Written answers

Thursday, 14 January 2016

Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht

Irish Language

Photo of Aengus Ó SnodaighAengus Ó Snodaigh (Dublin South Central, Sinn Fein)
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245. To ask the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht the expenditure, the training and evaluations that have taken place, and the number of persons engaged to work on the training and evaluation of competence in Irish in the Civil Service within and outside her Department since the transfer of responsibility for from Gaeleagras to her Department in 2013, and her plans for the future. [1590/16]

Photo of Joe McHughJoe McHugh (Donegal North East, Fine Gael)
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For the past number of years, Foras na Gaeilge has had contractual agreements with Gaelchultúr/Coláiste na hÉireann for the provision of Irish language training services to the public service. The value of the current contract for these services, for the period from March 2015 to February 2018, is €40,000 per annum. In accordance with these contractual agreements, amounts of €66,666, €57,777 and €41,111 were paid to the service provider in the years 2013, 2014 and 2015 respectively.

A total of 3,733 courses were provided over this period which were attended by 789 civil servants and 2,944 public servants. These courses include cases where state bodies paid for employees to attend courses which were already available to the general public. It also includes on-line courses for individuals developed to suit their specific needs. The courses provided under these agreements include:

- Basic, intermediate and advanced Irish;

- Language awareness;

- Advanced Irish Language Grammar;

- Postgraduate Diploma in Translation (NFQ Level 9)

- Certificate in Professional Irish (NFQ Levels 3, 4 & 5)

A total of 82 people have been directly employed in the delivery of these courses, in addition to a small number of staff within both Foras na Gaeilge and my Department to whom other duties have also been assigned.

My Department provides assistance for the development and maintenance by the National University of Ireland Maynooth (NUIM) of Teastas Eorpach na Gaeilge. This robust mechanism for testing competency in the Irish language, which is broadly based on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, was used by the Public Appointments Service on a pilot basis in the recent recruitment competition for executive officers. Details of the funding provided to NUIM in respect of Teastas Eorpach na Gaeilge in recent years are as follows:

Paid€177,500 €169,500€159,000 €127,200 €127,500€127,110 €127,500€127,500*€1,142,810
*amount sanctioned


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