Irish government proposes to cut funding to the Modern Languages in Primary Schools Initiative
According to the Irish Times, the Irish government has proposed a range of cuts to the education budget, which will provide net savings of around €76 million in 2012, increasing to €241 million in 2014.
The proposals suggest that the Modern Languages in Primary Schools Initiative, a long-running pilot scheme which has involved approximately 500 schools since 1998, be abolished. It is hoped that this will save €2.5 million, which will go towards the cost of implementing the Literacy & Numeracy Strategy.
Minister for Education, Ruairí Quinn, announced the education cuts on 5 December, just a few weeks after all EU countries pledged to “step up their efforts” to implement the Barcelona Agreement, calling for early language learning of at least two foreign languages.