A new Polish School in Dundalk, or Polska Szkola, got off to a flying start when it was officially opened in recent weeks. The boardroom in the VEC’s offices at Chapel St., Dundalk was packed to capacity for the opening ceremony which saw people travel from far and near to witness history in the making.
The school, based at the VEC’s Continuing Education Centre at Chapel Street was declared officially open by Jennifer Green, Chairperson of Dundalk Town Council, while redemptorist priest, Fr. Michael Cusack, C.Ss.R., Adm., performed a special blessing for all of the invited guests, children, parents and teachers present.
The school is supported by Co. Louth VEC and will operate each Saturday from 09:30am to 03:30pm. Up to thirty children are already enrolled at the school and founding member and head teacher, Ms. Sylwia Jakubas, says, “this figure is expected to rise once people realise we are up and running”.
The school will see young people come together for classes in a wide range of subject areas including literacy, numeracy, culture, music, art, geography and sport. Sylwia continued: “There is a large Polish population in Dundalk and its surrounding areas; their children now have the opportunity to learn the Polish language and learn about Polish culture and heritage. Many will have grandparents and cousins in Poland and our school will help them to communicate more effectively - speaking, reading and writing”.
CEO of the VEC, Dr. Pádraig Kirk, told the audience that the VEC had decided to support the initiative because, “like those parents present, it too was passionate about education”. Similar Polish schools already operate in Dublin and Newry and the CEO declared, “if Dublin and Newry can do it, so can Dundalk”. Michael Curran, Director of Services with Louth County Council was among the speakers who congratulated everyone involved in bringing the school to fruition.
In addition to the planned Saturday classes, Polska Szkola will be able to help Irish people who want to learn the Polish language, as well as Polish people who would like to improve on their own native literacy skills. A class for adults in English has already got underway.
For information on Polska Szkola, Dundalk please visit www.polskaszkoladundalk.com, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or call (085) 2269456.