This is another blow for Ballymagroarty School whose work on information and communication technology (ICT) has already been featured by the Council for Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment (CCEA).
“Gaelscoil na Daróige is delighted to be recognized in the EDTECH50 directory as an organization shaping education technology. It is a recognition of the incredible work done during the pandemic,” said the director, Fiachra Ó Donghaile.
“At the start of lockdown, we wanted to make sure our immersive framework was as good online as it was offline.
“We wanted to limit the disruption to children’s learning when they couldn’t attend face-to-face lessons.”
Séanna Ó Coinn, ICT coordinator, explained some of the measures that have been taken over the past two years.
“To reduce the impact of distance learning on language acquisition, we have sought to ensure continuity of learning.
“This challenge was even greater given that a considerable number of parents at school had few or no Irish people at home.”
The school offered a mix of paper-based, hands-on and online learning and received overwhelmingly positive feedback from parents.
“Initially, when home learning was announced, I was filled with dread,” said Diarmuid Carlin, a parent. “But it turned out better than I could have ever imagined.
“The packs and emails perfectly complimented the expert use of the online communication app for Rang1, and the genius of the dedicated YouTube channels for older kids.
“The fact that my youngest could upload her own work to her tablet and interact with her teacher, while the two older ones could rewind the teacher on TV when they were looking to revise part of a lesson made the distance learning, even for me as a parent, enjoyable. In fact, I could go back to it if necessary,” Diarmuid laughs.
Many platforms and programs have been fully utilized by teachers to maximize online learning.
“Governors and staff shared a determination to continue to provide effective teaching and learning experiences during the pandemic and we are extremely grateful to our parents who have enthusiastically engaged in online learning,” said Fiachra.
Séanna said the EDTECH50 recognition is good news for Irish middle school education in general.
“With over 7,500 pupils, Irish Medium Schools have demonstrated that we can continue to grow and deliver a great immersive experience for pupils, even during the pandemic, through the effective and innovative use of technology.
“This recognition is a reflection of the outstanding work carried out in Irish medium schools in difficult times and it will further increase the attractiveness of medium Irish education as an option for parents across Ireland as they move on. preparing to apply for a school place for their children in January.”