Newsletter 22 September 2021

Dear Parents,

Thankfully the children have settled back to school for what we hope will be a more ‘normal’ school year. Happily we are seeing a reduction in restrictions and are witnessing a glimmer of hope with regard to school sports competitions restarting in the near future, and the likelihood of further enforced school closures diminishing daily. We will, however, still be required to operate in learning pods within the classrooms for at least the duration of the first term and to continue to operate the staggered dismissal of pupils at the end of the school day until advised otherwise. Teachers will also continue to wear masks in class. We thank you for your continued patience in this regard and hope that complete normality will be restored before too long. In the meantime, please note the following:

Covid Provisions.

The advice around management of Covid19 is changing weekly in terms of isolation, quarantine periods and timescales on return to school. However, despite this we are under strict instructions to send pupils home who are displaying Covid symptoms particularly coughs, headaches, sore throats and temperatures. We do realise that many, if not most of the published symptoms are also consistent with a whole plethora of ailments which children typically display at this time of year. We also understand that when a child is sent home with symptoms, it is a source of frustration for parents as, in normal circumstances sending the children home would not be necessary. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause but please understand that we are obliged to take this course of action. However if your child has recovered from Covid they will not be required to stay home, book a test or quarantine.

Children’s Uniforms/Lost Property.

Please label the children’s uniforms either by sewing on a name tag or by putting an identifying mark on the label. We have already had a number of parents in contact regarding lost jumpers etc.

End of School Day.

One of the requirements around management of the risk around the Covid19 virus is that we must have all children off the school premises within ten minutes of the end of the day’s classes. This is to avoid contact among the children from outside of their own classes/Pods. This has been achieved with the cooperation of the vast majority of parents and we thank you for your vigilance in this regard. We fully understand that there may be occasions where parents are unavoidably late and have been accommodating in this regard. However we do have a number of children who are constantly not collected on time. We ask that all parents make an effort to have their children collected no later than 3 p.m. into the future.

School Work.

Our teachers are working very hard to bridge the gaps caused by the enforced closures of the school over the past two school years. However this requires that the pupils are on task, attentive in class as well as making sure that all homework exercises are completed to the required standard. The Department of Education has recently sanctioned supplementary SET time for the school which will enable us to give extra help to children most impacted upon by the Covid closures. We hope to provide this extra help to the children over the second half of Term 1 and in Term 3. To assist us with this the teachers are carrying out observations to identify the children who are not progressing as expected and we will be in touch with the relevant parents inviting them to come to school, discuss the required interventions with the teacher and assist in the preparation of an individualised programme of work. The focus will not be solely on academic content but will also focus on behaviour and social interaction. We will begin making contact with parents from Monday next.

School Transport.

The school no longer has a role to play in applications for school bus transport to and from school. This is now done entirely through the Bus Eireann website. Anybody requiring bus tickets for their children should apply online.

School Books.

Please ensure that the children have all of their school books.

With Thanks,

K. Dennedy