20/10/2014 West Cork Times

An Foras Pátrúnachta / Press / 20/10/2014 West Cork Times

Ní Riada praises Clonakilty Gaelscoil for ‘resounding success’ in Comenius Scheme

SPEAKING in Clonakilty Sinn Féin MEP for Ireland South Liadh Ní Riada praised the staff, parents and children of Gaelscoil Mhíchíl Uí Choileáin on their successful participation in the European Comenius program.

The entire school community welcomed a group of 28 students and 16 teachers from Croatia, France, Germany and Italy on a week-long visit as part of the Comenius program.

The programme seeks to link schools, children and teachers across Europe in order to share experiences and develop cooperation.

Liadh Ní Riada said, “I am delighted to be in Clonakilty today to meet the visiting children and their teachers, and to catch up with all at the Gaelscoil here. Príomhoide Carmel Nic Airt and the staff, management and parents have done an excellent job in making this visit a success.

“Its great to see so many strong friendships built between children from across Europe, and to hear positive feedback from their teachers. The theme of the visit is ‘building bridges of understanding’ and we all have something to learn from these children. Despite their different languages they managed to spend a week playing and learning together, communicating through play, sport, song and dance.

“Its particularly heartening to hear Gaeilge being used side by side with Croatian, French, German and Italian in Clonakilty this week. Parity of culture and language is central to respect and cooperation throughout Europe, and I was happy to see that in evidence today. Unfortunately it is not so apparent in the European Parliament where I still cannot conduct my business as Gaeilge. The responsibility for this lies with the Irish Government and I reiterate my call to them to act now.

“A huge maith sibh to all at Gaelscoil Mhíchíl Uí Choileáin, and slán abhaile to their visitors!”