Successful Completion of Comhairle na Gaelscolaíochta Project

Thu 15th May 2014

Comhairle Na Gaelscolaiochta

Mallon Technology is pleased to announce the successful completion of a project undertaken for Comhairle na Gaelscolaíochta.

Comhairle na Gaelscolaíochta was set up by the Department of Education in Northern Ireland in 2000 with the aim of promoting, facilitating and encouraging Irish-medium education and Irish-medium schools, in a planned, educationally efficient and cost-effective way. Their principle mission is to further develop a network of quality Irish-medium education over the next 10 years within Northern Ireland.

Last year, Mallon Technology won the tender to provide Comhairle na Gaelscolaíochta with a project specialist to help in the preparation of a detailed report providing a strategic assessment of the requirements on a regional area basis of the Irish-medium Education sector at both primary and post-primary level.

The purpose of the strategic assessment was to carry out a detailed investigation into the area planning needs of the Irish-medium sector with the purpose of identifying all the requirements to ensure a network of sustainable Irish-medium schools that are capable of delivering effectively the revised curriculum and post-primary schools within reasonable travelling distance for pupils.

Mallon Technology employed GIS systems to carry out spatial analysis that would be used in the final report encapsulating the following:

· Preparation of an area profile, outlining current Irish-medium provisions using robust and verifiable data

· Examination of the current viability and future sustainability of existing provisions in line with the relevant Department of Education policies

· Planning for the future need of the Irish-medium Education sector using robust and verifiable data

· Identification of any under or over provisions within the Irish-medium education sector, taking account of cross boundary flows

· Identification of options to address under or over provisions within the Irish-medium education sector, taking account of cross boundary flows which deliver viable and sustainable schools

· Production of an area plan of Irish-medium education provision to meet future demand

As part of the final report over 50 maps were created which detailed: pupil distributions for all 5 education boards and individual Irish-medium schools, locations of available cross border schools, pupil travel routes, locations of available facilities and locations of any areas where a new school is needed. The final report and maps that were produced are to be used in the preparation of a report of area planning within the Irish-medium education sector with a view of seeking Department of Education approval to incorporate Comhairle na Gaelscolaíochta recommendations into their own area planning.