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Limerick Education Advocates Condemn National Board's Actions |

Limerick Education Advocates Condemn National Board’s Actions

In a recent demonstration held in Ardagh, West Limerick, Mr P. McMahon, D.O., presided over a sizable gathering expressing their discontent with the National Board of Education. The event, organized by local residents, featured Mr O’Sullivan, Gaelic League Organizer, as the principal speaker.

The gathering passed a resolution, proposed by Mr D. Drew, D.C., and seconded by Mr O’Connell of Sinn Féin, denouncing the recent decisions of the National Board of Education. The resolution expressed strong condemnation for what the attendees deemed “un-Irish and insulting actions” by the Board. The controversy revolves around the Board’s refusal to comply with the recommendations of the Mansion House Conference, a representative body seen as speaking authoritatively on Irish education matters.

The resolution highlighted the disappointment of the people of West Limerick, assembled at the public meeting, regarding the National Board’s rejection of the Mansion House Conference’s proposals. The Conference, deemed representative of the entire nation, had provided recommendations on the teaching of Irish language and culture in schools and colleges under the Board’s jurisdiction.

The attendees asserted that the National Board had thwarted the national will and persisted in hindering the revival of the Irish language. They called upon the broader Irish populace to unite in support of the Gaelic League’s efforts, aiming to render the practices of the National Board untenable. The resolution specifically called for the abolition of the Board and the establishment of a properly constituted department of Irish education, accountable to the Irish people and aligned with the aspirations of the Irish nation.

Mr I. O’Connor, a supporter of the motion, emphasized the authority of the Mansion House Conference. The conference, chaired by the Lord Mayor of Dublin and attended by esteemed figures in education such as Monsignor O’Halloran, Newcastle West, and Dr Douglas Hyde, was considered by the attendees as a legitimate and authoritative body.

Mr O’Sullivan, in a lengthy and impassioned speech on the Language movement in general, criticized the National Commissioners as privileged individuals. He accused them of providing a foreign education for Irish children at the expense of Irish taxpayers, likening their actions to those of oppressive landlords from Ireland’s past. He asserted that the National Commissioners seemed determined to resist the aspirations of the Irish people.

The events in West Limerick reflect a broader sentiment of dissatisfaction with the National Board of Education’s policies, particularly in relation to the promotion and preservation of Irish language and culture. The resolution passed at the meeting demonstrates a unified call for change, with advocates urging a shift towards an education system more aligned with the cultural and linguistic aspirations of the Irish people.

Freeman’s Journal – Thursday 06 November 1913

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