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SCOTS COUNCILS ACCUSED OF HOSTILE ATTITUDE TO GAELIC

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The chief executive of the Gaelic playgroup agency has accused 17 councils of having a clear-cut anti-Gaelic attitu...
The chief executive of the Gaelic playgroup agency has accused 17 councils of having a clear-cut anti-Gaelic attitude, reports The Scotsman (p8).

Finlay Macleod, of Comhairle nan Sgoiltean Araich (CNSA) says this attitude manifests itself in many ways, including sabotage, preventing development, evasion or 'grudging acquiescence'.

Mr Macleod makes his comments in a report to the Scottish Office on Gaelic pre-school education. He says a number of children within the CNSA network has dropped from 2,600 last year to 2,000 today.

He blames the fall on 30 new Gaelic-medium nursuries being operated by councils and a lack of funding for a local development officer.

'It would hardly require the skills of a Delphic Oracle to see that once the local authorities got their hands on extra funding for the opening of their own nursuries they were, beyond the most grudging minimum, unlikely to pass it on to CNSA, who are regarded as troublesome competitors,' he said.

But Val MacIver, Highland Council's education chair, accused Mr Macleod or spreading fear and alarm among parents. 'Mr Macleod is not serving the best interests of the Gaelic community through his confrontational style and the innaccurate nature of his attacks on the council. He is damaging relations between the CNSA and the council.'

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