Increase in Honours Irish Leaving students
The good news from this year's Leaving Certificate results is that the number of students studying honours level Irish has increased 7% to over 19,000 (57,000 students in total did the Leaving in 2015). Of course, like English and Maths, Irish remains compulsory, barring exemptions, but the fact that students are electing to study the higher level suggests a greater degree of competency in the language, and the 40% of marks allocated to the oral exam leads one to hope that a slight revival in interest is underway.
Well, considering the growth in the Gaelscoileanna movement, it seems natural. These children won't do Irish daily just to do the regular/gnáth leibhéal Irish when the higher level is far superior. :P
Uplifting news, though. My generation aren't as bad as we're painted.
Interestingly, a Polish student in Tralee got an A1 in Honours Irish, so personal aptitude and diligence seem key to success in language learning.
When I was supporting the Irish language in the forums before it's creation- it was with a view to improving my Irish and finishing the leaving cert (ordinary level) despite an exemption- I got my leaving cert results a few days ago and reached a b1 mostly thanks to this course!