Councillors Karen Conaghan and Caroline McAllister introduce the Gaelic language at Gavinburn PS in Old Kilpatrick.

By Liam O’Heanai

Pupils in West Dunbartonshire will have increased access to  programmes aimed at developing their use of the Gaelic language.

Educational Services successfully secured an increase in funding from Bòrd na Gàidhlig  Gaelic Language Act Implementation Fund (GLAIF) from £15,000 to £26,205.

The money will continue to support Gaelic Language teaching at Edinbarnet and Gavinburn Primary Schools, with ofboth schools teaching the language as part of the 1+2 programme which gives the opportunity  for pupils to learn additional languages.  In addition both schools are providing Gaelic family learning homework clubs which will be introduced to all families across West Dunbartonshire in January as part of a pilot project.

The Council is keen to develop and broaden Gaelic teaching within schools with one teacher attending Gaelic Lanaguage in Primary School (GLPS) training and another achieving a qualification from  Scotland’s Gaelic College.

The Council also runs a Gaelic Bookbug group at Dalmuir Library and plans to pilot a Gaelic toddler group next year so children can develop their skills in the language from an early age.

Councillor Karen Conaghan, Convener of Educational Services, said: “This funding will go a long way to supporting our pupils and teachers who are keen to learn the Gaelic language. It’s great to see pupils learning this additional language which will benefit them throughout their lives and is  important aspect of Scottish culture.”

Councillor Caroline McAllister, Vice Convener of Educational Services, said: “Learning Gaelic language from an early age will provide our young people with increased career choices which will ensure they attain and achieve all that they can .  It’s fantastic  to see these opportunities being offered to our earliest residents through Bookbug and also at a toddlers group.”

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