Saint Brigid’s National School, is a primary school situated in the centre of Greystones, Co. Wicklow. Our mission is to provide the highest quality education for all our children in a happy, safe and stimulating Christian environment, focusing on their academic, social, personal, moral and spiritual development to help them be the best they can be.

Search results for uniform

Second hand uniform sale

Thank you to the Parents’ Association for organising the annual SECOND HAND UNIFORM SALE on Friday 3rd July. As always it was a great opportunity for good value. Many thanks to all involved.

School Uniform

SCHOOL UNIFORM: As we are now in the month of October, the children are to wear their long tracksuit bottoms and not their shorts. Thank you very much.

Uniforms

Uniforms

Students are asked to:

  • Wear their St. Brigid’s school uniform with pride.
  • Wear their school uniform for school and school activities only.
  • Wear the appropriate school uniform every day.

School Uniform 2019/2020

  • Green tartan school pinafore/grey trousers
  • Green crested cardigan/jumper
  • White blouse/shirt.
  • Green tie.
  • White, dark green or navy stockings/ tights
  • Grey socks with trousers.
  • Optional kilt for 5th and 6th class with green v- necked jumper.

Shoes

  • Footwear – Black/navy shoes with dark soles. For PE suitable runners required. These can only be worn on PE Days.
  •  No knee-high boots or Ugg boots.

Tracksuit

  • Green school tracksuit and white polo shirt
  • Tracksuits are worn on PE days, for some school outings and for school activities directed by the teacher.
  • Tracksuit may be worn for after school sporting activities which are organised by the school.
  • School shorts may be worn on PE days and for the above activities during the months of MAY, JUNE and SEPTEMBER ONLY.

Optional Summer Uniform

  • Green school shorts and white polo shirt may be worn instead of school uniform during MAY and JUNE ONLY.

All items of uniform are available from ‘Schoolwear House’, Tesco SC., Greystones (Phone 01-287 3420).

Click on THIS LINK to go to their website.

All belongings must be clearly marked with your child’s name and room number.

Jewellery

  • One pair of studs may be worn in pierced ears.
  • One finger ring is allowed.

Reminder

  • No nail varnish or false nails
  • No make-up
  • No hair colour or hair extensions are allowed.
  • Long hair must be in a plait/ponytail or bun.

Valuables

Children should not bring valuables to school as the school cannot accept responsibility for any valuables brought into school.

Letters home from school.

Scroll down this post to see LETTERS SENT HOME so far this term

Newsletter 13 – 27th November

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Happy Friday.

Christmas officially kicks off tonight with the airing of the annual Late Late Toy Show. I know that many of our boys and girls have been looking forward to this for many weeks now – the Christmas pyjamas are at the ready, the treats have been bought and the children are all set to tune into the biggest Toy TV show of the year. In the words of Ryan Tubridy himself, “Now more than ever we need that sprinkling of joy and the ceremony of the hot chocolates and the PJs and the family gathering around for a night of unpredictable magic.”

Junior Infant Applications – The closing date for receipt of applications was Monday 23rd November. We received 142 applications in total. Round 1 offers went out on Tuesday 24th November. While some siblings did not get offered a place in the first round, I am confident that it will all work out for everyone in the end as we know a number of children received offers in more than one school. I appreciate it is an anxious wait for parents but please try not to worry.

Advent – Advent will begin this Sunday 29th November. Advent is the season of hope and expectation in which we prepare for the celebration of Christmas. The Advent season invites us to step away from what can be a frenzied time of parties and shopping to consider how we commemorate the birth of Jesus. We will have a special blessing of the school Advent Wreath over the intercom later today.

Christmas Holidays – School will close on Tuesday 22nd December at 12.10pm for Junior and Senior Infants and their siblings and at 12,30pm for the rest of the school and will reopen on Wednesday 6th January.

Christmas Cards – The children were so excited going home from school this week with the Christmas cards they had designed for 2020. We raised a whopping €2555.00 for the school from this project. A huge thank you for your support with this.

PA Fund Raising

Class Novels and books for reluctant readers – We raised €900 euros from the second hand book sale we had just before lockdown in March. The money is being used to buy two sets of new class novels for our 5th classes and to add to our depleted stock of books of high interest for our reluctant readers.

Project Yard – We are looking to make some improvements to our schoolyard this year. The basketball court needs resurfacing, there is a need for a sheltered area/outdoor classroom and the walls need brightening up. This work will need to take place over the holidays or weekends when the weather is good. We will keep you posted with developments

Presentation to Paul Thornton – On Monday last, two of our 6th class girls presented Paul Thornton with a framed photograph of the Greystones Bear on behalf of the school community in recognition of all the work he has done in helping prepare our boys and girls for First Communion and Confirmation He was visibly touched by the presentation and thanked everyone for the gift.

School and Learning – From “piloting their first space rocket” to outer space in Senior Infants to rhyming off the counties of Ireland in 4th class through song to designing and testing board games in 5th class, school has been a fun place to be this week. Oh to be young again J

Project Postcard – Our 2nd, 4th and 6th classes will participate in this project. Our school has been allocated Knockrobin Nursing Home in Wicklow and St. Joseph’s Nursing Home in Crinken Glen Shankill. We hope that all the children will enjoy taking part in the Project and we thank them in advance for helping to spread a little cheer at this time of the year.

The prospect of moving to Level 3 restrictions from December 1st is good news. Our individual and collective behaviour is going to be critical to how we get through the next few weeks. Therefore, we need to keep up with the mask wearing and social distancing for the foreseeable future. We are all in this together.

Until next week slán.

Le meas,

Máire Costello

Principal

***********************************

Mrs. Costello’s Weekly Newsletter: 12 – 20th November

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope you all have had a good week.

Hand on heart, I can honestly say that since I took over as Principal three years ago I have never seen the children so happy coming to school. Your positive attitude to school and learning has certainly rubbed off on the boys and girls and goes a long way to explaining the secret to having children with such a good attitude towards school. Thank you for your continued support and encouragement.

The news that the US company Moderna has produced another Covid vaccine hot on the heels of the vaccine produced  by Pfizer and Biontech in recent days is reason for optimism. Two Covid vaccines showing they are over 90% effective after trials is great news.

Christmas Cards – Thank you for placing your orders for the beautiful Christmas cards created by our very talented boys and girls. I know family and friends will appreciate the time and effort that went into designing the cards. There is nothing quite like a card made by a child.

Slán le Paul Thornton – We say goodbye to the pastoral parish worker Paul Thornton who is finishing up in Holy Rosary next Friday 27th November. Paul was appointed to work in the Greystones and Kilquade pastoral area back in 2011. Over the last nine years, he has played a key role in helping prepare our boys and girls for First Communion and Confirmation. We appreciate all that he has done for our community over the years and wish him well for the future.

Online Internet Safety Information for Parents – The National Parents Council hosted a number of online workshops for parents this week on the topic of supporting children to stay safe online. The feedback from parents on these workshops has been very positive. Places were limited and so unfortunately not everyone who wanted to register managed to secure a place. The NPC have planned more events for the rest of November.

Parent Teacher Meetings – I know that many of you have already received a written progress report or telephone call from your child’s class teacher regarding your child’s progress at school.

While the main focus of parent-teacher meetings should be on learning, it’s also an opportunity  to discuss factors that can affect learning, such as students’ peer relationships, classroom behaviour, motivation and work habits, as well as students’ strengths and challenges.

The teachers have allocated 10 minute calls for each meeting.   If you feel you need more time to discuss an issue that has been on your mind please don’t hesitate to request more time on another day. The teachers are very accommodating and more than willing to further discuss any concerns you may have.

Junior Infant Enrolment for Sept 2021 – A reminder that the school shall cease accepting applications for admission on Monday 23rd November 2020. The date by which applicants will be notified of the decision on their application is Monday 30th November 2020.

Light Up Greystones – At 5pm this coming Saturday 21st November, Greystones will come alight with the switching on of the town’s Christmas lights. This year you will not be able to go into Greystones to see the lights being switched on but you can watch it online on https://greystones.ie/light-up-greystones/ from the comfort of your own home. Watch out for a special message from the boys and girls of St. Brigid’s.

Outdoor Planting – The planters at the entrance to our school were looking a little sad. A big thank you to Aoife Murray Chairperson of the PA who used her magic green fingers to bring them back to life.

School Life – While robust hand and respiratory hygiene continues to be a priority for us here at St. Brigid’s, we are busy getting on with what we as teachers do best which is to teach and encourage and foster learning in our students.

Children love music and over the last couple of weeks, our Junior Infants have been exploring the music of Camille Saint Saens “Carnival of Animals” through art.   Our 4th classes have been studying money in Maths, learning how to multiply and divide money, a skill that will serve them well in the future.  When I visited 6th class yesterday morning, they were totally engrossed in a creative writing lesson based on “The Lighthouse”.

This is a snapshot of the teaching and learning that took place in some of our classrooms this week. A busy and exciting place to be I think you will agree.

I never cease to be amazed by the pupils’ genuine excitement about the simplest things in life. Perhaps this should be our lesson for this week.

Have a lovely weekend. Keep safe, keep well and keep smiling.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

Principal

*************************************

Dear Parents/Guardians,

We have come to the end of another busy week at St. Brigid’s. The boys and girls are working really hard at school and making steady progress on their learning journeys. They are back on track to where they should be and this is testament to the great teaching and learning that is going on inside the classroom each day.

Trip to the Post Office – Our Senior Infants are so excited to be heading off to the Post Office later today to post their first postcards. They are learning all about the Post Office in Aistear, the early childhood curriculum framework for children. I bet you never got to go to the Post Office when you were in school. Oh how school has changed!

Virtual Visit – This week the children’s author “Jackie Burke” paid a virtual visit to the boys and girls in our 4th. 5th and 6th classes. The author read a chapter from her new book “Harp Maiden” and gave tips to the children on how to come up with ideas for stories, how to structure stories and what to do if they got stuck. There was an opportunity for the children to ask questions at the end. The talk was extremely successful and thoroughly enjoyed by all the pupils.

Internet Safety Webinar – Many parents signed up for the Online Internet Safety sessions for Parents being organised through the National Parents Council. The sessions are now fully booked but the National Parents Council hope to organise some more in the future.

Science Week at St. Brigid’s. – The children are busy working as scientists this week. They are learning that science describes what’s happening all around us all the time from the science experiments that they are carrying out. The Skittle and the Colour Changing Milk Experiments were big hits with our younger children and a great way to introduce chemical bonding and the process of dissolving to young minds. The Dancing Raisin Experiment allowed the children to explore Archimedes’ Principle unbeknownst to themselves.

Homework – After much debate and discussion the staff have decided that the emphasis for now should continue to be on learning homework (Tables, Spellings, SE Facts, Verse of a poem/song etc.) reading and project work. We will of course be keeping this under constant review.

Phones from Santa for Christmas – I understand that many children are asking Santa for phones this Christmas. It is important for children to know that Santa always puts some serious thought into why a child might need a phone, what age is appropriate for a child to get a mobile device and how responsible and mature the child is.

Sacraments of First Communion and Confirmation for 2021 – Parents who have a child they wish to present to the parishes of Greystones or Kilquade to receive the Sacraments of First Communion or Confirmation in 2021 need to register that intention before the end of November 2020. Details of the registration process are on the parish websites www.greystonesparish.ie or www.kilquadeparish.ie

Christmas Cards for 2020 – Thank you so much to those of you who have already purchased your child’s/children’s cards. For those of you who have yet to do so, today is the final day that you can place an order. The payment link will cease to operate from midnight tonight.

Project Postcard – Wicklow County Library Service, as part of the Wicklow County Community Response programme, are launching “Project Postcard”: the aim of Project Postcard is to link primary school children with local nursing home residents. A number of our classes will participate in this project.

St Vincent DePaul Virtual Food & Gift Appeal- Every year, the Society of St. Vincent DePaul provides help with food and gifts to thousands of families at Christmas. Normally we would do a collection in the school for them, but this cannot happen this year due to COVID 19. St. Vincent DePaul are collecting virtually for Christmas 2020. This year more than ever they need your help. Below is a link where you can make your donation. https://www.svp.ie/appeal-2020/food-appeal.aspx or https://www.svp.ie/appeal-2020/virtual-gifts.aspx.

Thank you for adhering to our protocols around mask wearing when on the school grounds and for keeping your social distance. You have played your part in keeping our school a safe place to be.

The news that there is a vaccine on the horizon is a good note on which to end this message.

Until next week, take care and stay safe.

Le meas,

Máire Costello

Principal

************************

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope you all had a nice Midterm.

A very special part of my day is welcoming the children to school each morning and it was no different this week. The children bounced into school and were happy to be meeting up with their friends again after a week apart.

Cleaning Products – I know hand sanitiser, soap and cleaning products have been in the news a lot lately. With regards to the hand sanitiser, soap and cleaning products we are using at St. Brigid’s, a word of reassurance – Thankfully none of the products we are using here at the school were on the list of products that had to be recalled by the DES so no need for concern. One less worry for me at Halloween.

School Improvements -Over the Midterm, we were busy making some improvements to the school. The children in Rooms 2 and 3 were delighted with their new state of the art Smart Boards which were installed over the break. One child commented, “Did you see our new board Ms. Costello ? It looks just like a big telly”. Six classes got new magnetic whiteboards and the taps and sinks are currently being replaced in the main building.

Parent Teacher Meetings for Infants to 6th class for 2020 – These meetings will take place over the course of the next few weeks. Due to Covid 19 restrictions, the format of our meetings for this year is different. Your class teacher will be in touch with you regrading the format of the meeting and to arrange an appointment time.

Fundraising – A huge thank you to each and every one of you for supporting our Halloween Dress Up Fundraiser. We raised a whopping €1,731.00. The money you so kindly donated will go towards resurfacing the basketball court and yard which are looking a little worse for wear.

Christmas Cards – The sample cards have just arrived hot off the press. The children will bring home the sample card today. All orders can be made online and a payment link will be sent to you

GAA Coaching –Kevin Spain from Éire ÓG is coaching our 3rd, 4th and 5th classes at school for the next six weeks. The boys and girls had their first session with him on Wednesday and really enjoyed themselves. It is important that they wear a gum shield for these lessons.

Junior Infant Enrolment for Sept 2021 – Thank you to those of you who have already sent in your applications. A reminder to those of you who have yet to do so that you have two more weeks to make an application. We commenced accepting applications for admission to Junior Infants for 2021 on Monday 2nd November 2020. The school shall cease accepting applications for admission on Monday 23rd November 2020. The date by which applicants will be notified of the decision on their application is 30th November 2020.

Mobile Phones Policy – The Board of Management reviewed, updated and ratified the Mobile Phone Policy at our last board meeting. This policy is now up on the school website under Policies.

Written Homework – Thank you to those of you who contributed to our recent debate/discussion on written homework.. The benefits of written homework has been debated by teachers and parents for years. Many people think of homework as doing more harm than good by causing copious amounts of unnecessary stress to everyone while others believe that it has great advantages for children by encouraging them to think more independently outside the classroom I will be sending a separate email on this early next week

Team Hope Christmas Shoebox Appeal Week 9th -15th November – Some parents were asking for the details again so I am including them here

This year the Team Hope Shoebox Appeal is going online. Due to the effects of Covid-19 restrictions, it is not possible to send gift-filled shoeboxes from Ireland this year, so they are asking schools, families, friends, communities and businesses to support their appeal by donating gift-filled shoeboxes online. Each gift-filled shoebox is €20. Please go to https://www.teamhope.ie/christmas-shoebox-appeal/ for more details.

Folens Christmas Annuals – We have just received delivery of the annuals. If you placed an order for an annual, your child will bring it home today.

I am very mindful that these continue to be unsettling and difficult times for students, staff and parents. However, through working together so positively over these recent weeks we have demonstrated just how much can be achieved within such a cohesive, assured, caring and supportive community such as ours, and from this we should continue to draw much strength.

Please do remember to contact us if you need any support.

Yours sincerely,

Máire Costello

Principal

NEW 6th November 2020

*****************************

22nd October 2020

Dear Parents/ Guardians,

My weekend message comes a day early as we are preparing for a very busy day tomorrow and just wanted to share some important information with you.

Halloween Dress Up Day

One more sleep until we see all the boys and girls in their Halloween outfits. We are really looking forward to seeing all the creative costumes. The day is always a great day at the school where the children get to play lots of Halloween Games and have fun with their friends. While it might be a bit noisy on the day, it is great to see the children so happy.

A big THANK YOU to everyone for your very generous donations to our Halloween Fundraiser. Can you believe we have raised a whopping €1,389.00 so far? The yard will need to be resurfaced and this money will go towards the huge cost involved in getting this done. Arís míle buíochas. We are so lucky to have such supportive parents.

The children can bring in a treat tomorrow so they can participate in the classroom parties. Due to COVID 19 children can not share their treats as in previous years.

Enrolment for Junior Infants 2021-2022

Enrolment for Junior Infants opens on Monday 2nd November. Applications will only be accepted via email from 2nd – 23rd November inclusive. The Admissions Notice and Admissions Policy are available our school website. Applications forms will be uploaded in time for the 2nd November. Please note the applications forms are not available yet. You will need to submit a scanned copy of your child’s birth cert to complete the application.

Remote Teaching and Learning Policy

The staff together with the Board of Management have been very busy over the last month working on developing a Remote Learning and Teaching Policy for our school. The policy has now been completed and was ratified at the Board of Management Meeting last Tuesday. A copy of the policy will be available on our school website from tomorrow.

Marshmallow Challenge

Congratulations to John Boulter, Félim Donnelly and Seán Doorly in Ms Walle’s 6th Class who were the winners of this years Marshmallow Challenge with their free-standing structure of 62cm. Well done boys. Some budding engineers in the making.

In eight short weeks the boys and girls have made really good progress with their learning. I am so proud of their ability to adapt to change and how resilient they are. As I said before they are an example to us all.

Finally, I hope you all have a lovely midterm and great Halloween. We are looking forward to seeing all the children refreshed and ready to take up the challenge of another term on Monday 2nd November. Normal closing time tomorrow.

On behalf of myself and the staff I would like to thank you for all your support and words of encouragement since we reopened. We are in this together. Mar a deireann an seanfhocal ‘Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireann na daoine’.

Stay safe, stay well and remember to keep washing those hands and keep your distance.

Máire Costello

Principal

********************************

16th October 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope this email finds you well.

I know the Government’s announcement on Wednesday night of a nationwide ban on visits to homes or gardens in most circumstances is not the news that we wanted to hear. We are living in difficult times but if we continue to adhere to the HSE guidelines, and take on board the advice of Professor Luke O’Neil (to avoid the three “Cs” – closed spaces, close contact between people and crowds) and wear masks when we can’t maintain two metres, we can make it through this pandemic.

Pandemic or no pandemic, it is lovely to see the children skipping into school each morning.To hear them say that they don’t want to go home at home time is testament to the fact that they are really enjoying school. What more could we ask for?

The school is a hive of activity at the moment as you will see from below.

Writers in the making – Our two Senior Infants classes have just written their very first stories. We are so proud of them all.

History – Our third classes have enjoyed learning about the story of “The Wooden Horse of Troy “ and have learnt that story telling often results in different versions of the same tale being told. They have created beautiful drawings of the wooden horse that are on display outside their classrooms.

Maths Week

This week we are celebrating Maths Week at the school. Everywhere you look you can see maths in action.  Our message to the children for maths week is that to become good at maths you have to work at it like everything else in life. Developing a positive attitude towards maths in children is a priority for us here at St. Brigid’s. With that in mind, the staff have been busy this week designing challenges and games to bring fun to the learning of maths. I was also involved as you will see from below.

Principals’ Daily Puzzle – Knowing how much the boys and girls love a good puzzle, I have set puzzles for the children to solve each day this week. The children really enjoyed challenging themselves and were delighted when they managed to work out the answers.

Marshmallow Challenge – Several of our classes took on this challenge The challenge was to build the tallest free-standing structure in just 18 minutes using no more than 20 sticks of spaghetti, one metre of tape, one metre of string, and one marshmallow. The marshmallow had to be on top and could not be deformed to hold it in place.The winning team will be announced next week.

Maths in Action in our school this week:

  • Junior Infants – Forget about going on a bear hunt, the children in our Junior Infant classes have been going on shape hunts this week and they have been finding lots of interesting shapes.
  • Senior Infants – Ms Teehan and Ms. Smith’s Classes had great fun learning all about data, pattern and number this week using smarties. And they even got to eat the smarties at the end of the lesson. What a nice treat for our junior mathematicians!! Well deserved
  • First Classes – There is nothing quite like a good old fashioned  board game and the children in our First classes have been enjoying some of the old favourites.
  • Second – There were some great detectives at work in Second Class cracking the codes and solving lots of maths puzzles
  • Third Classes – The children in our third classes were also busy completing crack the code colouring sheets,  solving puzzles and playing lots of  fun maths games.
  • 4th  Classes –  The children have been having lots of fun playing board games, card games and online tables games. The children were developing problem solving skills without even knowing
  • 5th Classes – Marshmallow Challenge and clay art for Halloween
  • 6th Classes – The boys and girls in Ms. Hughes and Ms Walles classes have been  learning all about co-ordinates by  playing Battleships and by drawing mystery pictures. They will participate in our first ever maths week quiz later today. We wish the teams all the best and may the best team win. The winners are to be announced next week.

A huge thank you to Ms. Beausang who organised the week for us.

Halloween – Halloween has most certainly not been cancelled at St. Brigid’s. The decorations are all up, Ms. Hughes` class have painted their windows and the children are learning lots of Halloween poems and songs.

Friday 23rd Oct is fast approaching and we are really looking forward to seeing the boys and girls dressed up. If some children are not comfortable dressing up, they can wear their tracksuits to school on the day instead. No scary costumes, props or weapons please.

Traditionally the Parents Association and 6th classes would run a Halloween Bake Sale on the day to raise funds for the school. Unfortunately, this cannot go ahead this year so we are asking if you are in a position to make a small donation to the school, that would be very much appreciated.

Friday 23rd October is a normal school day and the normal school hour home times apply – Junior and Senior Infants go home at 1.40pm and 1st to 6th go home at 2.40pm.

School Website -The school website is a good window to keep up to date with the work we do in school especially now that you cannot come into the school.

Christmas Cards – The children had great fun designing their own personalised cards at school this week. A big thank you to all the teachers, Tara, Carol and the PA for organising this for us. The cards have now been sent on to the printers.

TEAM HOPE CHRISTMAS SHOEBOX APPEAL WEEK 9TH -15TH NOVEMBER

This year the Team Hope Shoebox Appeal is going online. Due to the effects of Covid-19 restrictions, it is not possible to send gift-filled shoeboxes from Ireland this year, so they are asking schools, families, friends, communities and businesses to support their appeal by donating gift-filled shoeboxes online. Each gift-filled shoebox is €20. Please click on https://www.teamhope.ie/christmas-shoebox-appeal/ for more details.

Basketball – There will be no basketball after school on Fri 23rd October

Midterm Break – Monday 26th October to Friday 30th October. School will reopen on Monday 2nd November

Thank you – A big thank you from our Learning Support team to those of you who kindly donated mini trampolines and pilates balls to the school. They have been put to great use already.

We appreciate all the support and help you have given to us over the last seven weeks. Míle, míle buíochas.

Until next week. Slán sabháilte .

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

****************************

9th October 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope you are all keeping well.

We are now six weeks back at school and the boys and girls are getting on really well with their learning. It is amazing to see how far they have come on their learning journey in just 30 days.  Our Junior Infants can already sound out, read and write the letters “s” , “a”  and “t”. Our fourth classes are learning all about “The Famine” and are delighted with themselves that they have mastered “Short Division” while our senior classes are composing amazing poetry inspired by that great Irish poet “Seamus Heaney”. There is  beautiful art work on the walls outside all the classrooms and the sound of music coming from the yard would lift anyone’s spirits.

Halloween – We are looking forward to seeing all the boys and girls in their Halloween costumes on Friday 23rd October. While  we are unable to hold a cake sale on the day this year, the children are welcome to  bring in a small treat on the day to celebrate.

Christmas Cards – I hate to mention the word “Christmas” so early but  over the coming week all children from Infants to 6th will be designing templates for  their own personal Christmas cards which will then be sent to the printers for printing. The children will do the templates  at school this year so it would be a good idea if you could get them to do a practice drawing or two over the weekend. No pressure.

Music Generation is back – The boys and girls from 1st to 3rd were delighted to welcome Joan back on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week. She is a very talented musician and has a great rapport with the children. Though she has had to make some changes to  her lessons this year, I have no doubt that both the children and the teachers will learn a huge amount from her over the course of the year.

Cycle  Safety – Ruth and her Dad are doing a great job delivering the cycle safety course to our fifth classes. This course is something we will definitely continue to roll out (pardon the pun) considering the huge uptake in cycling in recent months  and the importance of road safety.

Maths Week – 10th -18th October. If you are looking for some fun maths activities, puzzles and games to do with your children for this week, please click here

After School Hub – Following on from the extremely popular Home School Hub, RTE 2 will be launching a daily after school show for children which is due to start next week. Múinteoir John, Ray, and Cliona will be back on RTÉ2 screens every day from 3 to 4pm with a huge range of activities in which kids can participate.

That’s all for now. Don’t hesitate to get in touch If you have any concerns.

Enjoy the weekend. Slán sabháilte .

Máire Costello

Principal

**********************************************************

2nd October 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Happy Friday. I can’t believe how quickly the week has gone by.

It was a quiet week here at St. Brigid’s as things have begun to really settle down and everyone is getting back into a routine.

I had the opportunity and great privilege to spend some time in an Infant classroom this week. It was lovely to see the children so engaged in their learning and when one little girl shouted out “I just love school“, it made my day.

Ms. Caffrey’s 6th class finally got to make their Confirmation last night in Kilcoole Church. It was a very special ceremony and a big thank you to Fr. John, Fr. Gerard and Paul Thornton for all the hard work they put in to ensuring that it took place.  It was lovely to be able to catch up with our past pupils to see how they are getting on in secondary school. Many of them said they missed St. Brigid’s which was nice to hear.

The safety of the children around drop off and pick up times is always on our minds. Please consider  their safety when you park up in the mornings and afternoons.

I would encourage you to visit our school website regularly to keep up to date with all that is going on in our school and to avail of the many educational resources that are posted there.

And some good news to finish – Congratulations to Ms. Murray and Ms. Hickey on the recent births of baby Éabha and baby Darragh and to Ms. Smith on her engagement. We are so happy for them all and wish them well for the future.

Until next week

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

Principal

25th September 2020

Dear Parents Guardians,

I hope this email finds you well.

We are back at school for a month now and I have to say that despite the new routines and protocols, it feels like we never left.

The weather on the whole has been good this week so the classes have had lots of time to partake in some outside learning which I know they really enjoyed. Lots of great learning is taking place indoors too as is evidenced by the numerous displays on the classroom walls and corridors and from the informal chats I have had with the children

I would like to thank the boys and girls who have been GREAT following sanitization procedures and are working really hard to keep as socially distanced as possible.

Some information to share with you:

Photo Shoot for our Junior Infants – Our Junior Infants had their photographs taken by our school photographer this week. The boys and girls were very relaxed in front of the camera and I’m sure the photos will be lovely.

New Spelling Program for 2nd to 6th for 2020/2021 -We are very excited to be introducing a new approach to teaching and learning spelling this year, an approach where each child gets lists of spellings specific to their spelling need. This individualised approach ensures each child is appropriately challenged. Our 5th and 6th classes have completed their initial assessments and are ready to start working on their individualised spelling programs, 4th are in the middle of their assessments and 2nd and 3rd will start their assessments over the coming days. Feedback from the 6th classes has been very positive so far.

Absence from school Please continue to let us know if you are keeping your child home sick or if they are experiencing any COVID19 related symptoms. We are working diligently to continue to monitor all wellness related information and continue to keep our school healthy.

Thank you from our Infants teachers – Our Infant Teachers would like to thank most sincerely all those who sent in toy resources for our Infant classes. I can assure you that they will get lots of use over the coming year.

Confirmations – Last years 6th classes will eventually get to make their Confirmation over the next three Thursdays in Kilcoole Church. They have waited a very long time to celebrate this special sacrament and we wish them all the best and hope they have a lovely evening.

Homework – Thank you to those of you who emailed us in relation to homework. From the feedback we have received to date, it would appear that the majority of parents are in favour of no written homework, (excluding project work) for now. This discussion is still ongoing. If you would still like to contribute to this discussion, there is still time for you to do so. When we have reviewed all the responses and taken into account the research in this area and the considerations of the teachers, we will be back in touch. ,

School Lunches – We have a healthy eating lunch policy here at the school. Sandwiches, vegetables, fruit, water and milk are what we consider to constitute a healthy lunch. The following are not allowed – Crisps, chewing gum, nuts, lollipops, sweets, biscuits, popcorn, chocolate bars, cereal bars with chocolate and fizzy drinks. Because of the prevalence of nut allergies, please do not give your children nuts or food containing nuts. We would ask that you adhere strictly to this policy

School Holidays Document – I have attached a copy of the school holidays for 2020.2021 for your convenience.

Annual Admission Notice for the intake of Junior Infants for 2021/2022– It is a requirement of the Admissions to School Act 2018 that the board of management prepare an Annual Admission Notice outlining specific information in respect of the application process for admission to the school year in question. The notice for admissions for 2021/2022 will be uploaded to our school website today.

Cúla 4 ar Scoil – Cúla 4 are continuing with their school program for this year. The repeat programs can be watched daily Monday to Thursday on TG4, at 5pm. Watch anytime on Cúla4.com, or TG4.ie. Individual lessons from the programmes are available on youtube Cúla4.

A final word – I appreciate and value the many positive comments we have had from parents since we reopened our doors on the 27th August. – thank you so much for your support and encouragement of what we are doing. Our staff have worked very hard in the last few weeks to ensure that their care of your children, academically and pastorally, is the best care we can give them in this new learning environment that we find ourselves.

Well done everyone on another week at school. Have a lovely weekend.  Stay safe.

Kind regards,

Maire Costello

Principal.

****************************

9th September 2020

Re: Allocation of Homework/ Schoolwork when a child is Absent from School

Dear Parents/ Guardians,

I would like share some information with you in relation to the allocation of Homework / Schoolwork when a child absent from school.

Scenario 1

Our School Policy in relation to providing homework / schoolwork for children who are absent due to a short term illness or away on holiday during term time still applies i.e. they are not provided with work. We would encourage them to read while they are absent. There are also a number of useful educational links on our school website which they can tap into. The teacher will work with them when they come back to school.

Scenario 2

Awaiting on COVID Test Result – No homework/ schoolwork is provided. Again, there are educational links on the school website that children can use while they are absent from school.

Scenario 3

If your child has to quarantine due to a positive COVID test or is designated as a close contact of a person who tested positive – Homework/ schoolwork will be provided.

Scenario 4

If a child has an underlying illness and is not attending school, work will be provided.

On a personal note, I would like to thank all the parents for the part you are playing in keeping your children home from school when they are unwell. We are all in this together and the health and safety of the whole school community is a top priority for us all.

Thanks again for your support and cooperation as we adapt to new routines and protocols.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

***************************************************
4th September 2020

Dear Parents/ Guardians,

We have completed our first full week and I feel things went really smoothly.  Thank you again for your cooperation at drop off and collection times and for wearing face covering while on the school premises.   As I have said many times before we are all in this together and it is great that everyone is playing their part.

I know the boys and girls had a lot of new routines to get used to. But they are adapting like fish to water.  The congestion at drop off and collection has eased considerably.  Today was the first day our 1st and 2nd classes went in on their own and they are to be commended for how well they managed.

The staff would like to wish all the boys and girls who are making their First Communion tomorrow the very best and hope they have a lovely day.  They have had to wait for a long time for this and I know it is going to be all the more special.

Our PE teacher Cormac is all set and ready to start back next Thursday 10th.  The children really look forward to his classes and I know they will give them a big welcome back.   All classes will have two sessions of PE a week.  One with the class teacher and one with Cormac.  For this year PE will be outdoors as much as possible so we would ask you that your child has a rain jacket with them on their  PE days.

The Junior Infants are really settling into school.  I am so proud of them all.  They are ready to make their next big jump on ‘Independence Day’ Thursday 10th September when they will be in school for their first full day from 8.50 am -1.40 pm.  I know they will be great.

The children have worked really hard this their first week back and are deserving of a well earned break.

Have a lovely weekend.  Don’t forget we are here for you  if you need us.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

****************************************************
2nd September 2020

Dear Parents,

Thank you very much for helping us provide a safe, secure and happy environment in which your child can learn.

We are adjusting to the ‘new normal’. Our safety protocols are constantly under review.

We are close to having a good ‘drop off’ in the mornings at ‘Mrs. Mooney’s gate’ where the younger students are entering the school.

The children themselves have been wonderful. The Junior Infants excelled at arriving in unaccompanied on their third day and lining up with their teacher in the school yard.

However, the wet weather on so many mornings since the beginning of term has not helped.

1. Could we remind all adults to ‘drop and go’ because not doing so can lead to congestion on the footpath.

2. As difficult as it is could we ask parents not to congregate at the wall by Mrs. Mooney’s gate. We understand that you want to see how your child is doing, but social distancing in not occurring.

3. We would also ask you to cross at the Lollipop Lady. We do realise that brings you a little out of your way if you are coming over the bridge from the Church Road direction. However, crossing at that corner is a very dangerous place to cross. For this reason, we would like to get all students into the habit of walking down to cross with the Lollipop Lady.

4. Finally we recommend that your child dress warmly in school. In line with recommendations we are trying to keep the rooms ventilated and so the classroom windows are open.

Thank you again for your continued support. We are all in this together.

Ms. Costello and Ms. Beausang

***************************************************

31st August 2020

Dear Parents,

We are looking forward to our first full week in school since last March. Please find below some important information. At the start of each school year we experience some problems with drop off and collection. This soon settles down as parents and children adapt to the new routine. Again I would plead with you to be patient during this time.

Junior Infants

I just want to complement our Junior Infants on how well they did this morning saying goodbye at the gates. They were absolutely fantastic and an example to us all. Thank you, parents, for preparing them so well for this.

Drop and Go!

I appreciate it is early days and we are all still getting used to new routines. Thank you for cooperating with wearing face coverings when in the vicinity of the school. We would ask that you do not congregate at the gates so that the children can enter the school without having to step off the footpath. Ideally you could drop the children close to the school and watch them walk to their gate.

Gates

Gate 1: Main gate Trafalgar Road at Pedestrian Crossing. This gate is for Reception / Room 10, Room 11, Room 12 & Room 19

Gate 2: Wooden Gate beside Mrs Mooney’s. This gate is for Rooms 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8 & 9.

Gate 3: Laneway Gate Kimberley Road. This gate is for Rooms 14,15,16,17 & 20.

Late Drops Off

Gate 2 & 3 will be locked at 9.00 am sharp. The only entrance to the school after this time is through Gate 1. Please note it will be closed over but will not be padlocked.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

*****************************************************

30th August 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope you are all having a nice weekend

On Thursday we were delighted to be able to welcome at last our new Junior Infants to the school for their first two days of formal education. The children seemed to really enjoy their time with us and are already settling into a little routine.

It was amazing to see the boys and girls from Senior Infants to 6th class walking back in through the gates of St. Brigid’s after almost six months.away. They seemed happy to be reunited with their friends and finally get the opportunity to meet their teachers. So far so good.

We are really looking forward to a full week this week and hope the children are too. The gates will open for all children including Junior and Senior Infants at 8.50am and classes will begin at 9.00am.

3rd to 6th class will enter the school grounds through their designated gates (Either Gate 2 or Gate 3) and go straight to their classrooms.

Junior Infants to Second class will be dropped at Gate 1 and enter the Basketball Yard where their teachers will be waiting for them.

By Wednesday we are hoping that our 1st and 2nd classes will have become familiar with their routes into the school and be able to go straight to their classrooms from Thursday onwards.

As I have said in previous emails, nothing is set in stone. We will be reviewing drop off and collection routines on a regular basis to ensure we have the best possible set up.

Finally, thank you for your co-operation as we implement these new routines. We could not do it without you.

Here’s to a great week ahead.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

Principal

******************************************************

28th August 2020
Dear Parents/ Guardians, Just some important updates to share with you.

Hand sanitisers have been installed in all classrooms and public areas throughout the school. It is not necessary for children to bring in their own personal hand sanitisers, nor is it recommended by the Department of Education and Skills. However, if you would like your child to bring in their own sanitiser it is important that they do not share it with anybody else. It is for their use only.

Travel & Restricted Movement: If you or any member of your household has returned from a country that is not on the ‘green list’ it is a requirement that all members of that household restrict their movement for 14 days. This includes children that may not have travelled to the country. This is the advice we received this morning from the HSE.

COVID 19 Testing: If any member of your household is being tested/awaiting testing for COVID 19 the entire household must isolate until a negative test result is received. If a positive test is received self-isolation for 14 days is required. Again, we received this advice this morning from the HSE.

Face Covering: We appreciate that it is difficult for parents to maintain the 2 m distance at drop off and collection times. We would therefore ask that you would wear a face covering to help ensure safety for all.

We really appreciate how you have cooperated with us since we reopened. As I have said in previous emails, nothing is set in stone and it’s an ever-evolving situation. We will be reviewing constantly the new routines and procedures and will make changes when and if necessary.

Have a lovely weekend. Hope this rain goes away!

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello
****************************************************
27th August 2020
Dear Parents / Guardians,

It was lovely to see you and all your children this morning. We have really missed the boys and girls. The school building was so empty without the sound of the children’s laughter and chat. I hope they enjoyed their first day back and we look forward to many more fun filled days.

Thank you for cooperating with our new routine for drop off and collection. I know our new routine will take some time to get used to.

Can I just remind you of the importance of maintaining a distance of 2 m and if you cannot maintain this distance please wear a face covering. This is in the interest of safety for all.

We are looking forward to a happy, healthy and safe first term.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

****************************************************
26th August 2020

Dear Parents/ Guardians,

We are almost there! Only one more sleep to the grand reopening! have big hopes for a good year ahead. Below is just some information that you might find useful. Looking forward to seeing the boys and girls in their full school uniform.

New Protocols for Parents and Guardians

Entry to School: No parents/guardians are permitted to enter the school building without a prior appointment with the Principal.

Dropping off Forgotten Items: Again unfortunately, parents/ guardians will not be permitted to drop off books/projects/ lunches to the office during the school day.

Late Drop Off: If you are late dropping off your child to school, enter the school via Gate 1 and make your way to Reception using the second door on the right of main building. Please use the buzzer and the secretary will let your child in. Please be patient if the door is not answered immediately as most of the time there will be only one secretary on duty.

Collecting Children Early: If you need to collect your child early you need to notify the teacher in writing stating reason for early collection via teacher email. Your child can be collected from the door at reception. Unfortunately, parents will not be able to enter the school when collecting their child. You will need to wait under the shelter outside. Again, we would ask for your patience with this.

At Drop Off and Collection: We would ask you not to congregate at the school gates and be mindful of keeping the 2m social distance at all times.

Bicycles

We have had a number of queries in relation to children coming to school on their bikes/scooters. We have given this a lot of thought and we consider it appropriate that children coming to school with bicycles / scooters should enter through Gate 3 on Kimberley Road. We will be reviewing this at the end of September.

Siblings Entering / Exiting Through Different Gates

We appreciate your cooperation in ensuring your child enters the school through their designated gate. We currently have 317 families in the school and we’re unable to coordinate all siblings entering through the same gate. We will review this on an ongoing basis.

PE & After School Activities

PE will start back the week of 7th September. You will receive an email with your child’s PE days. Full school uniform should be worn everyday except for PE days. Children may wear shorts for PE during the month of September. As we anticipate doing as much of our PE as possible outdoors this year please ensure that your child brings a waterproof Rain Jacket to school on PE days.
Basketball and GAA. We will need to update you on this next week.

Schools’ Response Plan to COVID 19 Requirements

COVID 19 Induction programmes have been completed by all staff.
Deep cleaning of the school was completed over the summer months with Liquid Guard applied to all high contact points including light switches, door handles etc.
Extra cleaning hours have been allocated with the hours increased from 40 to 65 hours per week for this year.
COVID 19 policy has been adopted by the Board of Management and will be put up on the school website over the coming days.
COVID 19 Risk Assessment Policy was prepared and completed with ongoing reviews in place.
COVID 19 Signage has been placed throughout the school.
Hand sanitisers are in place in all classrooms, offices and entrance of the school.
Masks/ visors will be worn by all staff.
Ms Heneghan and Ms Teehan have been appointed as our COVID 19 Lead Worker Representatives along with Helena Moore and Sharleen Hogan as Assistant Lead Worker Representatives. They will ensure compliance with statutory obligations.
If a child becomes ill in school showing symptoms of COVID 19 they will be brought to one of the two isolation rooms in the school. Their temperature will be taken using an infrared thermometer and parents will be contacted. The parents will be advised to consult their GP and update us of the situation. Should the child be confirmed with a positive test this becomes a Public Health matter. The HSE will do a full risk assessment and are responsible for carrying out a full contract tracing. It is Public Health who determine whether the pod/ bubble or school will close. This is not a responsibility of the Board of Management.
Homework

The focus for teaching and learning for the month of September will be Literacy, Numeracy and Wellbeing. We as a staff have decided that there will be no written homework for this month as the children adapt to the new routines of school. We see this as a great opportunity for parents to sit read as much as possible with their children. However, reading, tables, spellings will be given to older classes.

No Early Close Tomorrow

There is no early close for children from Senior to 6th Class. Please refer to previous emails for Junior Infant and Senior Infant start times and gates the enter the school.

We look forward to seeing everyone tomorrow. We are all very excited to be reunited with the boys and girls after such a long time.
****************************************************
Dear Parents / Guardians,

The BoM and School Staff are looking forward to welcoming all our pupils and parents / guardians back to school for the 2020/2021 school year in three days time on Thursday 27th August.

We are satisfied that we have control measures in place to ensure that this will be a safe re-opening. It will take some time for all of us to get used to the “new circumstances” as we become familiar with the new routines and procedures designed to keep everyone safe and to prevent the spread of the virus. There will, undoubtedly, be some unforeseen challenges and we will deal with these as they arise.

We would like to thank you for your co-operation in making preparations to date and look forward to working with you as we assist the children adapt to the necessary changes. We are also conscious of the fact that our pupils have not been in school since March and that they are looking forward to coming back to school to meet their friends again. We are aware that our new pupils are beginning a school year at a challenging time and have made plans to ensure that their arrival will be as free from stress as possible.

Kind regards

Tom Sherlock                                    Máire Costello

Chairman Board of Management Principal

****************************************************

23rd August 2020

Dear Children,

As the summer holidays come to an end it’s hard to believe that you haven’t been in the school building in five months. We have missed you all so much and are really looking forward to seeing you again in four days time. We’re sure you’re excited to come back to St. Brigid’s to see your friends, teachers and other staff members but we also understand that you might be a little nervous about coming back and that is totally normal too.

St. Brigid’s will still be the school you know and love but there will be some changes that we have put in place to keep everybody safe. Your parents and teachers will talk to you about these changes Some of these changes include:

-New routines for coming into school in the morning
-New routines for leaving the school in the evening
-Designated Gate entrances for drop off and collection
-Designated Yard Zones for each class level
-Two separate yard times- One for Infants to 3rd and and one for 4th to 6th
-The staff will be wearing face coverings, masks or visors, like what you may have seen in other workplaces or shops. However, we will still be the same people, just five months older!!
-In the first few days and weeks we will be going back over key work that you might have done last year to help you get used to being back in school again.

We will also be reminding you about catching coughs and sneezes safely in a tissue or your elbow, regular hand washing, use of hand sanitiser and social distancing which we’re sure you have become very familiar with over the last few months.

It has been a difficult few months for most people but we have been working hard to make sure that school will be a safe and fun place for you to learn and we look forward to seeing you all on the 27th of August.

If you have any questions or concerns that you would like to ask us, please email the school (get your parent(s) to help) and we will do our very best to answer them as best we can!.

Enjoy the last few days of the summer holidays. See you all on Thursday

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello and all the Staff

****************************************************

19th August, 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Please find below information I received from the Department of Education and Skills to share with anyone attending school who has travelled abroad recently.

Subject: Information for all schools: Reminder to anyone attending school who has travelled abroad

Reminder to anyone attending school who has travelled abroad:

Government policy, which is based on official public health advice, continues to advise against non-essential travel overseas for everyone.

It is a requirement for anyone coming into Ireland, from locations other than those with a rating of ‘normal precautions’ (“green”), to restrict their movements for 14 days, and this includes school staff, parents and children or other students coming from abroad to attend school in Ireland. Restricting your movements means staying indoors in one location and avoiding contact with other people and social situations as much as possible.

Regards,

Reopening Schools Section

****************************************************

18th August 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Some information to share with you in advance of our return to school in relation to the wearing of uniforms, lunch boxes and school stationary.

School Uniform – The children will continue to wear their uniforms on uniform day and their tracksuits on PE Days. For the month of September the boys and girls may wear their school shorts for PE if they like.. Please note The Department of Education Guidelines on the Return to School do not make any reference at all to the need to wash uniforms on a daily basis. It is entirely up to each family to decide how often they want to wash the uniform.

Lunch Boxes – For this year, it would be a good idea if the children could bring their lunch to school in a paper bag rather than in a lunch box to lessen the risk of cross contamination between school and home.

Stationary – Children from 1st class to 6th class should have two pencil cases, one to remain in school and one to remain at home. Their class teachers will advise them what the contents should be when they return. The Junior and Senior Infants will be supplied with an individual filled pencil case in school and they will not need to have one for home.

We are continuing to work through the details of our return to school and will keep you updated.

Kind regards,
Máire Costello
Principal

****************************************************

17th August, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,

I hope you all had a nice weekend.

Please find below an email detailing how we anticipate physical distancing and safe school attendance will work in our school. It is important to mention that all school personnel will be wearing face coverings and you will need to talk to your children about this in advance of our return to school. Also, any parent or visitor entering the school buildings will be required to wear a face covering. We would very much appreciate your full cooperation with this measure.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I will be in touch with you again on Thursday 20th August in relation to drop off and collection routines.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

Principal

****************************************************

RE: Physical Distancing and Safe School Attendance

Monday 17th August 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,

We are currently working on upgrading our procedures and routines within the school to ensure that there is as much Physical Distancing as is possible in our building. We will apply physical distancing in a practical and sensible way, recognising that the learning environment cannot be dominated by a potentially counterproductive focus on this issue.

Physical Distancing will be achieved in two ways: –

Increasing Separation. This will be achieved by re-configuring the classrooms to maximise physical distancing. Each class will be referred to as a bubble and we will ensure that there is as little contact as possible between children in different bubbles. Within the bubbles, children will be organised into pods. A pod is a group of children (normally 6) who will sit together and who will stay in their pod while in the bubble, or classroom.

Decreasing Interaction. This will be achieved by decreasing the potential for children from different bubbles to interact. There will be marked routes for various bubbles to enter and exit the school and to access their classrooms. Bubbles will have different mid-morning and lunch-time access to the playground. We will make these routines enjoyable activities for the children, emphasising safety at all times.

While all children will be welcome back to school, we would remind parents that, where children are displaying colds, coughs or flu like symptoms, they should not be sent to school. Children who display such symptoms in school will be isolated and parents asked to collect them from the school.

Children who have travelled from countries not on the Green List should not attend school during the 14-day self-isolation period

Further information on COVID-19 symptoms in children is available HERE

Teachers will make children aware of the proper hygiene procedures regarding hand washing and etiquette related to sneezing, coughing or spitting. We would be grateful if you could also emphasise safe behaviour in this regard to your children at home as part of the preparation for returning to school.

Our aim remains to re-open the school in an orderly safe manner, while reassuring the children and making them feel comfortable, safe and relaxed with their friends in the new school environment. This will be achieved by all of us working towards this common goal.

Kind regards,

Tom Sherlock Máire Costello

Chairman Board of Management Principal

****************************************************

13th August, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,

I apologise in advance for the number of emails and messages you will be receiving from me over the coming days but I really want to keep you as up to date as possible with what is happening with regards to the reopening of St. Brigid’s. I feel clear communications from the school giving up-to-date information is the best means of countering anxiety, re-assuring the entire community and giving staff, parents and children ownership of the return to school process.

Please click to this link to download a Newsletter put together by the Deputy Principal Mary Beausang detailing some of the information that you and your children need to know about returning to school. I think you will all agree that there is lots of valuable information to be found in this Newsletter and I would urge you to keep a copy of it close to hand.

I will be in touch with you again on Monday where the focus of my message will be on physical distancing and safe school attendance.

In the meantime, take care and stay safe.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

Principal

****************************************************

12th August, 2020

Re-opening of St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones

Dear Parents / Guardians,

I hope you and your families are keeping well.

I will be keeping you updated over the next two weeks as the details of our return to school protocols become clearer.

We are planning to re-open our school safely on Thursday 27th August, in line with current guidance and recommendations. Our intention is that it will be a full return to school for all, albeit with some differences, details of which will be in later communications.

Re-opening the school safely will require the co-operation of all members of our School Community – Board of Management (BoM), School Leadership, Staff, Parents and Pupils. We will all be called on to play our part in ensuring that re-opening of the school is done in a safe manner which prevents the spread of the virus and allows the vital work of Teaching and Learning to proceed with as little disruption as possible.

We have been working on our plan for the safe reopening of the school for some weeks now and will publish the Department of Education and Skills (DES) COVID-19 Response Plan for the safe and sustainable reopening of Primary and Special Schools on our school website later today. The Response Plan gives details of

  • Physical preparation, signage, hand sanitiser stations,
  • Advice, procedures and training for the safe return to working in the school for all school staff and pupils
  • General and specific advice on how all pupils, staff, parents and visitors will prevent the spread of the virus

We will also publish our COVID-19 Policy Statement on the school website later today. Our BoM will keep you informed as to the progress of our re-opening plans and provide you with the information required by you to play your part in safely re-opening the school.

We are really looking forward to welcoming our children back to school and will be doing all that we can to ensure that the return to school is a safe and enjoyable experience for the children. We will be in touch with you again shortly.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

Principal

The following websites provide further information on COVID-19 and on government advice and recommendations regarding the re-opening of schools: –

****************************************************

8th August, 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope this email finds you and your family keeping well and that you are enjoying the summer break and the lovely weather we are having this weekend.

I understand  you may have questions and concerns regarding your children’s return to school at the end of August.

Following receipt of the  Department of Education’s Road Map  for the safe return to school of our pupils and staff, the Board of Management recently met to  discuss the document. The Board and Staff  are now busy working hard on drafting a COVID 19 Response Plan  to ensure we can all return to school safely. The plan, among other things, necessitates making some changes this year to include specific entrance/exit gates for specific classes,  restrictions  on parents and visitors entering the school, the mandatory wearing of face coverings for staff and split yard times.

I will be in contact with you again next week when the plan is finalised to make you aware of new procedures and protocols that will be put in place for the coming school year.

As I am sure you will appreciate all decisions made by the Board  will be based on best practice to ensure the health and safety of all in the school community.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

**********************************************

28th July 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope you are all keeping well.

As you may be aware, the Government published its guidance for how schools can reopen safely and fully at the end August yesterday evening.

The school received a copy of this plan and a letter for you the parents/guardians from the Minister of Education late last night. I have attached below a copy of this letter for your attention,

The Board of Management is fully aware that the reopening of  our school is essential to the well being of our pupils. The board will be meeting to review the “Reopening Our Schools” 58 page document over the coming days and be in touch with you again in relation to procedures and protocols around the return to school

In the meantime, enjoy the remaining weeks of the summer holidays and spending time with family and friends.

Kind regards,
Ms. Costello

To Parents – Letter from Minister Foley

In this letter Minister Foley mentions that the Department of Education will provide age appropriate materials to help you prepare your child for their return to school in advance of our return. They will be on THIS link and we will circulate them as they become available.

**********************************************
Scroll down this post to see LETTERS SENT HOME since Thursday, 12th March 2020

26th June 2020

END OF TERM LETTER FROM THE PRINCIPAL
Dear Parents/Guardians,

We have made it through a rather interesting year. This year saw the closing of the school on the 12th March and the beginning of a new way of learning for our pupils. The closing of the school was certainly unprecedented and adapting to home learning was not without its challenges. We have however managed to weather these storms and can now focus on the summer holidays and everything that goes with it.

I would like to thank all of you for everything that you have done over the last three months.We could not have gotten to the end of this year without the help of everyone in the St. Brigid Community. I would like to acknowledge the great work of all the staff for their hard work and dedication after our initial leap into the unknown on March 12th.

To the boys and girls of St. Brigid’s, as the summer holidays begin, take this time to enjoy sleeping in late and going to bed a little later.Take this time to reflect on all that you have accomplished during the course of the lockdown. Enjoy taking trips, reading new and exciting books, visiting new places and catching up with family and friends.Most importantly take some time to relax and enjoy the summer weather and summer activities.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish our 6th classes all the best as they move onto Secondary school. We held al fresco graduations for them in the school yard yesterday. The sun shone brightly and it was lovely to be able to wish them well in person. A huge thank you to Aoife Murray, Louise Fenelon and the Parents Association without whose help and assistance the day wouldn’t have been possible.

Have a great summer and for all our sakes, let’s hope we never hear the words “home learning” ever again.

Take care and stay safe.

Kind regards
Ms. Costello

21st June, 2020

Dear Parents Guardians,

I hope you are all keeping well.

We are nearly at the finishing line. Five more days to go until the summer holidays begin. I can almost hear the sighs of relief.

Without doubt, these last few months have been challenging. Facilitating home learning was not in the job description when you signed up to be parents and I know that the experience has been very different in every household. I would like to compliment you all on the fantastic job you have done in guiding and supporting your children during this lock-down. While your children may not know it yet, you will have helped create cherished memories for your children to look back on fondly in the years to come.

Thank you to all of you who send in photos for our Home School Sports Day Video which is now up on the school website. From the looks of things, the children had a great day despite the poor weather.

The school reports were sent out last Monday via Aladdin Connect. Please get in touch with us if you have not received yours or are having trouble accessing it.

We have just finalised our booklists for next year and these will be sent out this week. At the bottom of the booklist is the name of the teacher your child will be with for the coming academic year.

Finishing primary school in lock-down has been difficult for our 6th class pupils. They left St. Brigid’s on the 12th March not realising they would never return. We feel it is important to mark the end of their time at our school before they move on to secondary school and so we will be having an outdoor Graduation Ceremony for them next Thursday 25th June in the school yard.  I’m sure it will be a very special occasion . Fingers crossed the weather holds up.

Many parents have been asking about a second hand uniform sale. The PA are in the process of organising this. It will take place on Friday 3rd July. More details to follow.

Finally I would like to finish with a poem by the laureate of the Harlem renaissance. It seems particularly apt for the times that are in it – The pointlessness and ennui we all feel after three months of lock-down.

Until next week,

Kind regards, Ms Costello

MOTHER TO SON

Well, son, I’ll tell you:
Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.
It’s had tacks in it,
And splinters,
And boards torn up,
And places with no carpet on the floor—
Bare.
But all the time
I’se been a-climbin’ on,
And reachin’ landin’s,
And turnin’ corners,
And sometimes goin’ in the dark
Where there ain’t been no light.
So, boy, don’t you turn back.
Don’t you set down on the steps.
‘Cause you finds it’s kinder hard.
Don’t you fall now—
For I’se still goin’, honey,
I’se still climbin’,
And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.

Langston Hughes

************************************

15th June, 2020

Re returning book rental or library books & collecting 6th class photos

Dear Parents,

As the school year comes to an end, we would ask you to return any book rental, library or books belonging to the school this Friday 19th June from 10am -12noon.  Please click on THIS link a copy of the classes and the book rental books which need to be returned to the school.

We would also ask you to also check if you have any other books / library books at home that belong to the school and return them on Friday.

Steps to follow on Friday

  • Please place books in a sealed plastic bag labelled with your child’s name.
  • Please enter the school grounds via the old convent gate on Kimberley Road.
  • Please bring bagged books to the door of the Yellow Brick building (Room 14,15,16,17) and NOT the main school building.
  • Please exit the school grounds via the lane onto Kimberley Road.

For Parents of 6th Class Students

Parents can collect 6th Class photos which they ordered from Ian Young next Friday also from the door of the Yellow Brick building.  Please enter and exit school as above.

Second-Hand Uniforms

We anticipate having a second-hand uniform sale in early July provided it is safe to do so.  If you have a uniform in good condition and would like to donate it to the school, please place it in a sealed bag and drop it down to the school (yellow brick building) on Friday between 10-12.  It is important that the uniforms are WASHED & IN GOOD CONDITION.   Please enter and exit the school as above.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

***********************************

12th June, 2020

Boys and girls,

Today is a special day. It is the first home school sports day that we have ever had at St. Brigid’s. This is history in the making.

It is regrettable that we cannot celebrate this special day in the custom that we are used to but we have to make the best of things in the circumstances that we are in.

I know that you will enjoy putting the books aside for one day to engage in some exciting sporting events whether that be a fitness class with Joe Wicks or building and participating in your own obstacle course. I’m sure many of you have some great ideas for the day. However, dont worry if you haven’t. Ms Murray has sent your parents lots of interesting activities that you can do today. Whatever you do, be sure to have lots and lots of fun.

We would be delighted if you could send in a photo or two of what you get up to today so we can make a short video to put up on the website for everyone to see.

Now all we need is for the rain to stay away. Fingers crossed.

Kind regards,

Ms Costello

*************************************

11th June 2020

Dear Parents/ Guardians,

As you know tomorrow should have been our schools Sports Day. Unfortunately, we can not go ahead with the traditional Sports Day but have organised a virtual Home Sports Day instead.  You received an email last Friday with details of how this might work at home.

We would love to see some photographs of how you celebrated this unique Sports Day.  Please email photos to nmurray@stbgns.ie.

It is important that the children have lots of fun in whatever activities they choose to pursue.   Maybe Mum and Dad can join in ?.

On another matter I am very conscious that student’s interest in home learning is waning.  Traditionally, for the last two weeks of school the classes would have engaged in a more informal type of learning.  The emphasis would have been on a lot of outside activities, reading and a little bit of maths.  We would encourage you to keep this up as much as possible.  However, if it is causing stress, as the primary educator you are best placed to decide what works best in your child.

We can never underestimate how important it is to learn life skills.  Perhaps the children could take on some new tasks around the house over the coming two weeks.  These life skills which will serve them well in further years.  For example, learning how to sort washing, put on a wash, prepare a meal, setting the table, stacking the dishwasher, dying dishes, sorting the waste materials to be recycled, learning how to change their bed etc.

Enjoy the Sports Day.  Have fun.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

***********************************

8th June 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Thank you for your responses to our most recent survey. Your input is valued and welcome and the results can be viewed in the jpeg below.

September is just under three months away. A great deal can happen in that time. Three months ago none of us knew what was ahead of us.

There is a great deal of uncertainty. No one can predict what the situation will be in September. As a school we have no say in how and when schools will reopen but we are hoping to get some guidance on the from the Department this week.

We miss the children, spending time with them and helping them learn. We would love if we could start back in September as normal and work with the children, to see them back playing with friends, to hear all about how they have been doing, to address any gaps in their learning and to reassure them that all is well.

We have been watching what is happening in other countries when children return to school. ‘Blended learning’ seems to be a possibility, when because of ‘social distancing’ numbers are reduced in classrooms. We don’t know what the rules about ‘social distancing’ will be in three months time and we are hoping for the best. We are thinking about how we could make the best use of the space we have, but there may be some changes to the school week. We understand the inconvenience of this and would like to reassure you that we would bring in families on the same days.

At the moment we are just gathering the information that will help us plan for the best outcomes. We want to work together with you to achieve this. Many of the staff are homeschooling while they work, so they understand the challenges parents face. We want to address difficulties you may be having as best we can.

With 328 families in the school we got a wide range of answers. The key findings are;

  • 6% have no access to a device.
  • 61% are sharing a device with others
  • 29%  have no printer access
  • 20% have limited access to a printer
  • 4%  have no or limited internet access

Some parents find teaching hard, and some are enjoying it. While some parents would like more engagement online, others have requested the use of books and copies and minimal work online. Some prefer revision, while others would like to move on to new topics at home. Some parents would like ‘busy work’, others would like something that fulfils the curriculum. Some parents asked for more engagement and some have requested less.

Regarding parent concerns on blended learning, what we did learn was that parents have concerns about:

– availability of childcare, asking a child minder to home school

– safety, family members who are high risk

– the effects of school closure on children, emotionally socially as well as educationally

– difficulties children have with focus and distractions where they feel there is little accountability, worries parents have about children falling behind.

– Irish, Art, tin whistle, project work and handwriting can be hard. Workbooks like ‘Figure It Out’ are easier to do.

– concerns about Junior Infants, particularly with socialization,

– Sixth Classes preparing for secondary school

– Children with additional needs

There is shared agreement that parents would like a safe environment, with investment by the DES as necessary to reduce spread of virus. If there was to be a ‘new normal’ where the school environment was very different, parents wondered on the effect this would have on children. You would like if we could show flexibility and understanding of work commitments and home school. You would also like to see a more uniform approach across the school

Some of these lessons can be implemented immediately:

– Work will be sent home on a Friday, not a Sunday.

– Work will not require a printer.

We appreciate all you have been doing at home. With these responses you have given us a lot to think about. We have taken on board what you have told us. We will keep the lines of communication open. We will do our best. Parents and teachers have been on a sharp learning curve. Staff will continue to work on upskilling in the new circumstance in which we find ourselves. Please be assured that we will do our very best to make sure that the children’s return to school is a happy and healthy time for them.

Kind regards,

Ms Costello

************************************

2nd June 2020

Dear Parents, Please find attached details on the SCHOOLWEAR HOUSE REOPENING in June. Kind regards, Ms. Costello

1st June 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope you are all having a lovely Bank Holiday Weekend. This year, it seems summer has arrived a little earlier than expected with beautiful days to lift our spirits.The weather has been absolutely gorgeous over the last few weeks and has afforded us the opportunity to spend quality time with family enjoying summer activities outdoors. La vie est belle.

As time goes on, and weeks have turned into months, I know that many of our children are finding learning at home consistently more challenging. From the correspondence we have been receiving of late, it is obvious that home learning fatigue is setting in. The fact that siblings in Secondary School have now finished up for the year, does not help matters. The fall off in engagement from the beginning of the lock down to now is to be expected.Taking learning outdoors will help with re-engagement.It is proven that being outdoors in the sunlight improves our mood and helps keeps us feeling balanced and focused. My advice to you therefore at this time is to allow the home learning take place as much as possible outside. Also, don’t forget the Home School Hub and Cúla4 are great resources to tap into.The links to this weeks schedules are here: RTE Home School Hub  and  Cúla4

School in the month of June is very different from all the other months of the year. While there continues to be a strong focus on Numeracy and Literacy, it is traditionally the month of summer activities, school tours and of course the all important annual school sports day. St. Brigid’s Sports Day, which was scheduled for Friday 12th June, will not happen this year in the format we are accustomed to. However, Ms Murray is busy working on a virtual sports day plan, which will be sent out to all families early next week. We hope as many of the boys and girls will commit to participating in our first and hopefully last ever virtual sports day and that they will enjoy the day.

I said in a previous email that it is important to continue to have high expectations for your children, to remain positive, to keep up with a daily routine and to engage with learning activities that the children enjoy. It is important to remember that children learn best when they are happy.

Finally, a huge thank you from all the staff for the support and encouragement you are giving to your children in the times we are currently living through. I know many of you are working full time and it is not easy juggling home and work life. Continue doing what you are doing. Rest assured you are doing your best and your best is good enough.

Until next week, take care and stay safe.

Kind regards,
Ms. Costello

************************************

29th May 2020

LETTER FROM THE BOARD OF MANAGEMENT

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope you are all keeping well and safe in these exceptional times and are not finding things too stressful. Our school Principal Ms Costello has kept the Board of Management aware of the work that the teachers and SNAs have been doing, to assist your children continue their learning despite the school being closed and of the huge efforts you the parents are making to support this. The Board greatly appreciates the work being done by everyone and is anxious to support you in any way possible.

Re-opening of school

You will be aware that the current Government advice is that schools will remain closed until 1st September. I think everyone is very anxious to ensure that the schools will in fact open on that day. This will of course be subject to it being safe to do so. The Board of Management and the teachers and school staff are very keen to be able to return safely on 1st September. We have already started to look at what a return will look like in light of Public Health advice, social distancing etc. and trying to anticipate what arrangements we will have to make and any measures we may need to put in place to ensure we can open.

We are also aware that the Department of Education and Science in consultation with the education partners and public health experts are considering what the “new normal” will be when the schools re-open. We expect to receive guidance from the Department on this in the next few weeks and this will assist our own planning. I want to assure you at this stage that the Board the teachers and the staff are very anxious to get back to school as soon as possible and we are fully committed to doing everything possible to achieve this. We will keep you informed of progress as we go on and if it will be possible to have a full return or whether some form of ‘staggered classes’ will be necessary. Our objective is to achieve normality or as close to it as possible.

Bereavements

The Board of Management has learned that a number of families and staff have suffered bereavements since the closure of the school. Unfortunately we have been unable to offer support and sympathy in the usual way so I take this opportunity on behalf of the whole school community to offer our condolences to the bereaved and to pray that their loved ones are safe in the arms of God.

First Communion, Confirmation, Graduation

Unfortunately it has not been possible to celebrate any of these important and always joyful events as we had planned. Fr Gerard and Fr John have used the Morning Mass on the parish webcam and the Evening Prayer on the Zoom App to pray for the boys and girls on the appropriate dates and I know that the Principal and class teachers were also in touch with special messages for the occasion. The parish and the school are committed to celebrating the sacraments when it is possible to do so.

It will not be possible to celebrate the 6th class graduation in the normal way either. We are aware that some schools have held virtual graduation ceremonies on the Zoom or other platforms. The Board and the teachers have considered this and we feel that a virtual celebration is not a satisfactory substitute for the usual graduation mass and celebration in the parish hall and we do not therefore intend to arrange one. We feel it is preferable to wait until we can have a proper graduation ceremony and we are committed to arranging this as soon as it is possible. We are considering whether it might be possible to arrange a less formal get together of the girls and boys before 1st September, within Public Health guidelines – possibly sometime in August.

Conclusion

Finally I want, on behalf of the Board of Management, to thank you for your help and support for the school and the staff throughout these extraordinary times. I hope the next few weeks when ‘distance learning’ will continue, to whatever extent is possible for each family, will not be too stressful and that you and your children will be able to enjoy the good weather. Enjoy the summer holidays. Please stay safe and well.

We look forward to seeing you all when we re-open.

Tom Sherlock

Chairman

Board of Management

************************************

25th May 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Click on ‘Read more’ below to see an audio message for the children for this week.

Kind regards, Ms. Costello

*************************************

24th May 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Tomorrow marks the beginning of Week 9 of Home Learning. It is strange how the days seem to be going by so slowly while the weeks seem to be flying by.

It was so nice to catch up with some of you last Wednesday when you were collecting your children’s books even if it was from a 2m distance and even if it was only briefly. Your cooperation on the day was very much appreciated and ensured we could distribute the books in a safe manner.

I  know the boys and girls have been trying really hard to keep up with their weekly school work and I am so proud of all that they have achieved over the last two months. I have enjoyed hearing about all the new skills they have been acquiring from learning to ride a bike, to baking cakes, to painting fences, to learning to read.  Skills for life indeed. I particularly like hearing about all the books they have been reading.  I know some children say they don’t like reading. It is my firm  belief that they just haven’t found the right book. What better gift can we give a child than a love for reading !!

Spare a thought for our  6th classes who  were due to make their Confirmation next Thursday 28th May in Holy Rosary Church surrounded by family and friends.   However, due to the  Covid 19 pandemic this has been put on hold for now. This is hard on our 6th class students but it will be all the more special  when it does eventually happen.

If you haven’t already seen the special  video the boys and girls in Ms. Smith’s Junior Infants made  to thank our front line staff for all they do on our school website, I urge you to do so. It would melt you heart and will certainly keep you smiling. One of the children is even wearing a white coat. How cute is that  !!

I love hearing from the boys and girls so if they have anything work they  want to send me, I would be delighted to see it.

Finally, I know that many of the children are enjoying the  RTE Home School Hub and Cúla4 programmes. Below are the links to this week schedules for your convenience .

RTE School Hub     Cúla4

Until next week, stay safe, stay well and stay home.

Le meas,

Ms. Costello

21st May 2020

Dear Parents /Guardians,

Thanks for picking up your child’s books yesterday.  It went very smoothly.  Some people couldn’t make it yesterday.  We are opening one more slot to collect your child’s books on next MONDAY 25th MAY from 9.30 am -11.00 am.  Entrance to the school will be via the old convent.  Please come to the school office to collect books. We would ask you to keep social distancing in mind when entering and exiting the school on Monday.

Kind regards,
Ms. Costello

19th May 2020

Dear Parents,

As a follow up to the email sent last Thursday.

Just a quick reminder that the book collection is taking place tomorrow Wednesday 20th May.

All classes have been allocated individual timeslots.  Please note, you will collect all books for your family, at the time allocated to your oldest child if you have more than one child in the school.

Click HERE to download the collection schedule for Wednesday.

We will not be in a position to take back, schoolbooks, book rental books or library books tomorrow.

We would appreciate your co-operation in the one-way system which will be in operation when entering and exiting the school grounds tomorrow.  Please note the entrance and exit point for your family.

We would urge you to leave the grounds as soon as you have collected your books to ensure everyone’s safety.

Stay safe and stay well.  See you all tomorrow.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

************************************

Sunday 17th May, 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Tomorrow marks a new beginning for us all as we enter Phase 1 of the lifting of restrictions. This is good news and a positive note to start the new week.

I know every family’s experience of home learning is different but whatever your experience has been over the last number of weeks. it certainly was an opportunity to spend some more time with your children and this has got to be a good thing. You will never get these days back so enjoy them while you can.

Saturday was to have been a very special day for the boys and girls in Ms. Murray’s and Ms. Staunton’s 2nd classes. They were to have made their First Holy Communion in Holy Rosary Church surrounded by family and friends. Unfortunately as you know this could not go ahead due to the Covid 19 Restrictions that are currently in place.. However, our families are made of tough stuff and the boys and girls together with their families managed to mark the day in their own special way and create memories for the future. From the photos I received, it is obvious that the children enjoyed their day in spite of everything. And can I say , that they all looked really beautiful and really happy. When they do eventually get to make their First Communion, it will be an extra, extra special day.

A quick reminder that you can collect your childrens’ books from the school on Wednesday 20th May. It is important that you adhere strictly to the times allocated to ensure everything runs according to plan.

Please find below the links to the Cula4 and Home School Hub.schedules for the coming week.

For the Home School Hub from Monday 8th May to Friday 18th May to Friday 22nd May Click HERE to download

For Cula4 scroll down the link to see the lesson content planned for the week.

Finally, I know the enthusiasm for home learning may be waning a little, but just remember we are all here to help you should you need us. The teachers are keen to know how the children in their classes are getting on with home learning so I would encourage the boys and girls to send in one piece of work to their teacher each week. Alternatively, an email to say they are getting on fine would be very much appreciated.

Say hello to the boys and girls for me and tell them I am so proud of them all.

Until next week,

Slán go fóill,

Ms. Costello

*************************************

14th May 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

We are organising to distribute your child/children’s school books on Wednesday 20th MayThe collection will take place at designated collection points A , B, C, D and E in the school grounds Attached please find the Timetable for Book Collection

The following guidelines MUST be strictly adhered to:

  • Please adhere to your allocated time. Times are final and cannot be changed.
  • No children are allowed on the premises.
  • There is a strict one-way system in place for entering and leaving the school grounds.
  • Teachers will have organised siblings’ books to go to their older brother/sister’s class for collection so please note time of your eldest child’s class collection only
  • Bags will be ordered alphabetically to speed up the collection.
  • A staff member will leave your child’s bag on the table for you.

When you collect the bags, please leave the school grounds quickly and safely.

  • Parents must not stop to chat to other parents at any time during the collection.
  • Please adhere to HSE social distancing guidelines at all times.

Collecting multiple bags from your child’s class only

To promote social distancing and maximise safety for all, whilst supporting parents who cannot collect their child’s books, we would ask parents to liaise with each other when organising the collection of multiple bags.

We thank parents who are collecting multiple bags for other children but please ensure that the bags are from your child’s own class as these are the only bags that will be available at that time slot.

Myself and some staff members will be in the school on Wednesday to facilitate the collection. The Gardaí will monitor the collection to ensure that the guidelines are being adhered to.

I would strongly advise all parents to follow the strict rules set out above.

I would appreciate your full cooperation to ensure we carry out this task safely.

***********************************
Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

Principal

MONDAY MORNING AUDIO MESSAGE for CHILDREN from MRS COSTELLO: 11th May 2020.

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope all the home learning goes well this week. I know it is not easy.

Please find attached an audio message from me for your children. It is an MP3 file so you should be able to open it on any smart device or laptop.

Kind regards,.

Ms. Costello

10th May 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope this email finds you well and safe. I don’t know where this week has gone to.

We have been blessed with some beautiful weather over the last few days. I know that a  lot of learning has been taking place outdoors this week and that is exactly as it should be. Children learn best by doing and there is no better place to be active than outdoors.

This week I have enjoyed looking at some of the fantastic work your children have produced as part of this week’s home learning. The teachers have been sending me on some of their projects, stories, book reports and drawings. I am in awe at all of the new knowledge and skills they are acquiring. I am looking forward to meeting the next David Attenbourgh, the next JK Rowling when we return to school. The boys and girls are a credit to you all, to themselves and to their teachers.

To keep up to date with everything that’s happening in the school I would encourage you check out the school website. The video clips of the younger children will bring a smile to you face.

I know the thought of sustaining home learning for the foreseeable  future can appear daunting but I would like to reassure you that the teachers and I are here for you every step of the way and are eager to help in any way that we can.

Here are the links to the RTE Home School Hub  and Cula4 ar Scoil schedules

If you are looking for some more material to occupy your child, I recommend “The Childrens Times” that comes with the Sunday Times.

Stay well and stay safe.

Ms Costello

*************************************

NEW:’Morning Boys and Girls, I hope you had a nice Bank Holiday Weekend and are ready for another week of home schooling. You are used to hearing me at 12.15pm on the Intercom at school each day so I decided to surprise you with a short audio message today’. Click HERE to download it so you can listen it on your laptop or tablet.

The following version you can play on your phone:

Audio Message to Children 4 May 2020 (online-audio-converter.com).mp3

***************************************

5th May 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,,

We are currently planning for you to come and collect your childrens school books. However, this will not take place until after the 18th of May in keeping with the Governments recent guidelines on the opening of school buildings for school staff. As you will appreciate the logistics of, organising the collection of the books while ensuring that social distancing is maintained will be challenging. We will be in touch again with you with your date and time for collection when we have the plans finalised.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

*************************************

3rd May 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians.

I hope you are enjoying the lovely weather we are having this Bank Holiday Weekend and availing of the opportunity to get outdoors even if it is within a 2km limit. Thank you to those of you who have been in touch. Your messages are very much appreciated.

I know that two emails within two days may seem a bit excessive. However, in light of the Taoiseach’s announcement on Friday that schools would remain closed until the Autumn, I thought it was necessary.

Tears have been shed in many a household within our community since this news broke. Dreams of the longed for school tours, Sports Day and the Basketball League have all been shattered not to mention the disappointment for our 2nd and 6th classes who will not be making their First Communions and Confirmations this year. My heart goes out particularly to our 6th class students whose time in Primary School has been cut short so abruptly. However, I guarantee we will mark their time at St. Brigid’s with a very special celebration when it is safe to do so. And that is a promise you can hold me too.

Covid 19 has had a huge impact on us all. Despite all the turmoil, there is cause for hope. There is no doubt that our children have been asked to sacrifice a lot but they will emerge a more resilient, empathetic generation from this pandemic.

Finally, I would like to assure you that the staff of St. Brigid’s will continue to deliver the high standard of teaching and learning that you have come to expect from our school . I can’t speak highly enough about my staff and I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge their professionalism and dedication publicly. A huge thank you to Tara also who has been keeping things going behind the scenes as usual.

Say a big hello to the boys and girls for me and remind them ” to always look on the bright side of life.” I will be sending them their own special message tomorrow.

Fan sabháilte.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

**************************************

1st May 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Today marks the end of another five days of home learning.

I know for some, the week has not been without its challenges. I am conscious of the fact that the novelty of home learning may be wearing thin and that home learning fatigue may be setting in. This is perfectly normal and to be expected. The children are missing their friends and would like to get back to learning as they know it.

My advice at this time is not to stress about schoolwork. When school returns to normal, we will get your children back on track. We are teachers and that’s what we are trained to do. In the meantime, continue to have high expectations for your child/children, remain positive, keep up with a daily routine and engage with learning activities that the children enjoy. It is also important that the children link in with their teachers at least once a week so the teachers can see how they are getting on and offer any support they may need.

Can I let you in on a little secret? The teachers are really missing the children and are really anxious to hear their news and all about the new skills they have acquired.

While today marks the end of five weeks of home learning, it also marks the beginning of a new month, the beginning of Summer, the beginning of new experiences. Thinking about this has brought to mind the poem “Begin” by Brendan Kennelly, particularly the last four lines.

“Though we live in a world that dreams of ending
that always seems about to give in
something that will not acknowledge conclusion
insists that we forever begin.”

Our children will not give in. They will continue to grow and be the best that they can be.

Have a lovely bank holiday weekend. Enjoy this special time with your families. Talk to you all again next week.

Le meas,

Ms. Costello

*************************************

1st May 2020

Dear Parents,

FYI – The timetables and details for Week 3 Cúla4 ar Scoil  and for the Home School Hub from Tues 5th May to Friday 8th May.

https://www.rte.ie/learn/2020/0418/1132305-home-school-hub-teachers-lesson-plan/

Ms. Costello
*************************************

26th April, 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

As promised, here are the details for this weeks Cúla4 ar ScoiL and RTE Home School Hub. I hope they are of some help.

For those of you want to support your childs learning of Irish at home, Cúla4 ar Scoil is a school program on TG4 covering elements of the primary curriculum with different themes each week. This weeks theme is Éadaí (Clothes). It’s airs daily at 10 a.m. Details of the timetable are at https://www.cula4.com/en/shows/cula4-ar-scoil/

Regards.

Ms. Costello

RTE HOME SCHOOL HUB Week: 27 – April 1 May

Date Subject

1st & 2nd

Subject

3rd & 4th

Subject

5th & 6th

Monday 27 April History (Children of Lir) Gaeilge (Ócáidí Speisialta) Science (Lava Lamp)
Tuesday 28 April Geography (Local Natural Environment) Maths (Data) History (The Normans)
Wednesday 29 April PE (Gymnastics) English (Poetry – Limericks) Music (Alouette)
Thursday 30 April Maths (Algebra) ISL (Irish Sign Language)  Visual Arts (Viewfinder)
Friday 1 May English (Grammar) Maths (Lines and Angles) Geography (Flora & Fauna)

24th April, 2020
Dear Parents/Guardians

You have come to the end of another week of supporting home learning.

It is not easy I know, but from the emails and communication we have been receiving, it would appear that the children are coping well over all under the circumstances. Children are very resilient and a great example to us all.

I know that many of you are taking advantage of the good weather we are having of late and that a lot of learning is taking place outdoors in back gardens. This is to be encouraged. After all,a book is no substitute for nature.

There are some in our school community who have lost loved ones recently. We keep them in our thoughts and prayers at this time.

FYI

  • Barnardos have launched a national telephone support service for parents in response to the challenges they are facing during the Covid 19 Pandemic 1800 910 123. They are providing support and advice to parents on a range of issues issues
  • Ms. Beausang updates the Junior and Senior Webmixes on the school website every Monday morning. Be sure to check them out.
  • Home School Hub & Cúla4 ar Scoil -Unfortunately, I have not yet received the scheduling for next week but I will send this on as soon as I receive it.

A final word, I feel it is important to remember to take one day at a time, try to focus on the positive and do what works best for your family.

Have a good weekend. Stay safe and stay well

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

************************************

20th April, 2020

Hello Children,

It feels strange to be welcoming you back after your Easter holidays via email rather than in person in your classroom,  or on the corridors or in the playground.

I do hope you enjoyed the last couple of weeks, especially  the wonderful weather and perhaps a little  chocolate was consumed.

It is back to home learning today for the next couple of weeks at least. Please do what you can in agreement with your parents / guardians. Remember,  try and read a little bit everyday, and if you read a particularly great book, send me an email with the name of the book and a short blurb along with the reasons you enjoyed the book.

Finally, remember, we are still all trying to stay healthy by washing our hands regularly, maintaining social distance and exercising good cough & sneeze etiquette.

Take care and continue to make me proud by being the best that you can be.

Your virtual Principal,

Ms. Costello

19th April, 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians

The teachers have organised some home learning for your children for  this coming week. You know your child  and what works best for them. Listen to them and be guided by them.

I came across some good advice in this regard from a lecturer in Digital Education from Marino Institute of Education who says “Parents should focus on routine and not productivity”

For your convenience please find below the timetable for this weeks RTE Home School Hub and a link to the materials from previous episodes. This might help a little in organising the home learning.

We are all here to help you. Don’t hesitate to get in touch if you need us.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

Worksheets and supporting material from previous episodes can be found at https://www.rte.ie/learn/

RTE HOME SCHOOL HUB Week: 20-24 April

Date Subject

1st & 2nd

Subject

3rd & 4th

Subject

5th & 6th

Monday 20 April Gaeilge (Éadaí) Art – Marbling SPHE (Worry)
Tuesday 21 April SPHE (Helping at Home) SESE (Counties of Ireland) English (Haiku)
Wednesday 22 April Art (Stencils) English (Biography) Music (Carnival of the Animals)
Thursday 23 April Maths (Data) PE (Circuit Lesson)  Science (Solar Oven)
Friday 24 April Drama (Exploring) English (Poetry) Gaeilge (Dul Siar ar Éadaí)

17th April, 2020
Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope you all had a nice Easter and an opportunity to spend some quality time with your children and just be.

I know the news that schools would remain closed for the foreseeable future was not the news you wanted to hear from Minister McHugh last week. It is not the news we tthe staff at St. Brigid’s wanted to hear either. We are anxious to get back to school to engage with teaching and learning as we know best. We miss the children terribly and the unique atmosphere of the school setting.

However, this is not to be for the time being. To stay safe and stay well, we must stay at home.

Trying to work from home whilst entertaining children and refereeing sibling quarrels, all the while facilitating home learning is undoubtedly challenging. Not to mention the worry of a sick relative or concern for a member of the family who has just lost their job due to the Covid crisis. If any of the work being sent home by teachers is causing stress and anxiety for you or your child/children, you don’t have to do it. As I have said many times before, you know your child best. Be guided by them.

I would like to reassure you of the teachers commitment to support your child’s/childrens’ learning over the coming weeks. . I want you to know that we are all here for you. If you any problem, no matter how small, please don’t hesitate to get in contact. .

Finally, I want to commend you on the excellent job you are all doing in supporting your childrens’ learning at home and reassure you that your children are learning even when they are not learning.

Be sure to say hello to all the boys and girls from all the staff.

Regards,

Ms. Costello

8th April 2020

EASTER NEWSLETTER

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Please find attached our Easter Newsletter.

Happy Easter to one and all. Say a special hello to the boys and girls for me.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

Easter Newsletter 2020

***

26th March 2020
Boys and Girls, I hope you are all keeping safe and well.

You are now at the end of two weeks of home learning. I know that this type of learning is very different from what you are used to but I am confident that you will continue to be the best that you can be no matter where the learning is taking place.

I am excited to hear about all the new skills and knowledge you will have picked up over the last while. The world is such a wonderful place and there is so much out there to explore.

It is important to keep up with your reading during this time even it’s only for 10 mins a day.  Getting out in the fresh air is also really important along with washing your hands, keeping your physical distance and doing everything else that your parents tell you to do. Mum and Dad know best !!

I know that you are really missing your friends right now but it will make meeting up again when we return to school all the more special.

The school is a very lonely looking place right now.  Myself and your teachers are a really missing you and hopefully it won’t be too much longer until we are all back together again.

Bye for now, Ms. Costello

***

3rd April 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope this email finds you well and safe.

Let me begin by thanking you for the lovely messages of support and good wishes that we have received from so many of you over the last few weeks.. I can’t tell you how much it means to us all. It is very much appreciated

I take my hat off to you the parents for the part you are playing in supporting your children’s learning at home at this difficult time . I know that none of you signed up for the job and I appreciate how difficult it can be managing home and school life under the one roof. It is great to hear that many of your children are engaging fully with this new form of learning and that is a testament to just how resilient our young students are.

However, for others, it a proving to be a bit of a challenge. This is to be expected as many children require the routine structure of the school day, the physical environment of the school building and the face to face interaction with the class teacher to learn best. As I have mentioned before, please don’t let any school suggested activities add in any way to what is an already stressful and testing time for many.. You know your child/children best. Be guided by them.

Like you, all of us at St. Brigid’s are trying to manage and cope with the many changes imposed upon us since the forced school closure three weeks ago..As teachers we are committed to supporting your child/children from a distance, so please don’t hesitate to get in touch if we can support them further.

On another note, there has been a whopping response to the online St. Brigid’s Home Learning Survey. Mile buíochas to all who took the time to complete it. It will help greatly with the planning for home learning going forward. I will analyse the data over the Easter and send a report on to you of the findings. Thanks again for your participation. We are all in this together.

I will be sending out the Easter New Letter over the coming days. A nice way to stay in touch with the Community I think.

Say a big hello to your children from me. Tell them that I am really missing them all. i hope it’s not too long before we meet up again and get the opportunity to share experiences and new skills learned over this time

Finally, on behalf of the Board of Management, the Staff and myself, I would like to wish you all a very happy Easter. Put the books away, enjoy this down time with family and take the time to appreciate the wonderful world we live .

Slán go fóill.

Ms. Costello

24th March, 2020

Dear Parent/Guardians,

I hope you are all keeping well and remembering to practice social distancing.

The last two weeks have been particularly challenging for families of school going children and with the Minister for Education confirming today that schools will not be reopening in the short term, it looks like these challenges may continue for some time.

We as a school, do not want to add to the stress and pressure that parents/guardians may be feeling right now. We understand fully that the teaching and learning that take place in the classroom cannot be replicated in the home nor would we expect it to. We appreciate how difficult it is to motivate children to do school work when they are not in the school setting. The children have had to adapt to a new way of learning and this takes time. Add to this the many distractions at home and it is easy to see how quickly routine can go out the window.

The teachers have assigned work to our pupils in attempt to ensure continuity of learning and to help provide some structure and routine to the childrens’ day. However, you as the parent/guardian and  primary educator, are best placed to know what is and what is not working for your child/children in your home setting. Remember there are many forms of learning and school work is just one of them. We are really looking forward to hearing all the different skills and knowledge that the children will have acquired by the time we return to school.

To summarise, my message to you is to use the school work provided if it is working for you as a family. If it is not, I am confident that you will think of other activities that will keep your children occupied and engaged during this time. Don’t forget , there are lots of useful links and information  on the school website for both online and offline activities.

Stay well, stay safe and remember we are here to help and support you.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

20th March, 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope this email finds you all well. We are indeed living in unprecedented times.

I understand that juggling and balancing life’s demands is particularly difficult at present. There is also the added worry for some of caring for elderly or vulnerable relatives and a real fear around losing jobs and the fear of contracting the dreaded virus.

Our education system is designed around the norms of classrooms where we as a community trust a small number of adults to deliver a curriculum that enables each child to reach their full attention. Now, parents/guardians are being asked to work from home and home school their children at the same time. No easy task I know.

I am aware that your own family circumstances will dictate what you can provide for your child or children in the home at this time. I know that for some, getting to the teacher assigned work can be a difficult task. So my advice is that education happens in lots of different ways so don’t be hard on yourself or feel guilty if its not happening daily. There is more to education than the curriculum. Our children will bounce back and may indeed pick up many other useful skills during these weeks. You focus at this moment for your family will likely be to keep everyone safe and happy.

Rest assures that the staff are continuing to prepare resources and materials to support the learning that will be taking place at home over the coming days and weeks. Don’t forget that if you are looking for ideas to keep enquiring minds busy, there is a wealth of really useful information and links on the school website.

Please don’t be afraid to reach out to us if there is a concern or question that we might be able to help you with. We may not be able to get back to you straight away but we will do our very best to help and support you. You the parents can support each other by sharing strategies that you have found useful.

We are missing the daily interaction with your children and look forward to re-opening the school when it is safe to do so. Stay safe, stay well and remember when we do come back from this – and we will come back from this – we will come back stronger.

All the best.

Ms Costello.

12th March, 2020

The teachers have prepared SCHOOL WORK for your children to do during school closure. They are contacting their classes on the ‘platform’ they use most frequently and that parents are most used to. This might be Aladdin Connect, Seesaw, Class Dojo, email or Google Classroom. Please note that replicating the classroom learning environment for your child at home would not be possible. So much of the teaching and learning that occurs in the classroom is rooted in oral language e.g. direct teaching, class discussions, partner work and group work. Written work is always built upon an essential foundation of oral language. Therefore, it is not possible or relevant to provide enough ‘written work’ to keep your child busy for the entirety of what would be a school day. What we have tried to do, is provide what we feel is enough work to sustain and reinforce learning until we can return to normal. Teachers will be in touch over the length of the school closure. We will supplement this work with some further suggestions here on the school website, which we hope you will find useful. We provide this work to be helpful and not to put families under any pressure. Routine will be reassuring for your child at this time. These are suggestions only. The work provided is not compulsory.

Code of Behaviour

This policy will be communicated to staff and the school community as appropriate and will be subjected to yearly review, unless there is a compelling reason to review it earlier.

Ratified on: Nov 2019
Reviewed:  October 2020

Introductory Statement

This policy was formulated by the staff, pupils, parents and Board of Management of St. Brigid’s NS Greystones.

Rationale of the Code of Behaviour

Our motto ‘Mol an óige agus tiocfaidh sí’

Our code of behaviour is based on respect for oneself and others. We acknowledge the individuality of each child.  We recognise the variety of differences which exist between children and the need to accommodate these differences.  We foster an atmosphere where each child can learn. We expect each child to respect the rights of others and to play his/her part in making the school a safe and happy place to learn. Teachers, the Board of Management, parents and support staff all work in partnership to ensure that all school hours are devoted to teaching and learning.

Each teacher has responsibility for the maintenance of discipline within his/her classroom while sharing a common responsibility for good order within the school premises.  The overall responsibility for discipline within the school rests with the principal.

We acknowledge that good behaviour, especially in Junior and Senior Infants, flows from a desire to please and is based on the relationship between the child and teacher.  As girls and boys grow older, we recognise that good behaviour is based on mutual respect, a sense of motivation and purposeful learning. We acknowledge that communication, co-operation and positive relationships between parents, teachers and others in the school contribute enormously to good behaviour.

We acknowledge that vigilant supervision and acknowledgment of good behaviour are vital.  Children will be reminded monthly, and as the need arises, about the school’s rules.  A record of unacceptable behaviour is kept by the class teacher.

It was necessary to revise the Code of Behaviour of St. Brigid’s N.S. because:

  • It is an area of concern identified by the school community.
  • The existing policy is due for review.
  • To ensure an orderly climate for learning in the school.
  • It is a requirement under DES Circular 20/90 on School Discipline.
  • It is a requirement under the Education Welfare Act, 2000, Section 23.      
Relationship of the Code of Behaviour to characteristic spirit of the school

In St. Brigid’s N.S. we strive for co-operation between staff and pupils on a daily basis. Our mission statement is to enable each child to learn and develop to his/her full potential in a happy, safe and Christian learning environment. Through this mission statement and school values we aim to provide a caring, harmonious environment which aims to nurture the potential of everyone in the whole school community. We hope that this Code of Behaviour based on respect, responsibility, self-discipline, health and safety, co-operation, and the importance of learning will continue to develop positive relationships which exist in the school and act as a framework for good behaviour.

Aims
  • To ensure an educational environment that is guided by our mission statement
  • To foster and maintain good relationships, partnership and communication in the whole school environment including staff, parents and pupils
  • To create a positive atmosphere of respect, responsibility, tolerance and consideration for others.
  • To promote positive behaviour and self-discipline, recognising the differences between children and the need to accommodate these differences
  • To ensure the safety and well being of all members of the school community
  • To support parents and pupils in understanding school procedures that form part of the Code of Behaviour and to seek their co-operation in the application of these procedures.
  • To ensure that the school rules, rewards and sanctions are implemented in a fair and consistent manner throughout the whole school.
Content of the Policy

The policy is addressed under the following headings:

  1. Behaviour and learning
  • Standards of behaviour expected in the school

What behaviour is unacceptable?

  • Whole school approach to promoting positive behaviour

Staff

Board of Management

Parents

Pupils

  • Positive strategies for managing behaviour

Classroom

Playground

Other areas of the school

  • School Rules

We have basic rules to help protect your rights and to encourage responsibility

Why are school rules needed?

  • Rewards, Unacceptable Behaviour and Sanctions

Rewards and acknowledgement of good behaviour

Strategies for dealing with unacceptable behaviour

  • Procedure for notification of a pupil’s absence from school
  • Reference to other policies
  • Implementation Date
  1. Ratification, Communication and Review
Behaviour and Learning

 

A child’s good behaviour, co-operation and concentration have a very positive impact on his/her own and other’s learning and progress.  Unfortunately, the reverse is also true.

We are continuously monitoring the children’s behaviour.  We do our best to prevent any incidences of misbehaviour/ bullying while children are in our care.  However, as you will appreciate, it is not possible for use to deal with incidences which may arise when children are outside our care. 

When there are concerns regarding a child’s emotional, social wellbeing and development, these concerns will be discussed with the child’s parent(s) guardian(s) and, sometimes, assessment may be recommended.

The purpose of the Code of Behaviour and Anti-Bullying Code is to foster and maintain good relationships and happy learning atmosphere. 

Standards of Behaviour expected in the school


The Education Welfare Act, Section 23, states that the Code of Behaviour shall specify ‘The standards of behaviour that shall be observed by each student attending the school’.

All children are expected to:

  • Behave in a responsible manner, to show courtesy, consideration and respect for others
  • Work diligently, make good use of their time and to refrain from interrupting others at work
  • Be well-behaved, have good manners and obey all teachers and school rules
  • Have good attendance, punctuality and be proud to wear the school uniform
  • Come to school well prepared and take responsibility for their own learning

What behaviour is unacceptable?

It is unacceptable for children to behave in a way that indicates a lack of respect:

  • For themselves, e.g. doing something dangerous and not giving of their best
  • For others, e.g. unkind, disruptive, aggressive or bullying behaviour
  • For adults, e.g. lack of courtesy
  • For property and the environment, e.g. deliberately breaking things
3. Whole School Approach in promoting positive behaviour

Staff

We, the staff of St. Brigid’s N.S., believe that the creation of a positive school learning environment, based on mutual respect between teachers and pupils, is of utmost importance. This positive ethos permeates all activities in the school and helps to form a strong sense of community. It is the policy of St. Brigid’s N.S. to actively promote good behaviour through example, honesty and courtesy. Children learn best by being rewarded. As part of our on-going efforts to promote positive behaviour time will be allocated at some staff meetings for discussion regarding implementation of the code. Staff will be given opportunities to share their experience of both positive and negative behaviour and to learn from collective wisdom.

Teachers will use various strategies to promote good behaviour including “Golden Time”, star/reward charts, stickers, points on class Dojo, homework passes, lucky dip, group competition (groups compete, if someone misbehaves other groups get extra point), extra responsibilities in class and in the school, singling out for exceptional worthwhile achievements and efforts, and other incidental means of praise or reward. The school’s S.P.H.E. curriculum is used to support the code of behaviour. It aims to help children develop communication skills, appropriate ways of interacting and behaving, and conflict resolution skills including S.A.L.T (Stop, Ask, Listen, Talk).

To facilitate new members of staff to become familiar with practices within the school, discussion regarding the implementation of the code will always form part of the first staff meeting held each September. A copy of the code will be available to both parent and teachers on the school website. The code will also be given to parents.

Board of Management

The Board of Management of St. Brigid’s N.S. has overall responsibility for ensuring that the code of behaviour is prepared and revised in line with current legislation.

Parents

Parents play a very important role in helping our school implement its code of behaviour.  Evidence indicates that a good relationship between parents and the school is a very important factor in maintaining high standards of discipline.

Pupils

Pupils were consulted with in the drafting of this Code of Behaviour.

4. Positive strategies for managing behaviour

The most effective methodology that teachers develop in attempting to manage challenging behaviour is to prevent it occurring in the first place’, (Managing Challenging Behaviour, Guidelines for teachers INTO 2004:5).

Classroom

The following positive strategies are used by staff to effectively manage behaviour in the classroom –

  • Class contract is drawn up with the children based on a discussion about respect, co-operation, responsibility, behaviour and learning.
  • Teachers model positive behaviour and ensure pupils are frequently reminded of how they are expected to behave.
  • Classroom management techniques that ensure a variety of activities, for example in S.P.H.E., Golden Time, Pupil of the Week, and ‘Catch them being Good!’

Playground

We have playground rules which emphasise positive behaviour.

The bell rings twice at end of break time in the yard

  • On ringing of the first bell the children ‘Freeze’.
  • On ringing of the second bell children walk to their line and line up in single file.

Other areas of the school

When on the stairs, pupils walk quietly in single file

5. School Rules based on the principles of respect, responsibility, self discipline, health & safety, co-operation & importance of learning

 

School Rules

We have school rules to help you learn, be happy, safe and responsible.  These can be summed up as 6 Golden Rules.

Golden Rules

  1. We listen. We don’t interrupt.
  2. We are gentle. We don’t hurt others.
  3. We are honest.  We tell the truth.
  4. We are kind.
  5. We work hard.  We don’t waste time.
  6. We look after property.  We don’t damage things.

Why are school rules needed?

We have school rules to ensure that children:

  • Are safe and happy;
  • Feel secure and know what is expected of them;
  • Develop respect for themselves, other, their school and their environment;
  • Develop their sense of responsibility and co-operation;
  • Use their time well to learn and develop their talents; and
  • Get on well with others.

No Bullying

Bullying in any form is strictly forbidden.

If you are bullied, follow the Stay Safe Rule: say ‘STOP’, MOVE AWAY and TELL AN ADULT WHOM YOU TRUST.  (Please see Anti-Bullying Policy)

6. Rewards, Unacceptable Behaviour and Sanctions    

Incentives/Reward System              

Part of the vision of St. Brigid’s is to help children achieve their personal best and thus prepare them for further education, life and work.  We recognise that there are many different forms of intelligence and similarly that children use a variety of approaches to solve problems.  Our reward system seeks to provide encouragement to all children of all abilities and talents. Children will be encouraged, praised and listened to by adults in the school.

At St. Brigid’s N.S. we strive to promote effort and positive behaviour by verbal acknowledgement and merits. We promote positive behaviour, where greater emphasis is placed on rewards rather than sanctions.

Rewards:

Rewards such as the following are given:

At Junior Level

  • Verbal praise, stickers and stars are used.
  • Certificates are also given to children for good work and behaviour.
  • Pupils are mentioned at class assembly and over the intercom.

At Senior Level

  • Praise, acknowledgement and appreciation of good behaviour.
  • Merit awards.
  • Classroom privileges.
  • More responsibility.
  • Opportunities for pursuing enjoyable interests and activities.
  • Pupils are mentioned at class assembly and over the intercom.

Unacceptable Behaviour and Sanctions

We as a school have a responsibility to respond to any child’s unacceptable behaviour.

Three levels of misbehaviour are recognised: Minor, Serious and Gross. All everyday instances of a minor nature are dealt with by the class teacher, or the supervising teacher at break-times. 

Sanctions are imposed which take into account the child’s age the seriousness of the misdemeanour and the child’s previous behavioural record. In cases of repeated serious misbehaviour or single instances of gross misbehaviour parents will be involved at an early stage and invited to meet the teacher and/or the principal to discuss their child’s behaviour.

The purpose of a sanction is to bring about a change in behaviour by:

  • Helping students to learn that their behaviour is unacceptable
  • Helping them to recognise the effect of their actions and behaviour on others
  • Helping students (in ways appropriate to their age and development) to understand that they have choices about their own behaviour and that all choices have consequences
  • Helping them to learn to take responsibility for their behaviour.
  • Reinforcing the boundaries set out in the code of behaviour
  • Signalling to other students and to staff that their wellbeing is being protected.

Usually sanctions will relate as closely as possible to the behaviour.

Procedure for dealing with unacceptable behaviour in Junior Classes

The starting point for this process depends on the nature of unacceptable behaviour.

1. Reasoning with the pupil
2. Verbal warning of unacceptable behaviour and advise on how to improve  
3. Second Verbal warning
4. ‘Time-out’ on the thinking chair for a short period.  
5. Time out twice in one day, child required to draw/write out the story of what happened/fill in think sheet to be signed by parents  
6. Communication with parents.  
7. The class teacher will draw up an Individual Reward Chart//Behaviour Contract.with the child which the child, along with his/her parents, will be asked to sign.  
8. Referral to the Principal  
9. ** Referral to the Board of Management. Referral to Board of Management and the parents will be requested to meet the chairperson, the principal, their child’s class teacher, another member of the Board of Management to discuss any breach of contract and subsequent sanctions e.g. shortened school day**  

**On account of Covid 19 protocols, a face-to-face meeting between the parents, Board of Management, principal and class teacher may not be possible at this time. Meetings will take place online using Zoom or Webex **

Procedure for dealing with unacceptable behaviour in Senior Classes

The starting point for this process depends on the nature of unacceptable behaviour.

1. Verbal reprimand including advice on how to improve. .  
2. Second Verbal Warning
3. Temporary separation from peers in the classroom.  
4. Child required to fill in ‘Think sheet’ to be signed by parents.  
5. Communication with parents  
6.  Behaviour Contract to be drawn up with the child, which the child, along with his/her parents, will be asked to sign.  
7 Referral to the Principal
8. **Referral to Board of Management and the parents will be requested to meet the chairperson, the principal, their child’s class teacher, another member of the Board of Management to discuss any breach of contract and subsequent sanctions e.g. shortened school day**  
9. Temporary suspension by the Board of Management in accordance with Rule 130(5).  
10. Expulsion may be considered in an extreme case in accordance with Rule 130(6).  

**On account of Covid 19 protocols, a face to face meeting between the parents, Board of Management, principal and class teacher may not be possible at this time. Meetings will take place online using Zoom or Webex **

Children with Special Needs

All children are required to comply with the code of behaviour. However, the school recognises that children with special needs may require assistance in understanding certain rules.  Specialised behaviour plans will be put in place in consultation with parents and the class teacher, learning support/ resource teacher, and or principal will work closely with home to ensure that optimal support is given. Cognitive development will be taken into account at all times.  Professional advice from psychological assessments will be invaluable.

The children in the class or school may be taught strategies to assist a pupil with special needs adhere to the rules and thus provide peer support.  This will be done in a supportive and safe way, acknowledging and respecting the difference in all individuals.

Please note:

  • For serious instances of misbehaviour, a child may be suspended immediately by the principal with the written approval of the chairperson of the Board of Management.
  • School staff supervise children during school hours and respond to any misbehaviour. The school cannot take responsibility for children’s behaviour outside of school hours.
  • Parents are advised to monitor and supervise their children’s use of the internet/social media and mobile phones.
7. Procedure for notification of a pupil’s absence from school  

The most effective schools are those that have good relationships with parents. Every effort will be made by the Board of Management, Principal and staff to ensure that parents are kept well informed regarding their child’s behaviour. The school provides a welcoming atmosphere towards parents. Parents are not only informed when their child behaves badly, but also when he/she behaves particularly well.

The Education Welfare Act 2000 Section 18 stipulates that parents must notify the school of a student’s absence from school and the reason for this absence. Under the terms of the Educational Welfare Act schools are obliged to inform the EWO (Educational Welfare Officer) when a child has been absent for more than 20 days whatever the reason.

The following is the procedure in this school in the event of a child’s absence from school:

 · If your child is absent from school you are obliged to notify the school in writing or via the Aladdin Connect App giving the dates and reason for absence

· If you know in advance that your child is going to be absent e.g. for dental or medical appointment we would encourage you to inform the class teacher beforehand.

 · If a child is absent for 15 days this is reported to the Principal and a letter is sent to parents reminding them that their child’s absence will be reported to the EWO if the child is absent for 20 days.

 ·  If a child is absent for 20 days or more the Deputy Principal/Principal is obliged to refer this matter to the Education Welfare Officer for his/her consideration. The parents are informed in writing that this referral has taken place. A child’s attendance forms part of their school record and is stored in their personal file. Full school attendance, where possible, is a very important aspect of school life and has a very significant effect on your child’s progress at school.

Children who have very good attendance in St. Brigid’s N.S. are rewarded throughout the year

and also during the last week of school during an awards ceremony.

8. Reference to other policies  

The Code of Behaviour includes information from the following school plans and policies;

  • S.P.H.E. Plan
  • Anti-bullying Policy/
  • Admissions Policy
  • Health and Safety Policy
9. Implementation Date  
  •  
10. Ratification, Communication and Review  

This policy was first implemented on August 31st 2012 and most recently reviewed on 20th October 2020.

The Board of Management has ratified this Code of Behaviour. It will be published on the school website (www.saintbrigidsgreystones.ie) and a copy will be made available to all school personnel, the Parents’ Association, the Patron and to parents on request. 

A copy of this policy will also be made available to the Department of Education and Science if requested. 

This policy will be subjected to yearly review, unless there is a compelling reason to review it earlier.

Signed: Tom Sherlock                        Date: 20/10/2020 (Chairperson, Board of Management)

Addendum – (October 2020) During the current Pandemic crisis, we all have responsibility to keep each other safe and well. In order to do so, we have high expectations of our students to follow the rules and guidelines of the school related to:
Following any altered routines for arrival and departure
Following school instructions on hygiene,
such as handwashing and sanitising
Following instructions on how pupils can socialise at school
Moving around the school following specific instructions
(For example, out of bounds area, queuing, lunch routines)
Expectations about sneezing, coughing, tissues and disposal
(“Catch it, bin it, kill it)
Telling an adult if they are experiencing symptoms of Corona Virus
Rules about sharing any equipment or other items including drink bottlesAmended expectations about break and play times
including where children may or may not play
Use of toilet facilities

Students must not spit at or deliberately cough on another student or staff member. This will be considered a serious misbehaviour and
will be dealt with in accordance with our behaviour policy    

Communications from Principal & BOM re COVID-19 protocols for school

This is a new tab added to the school website menu on 12th August 2020. Here you will find all the information relevant to COVID-19, preventing its spread in St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones rand other related matters. In this way all the information will be to hand in one place. New information will be also posted initially on the homepage as updates in the Latest News section. The most up to date and important information will also be emailed home.

23rd October 2020

Dear Parents, We would like to reassure you that the handsanitiser ‘Virapro’ is not in use St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones. As you may have heard in this morning’s new it has been recalled from use. We are relying more on hand washing using soap than using sanitiser.

25th September 2020

Dear Parents,

My apologies for the  amount of emails you are receiving of late but I feel it is really important to keep you as up to date as possible with what is going on in the school especially in these strange times.

Below please find a copy of a letter detailing procedures we have put in place if we have a confirmed case of COVID 19 in the school. It is important to note that we do not have any confirmed positive cases in the school at this time.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

Date: 25/09/2020

Dear Parents and Staff,

Re: If we have a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the school

We do not have any confirmed positive cases of Covid-19 in the school. However, it is only prudent that we consider what procedures are in place to deal if such a situation were to arise so that all of us are aware in advance of what happens in such an event.

Safety and Control Measures

The BoM, school leadership and staff are very conscious of the paramount need to keep all pupils, staff and visitors safe while in the school.  The school is a controlled environment. There are control measures in place to combat the introduction or spread of COVID-19.  These are based on:

  • Physical Distancing
  • Hand Hygiene
  • Respiratory and Hygiene Etiquette
  • Mask Wearing

When a person displays symptoms of COVID-19

The following steps are taken when a person (child or adult) in the school presents with suspected COVID-19 symptoms:

  • That person is moved to the isolated area prior to going home. In the case of children, their parents will be asked to come to the school, take them home and contact their GP for a free telephone consultation
  • If the GP recommends that the person (child or adult) go for a COVID-19 test, that person is now considered a query case for COVID-19 and all of his/her household members are removed from the school and must restrict their movements until the results of the test come back
  • In the case of a negative result (98% of cases), the GP will advise when the person should return to school – usually after 48 hours.
  • In the case of a positive result (2% of cases), Public Health will, by law, be informed. This may take a matter of hours due to legal and volume of work issues.  The risk has been removed from the school as the person who tested positive and his/her household are at home
  • The person tested, or their parents, may well be informed before Public Health. In many cases a social media discussion ensues and anxiety levels are raised among the school community.

Public Health Intervention

The Public Health Department of the HSE is the agency responsible by law for dealing with positive cases of COVID-19:

  • Once notified by the HSE testing regime, Public Health Doctors assume total control of the situation and will carry out a risk assessment. Based on questioning, the person with the positive result they will ascertain if they were within the school setting when they contracted the virus.  If not, there is no need to contact the school
  • If the person was within the school setting when they contracted the virus, Public Health will contact the principal to carry out a Public Health Risk Assessment. This is a set of questions to see who might have been exposed to the virus and who needs to be excluded or tested.  This risk assessment will be unique to each school
  • The principal and BoM have no function in the risk assessment other than to provide whatever information is required by the Public Health Medical Officer conducting the risk assessment
  • The principal and BoM may be asked to assist the Medical Office by sending a message from them to the relevant families identified in the risk assessment. Public Health will not contact other members of the school community
  • The principal and BoM are not permitted to inform members of the school community of the identity of the person or persons who have tested positive for COVID-19 for the following reasons:
  • Doctor – Patient confidentiality
  • GDPR legislation prevents the publication of personal data without consent.

Tom Sherlock (Chairperson Board of Management)

Máire Costello (Principal/Secretary Board of Management)

************************

9th September 2020

Re: Allocation of Homework/ Schoolwork when a child is Absent from School

Dear Parents/ Guardians,

I would like share some information with you in relation to the allocation of Homework / Schoolwork when a child absent from school.

Scenario 1

Our School Policy in relation to providing homework / schoolwork for children who are absent due to a short term illness or away on holiday during term time still applies i.e. they are not provided with work. We would encourage them to read while they are absent. There are also a number of useful educational links on our school website which they can tap into. The teacher will work with them when they come back to school.

Scenario 2

Awaiting on COVID Test Result – No homework/ schoolwork is provided. Again, there are educational links on the school website that children can use while they are absent from school.

Scenario 3

If your child has to quarantine due to a positive COVID test or is designated as a close contact of a person who tested positive – Homework/ schoolwork will be provided.

Scenario 4

If a child has an underlying illness and is not attending school, work will be provided.

On a personal note, I would like to thank all the parents for the part you are playing in keeping your children home from school when they are unwell. We are all in this together and the health and safety of the whole school community is a top priority for us all.

Thanks again for your support and cooperation as we adapt to new routines and protocols.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

*********************************

St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones

COVID-19 Response Plan

Protocols in place for the safe reopening of the school

Contents

Introduction

1.0 Planning and preparing for return to school safely:

Measures in place

2.0 The Importance of Communication

3.0 Wellbeing

4.0 The Curriculum

5.0 Special Education Needs

6.0 Future proofing

 

Introduction

The School Covid19 Response Plan for St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones is in line with

  • Department of Education guidance
  • the Return to Work Safely Protocol and public health guidance from HSE re limiting spread of the virus, hygiene and respiratory etiquette
  • and the specific requirements of the school

The Covid-19 Response Plan is designed to support the staff and Board of Management (BOM) put measures in place that to prevent the spread of Covid-19 in the school environment.

The Covid-19 Response Plan details the policies and practices necessary for a school to reopen and to prevent the introduction and spread of Covid-19 in the school environment.

It is important that the resumption of school-based teaching and learning and the reopening of school facilities complies with the public health advice and guidance documents prepared by the Department. Doing so minimises the risk to pupils, staff and others. The Response Plan supports the sustainable reopening of school where the overriding objective is

  • to protect the health of staff and pupils
  • while promoting the educational and development needs of the pupils in the school.

The COVID-19 response plan will be updated in line with the public health advice.

In line with the Return to Work Safely Protocol, the key to a safe and sustainable return to work, and reopening of schools requires strong communication and a shared collaborative approach between the BOM, staff, pupils and parents.

The assistance and cooperation of all staff, pupils, parents, contractors and visitors is critical to the success of the plan in order for the school to re-open safely on 26th August 2020 for staff, and 27th August 2020 for students.

St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones understand that all school records and data must be maintained and processed in compliance with the GDPR and the Data Protection Acts. The responsibility for compliance with the legislation rests with each school (or ETB) in their role as data controller.

The information provided in this document is correct at the time of publication.

RESPONSE PLAN Before reopening schools for the 2020/21 school year  St. Brigid’s NS has the following protocols in place:
1.0  Planning

&

Preparing

for

Returning

to school safely

 

a)    School COVID-19 Policy Statement completed and ratified by BOM on the 12/08/2020. This policy outlines the commitment of the school to implement the plan and help prevent the spread of the virus. The policy will be signed and dated by the chairperson and principal of the BOM and brought to the attention of students, parents and staff. Schools must have a COVID-19 policy in place prior to the reopening of schools for the 2020/21 school year

b)    Return to Work Forms distributed. Forms to be returned at least three days before staff returned to work (23rd August) and reviewed.

c)    Arrangements made to keep up to date with public health advice and any updates. Provision made to pass on this information in a timely manner to staff, pupils, parents and stakeholders as required;

d)    Once ‘Return to Work Forms’ received, Induction Training online is provided for staff. Information provided: latest advice and guidance on public health, Covid-19 symptoms, what to do if a staff member or pupil develops symptoms of Covid-19 while at school, the Covid-19 response plan.

Staff will be kept fully informed of the control measures in place in the school and their duties and responsibilities in preventing the spread of Covid-19. This will be ongoing and will be updated with any changes to the control measures or guidance available from the public health authorities. If a staff member is unsure about any aspect of the Response Plan, Covid control measures or his/her duties, he/she should contact Principal, Lead Worker Representative (LWR) or Assistant Worker Representative.

e)    Contact Tracing Log is located at secretary’s office. Visitors to school will be limited on account of Covid-19. Permission will be needed from the school for anyone to visit the school. If there is an urgent reason a parent needs to visit, they are asked to contact the school first.

f)     School Management Checklist has been completed .

g)    Information on how to deal with a suspected case displayed in school so as to be to hand and circulated to staff. Confidentially important when this happens.

h)    Parents asked if their child is unwell to keep them at home and to err on the side of caution (newsletter emailed on Aladdin Connect and posted on school website)

i)        Lead Worker Representatives and Assistant Worker Representatives have been elected by the staff. The LWRs are Sile Heneghan and Orla Teehan. The Assistant LWRs are Helana Moore and Sharleen Hogan.

j)        Aide appointed. St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones has less than 500 students so an Aide was appointed for five days work to help with the reopening of the school.

k)    Health and Safety Risk Assessment compiled and action plan developed.

l)      Emergency Plan developed in order to review the school’s procedures involving fire drills, first aid, accidents and other occurrences to consider any new risks that arise due to the school’s COVID-19 Response Plan. Any changes to the school’s existing emergency procedures will be included in the school’s safety statement.

m)  Control Measures A range of essential control measures have been implemented to reduce the risk of the spread of Covid-19 virus and to protect the safety, health and welfare of staff, pupils, parents and visitors as far as possible within the school. These measures will be reviewed as they are implemented to check that they are working. A more formal review will be conducted at the end of September. It is critical that staff, pupils, parents and visitors are aware of, and adhere to, the control measures outlined and that they fully cooperate with all health and safety requirements.

e.g. Social distancing between students will not be necessary from Junior Infants to 2nd. From 3rd Class to 6th students are required to maintain one metre distance from each other. It is recommended that where possible a teacher should maintain a distance of two metres from students Junior Infants to 6th and from each other. The Department of Education advised (7th August 2020) where it is not possible for teachers to maintain two metres social distancing in their classrooms, they should wear face masks or visors as appropriate

In order to facilitate social distancing an additional school gate has been opened on Trafalgar Road, near Mooney’s Shop. There will now be four entrances in total.

·         Entrance 1 is for Rooms 10, 11, 12 and 19 and RECEPTION

·         Entrance 2 is for Rooms 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9

·         Entrance 3 is for Roome 14, 15, 16, 17 and 20

·         Entrance 4 is for Staff only

The school yard has been divided into three Zones. Class bubbles will only be allowed to play within their designated Zone.

Break times are staggered:

·         Sos – Infants to 3rd (10.15 – 10.25) and 4th to 6th (10.30 – 10.40)

·         Lón – Infants to 3rd (12.00 – 12.30) and 4th-6th (12.40 – 1.10)

Open windows and good ventilation will be important. There will be signage on display with information about COVID-19 and how to prevent its spread. This will be provided by the Department of Education and Skills

The hours allocated to cleaning have been increased by over 30% from 40 hours per week to 65 hours per week.

Staff should note that they have a legal obligation under Section 13 of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 to comply with health and safety requirements and to take reasonable care for the health and safety of themselves, their colleagues and other parties within the workplace.

The control measures shall continue to be reviewed and updated as required on an ongoing basis.

2.0 Communication

 

The key to a safe and sustainable return to work and reopening of schools is strong communication and a shared collaborative approach between the BOM, staff, students and parents. Relevant information concerning to the return to school and the safe operation of the school, will be communicated to staff, parents and students.

Communication with parents and staff will be by email and on Aladdin. Parents and staff will communicate information to children in an age appropriate way. In addition, advice and information will be given to children by the principal over the school intercom. Information will also be available on the school website https://www.saintbrigidsgreystones.ie/ It is important that all parents are signed up to Aladdin Connect and that they check the school website to keep up to date.

3.0 Wellbeing

 

During this time children, parents and teachers will be getting used to new routines and changes in school on account of Covid-19. The management and staff are conscious of the wellbeing of all.

Students: Teachers with the support of parents will help the children return to school. Routine and the familiar will be important. So too will be the activities children associate with school that they enjoy. ‘Weaving Wellbeing’ is a programme used in the school from 2nd to 6th. Infant classes will also have SPHE lessons with their wellbeing in mind.

Parents: Where parents have concerns they think the school could help with, they are invited to contact the class teacher or Principal, depending on the nature of their concern. If circumstances change for a child at home, it is always helpful to let the teacher know.

Staff will continue to work as a team supporting one another under the guidance of the School Principal. As instructed in the Roadmap for Reopening Schools Lead Worker Representatives and Assistant LWRs have been elected from the staff. Staff would ask parents to be understanding of the new situation we are all adapting too. Communication will be the key to understanding, good relationships and wellbeing.

4.0 The Curriculum The management and staff are also conscious of the importance of the school curriculum and learning at this time. Students have been engaging with ‘Distance Learning’ since March 2020. Teachers will do their best to balance the need for ‘catch up’ with the 3Rs on account of time missed with the need for the children to ‘catch up’ socially and the affective domain.

Assessment of where the students are in terms of learning may be a starting point. Revision of what would have been the Summer term’s work in their previous class may also be called for. Unfortunately, there may be less active or collaborative learning, less group work, less learning through play, using manipulatives etc. and more ‘chalk and talk’. There may be a need for ‘distance learning’ for children with underlying conditions.

Staff will work together to do their best overcome the limitations caused by COVID -19 and prepare for the various possibilities that may lie ahead.

5.0  Special Educational Needs

 

 

There may be children whose behavioural/sensory needs are such they need to be prioritised. The Special Education Teacher/Team will need to work with them for some part of the day as part of re-establishing their routine and relationships. SET can work in pairs so that when one SET is doing this the other is available for deployment that may be required in these unprecedented times.
Both Class and SET can see that children with diagnoses like dyslexia, dyscalculia, dyspraxia are differentiated for sufficiently in class. This is more important than ever before. Support can be supplemented with technology at home and at school e.g. a child with an Irish exemption working on programmes during Irish time e.g. touch typing.
Some of SEN children (with parental encouragement) did exceptionally well with using online programmes during the COVID closures. There may well be a value in upskilling SEN students in using these programmes in the coming term. It would teach them valuable computer skills and give them an advantage if ‘distance learning’ became necessary again.In order to re-open the school there may be a change in the short term to the level of support/face to face teaching that SET can give children in their caseload. A whole school approach to ADHD, developing gross motor skills would have all children building movement breaks into their day. Using the outdoors more on account of COVID-19 has been recommended. In addition children’s sensory needs will need to be met to help them readjust to being back in school.SET will need to connect with the children in their caseload and build a supportive relationship with them. This is REALLY important. However, numbers in the groups taken by SET will need to be smaller to enable social distancing. SET could not be able to work with groups of students from any more than one class at a time as children have to remain within their own ‘bubble’. Perhaps the solution would be to timetable a shorter time with students e.g. 20 minutes instead of so that each student could attend SET a couple of times a week.It would seem that in-class initiatives, station teaching, Phonics Blast and Maths Blast will not be possible at this time and that withdrawal rather than in-class teaching will be how SET operate. Whole school approaches and teamwork between class teachers and SET will be key as will communication and collaboration with parents. The importance of all children reading/being read to at home can never be underestimated.The Department of Education has said that for some children with SEN maintaining physical distancing may not be practical or appropriate. Parents/guardians should have a heightened awareness of signs, symptoms or changes in baseline which suggests illness/COVID-19 infection and where symptoms are present children should not attend school.

 

5.0

Conclusion

We do not know what the year ahead has in store, but the staff of St. Brigid’s would aspire to work together with parents and children to respond to whatever it may bring. All we can do is follow the safety guidelines, give of our best and prepare for whatever the new school year may bring.

Click HERE to download the Risk Assessment for St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones. This is a Working Document. It is subject to change – as the situation and guidelines from the HSE and DES.

Emergency Plan

Staff of St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones have reviewed the school’s emergency procedures; fire safety, first aid, accidents etc. to consider any new risks that might arise due to the school’s COVID-19 Response Plan. Many of the standard procedures as outlined in the school’s First Aid, Fire Evacuation Procedures and Accident/Injury Protocols will continue to be applied. However there are changes as follows:

First Aid

First Aid is now outdoors during break times. Staff wear masks. They also have gloves. Ice packs are taken from the bottom shelf of the mini freezer and placed in the sink after use. They are sanitized before being returned to the freezer. Only the staff on First Aid duty handle the icepacks. Staff on First Aid sanitize before duty and after each ‘patient’.

Fire drill

Previously fire drill was conducted effectively with students coming down both sides of the stairs and along both sides of the corridors. There would not be a 2m distance between children under these circumstance. So in the first term each class will practice fire drill as a class and at different times. In this way the children will be familiar with the route out of the school in the event that the alarm bell goes off. The school will identify additional fire evacuation areas to achieve the 2m physical distancing necessary between class bubbles 3rd– 6th. Fire drill procedures will be reviewed in advance of the second term when any changes will depend on public health advice at that time.

Accident/Injury protocols

In an emergency or in case of a serious incident, we will call for an ambulance or the fire brigade as normal on 112/999 giving details of location and type of medical incident.

********************************************* 

4th September, 2020

Dear Parents/ Guardians,

We have completed our first full week and I feel things went really smoothly. Thank you again for your cooperation at drop off and collection times and for wearing face covering while on the school premises. As I have said many times before we are all in this together and it is great that everyone is playing their part.

I know the boys and girls had a lot of new routines to get used to. But they are adapting like fish to water. The congestion at drop off and collection has eased considerably. Today was the first day our 1st and 2nd classes went in on their own and they are to be commended for how well they managed.

The staff would like to wish all the boys and girls who are making their First Communion tomorrow the very best and hope they have a lovely day. They have had to wait for a long time for this and I know it is going to be all the more special.

Our PE teacher Cormac is all set and ready to start back next Thursday 10th. The children really look forward to his classes and I know they will give them a big welcome back. All classes will have two sessions of PE a week. One with the class teacher and one with Cormac. For this year PE will be outdoors as much as possible so we would ask you that your child has a rain jacket with them on their PE days. Click Who has PE on a Day to download the details PE days for the different classes for your convenience.

The Junior Infants are really settling into school. I am so proud of them all. They are ready to make their next big jump on ‘Independence Day’ Thursday 10th September when they will be in school for their first full day from 8.50 am -1.40 pm. I know they will be great.

The children have worked really hard this their first week back and are deserving of a well earned break.

Have a lovely weekend. Don’t forget we are here for you if you need us.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

******************************************************
2nd September 2020

Dear Parents,

Thank you very much for helping us provide a safe, secure and happy environment in which your child can learn.

We are adjusting to the ‘new normal’. Our safety protocols are constantly under review.

We are close to having a good ‘drop off’ in the mornings at ‘Mrs. Mooney’s gate’ where the younger students are entering the school.

The children themselves have been wonderful. The Junior Infants excelled at arriving in unaccompanied on their third day and lining up with their teacher in the school yard.

However, the wet weather on so many mornings since the beginning of term has not helped.

1. Could we remind all adults to ‘drop and go’ because not doing so can lead to congestion on the footpath.

2. As difficult as it is could we ask parents not to congregate at the wall by Mrs. Mooney’s gate. We understand that you want to see how your child is doing, but social distancing in not occurring.

3. We would also ask you to cross at the Lollipop Lady. We do realise that brings you a little out of your way if you are coming over the bridge from the Church Road direction. However, crossing at that corner is a very dangerous place to cross. For this reason, we would like to get all students into the habit of walking down to cross with the Lollipop Lady.

4. Finally we recommend that your child dress warmly in school. In line with recommendations we are trying to keep the rooms ventilated and so the classroom windows are open.

Thank you again for your continued support. We are all in this together.

Ms. Costello and Ms. Beausang

***************************************************

31st August 2020

Dear Parents,

We are looking forward to our first full week in school since last March. Please find below some important information. At the start of each school year we experience some problems with drop off and collection. This soon settles down as parents and children adapt to the new routine. Again I would plead with you to be patient during this time.

Junior Infants

I just want to complement our Junior Infants on how well they did this morning saying goodbye at the gates. They were absolutely fantastic and an example to us all. Thank you, parents, for preparing them so well for this.

Drop and Go!

I appreciate it is early days and we are all still getting used to new routines. Thank you for cooperating with wearing face coverings when in the vicinity of the school. We would ask that you do not congregate at the gates so that the children can enter the school without having to step off the footpath. Ideally you could drop the children close to the school and watch them walk to their gate.

Gates

Gate 1: Main gate Trafalgar Road at Pedestrian Crossing. This gate is for Reception / Room 10, Room 11, Room 12 & Room 19

Gate 2: Wooden Gate beside Mrs Mooney’s. This gate is for Rooms 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8 & 9.

Gate 3: Laneway Gate Kimberley Road. This gate is for Rooms 14,15,16,17 & 20.

Late Drops Off

Gate 2 & 3 will be locked at 9.00 am sharp. The only entrance to the school after this time is through Gate 1. Please note it will be closed over but will not be padlocked.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello
***************************************************

Click HERE to download the Risk Assessment for St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones. This is a Working Document. It is subject to change – as the situation and guidelines from the HSE and DES.

***************************************************

30th August, 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope you are all having a nice weekend

On Thursday we were delighted to be able to welcome at last our new Junior Infants to the school for their first two days of formal education. The children seemed to really enjoy their time with us and are already settling into a little routine.

It was amazing to see the boys and girls from Senior Infants to 6th class walking back in through the gates of St. Brigid’s after almost six months.away. They seemed happy to be reunited with their friends and finally get the opportunity to meet their teachers. So far so good..

We are really looking forward to a full week this week and hope the children are too. The gates will open for all children including Junior and Senior Infants at 8.50am and classes will begin at 9.00am.

3rd to 6th class will enter the school grounds through their designated gates (Either Gate 2 or Gate 3) and go straight to their classrooms.

Junior Infants to Second class will be dropped at Gate 1 and enter the Basketball Yard where their teachers will be waiting for them.

By Wednesday we are hoping that our 1st and 2nd classes will have become familiar with their routes into the school and be able to go straight to their classrooms from Thursday on wards.

As I have said in previous emails, nothing is set in stone..We will be reviewing drop off and collection routines on a regular basis to ensure we have the best possible set up.

Finally, thank you for your co-operation as we implement these new routines. We could not do it without you.

Here’s to a great week ahead.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

Principal

****************************************************
28th August 2020

Dear Parents/ Guardians, Just some important updates to share with you.

Hand sanitisers have been installed in all classrooms and public areas throughout the school. It is not necessary for children to bring in their own personal hand sanitisers, nor is it recommended by the Department of Education and Skills. However, if you would like your child to bring in their own sanitiser it is important that they do not share it with anybody else. It is for their use only.

Travel & Restricted Movement: If you or any member of your household has returned from a country that is not on the ‘green list’ it is a requirement that all members of that household restrict their movement for 14 days. This includes children that may not have travelled to the country. This is the advice we received this morning from the HSE.

COVID 19 Testing: If any member of your household is being tested/awaiting testing for COVID 19 the entire household must isolate until a negative test result is received. If a positive test is received self-isolation for 14 days is required. Again, we received this advice this morning from the HSE.

Face Covering: We appreciate that it is difficult for parents to maintain the 2 m distance at drop off and collection times. We would therefore ask that you would wear a face covering to help ensure safety for all.

We really appreciate how you have cooperated with us since we reopened. As I have said in previous emails, nothing is set in stone and it’s an ever-evolving situation. We will be reviewing constantly the new routines and procedures and will make changes when and if necessary.

Have a lovely weekend. Hope this rain goes away!

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello
****************************************************************************

As you know from emails and the information on the school website, a great deal of work has been going on over the Summer Break so that the school is thoroughly clean with all the hygiene protocols in place. A lot of organising and planning has been done so a safe school day is possible.

Click HERE to download planning on gates, break times and zones in the yard. We trust that the level of planning you see reassures you that we are doing our very best.

Despite all the work that has gone in to reopening the school, there remains some unknowns. There may be questions no one will know the answer to until we are up and running. There may well be questions we hadn’t even thought of asking. But somethings are for sure: this time will not be without its challenges. We won’t have gotten everything right. Mistakes will be made. We will need to be positive and ‘solution focused’.

While parents, children and staff will be relieved that the children are back at school and we will all want to get back to close to normal, we also may be apprehensive, unsure, unfamiliar with the changes. We will need to be kind to one another and understanding and have patience in spades.

****************************************************

Scroll down this post to see LETTERS SENT HOME concerning the preparations for the return to school.

26th August 2020

Dear Parents/ Guardians,

We are almost there! Only one more sleep to the grand reopening! have big hopes for a good year ahead. Below is just some information that you might find useful. Looking forward to seeing the boys and girls in their full school uniform.

New Protocols for Parents and Guardians

Entry to School: No parents/guardians are permitted to enter the school building without a prior appointment with the Principal.

Dropping off Forgotten Items: Again unfortunately, parents/ guardians will not be permitted to drop off books/projects/ lunches to the office during the school day.

Late Drop Off: If you are late dropping off your child to school, enter the school via Gate 1 and make your way to Reception using the second door on the right of main building. Please use the buzzer and the secretary will let your child in. Please be patient if the door is not answered immediately as most of the time there will be only one secretary on duty.

Collecting Children Early: If you need to collect your child early you need to notify the teacher in writing stating reason for early collection via teacher email. Your child can be collected from the door at reception. Unfortunately, parents will not be able to enter the school when collecting their child. You will need to wait under the shelter outside. Again, we would ask for your patience with this.

At Drop Off and Collection: We would ask you not to congregate at the school gates and be mindful of keeping the 2m social distance at all times.

Bicycles

We have had a number of queries in relation to children coming to school on their bikes/scooters. We have given this a lot of thought and we consider it appropriate that children coming to school with bicycles / scooters should enter through Gate 3 on Kimberley Road. We will be reviewing this at the end of September.

Siblings Entering / Exiting Through Different Gates

We appreciate your cooperation in ensuring your child enters the school through their designated gate. We currently have 317 families in the school and we’re unable to coordinate all siblings entering through the same gate. We will review this on an ongoing basis.

PE & After School Activities

PE will start back the week of 7th September. You will receive an email with your child’s PE days. Full school uniform should be worn everyday except for PE days. Children may wear shorts for PE during the month of September. As we anticipate doing as much of our PE as possible outdoors this year please ensure that your child brings a waterproof Rain Jacket to school on PE days.
Basketball and GAA. We will need to update you on this next week.

Schools’ Response Plan to COVID 19 Requirements

COVID 19 Induction programmes have been completed by all staff.
Deep cleaning of the school was completed over the summer months with Liquid Guard applied to all high contact points including light switches, door handles etc.
Extra cleaning hours have been allocated with the hours increased from 40 to 65 hours per week for this year.
COVID 19 policy has been adopted by the Board of Management and will be put up on the school website over the coming days.
COVID 19 Risk Assessment Policy was prepared and completed with ongoing reviews in place.
COVID 19 Signage has been placed throughout the school.
Hand sanitisers are in place in all classrooms, offices and entrance of the school.
Masks/ visors will be worn by all staff.
Ms Heneghan and Ms Teehan have been appointed as our COVID 19 Lead Worker Representatives along with Helena Moore and Sharleen Hogan as Assistant Lead Worker Representatives. They will ensure compliance with statutory obligations.
If a child becomes ill in school showing symptoms of COVID 19 they will be brought to one of the two isolation rooms in the school. Their temperature will be taken using an infrared thermometer and parents will be contacted. The parents will be advised to consult their GP and update us of the situation. Should the child be confirmed with a positive test this becomes a Public Health matter. The HSE will do a full risk assessment and are responsible for carrying out a full contract tracing. It is Public Health who determine whether the pod/ bubble or school will close. This is not a responsibility of the Board of Management.
Homework

The focus for teaching and learning for the month of September will be Literacy, Numeracy and Wellbeing. We as a staff have decided that there will be no written homework for this month as the children adapt to the new routines of school. We see this as a great opportunity for parents to sit read as much as possible with their children. However, reading, tables, spellings will be given to older classes.

No Early Close Tomorrow

There is no early close for children from Senior to 6th Class. Please refer to previous emails for Junior Infant and Senior Infant start times and gates the enter the school.

We look forward to seeing everyone tomorrow. We are all very excited to be reunited with the boys and girls after such a long time.

****************************************************

Dear Parents / Guardians,

The BoM and School Staff are looking forward to welcoming all our pupils and parents / guardians back to school for the 2020/2021 school year in three days time on Thursday 27th August.

We are satisfied that we have control measures in place to ensure that this will be a safe re-opening. It will take some time for all of us to get used to the “new circumstances” as we become familiar with the new routines and procedures designed to keep everyone safe and to prevent the spread of the virus. There will, undoubtedly, be some unforeseen challenges and we will deal with these as they arise.

We would like to thank you for your co-operation in making preparations to date and look forward to working with you as we assist the children adapt to the necessary changes. We are also conscious of the fact that our pupils have not been in school since March and that they are looking forward to coming back to school to meet their friends again. We are aware that our new pupils are beginning a school year at a challenging time and have made plans to ensure that their arrival will be as free from stress as possible.

Kind regards

Tom Sherlock Máire Costello

Chairman Board of Management Principal
****************************************************
DROP OFF & COLLECTION

JUNIOR INFANT CLASSES

Sunday 23rd August

Dear Parents / Guardians,

As you already know,our school will reopen on Thursday 27th August. We want to ensure your children experience a calm, safe and fun first day despite significant restrictions imposed due to Covid 19. Traditionally in years past, the Junior Infants always attend for a shorter day for the first two weeks in order to settle in successfully. We have found this works well and will continue with this practice for this year.

While nothing is risk free and we are being asked to take a leap of faith as we reopen our doors, the Board of Management and the School Leadership Team have been working extremely hard to ensure a safe as possible return to school for all pupils and staff on Thursday. We have now finalised our plans for drop-off and collection of our three Junior Infant classes. Please be aware that these plans are not set in stone and will be under ongoing review.

As stated in the Department of Education and Skills Guidelines, visitors to the school (including parents and guardians) will be severely restricted. Unfortunately, therefore, you will only be able to accompany your child to his/her classroom for the first two days. At the end of the day, your child will be collected from a designated area in the playground.

The most notable changes for this year are:

-that each class will have a specific entry and exit gate (See below for details)
-later drop off times for Junior Infants for Thursday 27th and Friday 28th August only
-there will be no lining up in the yard at drop off time in the morning as the children will go straight to their classrooms with the exception of the first two days back – (See below)
-Drop off and Collection

Drop off Thursday 27th August – Staggered – 9.30am & 9.40am

Drop off Friday 28th August – Staggered – 9.30am & 9.40am

Drop off from Monday 31st August onwards – 8.50am for all Junior Infants

All Junior Infants will enter and exit the school grounds through Gate 2 which is the wooden gates on Trafalgar Road beside The Fat Fox.
Entry to the school on the first two days will be staggered – Your child’s class has been split into 2 groups to allow you and your child to enter the school building on a staggered basis. Each group will get a specific time to arrive at the school. We will advise you of your time in an email tomorrow.
For the first two days, one parent only will be allowed accompany their Junior Infant Child into their classroom so that physical distancing can be maintained as much as possible.
All adults will be required to wear a face covering and sanitise their hands on entering the building.
Children will be given an assigned place to sit.
Parents will be required to leave promptly to allow for the next group of children and parents to enter the room. A member of staff will be present to guide you to your exit point.
From Monday 31st August, parents will not be permitted to accompany their child into the classroom. The children should be dropped to the wooden gate where they will be met by their class teachers who will bring them safely to their classrooms.
Collection – 11.50am up until Wednesday 9th September and 1.40pm from Thursday 10th September
The children will be lined up alphabetically and brought to designated collection zones in the black yard by their class teachers. The children can be collected from these zones. In the interest of social distancing we would ask that you do not encroach beyond the boundary of the basketball court at collection time. We would also ask that you leave the grounds promptly to facilitate the use of the yard and basketball court by the older children..

It is imperative that

adults do not come within 2m of each other
parents do not try to have meetings with members of staff in the playground at drop-off and collection times
meetings between parents and teachers can only take place by prior arrangement. For everyone’s safety, this may be done via phone calls or emails
all parents adhere to the drop-off and collection plans as outlined above
Working together we hope to be able to progress the reopening in as safe a manner as possible for all. We would ask all parents to familiarise themselves with the above drop-off and collection routines for the safe delivery and collection of pupils from school. Please be patient as we endeavour to embed these necessary precautionary and protective practices at the beginning of the school year

I apologise for the amount of information contained in this email. I know there is an awful lot to take in. Don’t hesitate to get in touch if you are unclear about anything.

This is a huge week for us all as we return to school and we really appreciate your support as we try to safely reopen the school building.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello
Principal
****************************************************

DROP OFF & COLLECTION

SENIOR INFANT CLASSES

Sunday 23rd August

Dear Parents / Guardians,

The Board of Management and the School Leadership Team have been working extremely hard to ensure a safe return to school for all pupils and staff on Thursday. We have now finalised our plans for drop-off and collection of our two Senior Infant classes. Please be aware that these plans are not set in stone and will be under ongoing review.

The most notable changes for this year are:

-that each class will have a specific entry and exit gate (See below for details)
-later drop off time of 9.10am for Senior Infants for Thursday 27th and Friday 28th August only
-there will be no lining up in the yard at drop off time in the morning as the children will go straight to their classrooms with –the exception of the first two days back – (See below)

Drop off and Collection

To facilitate physical distancing, each class will have a specific entry and exit point. See below for details.

Gate 2 – Wooden Gates on Trafalgar Road (Beside Mooney’s / Fat Fox)
· Room 1 – Ms Teehan (Senior Infants)
· Room 2 – Ms Carwood (Junior Infants)
· Room 3 – Ms McGuirk (Junior Infants)
· Room 4 – Ms Coffey (Junior Infants)
· Room 5 – Ms Mangan (1st Class)
· Room 6 – Ms Corcoran (1st Class)
· Room 7 – Ms Smith (Senior Infants)
· Room 8 – Ms O’Donnell (2nd Class)
· Room 9 – Substitute teacher for Ms. Cuffe (2nd Class)

Drop Off – 9.10am for the first two days and 8.50am from Monday 31st August.
For the first two days back only, one parent will be permitted to bring their children into the school yard, where they will be met by their class teachers who will bring them to their classrooms.
From Monday 31st August, the children should be dropped off at the gate where there will be members of staff waiting to greet them and direct them safely to their classrooms.

Collection – 1.40pm
The children can be collected from the school yard at designated points. For Ms Smith’s class this will be at the basketball hoop at the top end of the black yard and for Ms. Teehans, class this will be at the basketball hoop at the bottom end of the black yard next to the convent. The class teachers will bring their classes to the designated collection points. In the interest of social distancing, we would ask that the parents do not encroach beyond the boundary of the basketball court.

Working together we hope to be able to progress the reopening in as safe a manner as possible for all. We would ask all parents to familiarise themselves with the above drop-off and collection routines for the safe delivery and collection of pupils from school. Please be patient as we endeavour to embed these necessary precautionary and protective practices at the beginning of the school year.

It is imperative that

-adults do not come within 2m of each other
-parents do not try to have meetings with members of staff in the playground at drop-off and collection times
-meetings between parents and teachers can only take place by prior arrangement. For everyone’s safety, this may be done via phone calls or emails
-all parents adhere to the drop-off and collection plans as outlined above.

This is a huge week for us all as we return to school and we really appreciate your support as we try to safely reopen the school building.

Kind regards,

Tom Sherlock Máire Costello
Chairperson Board of Management Principal

****************************************************

DROP OFF & COLLECTION

1st & 2nd CLASSES

Thursday 20th August

Dear Parents / Guardians,

The Board of Management and the School Leadership Team have been working extremely hard to ensure a safe return to school for all pupils and staff in a week’s time. We have now finalised our plans for drop-off and collection of the children. Please be aware that these plans are not set in stone and will be under ongoing review.

The most notable changes for this year are:

  • that each class will have a specific entry and exit gate (See below for details)
  • there will be no lining up in the yard at drop off time in the morning as the children will go straight to their classrooms with the exception of the first two days back – (See below)

Drop off and Collection

Gates will open at 8.50 am and classes will start at 9.00 am

To facilitate physical distancing, each class will have a specific entry and exit point. See below for details.

Gate 2 – Wooden Gates on Trafalgar Road (Beside Mooney’s / Fat Fox)

  • Room 1 – Ms Teehan (Senior Infants)
  • Room 2 – Ms Carwood (Junior Infants)
  • Room 3 – Ms McGuirk (Junior Infants)
  • Room 4 – Ms Coffey (Junior Infants)
  • Room 5 – Ms Mangan (1st Class)
  • Room 6 – Ms Corcoran (1st Class)
  • Room 7 – Ms Smith (Senior Infants)
  • Room 8 – Ms O’Donnell (2nd Class)
  • Room 9 – Substitute teacher for Ms. Cuffe (2nd Class)

Drop Off – 8.50am

For the first two days back only, parents will be permitted to bring their children into the school yard, where they will be met by their class teachers who will bring them to their classrooms.

From Monday 31st August, the children should be dropped off at the gate where there will be members of staff waiting to greet them and direct them safely to their classrooms.

Collection – 2.40pm

The children can be collected from the school yard at designated points. The class teacher will bring their classes to the designated collection points. In the interest of social distancing, we would ask that the parents do not encroach beyond the boundary of the basketball court.

Working together we hope to be able to progress the reopening in as safe a manner as possible for all. We would ask all parents to familiarise themselves with the above drop-off and collection routines for the safe delivery and collection of pupils from school. Please be patient as we endeavour to embed these necessary precautionary and protective practices at the beginning of the school year.

It is imperative that

  • adults adhere to the 2m social distancing recommended by NPHET
  • parents do not try to have meetings with members of staff in the playground at drop-off and collection times – meetings between parents and teachers can only take place by prior arrangement. For everyones safety, this may be done via phone calls or emails
  • all parents adhere to the drop-off and collection plans as outlined above

St Brigid’s appreciates your support as we try to safely reopen the school building.

Kind regards,

Tom Sherlock                                      Máire Costello

Chairperson Board of Management       Principal

****************************************************
DROP OFF & COLLECTION

3rd CLASS to 6th

Thursday 20th August

Dear Parents / Guardians,

The BoM and the School Leadership Team have been working extremely hard to ensure a safe return to school for all pupils and staff next Thursday 27th August.   We have now finalised our plans for drop-off and collection of the children.  Please be aware that these plans are not set in stone and will be under ongoing review.

The most notable changes for this year are:

• each class has been assigned a specific entry and exit gate (See below for details)

• there will be no lining up in the yard at drop off time in the morning as the children will go straight to their classrooms.

The gates will open at 8.50am. Third to sixth class pupils will enter through their specific gates unaccompanied. There will be a member of staff at all entrance points to direct them safely to their classrooms in the morning. In the evening, they will  be brought to the same exit gates by the class teacher. Parents are requested not  to enter the school grounds at collection time.

Gate 1- Main Gate Trafalgar Road (At Pedestrian Crossing) 

· Room 10 – Ms Purcell (4th Class)

· Room 11- Ms Gahan (3rd Class)

· Room 12- Ms Horan (3rd Class)

· Room 19- Ms Curley (4th Class)

Gate 3- Laneway Gate Kimberley Road (Road Behind School)

· Room 14 – Ms Heneghan (4th Class)

· Room 15 – Ms Caffrey (5th Class)

· Room 16 – Ms Hughes (6th Class)

· Room 17- Mr Dodd (5th Class)

· Room 20- Ms Walle (6th Class)

We request you do not to come onto the school grounds or into the school building unless it is has been arranged by prior appointment only.

Working together we hope to be able to progress the reopening in as safe a manner as possible for all. We would ask all parents to familiarise themselves with the above drop-off and collection routines for the safe delivery and collection of pupils from school.  Please be patient as we endeavour to embed these necessary precautionary and protective practices at the beginning of the school year.

It is imperative that: 

• social distancing is maintained at all times

• parents/guardians do not try to have meetings with members of staff at drop-off and collection times – meetings between parents and teachers can only take place by prior arrangement. For everyones safety, this may be done via phone calls or emails.

• all parents adhere to the drop-off and collection plans as outlined above

St Brigid’s appreciates your support as we try to safely reopen the school building.

Kind regards,

Tom Sherlock                                         Máire Costello

Chairperson Board of Management                      Principal

****************************************************
19th August 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Please find below information I received from the Department of Education and Skills to share with anyone attending school who has travelled abroad recently.

Sent: Monday 17 August 2020 15:31
Subject: Information for all schools: Reminder to anyone attending school who has travelled abroad

Reminder to anyone attending school who has travelled abroad:

Government policy, which is based on official public health advice, continues to advise against non-essential travel overseas for everyone.

It is a requirement for anyone coming into Ireland, from locations other than those with a rating of ‘normal precautions’ (“green”), to restrict their movements for 14 days, and this includes school staff, parents and children or other students coming from abroad to attend school in Ireland. Restricting your movements means staying indoors in one location and avoiding contact with other people and social situations as much as possible.

Regards,

Reopening Schools Section

****************************************************

18th August 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Some information to share with you in advance of our return to school in relation to the wearing of uniforms, lunch boxes and school stationary.

School Uniform – The children will continue to wear their uniforms on uniform day and their tracksuits on PE Days. For the month of September the boys and girls may wear their school shorts for PE if they like.. Please note The Department of Education Guidelines on the Return to School do not make any reference at all to the need to wash uniforms on a daily basis. It is entirely up to each family to decide how often they want to wash the uniform.

Lunch Boxes – For this year, it would be a good idea if the children could bring their lunch to school in a paper bag rather than in a lunch box to lessen the risk of cross contamination between school and home.

Stationary – Children from 1st class to 6th class should have two pencil cases, one to remain in school and one to remain at home. Their class teachers will advise them what the contents should be when they return. The Junior and Senior Infants will be supplied with an individual filled pencil case in school and they will not need to have one for home.

We are continuing to work through the details of our return to school and will keep you updated.

Kind regards,
Máire Costello
Principal

****************************************************
17th August 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,

I hope you all had a nice weekend.

Please find below an email detailing how we anticipate physical distancing and safe school attendance will work in our school. It is important to mention that all school personnel will be wearing face coverings and you will need to talk to your children about this in advance of our return to school. Also, any parent or visitor entering the school buildings will be required to wear a face covering. We would very much appreciate your full cooperation with this measure.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I will be in touch with you again on Thursday 20th August in relation to drop off and collection routines.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

Principal

****************************************************

RE: Physical Distancing and Safe School Attendance

Monday 17th August 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,

We are currently working on upgrading our procedures and routines within the school to ensure that there is as much Physical Distancing as is possible in our building. We will apply physical distancing in a practical and sensible way, recognising that the learning environment cannot be dominated by a potentially counterproductive focus on this issue.

Physical Distancing will be achieved in two ways: –

Increasing Separation. This will be achieved by re-configuring the classrooms to maximise physical distancing. Each class will be referred to as a bubble and we will ensure that there is as little contact as possible between children in different bubbles. Within the bubbles, children will be organised into pods. A pod is a group of children (normally 6) who will sit together and who will stay in their pod while in the bubble, or classroom.

Decreasing Interaction. This will be achieved by decreasing the potential for children from different bubbles to interact. There will be marked routes for various bubbles to enter and exit the school and to access their classrooms. Bubbles will have different mid-morning and lunch-time access to the playground. We will make these routines enjoyable activities for the children, emphasising safety at all times.

While all children will be welcome back to school, we would remind parents that, where children are displaying colds, coughs or flu like symptoms, they should not be sent to school. Children who display such symptoms in school will be isolated and parents asked to collect them from the school.

Children who have travelled from countries not on the Green List should not attend school during the 14-day self-isolation period

Further information on COVID-19 symptoms in children is available HERE

Teachers will make children aware of the proper hygiene procedures regarding hand washing and etiquette related to sneezing, coughing or spitting. We would be grateful if you could also emphasise safe behaviour in this regard to your children at home as part of the preparation for returning to school.

Our aim remains to re-open the school in an orderly safe manner, while reassuring the children and making them feel comfortable, safe and relaxed with their friends in the new school environment. This will be achieved by all of us working towards this common goal.

Kind regards,

Tom Sherlock Máire Costello

Chairman Board of Management Principal

****************************************************

13th August, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,

I apologise in advance for the number of emails and messages you will be receiving from me over the coming days but I really want to keep you as up to date as possible with what is happening with regards to the reopening of St. Brigid’s. I feel clear communications from the school giving up-to-date information is the best means of countering anxiety, re-assuring the entire community and giving staff, parents and children ownership of the return to school process.

Please click to this link to download a Newsletter put together by the Deputy Principal Mary Beausang detailing some of the information that you and your children need to know about returning to school. I think you will all agree that there is lots of valuable information to be found in this Newsletter and I would urge you to keep a copy of it close to hand.

I will be in touch with you again on Monday where the focus of my message will be on physical distancing and safe school attendance.

In the meantime, take care and stay safe.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

Principal

****************************************************

12th August, 2020

Click HERE to see the COVID-19 Policy Statement for St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones signed by Tom Sherlock the Chairperson of the Board of Management, as required by the Department of Education in their Roadmap for the return to school. All latest news will continue to be published to the homepage of the school website. In addition a Covid-19 tab will also be opened on the menu on the left hand side. That is where you will find all information from the school relevant to COVID-19

We understand that being in communication and parents having information is important. Please read any emails received from St. Brigid’s NS, and keep an eye on our school’s website. Some of the general information will be familiar to you by now, but there will be some details of measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones specifically.

****************************************************

Click HERE for the Covid 19 Response plan from the Department of Education. Or own school’s response with measures specific for St. Brigid’s NS is being finalised at the moment and will be posted when complete. Please ensure the school has your contact details so that you receive emails from the school with the information you will need. Let us know if you have moved house, changed phone number or email address so that we can ensured parents receive all relevant information.

COVID -19 Policy Statement

St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones is committed to providing a safe and healthy workplace for all our staff and a safe learning environment for all our students. To ensure that, we have developed the following COVID-19 Response Plan.  The Board of Management and all school staff are responsible for the implementation of this plan and a combined effort will help contain the spread of the virus. We will:

  • continue to monitor our COVID-19 response and amend this plan in consultation with our staff
  • provide up to date information to our staff and students on the Public Health advice issued by the HSE and Gov.ie
  • display information on the signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and correct hand-washing techniques
  • agree with staff, a worker representative who is easily identifiable to carry out the role outlined in this plan in relation to summer provision
  • inform all staff and students of essential hygiene and respiratory etiquette and physical distancing requirements
  • adapt the school to facilitate physical distancing as appropriate in line with the public health guidance and direction of the Department of Education
  • keep a contact log to help with contact tracing
  • ensure staff and students engage with the induction / familiarisation briefing provided by the Department of Education
  • implement the agreed procedures to be followed in the event of someone showing symptoms of COVID-19 while at school
  • provide instructions for staff and students to follow if they develop signs and symptoms of COVID-19 during school time
  • implement cleaning in line with Department of Education advice

All school staff will be consulted on an ongoing basis and feedback is encouraged on any concerns, issues or suggestions.

This can be done through the Lead Worker Representative(s), who will be supported in line with the agreement between the Department and education partners.

****************************************************
12th August 2020

Re-opening of St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones

Dear Parents / Guardians,

I hope you and your families are keeping well.

I will be keeping you updated over the next two weeks as the details of our return to school protocols become clearer.

We are planning to re-open our school safely on Thursday 27th August, in line with current guidance and recommendations. Our intention is that it will be a full return to school for all, albeit with some differences, details of which will be in later communications.

Re-opening the school safely will require the co-operation of all members of our School Community – Board of Management (BoM), School Leadership, Staff, Parents and Pupils. We will all be called on to play our part in ensuring that re-opening of the school is done in a safe manner which prevents the spread of the virus and allows the vital work of Teaching and Learning to proceed with as little disruption as possible.

We have been working on our plan for the safe reopening of the school for some weeks now and will publish the Department of Education and Skills (DES) COVID-19 Response Plan for the safe and sustainable reopening of Primary and Special Schools on our school website later today. The Response Plan gives details of

  • Physical preparation, signage, hand sanitiser stations,
  • Advice, procedures and training for the safe return to working in the school for all school staff and pupils
  • General and specific advice on how all pupils, staff, parents and visitors will prevent the spread of the virus

We will also publish our COVID-19 Policy Statement on the school website later today. Our BoM will keep you informed as to the progress of our re-opening plans and provide you with the information required by you to play your part in safely re-opening the school.

We are really looking forward to welcoming our children back to school and will be doing all that we can to ensure that the return to school is a safe and enjoyable experience for the children. We will be in touch with you again shortly.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

Principal

****************************************************
8th August, 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope this email finds you and your family keeping well and that you are enjoying the summer break and the lovely weather we are having this weekend.

I understand  you may have questions and concerns regarding your children’s return to school at the end of August.

Following receipt of the  Department of Education’s Road Map  for the safe return to school of our pupils and staff, the Board of Management recently met to  discuss the document. The Board and Staff  are now busy working hard on drafting a COVID 19 Response Plan  to ensure we can all return to school safely. The plan, among other things, necessitates making some changes this year to include specific entrance/exit gates for specific classes,  restrictions  on parents and visitors entering the school, the mandatory wearing of face coverings for staff and split yard times.

I will be in contact with you again next week when the plan is finalised to make you aware of new procedures and protocols that will be put in place for the coming school year.

As I am sure you will appreciate all decisions made by the Board  will be based on best practice to ensure the health and safety of all in the school community.

Kind regards,

Máire Costello

****************************************************

28th July 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope you are all keeping well.

As you may be aware, the Government published its guidance for how schools can reopen safely and fully at the end August yesterday evening.

The school received a copy of this plan and a letter for you the parents/guardians from the Minister of Education late last night. I have attached below a copy of this letter for your attention,

The Board of Management is fully aware that the reopening of  our school is essential to the well being of our pupils. The board will be meeting to review the “Reopening Our Schools” 58 page document over the coming days and be in touch with you again in relation to procedures and protocols around the return to school

In the meantime, enjoy the remaining weeks of the summer holidays and spending time with family and friends.

Kind regards,
Ms. Costello

Good attendance matters

WHAT MIGHT YOU MISS IF YOU MISS SCHOOL?

Independence Day? The Halloween Bake Sale? The day the baby lambs come to visit? The day the hens came. Baking buns in the staffroom? Making pizza in the staffroom? The Day the Santa Claus Man visits? The school decorated for Christmas. The school decorated for Halloween. English: our class novel, learning poems, writing poems, writing stories. Teacher reading to us. Irish: fun and games in Irish, learning Irish songs. Maths: doing our sums, learning our tables, doing problem solving. PE with teacher. PE with Cormac. PE in the hall. PE in the yard. PE anywhere. Go Noodle. Art: drawing, painting, using clay, using pastels, use charcoal, being messy. Music: listening to music, singing songs, singing rounds, singing in harmony. Learning about long ago. Learning about other countries. Learning about science. Aistear in Infants. Library day. The Library Ladies. Music Generation with Joan. The days we plant things. The day we harvest things and eat them. Using the ipads, laptops or chromebooks. School plays. Rehearsals. The musicals. Seeing the little kids do their plays. Being the audience when the older children perform. Sports. Matches. GAA. Basketball. Bicycle Safety, Scoot to School Day. After school activities. The day we get our photographs taken. The photographer that tells jokes. Dressing up for Halloween. Non uniform days. School Tours. Nature Walks. Trips to the Beach. The Seaside Scavenger Hunt, Sports Day. Students vs Teacher. Basketball Match. Visitors to the school. When the gardaí come to visit. When the fire brigade come to see us. More visitors to the school: the priest, ‘The Happy Pear’, authors, sports people, successful teams, the Sam Maguire Cup, scientists, engineers, artists, the photographer, politicians, the fire alarm, the day a dog came into the yard

What else would you miss?

There are so many interesting things to do in school it would be a pity to miss any of it.

#MissSchoolMissOut !

Reading with dogs

Could you and your dog spare a few hours each month to visit a local school to help improve children’s literacy and confidence?
We in St. Brigid’s would LOVE to have a dog visit our school to help children with reading. ‘Burns by Your Side’ will give you and your dog the opportunity to become trained volunteers.

Working alongside your dog, you will visit a local school for a few hours each month. Your dog could help children: increase motivation to read independently. The tried and tested method helps children gain confidence in building their vocabulary and fluency by reading to a dog. The dog is a non-judgmental listener, whose very presence may calm and relax reluctant and anxious readers. Dogs do not judge. In addition children involved in the scheme are taught how to handle the reading dogs appropriately, including how to greet and respect dogs and how to be safe around them.

Your dog should be healthy, well behaved and have a good level of obedience, be over 18 months old, have lived with you for at least a year. You’ll receive full training in the form of a canine good citizenship course for you and your dog, on going support, uniform for both dog and handler, full Garda Vetting. The training is at a small cost, and will be held over 12 weeks for 90 minutes during a weekday morning in Bray. To find out more about the scheme and how to apply contact orlagh@burnspet.ie

If you and your dog fulfil the criteria, Orlagh will arrange an initial meeting for you to understand the scheme a little more,
discuss your volunteering desires and see if your dog will be comfortable in his/her volunteering role. To learn more about this initiative take a look at the Burns by Your Side website; www.burnsbyyourside.org

After school activities

AFTER SCHOOLS ACTIVITIES 2019-2020

Dear Parents,

The general feedback on how we enrolled children for after school activities in previous years was that queuing system just wasn’t working. Parents also found our online option very frustrating.

With this in mind, we have decided to pilot a new system this year bearing in mind that most children were successful in securing a place in their preferred activity in previous years.

Children who were enrolled in Art, Basketball, GAA Football and Theatre Group for 2018-2019 will have first preference to re-enrol for next year. To secure your offered place, you need to pay a deposit of €30 online by Thursday 27th June at 9am. A payment link will be emailed separately to you this evening. Any remaining places will go into a lottery and the lottery draw will take place on Friday 28th June after the Uniform Sale at 11.00am. You are welcome to attend the draw.

If you would like your child’s name to be included in the lottery, please email the office stating the Activity and Day of choice e.g. Joe Blogs, Room 20, Art Tuesday.

If your child is successful in securing a place in the lottery you will receive an online payment link to pay the deposit by Wednesday 3rd July. If no deposit is received, we will offer the place to the next drawn ticket.

For 3rd Class 2019-2020 Students ONLY

As these students have not previously been enrolled in Art, Basketball, GAA Football or Theatre Group, places will be offered through the lottery system only. Please email the office stating the Activity and Day of choice e.g. Joe Blogs, Room 20, Art Tuesday. Their names are then put into the draw taking place on Friday 28th June.

If you have any difficulty in making a payment at this time, please contact me before Thursday 27th June at 9.00am.

You can download the list of extra curricular activities here:

After School Activities List 2019

Yours sincerely,

Ms. Costello

Please see attached list for days and classes for the various activities.

Art- Places will be offered to those enrolled in Art 2018-2019 first. Deposit to be paid online by Thursday 27th June at 9am to secure place. You will receive a payment link if your child is currently enrolled.

A lottery will take place Friday 28th June for any remaining places.

Athletics- Enrolment through school office in September

Basketball- Places will be offered to those enrolled in Basketball 2018-2019 first. Deposit to be paid online by Thursday 27th June at 9am to secure place. You will receive a payment link if your child is currently enrolled.

A lottery will take place Friday 28th June for any remaining places.

Football- Places will be offered to those enrolled in GAA Football 2018-2019 first. Deposit to be paid online by Thursday 27th June at 9am to secure place. You will receive a payment link if your child is currently enrolled.

A lottery will take place Friday 28th June for any remaining places.

French- Enrol directly via www. littlelingua.com

Guitar – Enrol directly with Marc Roche at 086-393 5142

Science- To be confirmed with Fiona Lang

Swimming -Enrolment through school office in September (places will be offered to current swimmers first)

Tennis- Enrol directly with Diane Cahill at 085-145 2000 or dianecahill9@gmail.com

Theatre Group- Places will be offered to those enrolled in Theatre Group 2018-2019 first. Deposit to be paid online by Thursday 27th June at 9am to secure place. You will receive a payment link if your child is currently enrolled.

A lottery will take place Friday 28th June for any remaining places.

School Calendar

The Parents’ Association have very kindly offered to organise the school calendar for 2019 as it was such a big hit over the last couple of years. However, there is a new twist for this year.  Each month will be themed, and we are asking the children to dress in keeping with the theme for the month. Children born in January will dress in ‘winter clothes’ (hats, scarves etc.) children born in June will dress in ‘sports gear’ (rugby kit, tennis outfit, school tracksuit etc.) and so on.

Photographs for the calendar will be taken on TUESDAY 9th October in the school hall by the calendar committee from the Parents’ Association.

Themes for the year 2019 are detailed below.

Children born in

Theme

What to Wear

Props

January

Winter

Winter Clothes

Hats, scarves, Ear Muffs

February

St. Brigid’s/ First day of Spring

Full School Uniform

Spring Flowers, Hearts for Valentine’s Day

March

St. Patrick’s Day

Green Clothing

Shamrocks, Irish Flags, Head Boppers

April

Easter

Yellow /Orange Clothing

Easter Eggs, Baskets, Bunnies etc

May

Month of Mary / Flowers

Blue /Spring Flower coloured clothing

Toy animals, flowers

June

Sports- Active Schools

Football/Rugby/ Tennis/ Basketball kits

Balls, Racquets, Skipping ropes etc

July

Summer

Appropriate Summer Clothing

Beach balls, sun glasses, sun hats etc

August

Farming / Harvest

Autumnal coloured clothing

Corn, hay, grass, rake, spade etc

September

Back to School

Full school uniform

Apples, pencils, school bag etc

October

Halloween

Non-Scary Fancy Dress

Pumpkins, brooms, Halloween props

November

Literacy – Book Characters

Dress up as your favourite book character

Books, Book Markers, props to go with chosen character

December

Christmas

Christmas Jumper / Christmas Clothing

Snowmen, Reindeer, Christmas Props

If you need any further information, please contact the Parents’ Association.

The children can come to school dressed in their themed clothing on Tuesday 9th October.  Children born in February and September must wear their FULL School Uniform (not tracksuit) for the photo shoot.  Children may change into their school tracksuits afterwards.

Kind regards,

Ms. Costello

We are a Digital School of Distinction

February 2020

Lego We Do is really taking off in school. Click on ‘Read More’ below to take a look at the slide show and photos from Ms. Murray’s 2nd Class R7

January 2020

In an exciting development for ICT in St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones, advised by Ms.Staunton the school has invested some of the 2019/2020 ICT Grant to invest in ten “WeDo 2.0 Lego Kits” for the school.

Designed for primary school classrooms, the children use the kits to enhance their skills in computing and science. All classes from 2nd up will have an opportunity to use the kits over the course of the year to design their very own robots and use basic programming to make their robots move.

Ms. Staunton’s 2nd class have been the first class to use the kits. Communicating, collaborating and creativity are all part of the process as the students follow instructions, learn how to code and problem solve in an ‘hands on’ way.

With Ms.Staunton leading our learning, staff and students alike are all looking forward to learning more about WeDo 2.0 Lego and how it works.

We love learning about technology.

Hot on the heels of Ms. Staunton’s 2nd Class was Ms. Murray’s 2nd.

Lego We Do is really taking off in school. Click on ‘Read More’ below to ake a look at the slide show and photos from Ms. Murray’s 2nd Class R7

ICT WEEK: A snapshot! After an intensive Good Digital Citizen session prior to lunch, 6th class room 15 had a super short timed PowerPoint presentation on any subject they wished with advice and support from the Transition Year students from St David’s. Eight students from St. Brigid’s presented their work. It was so much fun. Well done to all. A big thank you to Ms Caffrey for having us in.

January 2020

The staff of St. Brigid’s NS would like to thank parents Ruairí O’Sullivan, Niall Harrison and Janet Watters, and past pupils Cillian and Sébastien Fulmer who generously gave of their time to come into school over the weekend and domain link and update our stock of laptops.

We are hugely in their debt and very appreciative for all they, and the rest of the Parents’ Association Digital & ICT Committee do to keep our laptops up and running particularly in advance of this term’s ICT Week with the TY students of St. David’s Secondary School (see below).

You can read more about the work the PA’s Digital & ICT Committee has done in the school HERE.

‘Many hands make light work’. If you are a parent and if this is an area of expertise you have, and are willing to share we would love to hear from you. You could drop a message for Janet with your contact details into the school office.

 

December 2020

Last week was declared an ICT success by students in 3rd and 6th class and their teachers. They would like to thank the DIGITAL and ICT Committee of the Parents’ Association and the group of wonderful TY students that came in from St. David’s, Greystones to assist them in their learning.

Building on ICT weeks that the committee has previously organised, the work will continue to focus on 3rd to 6th with the goal to increase their digital skills in preparation for their transition to secondary school and associated IT demands.  A further goal is to assist the drive on positive use of technology and to create good digital citizens.

Third Class learned about Powerpoint and Sixth worked on Scratch.

With Scratch, you can program your own interactive activities, games, and animations. Scratch helps us learn to think, to problem solve, to be creative and to work together — essential skills for life in the 21st century. And it is fun!

The success of the week was in no small part due to the extensive preparation and planning by the Parents’ Association ICT Committee and the help and guidance provided to the primary students by the TY students from St. David’s.

Many thanks to the Digital and ICT Committee who came into school on Saturday 9th November 2019 to audit all the laptops that we have.

Even since then much quick thinking, trouble shooting and repair was involved as glitches presented themselves.

Eight reconditioned laptops are being donated to our stock. Many thanks to the committee for their trojan work.

In addition another kind benefactor has donated ten reconditioned desktops to the school, so our work in digital learning is really taking off the ground with the provision of the resources we need by generous parents and friends of the school.

We would like to thank the parents involved in delivering the content this week: Janet, Amanda, Aisling, Barbara and Sandra

and in addition those who help us behind the scenes: Ruairí, Milan and Niall.

‘It takes a village to raise a child’.

 

November 2019

1.Many thanks to the Digital and ICT Committee who came into school on Saturday 9th November 2019 to audit all the laptops that we have.

In addition eight reconditioned laptops are being added to our stock. Many thanks to the committee for all their trojan work.

This audit is timely as members of the committee are running an IT week from Monday 25th November 2019.

The work will continue to focus on 3rd to 6th with the goal to increase their digital skills in preparation for their transition to Secondary school and associated IT demands.  Also the goal is to assist the drive on positive use of technology and to create good digital citizens.

2.Thanks too to the Wicklow Library Service who have given us a number of free licences for Touch Type Read Spell. We have put these to good use.

October 2019

As European Code Week comes to an end, just a reminder of the happy news we got back in June when GOOGLE EUROPE announced the names of the thirty three organisations that were getting grants for Codeweek and St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones was one of the lucky ones.

St. Brigid’s NS, Greystones were one of just six organisations from Ireland on the list to receive a Europe #CodeWeekGrant! goo.gle/EducatorGrantsECW. Many congratulations to all the other awardees.

These grants amount to €186,000, given to thirty three schools and nonprofit making organisations in Europe who will deliver computer science hands-on activities for 236,000 students.

The Irish organisations are @WeAreTUDublin @SchoolOfEd_UL @LYITComputing @MakerMeetIE one other school @stjosephsrush Post Primary.

It ‘takes a village to raise a child’ and it takes support to embed digital technologies in a primary school. We would like to thank our principal Máire Costello and Board of Management for their continuing support, our wonderful Parents’ Association Digital & ICT Committee for their hard work and vision, Ciara Brennan of the PDST for her advice and guidance, the teachers and students for their enthusiasm and GOOGLE EUROPE of course.

Here’s to learning how we can use #ComputerScience to impact students’ education, together! #GrowwithGoogle.

Success in IT in school

1.A success we had not anticipated was the ‘knock on effect’ or the ‘snowball effect’ of Codeweek within the school, as teachers and younger students who were not included in the event, were got involved. The teachers of the younger students saw the buzz coding was creating and used our Beebots. So the younger students started coding during Code Week also. This initiative was a great success with students and teachers – and looks like becoming a regular event in the infant classes.

2.Coding will not be limited to Codeweek. Another initiative is planned for November.

3.In addition Senior students acted as peer tutors and taught their teachers too, using Scratch.

4.Initially the students who were being trained as ‘leaders’  worked in pairs. This methodology worked well in terms of developing the students’ communication skills.

 

Students learned with pair programming, sharing a device and working together.

‘During pair programming, students work in tandem. The “driver” controls the mouse & keyboard while the “navigator” makes suggestions, points out errors, and asks questions…partners routinely switch roles to gain the benefits of each role’. from NCWIT’s

‘The Power of Collaborative Learning.’

 

April 2019

Planning ahead for Code Week EU October 2019

Following on from the success of the visits of the Transition Year students from St. David’s Secondary School, mentored by members of our school’s Parents Association, we are planning the following for Code Week EU in October 2019; that approximately 10-12 visiting students would coach 3rd & 4th class students attending Learning Support for Special Needs, in code using ‘Hour of Code’ activities from the Code.org website e.g.

Hour of Code on Code.org

The Learning Support students accompanied by Transition Year students and supervised by members of the Parents’ Association will be timetabled

– to initially tutor younger 2nd classes in code,
– then their peers in 3rd and 4th class
– and finally older 5th and 6th classes in the school.

This will develop
– their self esteem,
– their ‘standing’ amongst their classmates,
– and their problem solving and coding skills.

March 2019

NEW to the website: Click on THIS link for THE DIGITAL LEARNING PLAN, for St. Brigid’s Greystones 2019 – 2020 (including targets and the actions we will implement to meet the targets).

IT Week: 11th – 15th February 2019

Objective: To help all our students acquire the digital skills required for secondary school assignments and project work

This week both 3rd classes were for the first time included. Using the laptops, the following was explained:

– cloud computing
– directory management
– file location
– and naming & saving

Then we moved on to working with power point presentation slides. Parent Barbara Beatty went through a presentation slide by slide using country and frog facts. The children were supported in the classroom setting by the Transition Year students to copy what Barbara was showing. Then the students ran their own slideshow. They had so much fun.

With the 4ths and 5ths the focus was on
– using the internet as a useful research tool
– and how to manage together with preparing a fact sheet showing the full extent of work done (in Word) and a presentation, showing bullet points only (using Powerpoints)

Parent Amanda Fulmer gave us ‘Hints and Tips’ on research technique including ‘the do’s and don’ts’. She then explained the differences between using fact sheets and slide presentations. We also covered
– personal presentation skills required
– and how to get the information across.

A quote from parent Elaine Killilea on this sums this up well:
“Tell them what you are going to tell them.
Tell them.
Then tell them what you told them”.

Time was then given, supported by the Transition Year students, to practice the useful hints given.

6th class had the opportunity to review Google Classroom & drive used by St David’s Secondary school. Transition year students Ruby Mackay and Conor Campbell showed  us an individual student class room account. We saw assignments already submitted and some group project work.

Ruby advised if we can use Word and Powerpoint proficiently we would have the skill set to use Google Docs which is very similar. She showed us a 3000 word English assignment submitted. Ruby reminded us that good basic typing skills is really a must. Otherwise it will take many more hours to prepare digitally submitted projects. Click HERE to find a webmix of free online typing activities on the St. Brigid’s website.

We revised some word skills with Mr Dodd’s class and project preparation skills with Ms Murray’s. The Transition Year students then supported classroom project work mingling among the student.

 

November 2018

Our digital year has gone from strength to strength. In the last week of November, Ten TY students from St. David’s secondary school worked in St. Brigid’s teaching 4th, 5th and 6th computer skills. The TY students have been very good teachers, establishing a great rapport with the primary students and having great patience. The younger students in turn are very engaged in learning about computers from young people that they look up to. This is another great initiative from the Parents’ Association, more specifically the ICT committee. Thank you to parents Janet, Amanda and Aisling for co-ordinating this for us.

Some words from the Parents’ Association on the inaugural SCHOOL’S ICT WEEK

‘We are delighted to confirm that the Parents Association have this year continued their support of our students with their digital and ICT development for educational use. We launched an IT week on the 26th November for the senior section of our school 4th, 5th and 6th class. For the first time we were supported by ten Transition year St David’s students. The children loved being mentored by their older peer group. They were deemed much cooler than parents! A big thank you to St David’s  school for joining us on this new venture.  We hope to repeat this again next February.

What was covered?

With fourth and fifth class we focused on the huge capability of Word.  We showed where it might be more appropriate to use than Power Point and how both can be used in conjunction. The students work on Christmas menu’s  and we saw some very creative work. We were subsequently told by a parent how her child used these newly acquired skills to design a Café Price list for St David’s Christmas Café.

 

Sixth class were given a session on using the Internet safely as a research tool. They also got valuable instruction on how to present a digital project. All skills definitely required for their continued educational journey in secondary school. One class then put into action research techniques learnt for their current class project on WW2 whilst the other class in small groups put together a fact sheet on healthy lifestyle for 12 year olds. They researched, created a word document fact sheet and then presented their findings to their class mates. It was a very interesting experience.

Feedback

We have received extremely positive feedback from Ms Costello, the teachers involved and the students.

I want to thank Aisling Carroll, Amanda Fulmer, Ms Costello, the staff of St. Brigid’s and staff and students St David’s school for making this possible. Without their commitment and determination none of this would have been possible. I also want to thank the IT operational support group of parents that keep our school student laptops in working order.

Janet Waters, PA Digital & ICT Group’

You can read more about the work of the hard working and far sighted PA Digital and ICT Group HERE. New members are always welcome to this group. Just leave a message for Janet, at the school office.
September 2018

Our digital year started well.

The students and staff in St. Brigid’s were very happy to receive the following email from Scoilnet today. Scoilnet is the official education portal of the Department of Education and Skills in Ireland. Today’s email said: ‘I’m delighted to congratulate your website on being chosen as Scoilnet’s Star Site. We here at Scoilnet think that you have a great website and that it is a super point of contact between the school and the wider community. I’ve attached the Star Site logo for you to proudly display alongside your other many awards on your site.

We would like to thank everyone who contributes to our website: students, parents, teachers and secretarial staff. We would like to thank our Principal Mrs. Costello and our Board of Management who support all our work. Thank you too, for visiting our website and reading all about our school. We hope that it is like a window on all that makes St. Brigid’s NS Greystones a special place to be.

This is what was said about our website on the Scoilnet Star Site page:

Congratulations to St Brigid’s NS of Greystones, Co. Wicklow for winning the Scoilnet Start Site Award.

St Brigid’s National School’s website is very well designed and is packed full of useful information for parents, pupils and the wider community. The layout is easy to navigate and the most important information such as Latest News and Term calendar is very easy to locate. The homepage contains a photo slider which highlights activities and achievements within the school. There is also a tickertape containing information on events and news. The homepage is mainly divided into three distinct columns which contain info on events in the school as well as information on enrolment and booklists.

The site contains a navigation bar to the left of the page which makes the site extremely easy to navigate. Some of the navigation tabs give information on the school, school news and school policies. There is a dedicated section to the pupil’s work and achievements such as science experiments, class plays and a visit to UCC to receive first prize in the All-Island School’s History Competition! There are also links to pages detailing other achievements of the school such as Active Schools, Green School award and Digital School of Distinction.

All in all, St Brigid’s National School’s website has a very clean layout, is easy to navigate and make excellent use of space and colour. It is an excellent point of contact between the school, pupils, parents and the wider community. Well done on winning Scoilnet’s Star Site Award!

Thank you very much to Scoilnet for featuring our website. Well done everyone

June Update:

We were awarded the Digital Schools of Distinction Award at the start of May. On 27th June 2018 we held our awards ceremony and we raised the flag. We were very lucky to have Minister Simon Harris join us for this special occasion. He raised the flag in front of the whole school. We really enjoyed showing him around St. Brigid’s and we were honoured to have him raise our flag. Below is a slideshow of some photos.

Members of the Parents’ Association Digital and ICT group completed desktop, word and PowerPoint sessions with 4th Class, Rooms 17 and 19. They were super students and really enjoyed it.

The group said; ‘We were able to deliver this program to all 3rd and 4th classes this year. We are pleased with our achievement’.

The PA Digital and ICT group want to thank lecturers Aisling Carroll and Barbara Beatty and all the parent support team. Without all their hard work and commitment none of this would have been possible.

At the beginning of May we found out the exciting news that we were awarded the Digital Schools of Distinction Award. Neil, the validator, was very impressed with the work we are doing in the school to improve out IT. He visited a few classes and couldn’t believe how much knowledge the children had regarding powerpoints, internet safety, Beebots, coding, etc. He was delighted to give us the award and looks forward to hearing what we have planned for the future.

Latest News

Summer Term

The Digital Schools’ validator Neil O’ Sullivan visited the school. He was helpful, encouraging and affirming. We await the news as to whether we have earned a Digital Schools’ Flag. Here’s hoping!

The Parents’ Association’s IT Committee are back!

On Tuesday, 17th April and Thursday, 19th they are going to work with Ms. Purcell’s 3rd Class and coach them in Word and Powerpoint.

The following week they are going to work with Ms. Finnerty’s 4th Class. They are also going to work with Ms. Smith’s class.

Staff and students really appreciate this input from the IT Committee.

 

New Year 2018

The Parents’ Association’s IT Committee worked with 3rd Class Room 14 during the months of February and March 2018. There were four intensive, hour long sessions which ran over just two weeks. The children were introduced to Word and Powerpoint during this time.

The children really put a value on this learning. Being motivated digital natives, they learn a great deal in this time. Over the next few weeks this opportunity will be offered to other middle and senior classes, as time allows.

We would like to thank Aisling, Amanda, Barbara, the two Janets and Roz for giving up their time to help us learn.

IS YOUR CHILD SAFE ON THE INTERNET? Parents of 2nd to 6th Class students, your Parents Association and St Brigid’s held an Internet Safety training session (recommended by the National Parent’s Council Primary) on Tuesday 23rd January 7.30pm to 9.30 pm., St Brigid’s School Hall. Following on from the interest generated by the Internet Safety training session held in the first half of the year, this second session was held for those who could not attend the previous session or for those who wish to learn some more.

‘The overall objective of the session was to provide parents with enough information and skills so that they will be able to engage in their child’s online life. Parents often admire how easily their children can use the Internet – but aren’t quite sure of what they are doing or seeing. This programme looks at how children use the internet and gave a practical demonstration of the technologies and the websites young people are using. Parents were introduced to strategies to help their children be responsible, effective and safer Internet users. This session also looked at cyber bullying.

As parents, it is vital to have good, open communication with your child about their internet lives, as with all other aspects of their lives. We need to talk to our children about the potential dangers that they may come across online as well as the many benefits they will find. The programme also shows parents how to disable or enable safety mode on your computer. Setting rules and boundaries around children’s Internet usage is an important aspect of keeping them safe on-line’.

Training & Development Programme, National Parents Council Primary

Digital Schools – Our Journey so far

We could have submitted for the Digital Award any time in the past three years or so, however we are ‘hastening slowly’.

When we are assessed, we aspire to be in a situation where
the use of ICT in our school is ‘authentic’
that every teacher is confident with IT
and that all students are be ‘hands on’ with technology.

1. Management has supported the teachers in this. A really important development that had to take place before we really could make progress was that the Broadband connection be improved. That happened in the Autumn Term of 2015 and has made a huge difference. Then when returned to school in September 2018, we found that we had Wifi. This was invaluable in terms of making progress using technology in the school.

2. We also needed to ensure that students had access to technology, so there was a substantial investment made in laptops. We decided it would be better to have a uniformity in the technology that we used and so built up a sizeable supply of laptops. They are relatively durable in comparison to other devices. One parents kindly gave of her time to unbox all these laptops for us and got them up and running.

3. With the investment in laptops came the need to store these laptops and presses were built accordingly.

4. We are working towards children getting ‘laptop time’ timetabled regularly. To date it has been practical that this would occur from second class. A significant break through occurred in the Summer Term of 2017. A group of parents ran a ‘four class pilot program’ with 6th class, with three sessions on word and one on Powerpoint.
In addition there was a ‘two class pilot program’ with a third class; one on Powerpoint and one on Word. This has been followed up in the school year 2007 – 18. The IT committee of the Parents’ Association is working with 3rd and 4th classes, coaching them in basic computer skills, Word and Powerpoint.

6.The Board has also encouraged teachers to upskill by offering to pay for Summer Courses in IT. Teachers are growing in confidence and competency with IT year on year.

7. St.Brigid’s has an online presence. There is a the school website, a Green Schools blog and a local history blog. Five teachers have had class blogs over the years. Three still do. Again pressure of time makes this challenging. However each class does have work displayed on the school website.

The local history blog was shortlisted for an Eir Junior Spiders Award this year. In 2014 the Green Schools Blog was shortlisted and in 2013 class blog ‘If Only the Best Birds Sang’ won the best school blog and overall prize for primary schools at the same awards.

Currently teachers use technology for;
1. Accessing ‘Aladdin’ to call the roll. Using the online noticeboard on ‘Aladdin’; reading the information on there
2. the Smartboard & Interactive White Board (IWB) publisher content in Irish, English&Maths
3. Using bought software e.g. Jolly Phonics
4. IWB online educational games particularly in Maths
5. Listening to audio files in Religion, Irish etc.
6. Watching educational powerpoint and video content
7. Using the online behavioural chart from Classroom Dojo
8. Using the exercise site ‘Go Noodle’
9. Teacher Planning: word processing
10. Engaging with the ‘Wordsworth’ programme for reading using ‘the flipped classroom’ approach. You can read more about the ‘flipped classroom’ HERE .
11. Subscribing to sites like the teaching resource site Twinkl and the Teaching Art website deepspacesparkle.com
12. Some teachers have class blogs and student blogs. Last March, Mrs. Caffrey’s class participated in the global initiative ‘Student Blogging Challenge’ over ten weeks.
13. Watching RTE 2 Children’s News Today if there is a ‘big’ story in the news e.g. 1916 commemorations
14. Creating slideshows of the children’s art for the school website.
15. Some teachers have tried Mystery Skype with other classes in Ireland and abroad.
Some students in turn have been
1. Using educational software like ‘Wordshark.’
2. Using the Symbaloo webmixes on the school website to work independently on Maths or English during the time they are timetabled.
3. Developing their skills in English; e.g learning phonics using ‘Teach your monster to read’, improving comprehension using Readtheory.org, vocabulary development using Freerice.com
4. Taken part in the Khan Academy ‘Learn Storm’ competition in Maths. Unfortunately that is not running this year. However students can use Khan Academy to learn maths.
5. Learned how code; to programme; to use ‘Scratch’.
6. Done word processing; typing up their own writing online and blogging (Mrs.Caffrey’s 5th and some students in LS)
7. Learned how to present projects as powerpoints (many classes from 4th up)
Our work now in school is to continue to continue to develop our own skills as teachers and giving children these opportunities to engage with technology at a younger age.

Some skills we would like the children to learn include
1. take photos on digital camera, upload them and make Animoto or Photopeach slideshows.
2. use Class 2.0 Tools; digital tools and widgets; Prezi.com, Storybird.com, Timetoast.com, Padlet, Tagxedo.com
3. make podcasts (sound recordings) using Audioboo or Audacity
4. make stop motion animations, and lego robotics (this would require an additional investment, or sponsorship)
5. engage with ‘makey makey’; a form of engineering that turns everyday objects into touchpads and combines them with the internet. (However once again this would require an investment)
6. participate in three Irish based annual Twitter projects: Autumn, Spring and Digital Art.
7. Taking care online. Observing online safety, etiquette and copyright.

The Irish Times – Thursday 10th November 2016.  Innovation in the Classroom

What will learning be like in 2036?

‘Pupils on a pilot project at St. Brigid’s National School in Greystones, Co. Wicklow, are using the WordsWorth Learning Programme for the flipped classroom model.

Instead of the pupils listening in class and then doing the homework, they watch video tutorials outside class and do some interactive exercises to consolidate what they have been taught.  The next day, they go back to school and build on what they have learned; they also learn from each other.

‘Using this peer group learning approach means that the students become more involved’, says Orla Teehan, learning support teacher at St. Brigid’s.  ‘When they come to me, they feel more confident because they have already done the work at home.’

The school also uses the programme to maintain & improve literacy standards, WordsWorth & similar programmes are likely to become commonplace, although a debate is needed on the role of for-profit service providers in the education system and whether we dance to their tune or get them to work for what we need.

Still, leading educators have advocated for this model including Pip Ferguson of DCU’s teaching enhancement unit and the late Bianca Ní Ghrógáin, a leading innovator in education.  Trials with the children at St. Brigid’s learning support unit have shown that the flipped classroom model leads to marked improvements in reading accuracy, reading comprehension and spelling skills.

Welcome to the classroom of the future.  This is one of numerous innovations changing how students learn’.

We have also used Khan Academy in 2015 and 16 from 3rd Class to 6th in a Flipped Classroom approach. Approximately 200 children took part in the Mathletes and Learnstorm competitions.

From June Newsletter to Parents 2015

Learning Maths on Khan Academy

What is Khan Academy?

Khan Academy is a free website for learning. In 2004 Sal Khan began coaching his twelve year old cousin Nadia long distance in Maths. After a while he found it easiest to send her YouTube videos to explain things. Out of this beginning grew Khan Academy. Its motto is ‘”a free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere”. In the years since then, Khan Academy has become bigger and more effective. To start with Khan Academy just taught Maths.  Now you can learn about history, science, art, economics, music, computer programming and more. Many experts in their field work to put content online that students can learn from. It is free to use and is supported by donations. The Gates Foundation and Google are two of its main supporters.

How has Khan Academy been used in St. Brigid’s?

Two hundred students in the school from 3rd class to 6th were signed up for the Khan Maths Challenge. Khan is particularly suitable for 4th – 6th class however there is plenty of early maths for 2nd class up too. Children like it because it makes learning fun; they are rewarded for doing Maths with points, badges and avatars. Persistence is rewarded as well as achievement.

Khan tracks progress for the student and recommends what they should do next. Teachers can check the dashboard and see the skills the students are acquiring and what students are finding hard. They can see who is working on Khan at home and the time they spend. Since January one hundred and seventy one students worked on Khan regularly. Seventy per cent of the work was done at home. The top three students competing in the Khan 6th week challenge spent nearly sixty hours working on Maths between them. Working thirty minutes a day on Khan really adds up. Even ten minutes a day would help.

The school piloted Khan from January, when a number of students participated in the national Mathletes Challenge. We came 1st in Wicklow, 7th in Leinster and 13th overall in Ireland. From 27th April we had a 6 week in-school challenge. This was even more successful. We hope to take part in the all Ireland Mathletes in January 2016.

Attendance

It is vital for developing your child’s life skills and for his/her success at St Brigid’s that her/his attendance is both regular and punctual.

You should ensure that your child remains in school for the full day and that family trips are organised to coincide with the school holidays.

(Dental appointments during school hours seem to be unavoidable. )

The school is legally required to notify the National Educational Welfare Board if your child has missed twenty days or more in the course of any one school year or if the principal/ class teacher is concerned about your child’s attendance.

At the end of each term, children with full attendance will be acknowledged and complimented. Children with full attendance for the year will receive a certificate on the last day of summer term.

Please do not promise your child that he/she may come home from school if he/she is unwell, as this may be unsettling for your child. It is understood that if a child is obviously unwell that you will be contacted but it is in your child’s best interest to be in school every day for the full day.

Good attendance is very important.

You will understand that it is important for learning. Good attendance is also a factor in a child’s social development in class. A child who is in school regularly will find it easier to make friends and sustain friendships. They will also know the teacher and settle in better.

We understand that sometimes children are unwell and have to stay home to recover. However the National Educational Welfare Bureau asks us to submit the names of any child who misses 20 days or more. The other nineteen days shouldn’t be seen as leeway.

Click here to see a summary of our attendance policy.

We asked the students of St. Brigid’s

‘WHAT MIGHT YOU MISS IF YOU MISS SCHOOL?’

and this is what they said:

‘Independence Day? The Halloween Bake Sale? The day the baby lambs come to visit? The day the hens came. Baking buns in the staffroom? Making pizza in the staffroom? The Day the Santa Claus Man visits? The school decorated for Christmas. The school decorated for Halloween. English: our class novel, learning poems, writing poems, writing stories. Teacher reading to us. Irish: fun and games in Irish, learning Irish songs. Maths: doing our sums, learning our tables, doing problem solving. PE with teacher. PE with Cormac. PE in the hall. PE in the yard. PE anywhere. Go Noodle. Art: drawing, painting, using clay, using pastels, use charcoal, being messy. Music: listening to music, singing songs, singing rounds, singing in harmony. Learning about long ago. Learning about other countries. Learning about science. Aistear in Infants. Library day. The Library Ladies. Music Generation with Joan. The days we plant things. The day we harvest things and eat them. Using the ipads, laptops or chromebooks. School plays. Rehearsals. The musicals. Seeing the little kids do their plays. Being the audience when the older children perform. Sports. Matches. GAA. Basketball. Bicycle Safety, Scoot to School Day. After school activities. The day we get our photographs taken. The photographer that tells jokes. Dressing up for Halloween. Non uniform days. School Tours. Nature Walks. Trips to the Beach. The Seaside Scavenger Hunt, Sports Day. Students vs Teacher. Basketball Match. Visitors to the school. When the gardaí come to visit. When the fire brigade come to see us. More visitors to the school: the priest, ‘The Happy Pear’, authors, sports people, successful teams, the Sam Maguire Cup, scientists, engineers, artists, the photographer, politicians, the fire alarm, the day a dog came into the yard.’

What else would you miss?

There are so many interesting things to do in school it would be a pity to miss any of it.

#MissSchoolMissOut !

WHAT MIGHT YOU MISS IF YOU MISSED A DAY DURING DECEMBER 2019?

WHAT MIGHT YOU MISS IF YOU MISS SCHOOL in DECEMBER? The school all decorated for Christmas by the Parents’ Association, Christmas themed lessons that the teachers have planned, Christmas Art&Craft, perhaps some Christmas baking, Christmas decorations in the classrooms. Seeing the stage going up in the hall, Seeing the big crib going up outside Mrs. Costello’s office, Christmas Trips to the Whale Theatre: Infants to 2nd – December 10th – “The Muppets Christmas Carol” followed by 3rd to 6th on December 17th – “The Nutcracker and the Four Realms,” Rehearsals for the Christmas Plays in Junior Infants to 1st Class, Rehearsals for the Christmas Carol Service – 3rd to 6th class, 18th December 2019 in Holy Rosary Church at 8.00pm – Christmas Jumper Day on Thursday 19th December is in aid of CF Ireland – A Very Special Visitor also on that day. That exciting feeling when school closes for the Christmas Holidays on 20th Dec 2019 (at 12.10 for Junior/ Senior Infants & Siblings / 12.30 for 1st – 6th) and you know Christmas Day is getting even nearer. And lots more. WHAT ELSE WOULD YOU MISS ? There are so many interesting things to do in school in December. it would be a pity to miss any of it.

How parents can make EVERY SCHOOL DAY COUNT?

  • Establish a good routine in the mornings and evenings so your child is prepared for the school day ahead.
  • Make sure your child goes to school regularly and follows the school rules.
  • Ensure your child arrives at school on time – not
  • Arrange dental and medical appointments outside school hours when possible.
  • Always inform the school if your child is absent due to illness – this should be followed up with a written note when your child returns to school.
  • Take truancy seriously – if your child is not attending school as you expect they may be putting themselves at risk – Who are they with? What are they doing?
  • Take family holidays outside term
  • Talk to your child about school and take an interest in their school work (including homework).
  • Attend parent evenings and school events.
  • Praise and reward your child’s achievements at
  • Always support school staff in their efforts to control diffcult or challenging behaviour
  • Discuss any problems or diffculties with the school – staff are there to help and will be

The advice for parents given above was published to mark the national ‘Every School Day Counts’ attendance awareness campaign for November – an initiative from TESS.

Good attendance is very important. 

You will understand that it is important for learning. 

Good attendance is also a factor in a child’s social development in class. 

A child who is in school regularly will find it easier to make friends and sustain friendships. 

They will also know the teacher and settle in better. 

 

TUSLA asks us to submit the names of any child who misses 20 days or more. The other nineteen days shouldn’t be seen as leeway. 

We understand that sometimes children are unwell and have to stay home to recover. 

However if a child was to miss 20 days in a year, they would miss 160 in their primary school career. 

On average children attend school five days a week and twenty days a month. 

So missing 160 days of school is the equivalent of missing eight months of school over a child’s time in primary school.

Even missing 10 days a year would be the same as missing eight weeks of school: 

the same length of time as the summer holidays here in Ireland. 

Taking even a week off school in June each year to go on holidays takes eight weeks off the number of days a child comes to school in their school career. A child can learn a great deal in that time. 

Being Punctual

New Year’s Resolutions: Being on time

The importance of being punctual.

When the bell rings in the morning,the teachers bring the children to their classrooms to start school work straight away.

As the Irish proverb goes ‘Tús maith, leath na hoibre’

 ‘A good start is half the work’.

Being on time for school is very important. It is at this time the children get an opportunity to say hello to their friends and teacher and to ‘settle in’. You will know yourself that being ‘on time’ makes for a more relaxing and happier start to a day.

The first ten minutes of school is an important time of the day. It is during this time that the teacher tells the children what the day ahead will bring. Being late certainly ‘wrong foots’ the child. They can be unsettled and spend a significant part of the morning ‘catching up’ as a result.

If there are late comers, the teacher is delayed starting the day’s work. He or she will find themselves repeating themselves as they ‘update’ each late comer as they arrive in the classroom.

As fir the children who have arrived on time: this repetition can be tedious for them and can result in them losing concentration. Late comers slow class work down. The student who arrived late can be playing ‘catch up’ until little break as a result.

Being on time is an important life skill which will stand to your child throughout their lives.