Letter (21) 23042018

Athenry, Co Galway

Telephone:  091-844510

Email: [email protected]


Dear Parents                                                  Issue: 21                               April 23rd 2018 

There have been a number of confirmed cases of “Slapped Cheek” syndrome in different classes throughout the school. Please review the attached information sheet overleaf and be vigilant. If you have any concerns that your child may have the condition, we would ask that you make an appointment with the doctor and follow his / her advice.


Mrs Monson’s 6th class took part in the Junior Entrepreneur Programme (JEP) again this year. JEP is an entrepreneurial awareness & skills enhancement programme for primary school children over a 12 week period. The children were encouraged to become critical thinkers, to identify a diverse range of strengths & talents, to engage in teamwork & collaboration and to reflect on their learning. Over the 12 weeks the children came up with their own business ideas out of which five ideas were selected. The ideas were presented to our three dragons: Mrs Neylon, Mrs Cronin and Victoria McDermott from Athenry Antiques. The winning product chosen was Slime Surprise. The next phase was design and costings. The school gave a start up loan of €400. Then it was a very busy week of production where the 6th class room was turned into a hive of activity. Finally the product was showcased & sold to the whole school and the girls raised over €1,700. They paid back their €400 loan and paid an extra €80 expenses. The remaining profits will be divided between the 6th class girls. Each girl has made €40 approx. It was a fantastic programme and an overall great learning experience for all involved. Thanks to staff, parents and children who supported 6th class by purchasing their product. The girls would also like to thank Mrs Monson for all her hard work in helping them with the project.


Congratulations to all the children who won medals in various events at the Annual Athenry Community Games and Parish Sport. Special congratulations to the 2 relay teams who represented the school and won gold medals: Team 1: Sophie Costello, Anna Rohan, Olivia Syrkowska and Rachel Doran. Team 2: Abigail O’Shea, Kayla Madden, Ciara Walsh and Leonore Church


Congratulations to all the girls in 2nd class who made their First Confession today. Thank you to the Parents Council who funded a party for them afterwards.


Tests will be administered to children from 1st class up to 6th class this week and next week.  Please forward the test fee outlined below to your child’s teacher as soon as possible.

2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th & 6th CLASSES ENGLISH, MATHS  & IRISH €3.00


There will be a Staff Meeting on Thursday May 3rd. Children will go home at 1.15pm.



Yours sincerely   ___________________________Teresa Neylon, Principal


Slapped Cheek syndrome (sometimes called Fifth Disease) is caused by the parvovirus B19 virus.

What is “Slapped Cheek Syndrome”?

It is a mild rash illness that occurs most commonly in children. The ill child typically has a “slapped cheek” rash on the face and a lacy red rash on the trunk and limbs. Occasionally, the rash may itch. An ill child may feel unwell and have a low-grade fever or a “cold” a few days before the rash breads out. The child is usually not very ill, and the rash resolves in 7 to 10 days.

Can adults get parvovirus B19 infection?

Yes, they can. An adult who is not immune can be infected with parvovirus B19 and either have no symptoms or develop the typical rash of slapped cheek syndrome, joint pain or swelling or both. The joint pain and swelling usually resolve in a week or two, but may last longer. However, most adults have previously been infected with parvovirus B19 and have developed life-long immunity to the virus and cannot become infected again.

Is parvovirus B19 infectious?

Yes. A person infected with parvovirus B19 is infectious during the early part of the illness, before the rash appears. By the time a child has the characteristic “slapped cheek” rash he / she is probably no longer contagious.

How does someone get infected with parvovirus B19?

Parvovirus B19 has been found in the respiratory secretions (e.g. saliva, sputum or nasal mucus) of infected persons before the onset of a rash, when they appear to “just have a cold”. The virus is probably spread from person to person by direct contact with those secretions, such as sharing cutlery, cups, drinks, drinking glasses etc.

Is parvovirus B19 infection serious?

Parvovirus B19 is usually a mild illness that resolves on its own. Parvovirus B19 infection may cause a serious illness in persons with chronic red blood cell disorders (e.g. sickle cell anaemia or spherocytosis) or a weakened immune system. Rarely, serious complications may develop from parvovirus B19 infection during early pregnancy.

Can parvovirus B19 infection be prevented?

There is no vaccine or medicine that prevents parvovirus B19 infection. Frequent hand washing is recommended to decrease the chance of becoming infected. People should also avoid sharing cutlery, cups, drinks, drinking glasses etc.

Should children with parvovirus be excluded from school?

Excluding pupils with slapped cheek syndrome from school is not likely to prevent the spread of the virus. People are infectious before they develop the rash and it becomes clear that they have slapped cheek syndrome. Cases of slapped cheek syndrome in a school most commonly happen when the infection is spreading in the community.

I am pregnant and have been exposed to a child with parvovirus B19. What should I do?

You should contact your doctor, who may wish to do a blood test. Usually, there is no serious complication for a pregnant woman or her baby if exposed to a person with slapped cheek syndrome. Most women are already immune to parvovirus B19 and these women and their babies are protected from infection and illness. Even if a woman is susceptible and gets infected with parvovirus B19 she usually experiences only a mild illness. Likewise, her unborn baby usually does not develop any problems due to parvovirus B19 infection. However, sometimes parvovirus B19 infection may cause miscarriage or severe anaemia in the unborn baby. There is no evidence that parvovirus B19 infection causes birth defect or development delay.

Translate »