Exemptions from studying Irish

 

A chara, – In relation to the integrity of exemptions from Irish in the education system (“Minister insists Irish will remain compulsory part of school curriculum”, News, January 4th), surely there is one simple way that will weed out many students giving false reasons for not doing the language.

Currently, there are several students who, despite growing up in Ireland, happily take part in French and Spanish lessons while ignoring Irish. Given that any difficulty affecting the learning of one language should equally affect the learning of another, the Department of Education could simply insist that if a student is deemed unable to do Irish, they should not be allowed to sit a state examination in any other language either. This would prevent students who don’t want to do Irish for personal reasons from flouting the rules; remove an obvious inconsistency that undermines trust in the system; and hopefully lead, if coupled with an improvement in the current curriculum, to a greater nationwide proficiency in the national language. – Is mise,

OSCAR DESPARD,

Portobello,

Dublin 8,