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Gaelic Education In Highland

How Do I Learn Gaelic?

21 February 10
Conversation required to expand Gaelic language lessons
Feedback from advanced students learning Gaelic through the Ulpan method in the Highlands is showing that more Internet-based back-up support and structured conversation sessions are needed to advance their language skills.
This information was presented to members of The Highland Councils Gaelic committee 18 February 2010 by David Grant, Director of Deiseal Ltd. and the Councils Community Learning and Development Officer Margaret Mulholland.
The Ulpan method of teaching Scottish Gaelic is based on the Welsh and Israeli model of language learning and was developed by Deiseal with support from Brd na Gidhlig in 2007.
In a report to the Gaelic Committee Margaret Mulholland outlined the ways in which Highland Council is supporting adult learning of Gaelic through the Ulpan method either through direct provision or partnership provision of classes.
In Inverness the Council first provided Ulpan classes in September 2007 and these classes are now run in partnership with Inverness College for over 90 students. The Council has run other Ulpan classes in Dingwall, Aviemore, Skye (Portree and Bradford) and support has been given Iomairt Lochaber to train new tutors for the West Lochaber Area in conjunction with Lochaber College and to establish new classes in Fort William, Invergarry, Ballachulish, Roybridge and Acharacle.
Two pilot classes, run as a pilot in Inverness for Highland Council staff have been extended for a further 20 weeks.
Councillor Hamish Fraser said: I welcome the excellent work that Ulpan has delivered so far in providing Gaelic learning opportunities for adults throughout the Highlands. To expand Ulpan provision further we need to promote tutor recruitment, increase tutor training opportunities and encourage more Gaelic speakers to come forward as tutors of the future.

21 February 10
Council to develop model for 0-3 year olds Gaelic Medium provision

Highland Councillors welcomed proposals on Thursday 18 February 2010  to create a sustainable model of Gaelic Medium provision for 0-3 year olds in the Highlands.
At a meeting of the Councils Gaelic Committee members agreed that a full report on sustainable Gaelic Medium provision be worked up following more detailed discussions with Gaelic Medium service providers; Brd na Gidhlig and the umbrella organisations TAIC (formerly CNSA) and Care and Learning Alliance (CALA).
Sam Brogan, Highland Councils Early Years Resource Manager informed members that a mapping exercise of current 0-3 year olds Gaelic Medium provision had been carried out during which visits were made to some 30 playgroups throughout the Highlands.
Results of the mapping exercise showed that TAIC has a network of 31 parent and toddler and croileagan groups throughout the Highlands serving some 245 children. Meanwhile the Care and Learning Alliance provides support to 86 parent and toddler groups serving over 1500 children and 1231 families.
Sam Brogan explained: Initial findings in the review indicate that it is crucial to have Gaelic speakers in parent and toddler groups supporting Gaelic language to lead on the use of Gaelic songs, rhymes, stories and Gaelic language acquisition.
Councillor Hamish Fraser, Chairman of The Highland Councils Gaelic Committee said: Once more detailed discussion with service providers and partner agencies has taken place we look forward to a further report coming back to the Gaelic Committee on a sustainable model of Gaelic Medium provision for the 0-3 year old age group. It is vital that we find a way to continue to develop Gaelic Medium Education in the pre-school sector which is the foundation for future Gaelic learning in primary and secondary education.

21 February 10
Conversation required to expand Gaelic language lessons

Feedback from advanced students learning Gaelic through the Ulpan method in the Highlands is showing that more Internet-based back-up support and structured conversation sessions are needed to advance their language skills.
This information was presented to members of The Highland Councils Gaelic committee today (18 February) by David Grant, Director of Deiseal Ltd. and the Councils Community Learning and Development Officer Margaret Mulholland.
The Ulpan method of teaching Scottish Gaelic is based on the Welsh and Israeli model of language learning and was developed by Deiseal with support from Brd na Gidhlig in 2007.
In a report to the Gaelic Committee Margaret Mulholland outlined the ways in which Highland Council is supporting adult learning of Gaelic through the Ulpan method either through direct provision or partnership provision of classes.
In Inverness the Council first provided Ulpan classes in September 2007 and these classes are now run in partnership with Inverness College for over 90 students. The Council has run other Ulpan classes in Dingwall, Aviemore, Skye (Portree and Bradford) and support has been given Iomairt Lochaber to train new tutors for the West Lochaber Area in conjunction with Lochaber College and to establish new classes in Fort William, Invergarry, Ballachulish, Roybridge and Acharacle.
Two pilot classes, run as a pilot in Inverness for Highland Council staff have been extended for a further 20 weeks.
Councillor Hamish Fraser said: I welcome the excellent work that Ulpan has delivered so far in providing Gaelic learning opportunities for adults throughout the Highlands. To expand Ulpan provision further we need to promote tutor recruitment, increase tutor training opportunities and encourage more Gaelic speakers to come forward as tutors of the future.

17 November 09
Council calls on BBC Trust to broadcast Gaelic TV channel on freeview The Highland Council is urging viewers and supporters of the BBC Alba Gaelic television channel to back them in their call to the BBC Trust for wider access to BBC Alba by making it available on freeview.

Since its launch just over a year ago BBC Alba is currently only available via satellite transmission, or the BBCs iPlayer internet access. Despite this restricted availability, the channels programming has maintained a core audience of some 220,000 viewers since its launch.

Now the BBC Trust, who is responsible for changes of this nature, has launched a public consultation on proposals by the BBC Executive (the corporations management) to make BBC Alba available on freeview. Submissions to the consultation must be lodged before 18 January 2010.

Currently there is insufficient bandwidth or capacity on the freeview channels to allow BBC Alba to be simply added on without removing other output. The proposals by the BBC management are to make space for BBC Alba by removing 13 radio channels (including Radios 1 7, Radio nan Gidheal, and the World Service) from this platform, in Scotland only, and only during the hours at which BBC Alba is transmitted. This is currently 5pm 11.30pm each weekday, and after 4pm at weekends.

All of these radio stations would continue to be fully available by AM/FM transmission or through DAB radio sets. Their withdrawal during those times would only affect those who access the broadcasts via freeview boxes or digital televisions. It is estimated that this could affect some 60,00090,000 people/130,000 listening hours representing approximately 1% of all radio listening. By contrast it is estimated that making BBC Alba output available on freeview would help the channel reach an additional 150,000180,000 people, generating an additional 250,000 viewing hours. Radio listeners on the affected channels have widely-available alternative means of accessing those channels; no such alternatives exist for BBC Alba.

Convener of The Highland Council Councillor Sandy Park and Chairman of the Councils Gaelic Committee, Councillor Hamish Fraser are writing to the BBC Trust to urge the BBC Trust to accept the proposal to make BBC Alba available on freeview.

Councillor Park said: The Councils stance on this issue is quite clear indeed we have written twice previously to the BBC Trust urging them to make the channel more widely available. So we welcome this review and the formal opportunity to make a submission. However it is perhaps just as important that members of the public and other organisations add their voice to this call and submit their support to this consultation, as I am sure that the number of positive responses received by the BBC Trust will no doubt have an influence on their decision.

Chairman of The Highland Councils Gaelic Committee, Councillor Hamish Fraser said: Weve felt since the outset that restricting access to the BBC Alba programming, by only making it available via satellite, was a poor decision. At a time when were striving to raise the profile and status of the Gaelic language its almost a matter of equality that as many people as possible should be able to access the channel. While I understand that some might be inconvenienced by the removal of the affected radio stations, they have readily and easily available alternatives for BBC Alba viewers there is no choice at the moment. I urge everyone interested to write to the BBC Trust to voice their support.

Information on the BBC Trust's consultation is available HERE

14 October 09
Gidhlig ga chomharrachadh aig a' Mhd
A' bruidhinn aig latha-fosglaidh a' Mhid Niseanta Roghail, thuirt Ministear na Gidhlig Mcheal Ruiseil gu robh e ag ainmeachadfh tuilleadh taic do dh'iomairt Riaghaltas na h-Alba gus ginealach r de luchd-labhairt na Gidhlig a chruthachadh.

Dh'ainmich am Ministear gum biodh 35,000 ga thoirt don Chomuinn Ghidhealaich airson Oifigear Leasachaidh Mid a chur an dreuchd gus planaichean Md 2010 ann an Gallaibh a thoirt air adhart agus gus taic a chumail ri ionnsachaidh na Gidhlig anns an sgre. Dh' ainmich e cuideachd gum faigheadh Comhairle Earra-Ghidheal is Mhid 15,000 gus tuilleadh chrsaichean ionnsachaidh Gidhlig a stidheachadh anns an sgre ionadail agus gus danamh nas fhasa do dhaoine clasaichean Ulpan a fhrithealadh.

A' bruidhinn san ban, thuirt Mgr Ruiseil: "Tha Riaghaltas na h-Alba a' gealltainn gnomhachd iginneach a chur air chois gus an didheadh ginealach r de luchd-labhairt na Gidhlig a chruthachadh. Is ann air sgth sin a tha mi ag ainmeachadh 50,000 eile airson phriseactan a bheirt taic do fhoghlaim agus leasachaidh na Gidhlig.

"Chan e a-mhin gum bi ath-sheallaidh aig an Oifigear r Leasachaidh a' Mhid seo air na thathas ag ullachadh airson Md na bliadhna ri thighinn ach bheir an neach taic do ionnsachadh agus leasachadh na Gidhlig ann an sgre Ghallaibh agus mun cuairt air. Cleachdaidh Comhairle Earra-Ghidheal is Bhid an tabhartas aca gus rdachadh a thoirt air ireamh luchd-labhairt na Gidhlig san sgire sin le bhith a' tabhann chlasaichean ionnsachaidh inbheach tro mheadhan r Ulpan. Tha na tasgaidhean sin ag aithneachadh cho cudromach sa tha coimhearsnachdan ionadail a thaobh ionnsachaidh na Gidhlig agus ann a bhith a' togail m ri teachd don Gidhlig a bhios lidir is seasmhach.

"Aig a' Mhd an-diugh, tha e na thoileachas dhomh duais Riaghaltas na h-Alba airson Tosgaire Gidhlig na Bliadhna seo a bhuileachadh air Anna Latharna NicIllIosa. Tha Anna air a bhith an ss o chionn fhada ann an obair leasachaidh na Gidhlig, agus tha i air cur ris an seo gu re mhr. Tha an obair aice o chionn ghoirid air rain is cel Hiort air a cumail aig toiseach obair-gnomh is brosnachaidh na Gidhlig, agus tha i air leth airidh air an duais seo fhaighinn.

"Tha sinn airson gun ionnsaich daoine a' Ghidhlig agus gun toir iad seachad i do chch gus an glidhear pirt bheairteach de bheatha culturail na h-Alba agus coimhearsnachd cnain snraichte ann an Alba. Tha an Riaghaltas seo ag obair gu h-iginneach agus is urrainn don Mhd is do bhuidhnean eile cuideachadh le seo. Le bhith a' danamh seo, gheibh sinn uile buannachd s."

Thuirt Iain Macleid, Ceann-suidhe a' Chomuinn Ghidhealaich: ""Tha Anna Latharna NicIllIosa air-leth airidh air an duais snraichte seo. Tha i air an t-uamhas a chur ri obair leasachaidh cnan is cultar na Gidhlig tron chrsa beatha inbheil aice ann an raointean foghlaim, na h-ealain, craoladh is foillseachadh, agus deagh iomhaigh ionadail, niseanta agus eadar-niseanta aice. Tha mi cinnteach gum bi i na deagh thosgaire don Ghidhlig thairis air a' bhliadhna th'air thoiseach.

Bheir maoineachadh Oifigear Leasachaidh a' Mhid taic mhr dhuinn anns na h-ullachaidhean a tha againn airson Md 2010 ann an Gallaibh agus togaidh seo air na tha sinn a' danamh mar bhuidheann. Is e for thaisbeanadh math airson ar cnan is cultar na Gidhlig a th'anns a' Mhd agus tha sinn toilichte taic is beannachd an Riaghaltais fhaighinn bhon tabhartas maoineachaidh seo."

Thuirt Dick Walsh, Stiiriche Comhairle Earraghaidheal is Bhid: "Thid na h-ireamhan de chrsaichean rim faotainn ann an Earra-Ghidheal 's Bid airson luchd-ionnsachaidh na Gidhlig an-irde gu mr le taic-arigid bho Riaghaltas na h-Alba. 'S e aon de na promh amasan Plana Gidhlig na Comhairle gum bi barrachd luchd labhairt agus luchd cleachdaidh na Gidhlig anns an sgire. 'S e cothrom air leth a tha seo gus sin fhaighinn gu buil 's gus Gidhlig a leasachadh ann an coimhearsnachdan Earra-Ghidheal. "

Thuirt Anna Latharna NicIllIosa: "Tha e na urram mhr dhomh an duais seo fhaighinn anns a' bhaile dachaigh san ban far an d'fhuair mi an cothrom nam nighean g Gidhlig ionnsachadh agus far na bhuannaich mi mo Bhonn r aig a' Mhd. On uairsin that mi air mo dhcheall a dhanamh gus ar cnan 's ar cultar a bhrosnachadh anns a h-uile digh a b'urrainn dhomh. Tha mi'n dchas gun toir an duais seo cothrom dhomh eadhon barrachd a dhanamh gus an obair chudromach seo a thoirt air adhart, aig an taigh agus thall thairis."

Is e seo an drna bliadhna den duais Tosgaire Gidhlig na Bliadhna a thug an Riaghaltas seachad. Tha seo a' comharrachadh dhaoine fa-leth a tha air a bhith a' brosnachadh na Gidhlig gu h-ifeachdach. Chaidh a' chiad duais mar seo a-riamh a bhuileachadh air Julie Fowlis, an seinneadair Gidhlig, aig Md na bliadhna n-uiridh anns an Eaglais Bhreac.

Chaidh an Comunn Gidhealach a stidheachadh ann an 1891 agus chaidh a' chiad Md a chumail anns an ban ann an 1892. Bithear ga chumail ann an ite eadar-dhealaichte de dh'Alba san Dmhair gach bliadhna. An-uiridh chaidh a chumail anns an Eaglais Bhreac agus an ath-bhliadhna thid a chumail ann an Gallaibh. Is e tachartas farpaiseach de chultar na Gidhlig a tha sa Mhd. Cumar farpaisean seinn, ciil, aithris is eile tron t-seachdain. Tha prgram de thachartasan iomaill ann taobh a-muigh nam farpaisean.

Is e siostam ionnsachaidh cnan a th'ann an Ulpan agus chaidh a chleachdadh airson cnanan eile. Thathas air atharrachadh airson Gidhlig na h-Alba agus thathas a' tabhann clasaichean Ulpan air feadh na h-Alba. Thathas ga theagasg tro ghrunn mhodalan agus thathas a' cur cuideam air cmhradh.

Caithness Mod Awarded 35,000 By Scottish Government
Speaking on the opening day of the Royal National Md, the Minister for Gaelic Michael Russell announced further support for the Scottish Government's drive to create a new generation of Gaelic speakers.

The Minister awarded 35,000 for the Royal National Md to appoint a Gaelic development officer to take forward plans for the 2010 Md in Caithness and to support Gaelic learning in the area. He also announced that Argyll and Bute Council will receive 15,000 to increase the number of Gaelic courses in the local area and providing access to Ulpan classes.

Speaking in Oban, Mr Russell said: "The Scottish Government is committed to taking urgent action to create a new generation of Gaelic speakers. That is why I am investing a further 50,000 in projects which will support Gaelic education and development.

"The Md's new development officer will not only oversee preparations for next year's celebrations but support Gaelic learning and development in Caithness and the surrounding areas. Argyll and Bute Council will use its award to boost the number of Gaelic speakers in the area by offering adult learning classes using the innovative Ulpan method. These investments recognise the important role local communities play in Gaelic learning and in building a strong and sustainable future for Gaelic.

"At the Md today, I am delighted to present this year's Scottish Government Gaelic Ambassador of the Year award to Anne Lorne Gillies. A long time Gaelic activist, Anne's contribution to Gaelic language and culture is immense. Her more recent work on the songs and music of St. Kilda has kept her at the forefront of current Gaelic activity and language promotion, and makes her a truly worthy recipient.

"We want people to learn and pass on Gaelic in order to preserve a rich seam in the cultural life of Scotland and a distinct language community in Scotland. This Government is taking urgent action and the Md and others can play their part too. In doing so we will all benefit."

John Macleod, President of An Comunn Gidhealach, who organise the Royal National Md, said: "Anne Lorne Gillies is most worthy recipient of this prestigious award. She has made a huge contribution to the development of Gaelic language and culture throughout a distinguished career in the fields of education, the arts, broadcasting and publishing, with a local, national and international profile. I am certain that she will be a worthy ambassador for Gaelic over the coming year.

The award of funding for a Mod Development Officer to support our preparations for the Mod 2010 in Caithness will greatly enhance our role over the coming year. The Mod is a great showcase for Gaelic language and culture and we are delighted to have the Scottish Government's endorsement of our work through this funding package."

Argyll and Bute Council Leader Dick Walsh said: "I am delighted to hear of this further funding from the Scottish Government for Gaelic language classes. As a Council we take responsibility for the continuation of the Gaelic language very seriously. The preservation of Gaelic is vital not only for Argyll and Bute but for Scotland as a whole. Since Argyll and Bute Council adopted the Gaelic Language Plan in 2008 we have promoted, and continue to promote Gaelic and we are proud to be a part of this."

Quote from Anne Lorne Gillies: "It is an enormous honour to receive this award in my home town of Oban, where I myself was given the opportunity to learn Gaelic as a little girl and where I won my Md Gold medal. Ever since I've tried to promote our language and culture in whatever ways I can. I hope this award will give me even greater opportunities to carry on this important work, both at home and abroad."

The Scottish Government's Gaelic Ambassador of the Year award is now in its second year. It acknowledges individuals who have effectively promoted Gaelic. Gaelic singer songwriter Julie Fowlis received the first ever ambassador award at last year's Md in Falkirk.

The Royal National Md was founded in 1891 and the first Md held in Oban in 1892. It is held in a different area of Scotland in October of every year. Last year it was in Falkirk and next year Caithness. The Md is a competitive celebration of Gaelic culture. Competitions will be held throughout the week in song, music, recitation and more. There is also a programme of fringe events around the competitions

Ulpan is a system of language learning that has been used for other languages. It has now been adapted for Scottish Gaelic and Ulpan classes are currently being offered throughout Scotland. It is taught in a series of modules with the main emphasis on speaking.

1 May 09

Thinig sgoilearan rd-sgoil Bhagh a Chaisteil an cuideachd neach-lbhrigidh BBC ALBA Fiona NicCoinnich airson FilmG 2009 a chur air bhog, a cho-fharpais innleachdach fhilmichean goirid Gidhlig air-loidhne aig MG ALBA, r oidhche chomharrachaidh aig rd-sgoil Bhagh a Chaisteil ann am Barraigh.

Nochd preasantair BBC Radio nan Gidheal, Janice Ann NicAoidh, mar aoigh shnraichte air an rd-rlar is bhruidhinn i ris na buannaichean airson a phrgraim igridh mhr-chrdte, Aileag.

Thug MG ALBA duais seachad do na sgoilearan airson an fhilm-ghoirid aca, An Dsgadh, a choisinn an duais Film as Fherr sa bhuidhinn Daoine ga anns a chiad cho-fharpais. Ri linn for dhroch shde cha do dhearg sgoilearan Bhagh a Chaisteil air tighinn a dhInbhir Nis sa Ghearran airson cuirm dhuaisean FilmG. Na ite, chaidh an soirbheachadh a chomharrachadh ann an cuirm raidh san sgoil an-raoir.

Thuirt Alasdair Moireasdan, Cathraiche MG ALBA: Tha mi air mo dhigh an duais Film as Fherr a thoirt seachad do sgoilearan rd-sgoil Bhagh a Chaisteil. Bha e for dhuilich nach robh e comasach dhaibh tighinn chun na promh oidhche dhuaisean ach s e adhbhar toileachais a th ann dhomhsa gun urrainn dhaibh ar cuideachadh gus FilmG 2009 a chur air chois, is e a-nis fosgailte airson inntrigidhean.

Tha a cho-fharpais FilmG ag amas air tlant cruthachail r fhoillseachadh airson BBC ALBA. Bha mi dh-rribh air mo mhisneachadh le inbhe nam farpaiseach an-uiridh agus bha a h-uile duine a tha an ss san t-sianal ro thoilichte mu na bh ann de thlant cruthachail ann an coimhearsnachd nan Gidheal. S e cuspair FilmG 2009 Gaisgeach, abair cuspair freagarrach airson ar linne agus s cinnteach gun tig curaidhean na Gidhlig agus seid nam meadhanan Gidhlig airson an ama ri teachd gu brr ann an co-fharpais na bliadhna-sa.

Arsa Iain MacIllEathain, Riochdaiche Whisky Galore Film Eta, a tha air dreach r de Whisky Galore a chur air digh: Tha e morbhaileach an uiread seo de thlant cruthachail fhaicinn a toirt spionnadh do fhilmeadaireachd sna h-Eileanan Siar is an coimhearsnachd na Gidhlig air feadh Alba. Tha mi ln chinnteach gum bi inntrigidhean na bliadhna an-uiridh nam brosnachadh do na filmeadairean falaichte no aithnichte mar-th a ch sinn ann am FilmG 2009.

Tha lrach-ln FilmG a-nis be, le fiosrachadh sln mu cho-fharpais na bliadhna-sa agus mar a chuireas tu a-steach thuice. S e an ceann-l airson inntrigidhean 20 Samhain 2009. Bidh a cho-fharpais a tabhann cobhair tranaidh is leasachaidh ann an cruth teagaisg air-loidhne agus bhuidhnean-obrach san Eilean. Thid cunntas air an seo a chur air an lraich-ln trth sa Chitean.

B e FilmG 2008 a chiad cho-fharpais fhilmichean goirid Gidhlig air-loidhne aig MG ALBA. Shoirbhich leis a cho-fharpais gu mr, a tladh crr is 50 inntrigeadh agus a lorg tlant air leth dridhteach is filmichean a tighinn bho iteachan cho fada air falbh ri Canada is Alasga.

Ach bha a Ghaidhealtachd is na h-Eileanan gu snraichte lidir a thaobh inntrigidhean. Am measg bhuannaichean anns a bhuihdinn Daoine ga bha rd-sgoil Phort Rgh airson Suirighe air aste = Disaster!, agus choisinn sgoilear rd-sgoil Mhalaig, Megan NicIllFhaolain, Cluich as Fherr airson An Rathad Dachaigh. Chaidh Film as Fherr sa ghn Inntrigeach r gu stiiriche stidhte an Inbhir Nis, Senaid NicDhmhnaill, airson Oidhche Shathairne agus fhuair stiiriche bho Ghlaschu is Uibhist a Tuath, isdean Moireach, an duais am measg Phrofeiseantach airson Sibhlachan.

Bha a cho-fharpais fosgailte do na h-uile os cionn 12 bliadhna a dhaois gus filmichean goirid eadar tr is cig mionaidean a dhanamh sa Ghidhlig. Chaidh daoine aig nach robh a Ghidhlig no a bha ga h-ionnsachadh a bhrosnachadh gu mr gus pirt a ghabhail agus an cnan a chleachdadh ann am priseact cruthachail. Fhuair an iomairt taic agus cuideachadh bho phroifeiseantaich s a ghnomhachas fhilmichean nam measg stiirichean a choisinn BAFTA, Don Coutts agus Annie Griffin, agus rionnag Still Game agus Eilbheas, Greg Hemphill.

Gabhaidh na filmichean a bhuannaich agus inntrigidhean fharpaiseach gu lir ann am FilmG 2008 fhaicinn aig www.filmg.co.uk
1 May 09
Pupils of Castlebay High School last night (Tuesday 28 April) joined BBC ALBA presenter Fiona MacKenzie to launch FilmG 2009, MG ALBAs innovative Gaelic online short film competition, during an evening of celebration at Castlebay High, on the Isle of Barra.

BBC Radio nan Gaidheal presenter Janice Ann MacKay made a special guest appearance on stage and also interviewed the winners for popular young peoples programme, Aileag.

MG ALBA awarded the pupils their trophy for their short, An Dusgadh (The Awakening) which won the Best Film award in the Young Peoples category in the inaugural competition. Due to adverse weather conditions the Castlebay pupils had been unable to travel to Inverness in February for the FilmG awards ceremony. Their win was celebrated instead at a special school ceremony last night.

Alasdair Morrison, Chairman of MG ALBA said: I am delighted to be presenting the pupils from Castlebay High School with their Best Film award. It was a shame the pupils could not be at the awards ceremony but I am pleased they have been able to help us launch FilmG 2009, which is now open for entries.

The FilmG competition is aimed at uncovering creative talent for BBC ALBA. I was hugely encouraged by last years standards and everyone involved with the channel was delighted at the extent of the creative talent in the Gaelic community. The theme for FilmG 2009 is Gaisgeach, or Hero, a fitting theme for our times and I am sure this years competition will uncover future champions for Gaelic and more real gems for Gaelic media.

Iain Maclean, Producer at Whisky Galore Film Ltd, who initiated the remake of Whisky Galore said: It is wonderful to see such impressive creative talent bring electricity to filming in the Western Isles as well as the Gaelic community throughout Scotland. I am sure all of last years entries will act as a catalyst for all the hidden and currently gifted film makers we will see in FilmG in 2009.

The FilmG 2009 website has now gone live with full details of this years competition and how to enter. The deadline for entries is 20 November 2009. The competition will also be offering training and development support in the form of online video tutorials and on-site workshops. Details will be posted on the website in early May.

FilmG 2008 was MG ALBAs first Gaelic online short film competition. The competition was a huge success attracting over 50 entries and uncovering some really impressive new talent, with entries being received from as far afield as Canada and Alaska.

The Highlands and Islands were particularly well represented. Winners in the Young Peoples category included Portree High School for Suirighe air astar - Disaster!, with Mallaig High School student Megan MacLellan taking Best Performance for An Rathad Dachaidh. Best Film in the New Entrant Category went to Inverness based director, Seonaid MacDonald for Oidhche Shathairne and Glasgow and North Uist based director, Uisdean Murray took the Professional award for Suibhleachan.

The competition was open to all over the age of 12 to make three to five minute short films in Gaelic. Non Gaelic speakers and learners were particularly encouraged to get involved and have fun with the language through a creative project. The project was generously supported and endorsed by film industry professionals including BAFTA winning directors Don Coutts and Annie Griffin, as well as Still Game and Eilbhis star Greg Hemphill.

All winning films and finalist entries from FilmG 2008 are available to watch at www.filmg.co.uk

17 March 09
Sprs Mr Event For Gaelic Medium Pupils
The Highland Council is working in partnership with Comunn na Gidhlig, to develop a national pilot event, Sprs Mr, for Primary 6 Gaelic Medium Education (GME) pupils. The event, which will take place in Stirling on the 11 and 12 May, aims to be fun, non-competitive and provide the opportunity for pupils to meet with other Gaelic Medium pupils from other schools throughout Scotland. A total of 80 young people are expected to attend. Sprs Mr will form part of the Curriculum for Excellence and is funded by Brd na Gidhlig - the National Gaelic Agency, Comunn na Gidhlig (CnaG), The Highland Council with support from Fisean nan Gidheal.
Tha Comhairle na Gidhealtachd ag obair cmhla ri Comann na Gidhlig gus pleat niseanta, Sprs Mr, a leasachadh do sgoilearan ann an Clas 6 ann am Foghlam tro Mheadhan na Gidhlig (FMG).
Thid seo air adhart ann an Sruighle air 11mh is 12ra Citean, agus bidh e sprsail is gun cho-fharpaisean. Bheir e cothrom do sgoilearan coinneachadh ri sgoilearan eile tro Mheadhan na Gidhlig sgoiltean air feadh Alba. Tha dil gun cruinnich 80 neach g.
Bidh Sprs Mr mar phirt dhen Churraicealam airson Sr-mhathais agus air a mhaoineachadh le Brd na Gidhlig, Comann na Gidhlig (CnaG) is Comhairle na Gidhealtachd le taic bho Fhisean nan Gidheal.

5 February 09
Gaelic Authors for New Highland Writing Initiative
Sgriobhadh sa Sgre is the name of a new Highland Gaelic writing initiative which will see published authors and established writers visiting schools to work alongside pupils. The writers will also take in part in arts and community based events and the project will also promote Gaelic books through sales and marketing.

Iomairt Sgrobhaidh r Gidhlig Na Gidhealtachd
'S e Sgrobhadh san Sgre ainm iomairt sgrobhaidh r Gidhlig sa Ghidhealtachd. Air sgth na h-iomairt bidh ghdaran is sgrobhadairean stidhte a' tadhal air sgoiltean agus ag obair cmhla ri na sgoilearan. Gabhaidh na sgrobhadairean pirt ann an cisean ealain a bhios stidhte sa choimhearsnachd, agus bidh an sgeama cuideachd a' brosnachadh leabhraichean Gidhlig tro reic is margaideachd.

5 February 09
The Gaelic development agency Brd na Gidhlig, launched a major new information and networking site on 4th February 2009, www.mygaelic.com which aims to be the place to visit for everyone who wants to learn more about Gaelic - Gaelic language and culture, tourism, events relating to Gaelic and, how and where they can engage with the language. mygaelic.com is aimed at Gaelic speakers and novices alike, offering something for everyone with an interest in wishing to learn more about the language or indeed learning to speak Gaelic. The website was launched in Glasgow by Minister for Gaelic Linda Fabiani, where representatives of various Gaelic organisations were invited to view the innovative new communication channel.
Dh'fhoillsich Brd na Gidhlig, a' phromh bhuidheann poblach le uallach airson leasachadh na Gidhlig, lrach-ln r fiosrachaidh agus lonraidheil - mygaelic.com - an-diugh (Diciadain 4 Gearran 2009). Tha mygaelic.com ag amas air a bhith na h-ite tadhail do neach sam bith a tha airson barrachd fiosrachaidh fhaotainn mun Ghidhlig - an cnan agus an cultar, turasachd agus tachartasan co-cheangailte ri Gidhlig, agus dighean agus lraich eile far an urrainn dhaibh a dhol an ss anns a' chnan. Tha mygaelic.com airson an d chuid luchd-labhairt na Gidhlig, agus an fheadhainn a tha r dhan chnan. Bidh an lrach inntinneach do gach neach aig a bheil idh ann an Gidhlig no a tha airson barrachd fiosrachaidh fhaotainn mun chnan, no a' Ghidhlig ionnsachadh.

1 February 09
Tha Riaghaltas na h-Alba air a' chiad Dreachd Phlana Gidhlig a chur a-mach gu co-chomhairleachadh poblach. Tha am Plana a' moladh cheuman gus luchd-labhairt na Gidhlig a bhrosnachadh gu bhith a' cleachdadh na Gidhlig an uair a tha iad a' diligeadh ris an Riaghaltas.

Dh'ainmich Linda Fabiani foillseachadh a' Phlana aig deasbad sa Phrlamaid mun Ghidhlig feasgar an-diugh.

Tha na ceuman a' gabhail a-steach a bhith a' gluasad gu cleachdadh omhaigh corporra d-chnanach, fastadh tuilleadh oifigearan Gidhlig gus sil a chumail air adhartas a' Phlana agus a chur an gnomh; a bhith a' cur air digh chothroman ionnsachaidh cnain don luchd-obrach, a bhith a' gabhail ri agus a' cur filte air foirmean a bhith air an lonadh a-steach sa Ghidhlig; a bhith a' danamh ullachaidh airson choinneamhan poblach a bhith air an cumail sa Ghidhlig an uair a thathar mothachail air iarrtas air a shon; a bhith a' togail an irde comas airson seirbheisean eadar-theangachaidh; agus a' brosnachadh co-sgrobhadh ris an Riaghaltas sa Ghidhlig.

Thuirt Ministear na h-Erpa, Cisean air an Taobh a-muigh agus Cultar Linda Fabiani: "Buinidh a' Ghidhlig do dh'Alba. Cho math ri bhith na pirt air leth is riatanach de ar beatha chultarail bheairteach, 's e cnan niseanta a tha innte is feumaidh sinn an aithne sin a thoirt dhi."

"Tha Ministearan na h-Alba air ar seasamh a thaobh na Gidhlig a dhanamh gl shoilleir. Tha sinn dealasach ann a bhith a' sireadh m ri teachd a bhios seasgair is seasmhach don chnan, agus tha foillseachadh ar Dreachd Phlana Gidhlig na thuilleadh fianais air ar dcheall a thaobh a bhith a' meudachadh cleachdadh na Gidhlig sa bheatha phoblach."

"Tha soirbheas BBC Alba na chomharra soilleir air cho doghrasach 's a thathar a thaobh na Gidhlig. 'S e an dbhlan a tha romhainn a thaobh na Gidhlig san m ri teachd an doghras sin a stiireadh gus am bi daoine a' danamh barrachd cleachdadh den Gidhlig agus gus meudachadh fhaicinn ann an ireamh luchd-labhairt na Gaidhlig. 'S ann a mhin tro bhith a' brosnachadh tuisgse mun chnan agus a bhith ga cleachdadh is urrainn dhuinn m ri teachd a tha dha-rribh seasmhach a chruthachadh dhan Ghaidhlig.

Tha Dreachd Phlana Gidhlig Riaghaltas na h-Alba ag amas dreach air sin - a bhith a' misneachadh tuilleadh cleachdadh den chnan tro bhith a' cruthachadh chothroman prataigeach airson a bhith ga cleachdadh."

Tha Art MacCarmaig, Cathraiche Eadar-amail Bhrd na Gidhlig air filte a chur air Dreachd Phlana Gidhlig Riaghaltas na h-Alba mar "dheagh chomharra soilleir air dealas leantainneach an Riaghaltais a thaobh a' chnain".

Thuirt Mgr MacCarmaig: "Le bhith a' gabhail a' cheum chudromaich seo, tha Riaghaltas na h-Alba air fios a chur a-mach gu bheil for bhuannachd ann a bhith a' toirt taic agus comas leasachaidh dhan Ghaidhlig. Tha plana susbainteach an seo a tha iomchaidh airson a chuid ghnomhan fhin, ach tha e cuideachd a' toirt stiir do bhuidhnean eile agus a' cur a-mach fios gu bheil Riaghaltas na h-Alba airson m ri teachd seasmhach fhaicinn dhan Ghaidhlig, a dh'fhaodadh a bhith air a chleachdadh mar mhac-samhail aig iomadh re le buidhnean poblach, probhaideach agus saor-thoileach cho math ri daoine fa-leth.

"Tha mi a' cur filte air dealas agus rintean a' Mhinisteir ann a bhith a' foillseachadh an sgrobhainn seo agus bu mhath leam mpidh a chur air gach neach aig a bheil idh sa Ghidhlig, thairis air a h-uile raon anns a bheil sinn an ss, eadar an dachaigh, foghlam is craoladh ann an Gidhlig, am beachdan a dhanamh follaiseach r m a' cho-chomhairleachaidh. Tha sin a' gabhail a-steach a bhith a' measadh an sgrobhainn a tha far comhair agus cuideachd a bhith a' moladh leasachaidhean a dh'fhaoidte a dhanamh air."

Faodar freagairtean dhan cho-chomhairleachadh air Dreachd Phlana Gidhlig Riaghaltas na h-Alba a chur gu lrach-ln Riaghaltas na h-Alba. Faodar fiosan a chur cuideachd gu gaeliclanguageplan@scotland.gsi.gov.uk no gu planagaidhlig@scotland.gsi.gov.uk. Bidh an co-chomhairleachadh a' dol gu Giblean 29, 2009.

Mar a tha mnichte ann an Achd na Gaidhlig (Alba) 2005, faodaidh Brd na Gidhlig iarraidh air buidhnean poblach am Planaichean Gidhlig fhin ullachadh. Tha na leanas air am planaichean fhoillseachadh cheana: Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, Comhairle na Gidhealtachd, Iomairt na Gidhealtachd 's nan Eilean, Earra-Ghidheal is Bid, agus Prlamaid na h-Alba. Tha Comhairle Baile Ghlaschu air a phlana ullachadh agus co-chomhairleachadh a dhanamh air agus tha na buidhnean a leanas ag ullachadh phlanaichean aig an m a tha an lthair: Comhairle Baile Dhn ideann, Luchd-sgrdaidh na Banrigh air Foghlam, ghdarras Theisteanas na h-Alba, Oilthigh na Gidhealtachd 's nan Eilean, Ionnsachadh is Teagaisg Alba, agus Comhairle Maoineachaidh na h-Alba. O chionn ghoirid chaidh iarraidh air na buidhnean a leanas planaichean ullachadh: NHS na Gidhealtachd, NHS nan Eilean Siar, Caledonian Mac a' Bhriuthainn, Maoin Mara Chaledonian Earranta, ghdarras nan Croitearan, Dualchas Ndair na h-Alba, Coimisean na Coilltearachd agus Visit Scotland.

The Scottish Government has published its Draft Gaelic Language Plan for consultation. The Plan proposes measures to encourage Gaelic speakers to use the language when contacting the Government.

Linda Fabiani announced publication of the Draft Plan during a parliamentary debate on Gaelic this afternoon.

Measures proposed include a move to a bilingual corporate identity; the recruitment of further Gaelic officers to monitor and implement the Plan; making Gaelic language training available for staff; accepting and welcoming the completion of forms in Gaelic; making provision for holding public meetings in Gaelic where a demand is demonstrated; building capacity for translation services; and encouraging correspondence with the Government in Gaelic.

Minister for Europe, External Affairs and Culture Linda Fabiani said: "Gaelic belongs to Scotland. As well as being a unique and essential part of our rich cultural life, it is a national language and we must recognise it as such.

"Scottish Ministers have made our position on Gaelic very clear. We are committed to a secure and sustainable future for the language, and publication of our Draft Gaelic Language Plan is further evidence of our dedication to increasing the use of Gaelic in public life.

"The success of BBC Alba is a clear indication of the enthusiasm for Gaelic. The challenge for the future of Gaelic is to convert such enthusiasm into increased use of the language and an increase in the number of Gaelic speakers. Only through encouraging appreciation and use of the language can we build a truly sustainable future for Gaelic.

"The Scottish Government's Draft Gaelic Language Plan is aimed at exactly that - encouraging increased use of the language by creating practical opportunities for its use."

Interim Chair of Brd na Gidhlig Arthur Cormack has hailed the Scottish Government's Draft Gaelic Language Plan as a "welcome and positive indication of the Government's continuing commitment to the language".

Mr Cormack said: "By taking this significant step, the Scottish Government has signalled that there is real benefit in sustaining and developing Gaelic. It is a meaningful plan that applies to its own operations, but also offers a lead to other organisations with a clear message that the Scottish Government wants to see a sustainable future for Gaelic, which can be followed through at all sorts of levels by public, private and voluntary bodies as well as individuals.

"I welcome the Minister's commitment and intentions in launching the document and I would urge everyone with an interest in Gaelic, in all the range of areas we operate in, from the family home to education and broadcasting in Gaelic, to make their opinions known during the consultation period. That applies equally to assessing the document as it stands and taking a look at how it could be developed."

Responses to the consultation on the Scottish Government's Draft Gaelic Language Plan can be made via the Scottish Government website. Contributions can also be made to gaeliclanguageplan@scotland.gsi.gov.uk or planagaidhlig@scotland.gsi.gov.uk. The consultation runs until April 29, 2009.

As stated in the Gaelic Language Act (Scotland) 2005, Brd na Gidhlig can ask public bodies to produce their own Gaelic Language Plans. The following have already published their own plans: Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, Highland Council, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Argyll and Bute Council and the Scottish Parliament. Glasgow City Council has prepared and consulted on its plan and the following are currently preparing plans: Edinburgh City Council, Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Education, the Scottish Qualifications Authority, the University of the Highlands and Islands, Learning and Teaching Scotland, and the Scottish Funding Council. The following bodies have recently been asked to produce plans: NHS Highland, NHS Western Isles, Caledonian MacBrayne, Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited, the Crofters Commission, Scottish National Heritage, the Forestry Commission and Visit Scotland.

7 December 08
Council publishes Gaelic Carol Book in time for Christmas
A Christmas Gaelic song and carol book titled "Duan Nollaig" has been published this week by The Highland Council's Mairi Mhor Gaelic Song Fellowship.

The book follows the successful production of 'Duan Nollaig' in 2007 - the only double CD of Gaelic Christmas songs and carols for all ages. The Duan Nolliag CD proved to be a great success, remaining at the top of the Christmas best seller lists in Scotland for several weeks over the 2007 festive season and has continued to sell well all year round.

Both the Duan Nollaig book and CD were created through the Council's Mairi Mhor Gaelic Song Fellowship in response to requests from all over the world for recorded and published Gaelic Christmas songs and carols.

Councillor Hamish Fraser, Chairman of The Highland Council Gaelic Committee said: "The publication of Duan Nollaig is not only in time for Christmas but it is very appropriate as we look towards the Year of Homecoming 2009. In addition to providing an excellent teaching resource for all Gaelic Medium teachers throughout Scotland, the book will also strike a chord with Gaelic speakers and learners at home and abroad."

Fiona Mackenzie Highland Council's Mairi Mhor Gaelic Song Fellowship Officer said: "Following the initial success of the CD, I received many emails and calls from all over the world, particularly from teachers and solo singers, for a published version of the songs. There is no other Gaelic carol book in publication at present, and certainly no book which contains actual arrangements of Gaelic Christmas songs."

Irvin Duguid, who produced the CD, has arranged sixteen of the songs taken from the CD, for voice, piano and guitar and they include traditional Gaelic Christmas hymns such as:

"Laoidh Mhoire Mhaighdeann" (the Virgin Mary's Hymn);
- translations of well known carols such as 'Ciain an Oidhche' (Silent Night) and Fada Cian ann an Staball (Away in a Manger); and
- songs suitable for young children such as 'Rinn sinn bodach sneachd an diugh' (We made a snowman today).

Other well known Christmas songs such as 'Air a Chiad latha' (The 12 Days of Christmas) and 'Nollaig Chridheil' (We wish you a Merry Christmas) are also included.

Fiona added: "We hope that the book will prove very useful to teachers particularly in Highland schools who struggle every year, to find suitable and attractive material for the numerous concerts and Nativity plays at Christmas."

The 'Duan Nollaig Book' will be available priced around 10 from Highland Council's Education Centre in Dingwall; Highlander Music in Muir of Ord; The Music Shop, Inverness; other retailers and online from www.musicscotland.com and www.footstompin.com.

For more information, e-mail: fiona.mackenzie@highland.gov.uk
or telephone: 01349 863441.

October 2008
Royal National MOD - Falkirk 2008

November 2008
Blas Festival 2008     Click Here For Blas Festival 2009 4 - 12 Sep 2009

September 2008
BBC Alba Launch Night - The New Gaelic TV Station
Reworking of Runrig's "Alba", first tune on the opening night on Scotland's new TV channel, BBC Alba.

16 September 08
Council Supports Inverness Gaelic Choir
Inverness Common Good Fund and The Highland Council are helping Inverness Gaelic Choir to fulfil their plans to be the first Scottish Gaelic choir invited to participate in the prestigious Celtic Colours festival in Cape Breton from 9 - 16 October 2008

The choir, which was booked to fly with Zoom Airlines, lost all their money and tickets when the airline recently collapsed, but after intense fundraising and publicity the choir have finally been able to confirm their new flights have been purchased enabling them to fly to Canada.

Yesterday, members of The Highland Council's Inverness City Committee agreed to 4,000 funding from the Inverness Common Good Fund to help secure purchase of replacement flight tickets to Cape Breton. Funding from The Highland Council will also be providing a coach to take the choir from Inverness to Glasgow airport and return via Falkirk MOD at a cost of 1,550.

Depute Provost of Inverness City Committee, Councillor Alex Graham said: "As well as putting on many local performances the choir are great ambassadors for Inverness and the Highlands. The City Committee was very happy to make a donation from the Inverness Common Good Fund so that they can get to Canada."

Councillor Hamish Fraser, Chairman of The Highland Council's Gaelic Committee said: "We are delighted to be able to assist the choir in their efforts to raise the necessary funds to enable them to travel to Celtic Colours in Cape Breton. The Highland Council and the Province of Nova Scotia have a Memorandum of Understanding that exists to organise cultural and linguistic exchanges between the two regions and the Inverness Gaelic Choir is representative of this initiative. Highland Council wishes the Choir every success both in Cape Breton and also at the Royal National Mod in Falkirk."

Barchester Healthcare which owns Highview House Care Home in Inverness, has underwritten the purchase of new tickets which the choir will fundraise to pay back.

Fiona Mackenzie, the campaign's co-ordinator, member of the choir and Highland Council's Mairi Mhor Gaelic Song Fellow, explained: "When we originally purchased the tickets they cost 7,211 but now of course, replacement tickets are much more expensive, in the region of 18 to 20,000. By speaking to as many people as possible and contacting local and national businesses we have been able raise almost 13,000 to date.

"The choir has been overwhelmed by people's generosity and kindness and find it hard to believe the response the appeal has had. Not only have we had monetary donations but also offers of venues to hold fund raising events, cases of Drambuie, a beautiful banner from a Glasgow company for the choir to use at events, companies holding raffles for us, bands offering to play for us and even the Skye band the Peatbog Faeries sold almost 100 CDs for us at the Blas concert in Eden Court Theatre at the weekend.

"We also performed three concerts within Inverness on Saturday ~ in the Town House, by kind permission of Highland Council as part of their Open Doors scheme, as well as in Falcon Square and outside Eden Court ~ and were absolutely delighted at people's response to our singing.

"We will continue to fund raise to pay the ticket purchase back and to this end are holding a ceilidh dance on the 27th September in the beautiful venue of the Strathpeffer Spa Pavilion who has donated the facility to us for the event. Two ceilidh bands, ~Meantime~ and the ~Cnoc Ciuil Ceilidh Band~ have also offered to play for us free of charge which is a tremendous offer. The choir are delighted that we can at last get back to rehearsing and planning for the trip rather than worrying about the financial situation."

The Council's coach will take the choir back to Inverness via the Royal National Mod in Falkirk. Choir President Ola MacRae and General Manager of Highview Care Home, said: "It has been such a hard couple of weeks that we really feel that the only way to round off the trip will be to go and participate at the Mod in Falkirk. We will be well sung in after a week of singing in Canada and although we will be tired, we will probably be no more tired than the normal ~Mod~ tiredness!"

Mrs Janet Macgregor, Gaelic tutor to the choir said: "The Council's support of the Choir in this way reinforces its commitment to the Gaelic language and culture and the choir's performances in Cape Breton will help to maintain already established links with the Highland capital."

Further information please contact: Fiona Mackenzie tel: (01349) 868256 e-mail: Fiona.mackenzie@highland.gov.uk or view the Inverness Gaelic Choir website at: www.invernessgaelicchoir.org

12 September 08
Gaelic development body Brd na Gidhlig (BnG) is to use #150,000 of its Scottish Government funding as a Challenge Fund to support projects promoting the use of Gaelic in communities.

Culture Minister Linda Fabiani will make the announcement today, while addressing the first national Gaelic in the Community conference, held in Breasclete, Lewis.

The Challenge Fund supports the Scottish Government's priorities for preservation and promotion of the language, set out in the National Plan for Gaelic.

Ms Fabiani said: "This funding will enable BnG to take forward new projects that are central to strengthening Gaelic in the community. I am delighted at this focus on a community-based approach to preserving and extending the language. "Gaelic is a national language. We must recognise it on that basis and support it across all our communities, from areas where it is well established, to others where it is growing - such as parts of urban Scotland. "The Scottish Government is committed to securing a sustainable and successful future for Gaelic in Scotland and the release of this funding to Brd na Gidhlig is yet another step towards achieving that goal."

BnG Interim Chairman Arthur Cormack said: "Brd na Gidhlig is happy to have partnered with Comhairle nan Eilean Siar in organising this conference and we hope that we will begin to get a steer from the day as to the interventions necessary to ensure Gaelic's continued and increased use in different kinds of communities across Scotland.

"Although we still have 'traditional' Gaelic communities, where a majority of people speak Gaelic, there are an increasing number of smaller communities within urban areas where Gaelic is used regularly. We need to look at ways of supporting all kinds of Gaelic communities but perhaps look at special measures in the traditional Gaelic-speaking communities.

"We welcome the start of this conversation, the Minister's involvement in that and the continuing support of the Scottish Government in assisting us to promote Gaelic and extend its reach and influence.

"The release of funds from the Scottish Government is, of course, very welcome and will enable us to deliver more of the measures in the National Plan for Gaelic."

The Gaelic in the Community conference at Breasclete in Lewis has been organised by BnG and Comhairle nan Eilean Siar. The conference's main aim is to discuss the key steps required to strengthen Gaelic in communities where it has a high profile, and across Scotland as a whole.

At the conference, Ms Fabiani will ask delegates for their views on what works for Gaelic, and task BnG to consider these views and build them into future strategies.

9 September 08
Consultation on Gaelic Medium Primary School provision
in Skye and in Lochaber

The Highland Council has launched public consultations on proposals to develop two stand-alone Gaelic primary schools, one for Portree on the Isle of Skye and another in Fort William, Lochaber.
Copies of the consultation papers are available from John Ritchie, Area Education Manager, Education, Culture and Sport Officer at Portree 01478 613697 or Fort William 01397 707350. Members of the public who wish to submit written observations regarding the papers should do so no later than Friday 10 October 2008.
Letters have been sent to parents in the catchment areas of the proposed two schools enclosing a copy of the consultative paper relevant to their local area.
The Council is also organising public meetings led by representatives of the Education Authority. Parents of children and members of the community who may now or in the future be affected by the implications of the proposals are invited to attend these meetings which will be held on Wednesday 24 September at Portree High School and Thursday 25 September at Fort William RC Primary School. Both meetings will start at 7pm.

4 July 08
Minister Visits Gaelic Drama Summer School
The Minister for Europe, External Affairs and Culture, Linda Fabiani, this week visited a new initiative aimed at offering young Gaelic speakers an opportunity to learn professional theatre skills.
Ministear a' tadhal air Sgoil Shamhraidh Dhrma Gidhlig
Thadhail am Ministear airson na Roinn Erpa, Cisean Taobh a-Muigh agus Cultar, Linda Fabiani air iomairt r a tha airson sgilean thatar proifeasanta ionnsachadh do Ghidheil g

2 July 08
Next Phase for Brd na Gidhlig
In line with the Scottish Government's commitment to ensuring a sustainable future for Gaelic, Minister for Culture Linda Fabiani today appointed a Deputy Chair at Brd na Gidhlig (BnG) to provide continuity of leadership following Matthew MacIver's decision to step down as Chair.

After leading BnG through its early life, Matthew MacIver CBE has tendered his resignation as Chair in order to take up a professorship at the University of Highlands and Islands Millennium Institute. To ensure strong leadership within this key public body Linda Fabiani has asked Arthur Cormack, who currently serves on the Board, to become Deputy Chair.

Ms Fabiani said: "Matthew MacIver has devoted real effort and energy to Brd na Gidhlig in its early years of operation. I commend the contribution he has made to building a strong and successful future for Gaelic in Scotland and wish him success in his new post at the University of Highlands and Islands Millennium Institute.

"As testament to the importance this Government places on the promotion of Gaelic, I have appointed Arthur Cormack to the position of Deputy Chair. Arthur has been instrumental in driving forward change and leadership at Brd na Gidhlig and I am confident he will provide strong direction and continuity for the body. The Brd will now begin the process of electing an interim Chair.

"As it moves into its next phase, I am certain that Brd na Gidhlig will build on recent progress with the Gaelic Language Plans and develop a more strategic approach to delivering this Government's ambitious plans for the language. The Gaelic community rightly demand and deserve strong, unequivocal support and the Scottish Government is committed to a sustainable future for Gaelic."

It is the responsibility of the Board of BnG to elect an interim Chair for the body. This will allow time for the appointment of a new Chair subject to the normal public appointments process ensuring a full fair and open competition. As with most permanent public appointments, it is for Ministers to make the final decision.

31 May 08
Brd na Gidhlig and The Highland Council launch first Gaelic Language Plan
The Highland Council has become the first public body in Scotland to have its Gaelic Language Plan formally approved by Brd na Gidhlig.

The Plan, intended to boost the status and use of the language, will be implemented across the Highland Council area between now and 2011.

The Brd has the power to issue formal notice under Section 3 of the Gaelic Language (Scotland) Act 2005 to public authorities, requiring them to prepare and submit Gaelic Language Plans within an agreed timeframe.

The Highland Council is the first public authority to do so; with Plans currently in the approval process from Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, Argyll and Bute Council and The Scottish Parliament. Further Plans are in the pipeline from Highlands and Islands Enterprise and The Scottish Government.

The Highland Councils Plan includes the following:

  • Playing a leading role in the development of pre-school, primary and secondary Gaelic education.

  • Allowing greater public access to Council services in Gaelic.

  • Raising the profile of the language by using it alongside English on signage and literature.

  • Gaelic tuition opportunities for employees.

  • Assessing the impact on Gaelic of all new developments within the Councils sphere of influence.

Minister for Gaelic, Linda Fabiani said: I welcome this Gaelic Language Plan from The Highland Council which amongst other initiatives ensures that Gaelic speakers can engage with a vital public service in their own language.

The Scottish Government has an ambitious programme to raise the profile of Gaelic - ensuring it has a sustainable future and creating opportunities for its use in a wide range of contexts from education to culture to every day public services.

This is the first in a series of public bodies to take forward their Language Plan with Brd na Gidhlig, I very much look forward to the others to come and the real benefits these will bring to the Gaelic community and to Scotland.

Brd na Gidhlig Chief Executive, Kenneth Murray said: We are pleased to announce the approval of the very first Gaelic Language Plan and congratulate The Highland Council on a significant milestone.

Gaelic Language Plans reflect the aspirations of the National Plan for Gaelic and will mean that Gaelic speakers and learners can access some public services in the language more often and help to ensure that Gaelic is more visible in the authoritys operations. The Highland Council has produced a Plan that will work to achieve this goal.

It is important to remember that Gaelic Language Plans are not about imposing Gaelic on organisations or people, they are about facilitation not coercion.  The Brd, and the organisations we work in partnership with, are keen to create more opportunities for Gaelic speakers and those interested in Gaelic to use the language in as many everyday situations as possible.

The Highland Council Convener Sandy Park said: I am delighted that the Council is the first in Scotland to have its Gaelic Plan approved by Brd na Gidhlig.

We have devoted a great deal of time and effort towards developing the Plan and this underlines our commitment to promoting the Gaelic language and culture. It is based on the principle of equal respect for Gaelic and English and recognises that the Gaelic language is an integral part of Highland life.

Gaelic Committee Chairman Councillor Hamish Fraser said: This Plan sets out a four-year development programme and proposals for a support structure to sustain these developments. Supported by a Gaelic Development Team and the Gaelic Committee the Plan will focus the Council's commitment to Gaelic and oversee policy and planning for Gaelic throughout all Council services. Our aim is to enable members of the public to access Council services through Gaelic, in line with relevant Council policies.

This will involve raising awareness of Gaelic to create a positive climate of opinion for Gaelic development. We want to provide a range of opportunities for young people to acquire Gaelic in schools and in learning centres by playing a leading role in the development of Gaelic medium pre-school education and child care; responding positively to parental demand for Gaelic medium primary education and expanding  Gaelic medium provision in secondary schools. We want to encourage Gaelic to be spoken in the home and in the wider community. We want to provide a comprehensive and co-ordinated system of adult tuition in Gaelic, which will enable adult learners to develop their Gaelic throughout and beyond the lifetime of this plan.

The first six bodies to be formally notified to prepare language plans were: the Scottish Government, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, The Highland Council, Argyll and Bute Council, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar and the Scottish Parliament.

Brd na Gidhlig is the statutory Gaelic Development Agency, established under the Gaelic Language (Scotland) Act 2005 to promote Gaelic both in Scotland and abroad. The Act, which was commenced in February this year, requires the Brd to prepare a National Plan for Gaelic to establish a strategic approach to the development of the language and its culture.

10 May 08
Driving Forward the Gaelic Language Plan

The Highland Council has appointed a new Gaelic Development Manager to spearhead its promotion of the Gaelic language and culture. He is Donald MacNeill, a native Gaelic speaker who has wide experience in the public sector and in the media. Brought up in Inverness within a Gaelic-speaking household. Donald was educated at Crown Primary School and Millburn Academy before going to Glasgow University.

He had a ten year career in broadcast journalism (1988-1998) ~ in both radio and television ~ the bulk of which was in Gaelic. This included working with BBC Radio nan Gaidheal (Inverness), Grampian Television (Aberdeen & Inverness) and Scottish Television (Glasgow).

Since then, Donald has gained experience of development working in the public sector within Highlands and Islands Enterprise, initially in press and public relations, but latterly promoting the case for investment in the area's transport networks.

Donald said: "I am very much looking forward to getting to grips with this new role. There is no doubt that Gaelic is a fundamental part of what makes the Highlands different and special. It's an integral part of the area's heritage, but it's also making a real contribution to the area's economy and vibrancy in the 21st century. The Council~s Gaelic Language Plan has real potential to enhance the language's status within the next three or four years."

The need for statutory Gaelic Development plans flows from the Gaelic Language (Scotland) Act of 2005 and The Highland Council was one of the first public bodies in the country to be charged with the requirement to produce a Plan. It is hoped this will be formally approved shortly allowing the development work to get underway. The Plan is far-reaching and is intended to cement and improve the role and use of Gaelic across all the Council~s services from education to road signs, or from promoting its use in the home and community to working to enhance its contribution to cultural activity and the arts.

Independent Councillor Hamish Fraser, Chairman of the Gaelic Committee, welcomed the appointment.

He said: "Mr MacNeill's background and experience in both the media and public sectors makes him well qualified to take the plan forward on behalf of the Council, and he will be fully supported by the Gaelic Committee and council officers in implementing what is acknowledged to be a well balanced and achievable Plan. Mr MacNeill's appointment further consolidates the Council's commitment to supporting and promoting the language and culture of the Highlands with particular emphasis on the education system, our young people and our communities."

25 March 08
Highland Council Launches Gaelic Toolkit
The Highland Council supports and encourages people to develop their Gaelic. the new web pages contain basic information about Gaelic to help anyone getting started in learning the language.

15 March 08
Training Of Gaelic Tutors

This week The Highland Council has been running a special six day immersion training course for Gaelic language tutors in Portree, with 12 students signed up for the introductory course.

Skye and Lochalsh Community Learning and Development Officer (Gaelic), Shona Paterson has organised the Ulpan training course which is being held in Tigh na Sgire. She said: "Ulpan is a fast and effective way to learn a language. It has been used to great effect in Israel, where it originated, and in Wales.

"As Ulpan is a new way of teaching, tutors need to be trained and accredited in the system. Cli Gaidhlig has joined forces with Deiseal Earranta Ltd to provide this. Deiseal is a company set up by Daibhidh Grannd and Guto Rhys, both language tutors and linguists, to adapt the Welsh system to Gaelic."

The introductory course is familiarising trainee-tutors with the Ulpan methodology and ethos, key skills and their contractual obligations with Deiseal Earranta.

Over the six days trainee tutors circulate between teaching students and taking part in workshops where instruction in basic grammar, Gaelic dialects, teaching pronunciation and group management is being delivered. These sessions also provide opportunities for peer review learning.

Councillor Hamish Fraser, Chairman of The Highland Council's Gaelic Committee said: "One of the many aims of the Council's Draft Gaelic Language Plan is to provide opportunities to Council staff and members of the Community to learn Gaelic and Ulpan is one of the methods which can provide this.

"Ulpan is ideal for people who wish to learn to speak Gaelic with real confidence, such as people who need Gaelic for their work, parents with children in Gaelic-medium education people who have moved to a Gaelic-speaking community and employers wishing to provide in-house language tuition, Learning should be fun and I believe that Ulpan classes are fun and rewarding for learners and tutors alike, as everyone can see a steady growth in ability and confidence, week on week."

Daibhidh Grant, Director of Deiseal Ltd, the developers of Ulpan said: "This is a great course for complete beginners but it's also very useful for people with good reading and writing skills in Gaidhlig but who can't understand or speak it, it acts like glue for all the bits."

10 March 08
Rannsachadh r air a' Ghidhlig toiseachadh an t-seachdain seo
English Below
Thid rannsachadh mr a thiseachadh an t-seachdain seo a bhios coimhead air buaidh na Gidhlig air fs eaconomach, is e toirt sil air ite is inbhe na Gidhlig, ann am margadh obrach air feadh na h-Alba.

Bidh an rannsachadh a' coimhead air an ireamh de dh'eagrachaidhean air feadh na h-Alba a tha fastadh luchd-obrach ann an dreuchdan far a bheil a' Ghidhlig na buannachd no iomchaidh; d sersa dreuchdan a tha annta, agus, mar a bhios na h-eagrachaidhean seo a' sileachadh gun rdaich am feum airson sgilean Gidhlig san ite-obrach.

Theid an rannsachadh maoineachadh le Dreuchdan Alba, Brd na Gidhlig agus Iomairt na Gaidhealtachd s nan Eilean.

Thar na beagan lithean a tha romhainn, gheibh crr air 250 buidheann air feadh na dthcha ceisteachain a' coimhead air chuspairean mar cia mheud dreuchd a tha ann an gach buidheann far a bheil a' Ghidhlig na sgil cudromach, d re fileantais a tha a dhth agus far a bheil na h-obraichean.

Mar thoradh air Achd na Gidhlig, le Seirbheis Dhidseatach Ghidhlig air fire agus le idh ann an cnan, dualchas agus cultar nan Gidheal a' fs, tha feum nas motha ann airson daoine le sgilean sa chnan a bhith san ite-obrach. Tha seo a' toirt a-steach obair eadar-theangachaidh, teagaisg, craobh-sgaoilidh agus sna gnomhachasan cruthachail.

Bidh an sgrdadh seo a' cleachdadh digh-obrach fharsaing gus oidhirp a dhanamh inbhe na Gidhlig san ite-obrach a mheasadh san fharsaingeachd.

Thuirt Ian Carse, Dreuchdan Alba air a' Ghaidhealtachd is anns na h-Eileanan: "'S e sgrdadh gu math cudromach a tha seo agus, leis na leasachaidhean tha a' tighinn air a' chnan, tha e an deagh m. Cuidichidh an rannsachadh seo sinn tomhas fhaighinn air an iarrtas a tha ann airson sgilean Gidhlig ann an itean-obrach na h-Alba, agus gus modhan-obrach a chur air digh airson na tha a' Ghidhlig a' cur ri fs seasmhach eaconomach na h-Alba a leudachadh.

Lean Mgr Carse air: "Tha sinn a' tiseachadh gus buannachdan foghlam d-chnanach aithneachadh gu sln a thaobh leasachadh cnanachais, foghlaim agus sgilean. Cuideachd, bidh an sgrdadh a' beachdachadh air cothroman dreuchd nas fherr don fheadhainn aig a bheil a' Ghidhlig an-drsta, no do chlann a tha san siostam fhoghlam d-chnanach, no a tha gu bhith dol ann."

Thuirt Rosemary Ward, Manaidsear Fhoghlaim aig Brd na Gidhlig, "Tha Brd na Gidhlig, an com-pirteachas le Comunn na Gidhlig, gu mr an ss ann a bhi toirt piseach air dreuchdan na Gidhlig. Chuir Brd na Gidhlig air doigh bho chionn ghoirid Iomairt Trusaidh Tidsearan Gidhlig a dh'adhbhraich mran cheistean mu thranadh thidsearan is fiosrachadh mu dhreuchdan san fharsaingeachd".

Gheibhear leth-bhreac dhen cheisteachain aig www.heclaconsulting.co.uk

Is iad Hecla Consulting a n an rannsachadh, is gheibhear grim orra air 01463 712600 no aig hecla@heclaconsulting.co.uk. Bu choir na ceisteachain a thilleadh ro 31mh Mrt 2008. Thid toraidhean an sgrdaidh fhoillseachadh
nas fhaide am bliadhna fhathast.

10 March 08
New Gaelic research launched this week

A major study is launched this week on the role of Gaelic in economic growth in Scotland, focusing on its place in the Scottish labour market.

The study will look at how many organisations across Scotland are currently employing staff in posts where Gaelic is desirable essential skill. It will research how these organisations envisage the demand for Gaelic skills in the workplace is likely to increase.

The study is funded by Careers Scotland, Brd na Gidhlig and Highlands and
Islands Enterprise HIE.

Over the next few days, more than 250 organisations across Scotland will receive a questionnaire requesting information such as how many posts there are in each place of work where Gaelic is an important skill, the level of fluency and where these posts are based.

The Gaelic Language Act, the imminent launch of a Gaelic Digital Service and an ever growing interest in Gaelic language, heritage and culture has led to a growth in demand for individuals with skills in the language. Posts include translators, teachers and in the broadcasting and creative industries sector.

This study will endeavour to take a wide-ranging approach to assess the broader status of Gaelic in the Scottish labour market.

Ian Carse, head of career related information and learning in Careers Scotland in the Highlands and Islands, said: "As an all age agency this is a very important study for Careers Scotland, and given the ongoing developments in the language, it is quite timely. This study will begin to help us quantify the increasing demand for Gaelic skills in the workplace across Scotland and assist us in devising strategies for growing the contribution of Gaelic to sustainable economic growth in Scotland.

"We are beginning to fully recognise the benefits of bilingual education in terms of linguistic, educational and skills development. This study will also consider the enhanced career prospects for current Gaelic speakers and for children currently in or entering the bilingual education system."

Rosemary Ward, education manager at Brd na Gidhlig said: "Brd na Gidhlig, in partnership with Comunn na Gidhlig, is actively involved in the promotion of Gaelic career opportunities. The Brd recently mounted a targeted Gaelic Teacher Recruitment Campaign in the Highlands and Islands which resulted in a number of positive enquiries for teacher training and generic career information."

A copy of the questionnaire is available at: www.heclaconsulting.co.uk

The study will be conducted by Hecla Consulting who can be contacted at 01463 712600 or at hecla@heclaconsulting.co.uk. Questionnaires should be returned by 31 March 2008. Results of the research will be published later this year.

7 March 08
Council confirms commitment to Gaelic Plan
The Highland Council has confirmed its Highland-wide policy on bi-lingual road signs.

At a full Council meeting on Thursday 6th March 2008, the Council voted in support of an amendment by Councillor Hamish Fraser Chairman of the Council's Gaelic Committee, to support the Council policy as set out in its Gaelic Language Plan.

In doing so, the meeting rejected by 36 votes to 29 a notice of motion by 8 Caithness Councillors who wanted their area excluded from the policy stating: "...the blanket roll out of bi-lingual signs in the Highlands should only proceed where there exists significant local demand for such a policy."

Councillor Hamish Fraser said: "I am pleased that the Council has confirmed its Highland-wide support for our policy on bi-lingual signage."

Highland Council's draft Gaelic Language Plan was adopted by the Council's Gaelic Committee on November 8 2007 and was submitted to Bord na Gaidhlig on October 1 2007, as required by the Gaelic Language Act 2005.

The plan states that for road signage: "town, city and village welcome signs and Council road signs will be bilingual. Signs will incorporate historic village, town and city crests where appropriate. Gaelic will be placed above the English on these signs. Gaelic will be green and English in black. The size of the letters will be the same in each language. When existing signs require to be replaced due to age or damage, bilingual signs will be erected. Historic and visitor signs commissioned by the Council to direct people to historic and visitor events and venues should be bilingual unless this conflicts with Scottish Government regulations. The spelling of place names will be determined through consultation with Ainmean Aite na h-Alba."

For street name signs the plan states that: "...the adoption of Gaelic names will be encouraged on new streets and developments, using local historic and cultural connections wherever this information is available. Public opinion will be sought through the local Community Councils and the views of the local elected Members will be taken into account. In the event of a disagreement, the matter will be referred to the Planning, Environment and Development Committee. When existing street name signs require to be replaced due to age or damage, the new signs will be bilingual. Gaelic will be placed above English on these signs. The size of the letters will be the same in each language. Contractors erecting temporary signs will use bilingual signage. This will be required as an integral part of the contracting process."

Copies of The Highland Council's Gaelic Plan can be found on the Council's website at: www.highland.gov.uk

17 February 08

Gaelic music continues its breakthrough into mainstream music with stirring harmonies from one of Gaeldom's newest bands, thanks to Scottish Music Futures, a development fund to help cultivate the music industry in Scotland.

Broadcaster-musician Mary Ann Kennedy, who is herself at the heart of Scotland's traditional music scene, has unleashed her latest venture - a 'gathering of Gaeldom's young lions' - with the launch of her new seven man supergroup, Mary Ann Kennedy & Na Seid.

Na Seid translates as 'the heroes', and the seven young band members have
each won their fair share of traditional music's highest accolades. Mary Ann is one of just a handful of singers to win both Gold Medals at the Royal National Mod, along with a prestigious Saltire award at the Scots Traditional Music Awards.

Mary Ann Kennedy said: "What's special about this group is that Gaelic is part of every day life, for every single one of them, and not just a language for the stage. I think that's a powerful element, which in turn has a fundamental impact on the way they perform the music".

Ian Hamilton, HIE creative industries senior development manager said: "This is a great example of the Scottish Music Futures fund helping small Highland businesses collaborate to create something new and different. It is also shows what can be achieved from helping young musicians and those with technical skills, to achieve their full potential without leaving the country."

Mary Ann and husband Nick Turner recently benefited from the fund, when they received help to market their new top of the range recording and multi-media studio in the tiny loch side village of Ardgour, near Fort William.

Mary Ann Kennedy and Na Seid recorded their debut album, under the Lochaber-based record label 'Watercolour Music', and launched it at the final night of Glasgow's Celtic Connections festival in the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall.

Another business link in the band's success story is their agent, Davy Gardner, from Shetland. He said: "2007 was the year that Gaelic music finally and deservedly reached a wider audience, largely due to the success of a new wave of young Gaelic musicians such as Julie Fowlis. Mary Ann Kennedy and Na Seid look set to blow another fresh breeze through Scotland and further afield."

The creative industries employs the equivalent of 100,000 full-time jobs in Scotland and the Scottish Music Futures fund is designed to help those working in the music business to achieve their full economic potential.

The Scottish Music Futures fund is administered by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) for the whole of Scotland, in partnership with Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Arts Council.

16 February 08
English Version Below

Dealbh-chluich r - Fgarraich na Grine gu bhith air fhaicinn le sgoilearan Gidhlig

Tha Meanbh-chuileag, a' bhuidheann-drma aig Fisean nan Gidheal, air an rathad an-drsta le dealbh-chluich r bethail a bhios a tadhal air cha mhr gach sgoil Ghidhlig air feadh na dthcha thairis air na seachdainean a tha romhainn.  

Tha an dealbh-chluiche ag amas air clasaichean 4 gu 7 sa bhun-sgoil Ghidhlig, ach tha e cuideachd freagarrach do chloinn nas ige.

Tha Fgarraich na Grine, a chaidh a sgrobhadh le Senaid NicDhmhnaill, a' togail chuspairean cudromach agus inntinneach mu shlinte na Cruinne. An e ar digh-beatha a tha ag adhbhrachadh nan atharrachaidhean seo? No an e rud ndarra a th' ann? Ceistean duilich, ach le taic bho na promh charactaran, Daibhidh agus Uilleam, cuiridh an luchd-isteachd an t-Ollamh ceart!

Cluinnidh sinn cuideachd bho charactaran eile, leithid Winfred, Inuit g Alasga, a dh'innseas dhuinn mu na h-atharrachaidhean a chunnaic e thr nam bliadhnaichean. Gheibh sinn a-mach mu dheidhinn cumhachd na grine agus cumhachd nan tonnan, mu ghasaichean greenhouse agus mu mhathain-gheala. Mu dheireadh, 's ann an urra ris an luchd-isteachd fhin a tha e taghadh a dhanamh air d bu chir danamh airson stad a chur air iridh nan tonnan...

A thuilleadh air an dealbh-chluich fhin, gheibh na sgoilearan bth-obrach a bhios a' togail air cuid de na puingean as cudromaiche.

Tha dithis chleasaiche san dealbh-chluich: Darren Macilleathain (An t-Eilean Sgitheanach), agus Daibhidh Byrne (Inbhir Nis). Chaidh an dealbh-chluich a stiireadh le Calum Rothach agus Dougie Beck, le taic bho Ruairidh MacNeacail ( Eden). Eadar 4 Gerran agus 20 Mrt, bidh na balaich a' tadhal air cha mhr 60 bun-sgoil Ghidhlig, anns gach cernaidh de dh'Alba. Gheibhear clr-ama airson na cuairte aig deireadh a' bhratha seo.

Mar a thuirt Dougie Beck, Oifigear Priseict Meanbh-chuileag: "Tha sinn a' faireachdainn gu bheil e air leth cudromach gum faigh sgoilearan ga ann am foghlam tro mheadhan nan Gidhlig cothrom dealbhan-cluiche a leithid seo fhaicinn sna sgoiltean aca fhein; tha sinn a' diligeadh le cuspair anabarrach cudromach an seo cuspair a tha a' bualadh oirnn uile."

Thuirt Ceannard Fisean nan Gidheal, Art MacCarmaig; Tha Fisean nan Gidheal air a bhith an-ss barrachd is barrachd ann an leasachaidhean drma na Gidhlig, agus tha sinn air leth toilichte gu bheil e air a bhith comasach dhuinn taic a chumail dhan aon chompanaidh drma Gidhlig a tha ag obair ann am foghlam thairis air na beagan bhliadhnaichean a dhfhalbh.  Tha cruaidh fheum air an t-sersa obrach a tha seo far a bheil clann anns na sgoiltean Ghidhlig a cluinntinn na Gidhlig ann an digh neo-fhoirmeil, sprsail.  Bu chir dhan t-seirbheis seo a bhith na pirt gu math cudromach de dhfhoghlam tro mheadhan na Gidhlig agus bu chir barrachd den leithid a bhith a tachairt a-measg leasachaidhean eile air a bheil feum ann an saoghal drma na Gidhlig aig re coimhearsnachd agus re proifeiseanta.

Chaidh a' chuairt seo a mhaoineachadh le Iomairt na Gidhealtachd agus nan Eilean agus Comhairle na Gidhealtachd le taic-airgid bho Bhrd na Gidhlig.


A new play - Fgarraich na Grine (The Sun Refugees) - to be performed to Gaelic pupils
Meanbh-chuileag, Fisean nan Gidheal's theatre-in-education group, is on the road just now with an exciting new interactive play that will be visiting almost every Gaelic-medium school in Scotland over the next few weeks in a marathon tour funded by Highlands & Islands Enterprise and The Highland Council with financial assistance from Brd na Gidhlig.

The play is aimed at years 4 to 7 in the primary school, although it is also suitable for younger children.

Fgarraich na Grine (The Sun Refugees) was written by Senaid MacDonald and focuses on important aspects of the future of our planet. Is it our lifestyle that is bringing about these changes? Or is it a natural occurrence? Difficult questions, but with help from the main characters, Daibhidh and Uilleam, the audience tell the Professor how it really is!

We also hear from other characters, including Winfred, a young Inuit from Alaska who tells us about the changes he has seen over the years. We find out about solar power and wave power, about greenhouse gasses and polar bears. Finally, it's up to the audience to choose how best to stop the waves from rising ...

In addition to the play itself, pupils also receive a workshop which expands on some of the most important themes of the play.

There are two actors involved in the show: Darren MacLean (Skye); and Daibhidh Byrne (Inverness). The play was directed by Malcolm Munro and Dougie Beck, with assistance from Roddy Nicolson (Out of Eden). Between 4 February and 20 March, the team will be visiting almost 60 Gaelic-medium primary schools, in every area of Scotland.

According to Dougie Beck, Meanbh-chuileag Project Officer: "We feel that it is incredibly important that young people in Gaelic-medium Education get the opportunity to see and take part in plays like this in their own schools; we are dealing with an extremely important subject here a subject that touches us all."

"Fisean nan Gidheal has been involved more and more in the development of Gaelic drama," says Fisean nan Gidheal Chief Executive, Arthur Cormack. "We are extremely happy that it has been possible for us to support, over the last few years, the only Gaelic drama company which is working in the formal education sector.  Projects like this, where children in Gaelic schools hear Gaelic in an informal, fun way, are sorely needed.  This service should be an integral part of Gaelic-medium education, and more opportunities like this tour should be happening among other much-needed Gaelic drama developments at community and professional levels."

11 January 08
First Minister Opens Scotland's First Purpose Built Gaelic Medium School

Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond today (Friday 11 January 2008) formally opened Scotland's first purpose-built Gaelic Medium School at Inverness.

The 4 million Bun-sgoil Ghaidhlig Inbhir Nis is a focal point for Gaelic learning in the Inverness area, being available for a wide range of Gaelic-related events and performances.

There are 101 primary and 50 nursery pupils.

The school, which is located at Slackbuie, adjacent to Inverness Royal Academy, features 7 classrooms and a resource area. The new building includes an enhanced school hall, larger than the usual for a school of this size, and this is equipped with specialist seating to create a mini venue for Gaelic cultural events.

In addition there is a small recording studio, a parents' room for meetings and classes and accommodation for the Community Learning Team. The school also provides nursery and wrap around childcare for the Gaelic Community in the city.

Before unveiling a plaque to open the school, the First Minister said: "The opening of Scotland's first purpose built Gaelic school is a significant moment ~ not just for Inverness but for the whole of Scotland. Gaelic is an integral part of Scotland's identity and a vital part of the community life and culture in the Highlands and Islands. Bun-sgoil Ghaidhlig Inbhir Nis ~ its pupils and teachers ~ has automatically become part of the international picture to promote Scotland, retain our history and realise the full economic potential of the Gaelic language.

'I have no doubt that together with our Gaelic schools in Glasgow and Sleat , Bun-sgoil Ghaidhlig Inbhir Nis will play a key role to increase the status and use of Gaelic in Scotland.'

Councillor Bill Fernie, Chairman of the The Highland Council's Education Culture and Sport Committee, said: "This is a very special day for me as we meet to mark the opening of the first purpose built Gaelic Community School not just in the Highlands but in Scotland. This project records our commitment to securing the future of the Gaelic language."

Councillor Hamish Fraser, Chairman of the Council's Gaelic Committee, added: "This school will not just be about providing for the Gaelic Education needs of pre-school and primary age pupils, but will be a resource for the whole Gaelic community in Inverness, in Highland and across Scotland. A few years ago this would have been no more than a dream but it symbolises the massive steps that have taken place in Highland and across Scotland in Gaelic Medium education.

"It also reinforces this Council's commitment to making sure that our children are given an opportunity to be bilingual at an early age and goes some way to allow our children to catch up with their European peers who, in many countries, speak at least three languages before leaving primary school."

The First Minister was greeted at the school by piper Conall MacIllechiar, a Secondary 1 pupil of Inverness Royal Academy. Primary 7 pupils at the new school ~ Shona Crosbie and Donnie Forbes - met Mr Salmond and invited him to sign the visitors~ book.

Mr Salmond was then given a tour of the new school by Head Teacher, Mrs Janet MacLeod, before joining 200 guests at the opening ceremony in the school hall.

Primary 1 pupils, Niamh Kerr and Dominic Ferrier, presented the First Minister with the gift of a Gaelic calendar featuring the school.

Mrs MacLeod said: "This is of course a very important day, not only for Gaelic Medium Education, but for The Highland Council with the opening of Bun-sgoil Ghaidhlig Inbhir Nis being testament to the vision of the Council for the development of Gaelic. This school is also a tribute to the dedication of parents and members of the Inverness Gaelic community, some of whom were present today, some who were not, who worked so hard to progress Gaelic education to this stage. I consider it a privilege and an honour to be Head Teacher of the first purpose-built, dedicated Gaelic school in Scotland."

The school has been built for The Highland Council by Morrison Construction.

Royal National MOD - 2007 Fort William
2004 - 2005

Highland Council Gaelic Toolkit

Blas Festival 2009
4 - 12 September 2009
Gaelic Site

Story Of Gaelic Speaking People
HIE's Policy For Gaelic

Mairead McDonald sings about life on Eriskay

Tional - A Gaelic Language Gathering Spring 2008

Learn Gaelic
Cl Gidhlig

Learn Gaeilic Online
Lots of lessons, Listen to the sounds etc
Gidhlig air an Lon

Thurso Gaelic Playgroup
Mount Pleasant School
Castletown Road
KW14 8HL
Tel : 01847 896559

Inverness Gaelic Forum

Bun-sgoil Ghidhlig Inbhir Nis
Inverness Gaelic Primary School
The school, with seven classrooms and associated communal space has been designed for a maximum roll of 150 pupils. the School opened in August 2007.

Comann nam Prant
Gaelic Medium Education In Scoland
Web site in Gaelic and English.

Scottish Parliament Gaelic Web Site

Melvich Gaelic Choir

Free Gaelic Lessons
Scottish Gaelic Learners Material Online - links
McBains Gaelic Dictionary
Gaelic On the Web Worldwide - Gaelic College Links Page
A Few Places To Learn Gaelic

Am Baile - The Gaelic Village
This site is building into a huge resource in Gaelic and English with section on culture, people, environment, religion, places, society and economy.  A big photograph collection with thousands more to come.  Definitely a web site to watch with many resources being prepared for future inclusion.

Gaelic Psalm Singing

An Comunn Gidhealach
Gaelic promotion organisation
Comunn na Gaidhlig

Wide ranging economic, education and social development agency
Comunn an Luchd-Ionnsachaidh

Gaelic Learners Association
Comunn Gaidhlig Inbhirnis

Gaelic Society of Inverness
Tobar an Dualchais

National Gaelic Archive
Comann nam Parant

Aimed at parents of children undertaking Gaelic-medium education
Comunn Gaidhlig Lunnainn

Gaelic Society of London
An Lochran
Glasgow centre for Gaelic and Highland community
Comunn Gaidhlig Astrailia

The Scottish Gaelic Association of Australia
Ossianic Society

Glasgow University Ossianic Society
Celtic Society
Aberdeen University Celtic Society
Gaelic promotion body based in Edinburgh

Gaelic Media Service

Fis Rois
Fisean Nan Gaidheal


  • Gaelic supporters' website
  • Gaelic Learners
  • Gaelic education links
  • Gaelic-English Dictionary
  • InvernessGaelic.org
  • Royal National Mod
  • Sabhal Mr Ostaig (Gaelic College)
  • Am Baile (Gaelic Village)
  • BBC Alba
  • Commun na Gidhlig (CnaG)
  • Brd na Gidhlig
  • The Scottish Council Of Clans and Associations
  • Church Of Scotland Gaelic Pages
  • More Gaelic links

    Gaelic Media Service

    Go To The Bigger Gaelic Links Page


    Mar a Chuannic Mise: Nancy Dorian agus a Ghidhlig
    This documentary looks at the work of American linguist Professor Nancy C Dorian amongst the last speakers of East Sutherland Gaelic.  Almost 30 minutes


    Speaking Our Language - Episode One  Part One


    Speaking Our Language - Episode One Part Two


    Speaking Our Language - Episode One Part Three



    LEGA Gaelic Home PageSabhal Mor Ostaig - The Gaelic College Skye
    Sabhal Mr Ostaig  Colaiste Ghidhlig na h-Alba

    National Centre For Migration Studies

    Gaelic Items Archive 2006
    Earlier Gaelic News Items on Caithness.org Archive 2003 - 2005


     Rannsachadh adhartach

    Mion-fhiosrachadh mu Ghoogle - Gliocasan rannsachaidh - Google in English

    2001 Google