Wednesday, 19 March 2008

Cathal Ó Searcaigh la Irish Independent:

In considering the inclusion or otherwise of the work of Cathal O Searcaigh in the list of texts for study by students of Leaving Certificate Irish, the council discussed the fact that it had already recommended the work of this artist -- widely recognised as one of the foremost poets of this generation -- for study.

The controversy that led to the request for advice was also raised; should the nature of that controversy, and its association with the protection of vulnerable young people be a factor in arriving at advice for the minister?

The inclusion of the work of the artist had been based on the artistic merit of the work, and of its alignment with the aims and objectives of the syllabus for Leaving Certificate Irish.

Should it now reverse that position? On what basis? And with what consequences? Not just for the curriculum for Leaving Certificate Irish, but for all curriculum, and for the process by which curriculum is determined into the future?

The advice to the minister notes that, on balance, the council considered that its original position on the artistic merit and suitability for study of the work of Cathal O Searcaigh should stand.

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