While there is public sympathy for the Irish language there is little support to commit resources to it.
Contradictions in the general public's attitude to the Irish language were revealed in the results of a published survey. While there was overwhelming support for the teaching of the language in schools, there was no support for giving extra resources to it. The Irish National Teachers' Organisation (INTO) commissioned MRBI to survey the public while they conducted their own survey of primary school teachers.
Three quarters of the teachers who filled in the questionnaire said they were enthusiastic about teaching the language, but most of them felt that the general public is not interested in the revival of the language.
Almost half of the teachers and nearly 60% of the public believe that children should not have to learn Irish if their parents did not want them to.
Only 3% of the public speak Irish a lot.
Gerry Quigley, general secretary of INTO, identifies that there is a gap between what the schools are trying to do and the public reaction to the language. On the one hand, schools are trying to educate students to be fluent at Irish, while in reality only about 3% of the public speak the language a lot.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 29 May 1985. The reporter is Joe O'Brien.