Hopes high for new Dundalk school to open in September

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Reporter

Hopes high for new Dundalk school to open in September

Muirhevnamore Community Centre could be used to house the school on a temporary basis

Louth parents fighting for the right for their children to be educated through Irish have said they've received a significant boost after the disappointment of the November refusal by LMETB to assist with providing a premises.

The proposed school patron, An Foras Pátrúnachta (AFP), sent out an update letter to parents that indicated a formal proposal from the Dept. of Education requiring Ministerial approval was likely to be imminent.

A proposal initiated by the Department’s Forward Planning Section has not met any obstacles to date. It is thought that approval from the Minister will be swiftly forthcoming when presented.

AFP have agreed with Muirhevnamor Community Centre, subject to Dept. approval, to use the Centre facilities as a school on a temporary basis. Once approved, it will enable them to source permanent facilities in the Dundalk area.

Parents are anxiously awaiting formal Departmental approval, to enable a potential enrolment process to start in order to determine numbers.

Currently all 6th class pupils have places booked in English medium schools starting in Sept. 2021 and traditionally assessment tests and final confirmation of school places would take place in January / February.

There is significant concern that if a decision is not made swiftly that it will not be logistically feasible to open a new Dundalk gaelcholáiste in September 2021.

If Ministerial approval is swiftly forthcoming, it means that there will be places available for 25–30 children in Dundalk.

Parents say this will be critical for Gaelscoil Dhún Dealgan 6th class pupils as the Co Dublin gaelcholáiste, (Glór na Mara, Balbriggan) currently attended by Dundalk children, reports that it is fully subscribed for 2021 with no space available for Dundalk children next year.