What is Irish Medium Education (IME)

Irish-medium education is a rapidly growing education sector which delivers education through the Irish language. The pre-schools which provide this are called Naíscoileanna and the schools are called Gaelscoileanna.

Naíscoileanna & Gaelscoileanna deliver the curriculum through the Irish language immersion system. This system allows children to learn a second language as a natural part of their day to day school life. Irish is the language of communication and children quickly and naturally acquire understanding of and fluency through planned, structured play.

Children follow the national curriculum, the same as any English language school. They are taught the full range of subjects and also learn to read and write in English. This is structured as part of a well-designed and highly successful programme which results in the children becoming fluent in both Irish and English.

Children do not see a second language as a barrier and quickly build an understanding of the language of communication. This stimulates their young brains and unlocks the potential for them to speak and understand other languages at this important age.

The Irish-medium system is based on a recognised international model developed in Canada over 50 years ago. Since then it has been replicated all over the world to promote bilingualism.

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