AN informal consultation setting out proposals for the future of Gaelic secondary education in Scotland’s capital has begun.

The City of Edinburgh Council has been holding discussions with the city’s Gaelic community over the last year about how to further develop education provision given rising Gaelic school rolls across all age groups.

The consultation details proposals for developing Gaelic Medium Education (GME) including: four potential site options for a new Gaelic secondary school, with Liberton High School being the preferred choice, and research outlining the benefits of a standalone school or co-located campus.

The public can access the consultation document online to submit comments and there will be two virtual public meetings taking place on November 25 and 30 which will be webcast.

Once the feedback is analysed, it is expected that a report outlining plans for a statutory consultation will go to the Education, Children and Families Committee early next year. Education convener Councillor Ian Perry, said: “We’re committed to expanding high-quality secondary GME in an immersive environment and we’ve been discussing with the GME school communities about the different options for enhancing this provision in the city.

“To put forward a credible case to the Scottish Government for funding, we need to identify a preferred option for the future of secondary GME that has support of our Gaelic community.

“We have considered four options for a new secondary GME setting and the benefits and challenges of each are laid out in the consultation. I would urge everyone to take part so interested parties can influence any changes that would follow for a statutory consultation.”

Education vice-convener and Gaelic champion, councillor Alison Dickie, said: “These are exciting times for Gaelic in Scotland’s capital city, and we have a special responsibility to nurture and help cultivate the language as an integral part of our shared heritage and national identity.

“The journey we are on has seen us support the flourishing of the language with the publication of our second Gaelic Language Plan, an increase in pupils and a long-term strategy to develop GME.

“In order to embed a sustainable future for Gaelic, we will continue to deliver and expand on our fundamental principles of high-quality teaching and commitment to immersive education, regardless of setting.

“Education lies at the heart of the regeneration of Gaelic language and culture in Edinburgh. In any scenario, we will look to provide a place for both the school and community to thrive, securing the future of the language as vibrant and visible.”

The informal public consultation will close on December 11.