Irish Examiner view: Bualadh bos for a new TV channel

Launching Cúla4 as a standalone children's channel comes at a time when the Irish language could do with a boost
Irish Examiner view: Bualadh bos for a new TV channel

Múinteoir Orla presenting 'Cúla4 ar Scoil' in the children's strand of programming on TG4. It is very welcome news indeed that Cúla4 will become a standalone TV channel. File picture

Yesterday brought the welcome announcement that a new TV channel — Cúla4 — is to be established, with children’s news and children’s programmes broadcast as Gaeilge.

It is welcome because it caters for the biggest group of Irish language learners in the country, those in school who speak the language in class every day. 

Given the popularity of channels such as CBBC, and CBeebies with smaller children, creating an Irish-language channel to reinforce what Irish children are learning every day in school is a clever move.

It also comes at a time when the Irish language could do with a boost. Earlier this week, this newspaper outlined the pressure on those in the Gaeltacht trying to buy homes, as they compete with wealthy purchasers picking up holiday homes.

While this new television channel has no impact on that situation, it at least acknowledges the importance of sustaining Irish as a living language.

And, in targeting the next generation, it gives them a stronger grip on the language when it comes to everyday use, and not just as an academic subject to be endured for a couple of hours a week in school, with no life outside the classroom. 

• Discover more about Cúla 4 on its website, cula4.com, which you can navigate in Irish or in English. 

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