Seminar on educational requirements of minority languages

8 October, 2010

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Dr. Daniel Bourgeois from New Brunswick, Canada, a well known expert on linguistic minorities will speak at a public seminar about the management of educational systems for minority languages. The seminar is organised by Údarás na Gaeltachta in co-operation with Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway.

As part of his presentation, Dr. Bourgeois will focus on the needs and management of educational requirements for language minorities and on the implications that state policies have on the stability of minority languages.

Dr. Bourgeois states that: ‘Education is the most important public service that a state can provide to help families and communities maintain a minority language. Therefore policies and activities implemented in schools should be examined and State would be wise to establish a school education board where parents and community members could have input in its administration, so that they have a role in managing the education of minority languages.

An open discussion in relation to the Irish language in the education system will take place afterwards.

The seminar which is open to the public will take place on Thursday 14th October 2010 in The Park Lodge Hotel, An Spidéal at 8:00pm.

Daniel Bourgeois is the Executive Director of the Beaubassin Research Institute, Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada. Previously, he was the director of the Institut Canadien de Recherche en Politiques et Administration Publiques and a senior researcher in the Institut Canadien de Recherche sur les Minorités Linguistiques in Ollscoil Moncton. He is a leading internationally-recognised authority on educational provision for language minorities and has published widely on the topic, his book The Canadian Bilingual Districts was published in 2007. He specializes in public policy analysis, notably in regards to sub-state institutions and administrative decentralisation as well as minority institutional completeness and public service allocation to minority language groups.

He has been invited to Ireland to deliver a lecture in NUI Galway; to address a public seminar in Connemara on the management and provision for minority language education; to attend the publication of his research project in Irish, undertaken as a collaborative publication with Comhairle um Oideachas Gaeltachta agus Gaelscolaíochta: I dtreo Lánbhainistíocht Scoileanna Fraincise i dTimpleallacht Mhionlaigh; and to address the Fondúireacht na Gaeilge seminar on language identity issues: Féiniúlacht, Cultúr agus Teanga i Ré an Domhandaithe in Dublin. His research focuses specifically on the importance of continuity in the institutional support and supply provided to minority languages. His research highlights the requirements needed for effective and productive liason between language community and language institutions, especially those involved in the development and growth of young people in a minority language community.