Achoimre: While exemptions from Irish are periodically reported in the media, they have attracted little academic commentary. Learners with certain special educational needs (SEN) qualify for an exemption from Irish when clear criteria are met (DES1, 1994; DES, 1996), but there appears to be a gap between policy and practice. This paper presents findings on the educational profile of learners with Williams syndrome, a rare neurodevelopmental condition that results in an intellectual disability (ID) but an aptitude for language learning. Most of the teacher participants in the study acknowledged the languagelearning capacity of the learners but some portrayed professional dilemmas of working within the parameters of an exemption from Irish. While this paper primarily aims to open the debate on exemptions from Irish, it also proposes a framework for the teaching of Irish to learners with SEN.
An chéad eagrán dár nuachtlitir ar riachtanais bhreise oideachais in 2023 ina roinntear eolas maidir le hacmhainní, taighde, físeáin nua, Polasaí don Oideachas lán-Ghaeilge, ábhar léítheoireachta, agus eile.
The prevalence and types of special educational needs in Irish immersion primary schools in the Republic of Ireland
This study focuses on children with special educational needs (SEN) in the Republic of
Ireland (RoI) who are being educated through Irish as a second language in Irish immersion schools.
This study identified primary and post-primary teachers’ self-reported future CPD needs in relation to helping them meet the SEN of their students learning through Irish. The study investigated what motivated teachers to undertake CPD in SEN, the challenges they faced when doing so, and their preferred method of course delivery.