growth was seen in the early years sector with the number of parent and toddler groups and playgroups increasing from 80 to 93, thus furthering the potential of increasing the number of entrants to GME in the coming years.

Reflecting on the previous year, Bòrd na Gàidhlig Ceannard (CEO), John Angus MacKay said: “2013/2014 was another positive year for the Bòrd with continued growth in Gaelic education, at all levels.

“The 2011 census results gave us very encouraging evidence that the number of Gaelic speakers in Scotland has almost stabilised since the census of 2001.

“This is mainly due to the rise in Gaelic-medium education which has seen excellent growth since its inception in 1985.

“The trend shows that within the next ten years the long term decline of the language could be reversed.”

Minister for Scotland’s Languages Dr Alasdair Allan said the Government is currently consulting on the provision of GME across Scotland

He added: “I would like to congratulate the Bòrd on its work to promote Gaelic culture and to encourage the many community groups that are creating opportunities for speakers of all ages and backgrounds.”