Letter (4) 20102020


Dear Parents                                                    Issue: 04                                                         October 20th 2020

As you are aware, despite the new stricter lockdown measures announced by the government last night, schools all over Ireland will remain open. Thank you all so much for your continued co-operation and help since school re-opened. We really appreciate your support and adherence to all the public health guidelines. It is this team effort among the whole school community which will help us to keep the school as safe as possible for us all.

Science Award:

We are delighted to announce that our school has achieved an SFI Discover Science & Maths Award for the 2019 / 2020 academic year. Our sincere thanks to Miss Tyrrell for leading this for the school.

Our log of evidence showed evidence of the children’s engagement with STEM in the following areas:

  • Science
  • Technology
  • Engineering
  • Maths
  • STEM Showcase

We met all the criteria for the Plaque of STEM award. Here is some of the feedback we were given:

  • “You have displayed a wide variety of STEM skills including problem solving, group collaboration and have encouraged creativity amongst your students. This is evident from the range of individuality in the projects carried out throughout the school”.
  • “Great to see your participation in Space week by inviting the engineer to speak to the school via Skype from the European Space Agency. Well done to the learners who showcased their knowledge about Engineers and Science experiments with the whole school in assembly. Keep up the good work!”

Change to School Opening Time:

Pupils should not be gathering on the yard before 8:40am as the yard is unsupervised at this time. In addition to this, it is also a Covid 19 risk that we want to avoid. Pupils are to arrive between 8:40am and 8:50am where they will go directly into their classrooms.

Raincoats & suitable footwear:

Please ensure your child brings their raincoat to school and wears suitable footwear every day. The children will be going outside for break every day so they will need to be suitably dressed for the weather. Outdoor activity is being encouraged by the Department of Education.

Enrolments for Secondary School:

  • Presentation College: enrolment application forms had to be submitted by 1pm on Friday October 16th.
  • Coláiste and Eachréidh: applications are open until November 5th
  • Clarin College: visit www.clarincollege.ie Go to: Parents & Students / Enrolment 2021 where you can request an application form & a link for the Virtual Open Night 2021 / 2022. Applications will be accepted from October 19th to November 19th 2020.

Staying Connected:

  • I will host a virtual assembly for all classes in the school this week
  • In the interests of connecting with everybody (while also promoting the Irish language) I have been looking in on all classes weekly with either a face-to-face visit or by sending the class an Irish voice over video.
  • Mrs Cronin compiled a short (5mins) iMovie of the Holy Communion girls, which you can view on the school YouTube channel:

Halloween:

  • Friday October 23rd is a non-uniform day. Your child may come to school dressed in their Halloween costume or they may come to school in their normal clothes. It is their choice, we certainly don’t want to put expense on parents having to buy a costume.
  • Our only request is that props such as wands, swords etc. are left at home. These items are always very popular to share and due to current restrictions, it is better your child just wears their costume / face paint (without any props) coming in to the classroom.
  • Please note also, correct footwear is essential for the yard. (Most Disney princess shoes are not made for running in the yard!)
  • In the past we have collected €1 / €2 from the children on this non-uniform day and given the proceeds to Temple Street hospital (“Trick or Treat for Temple St.”), as a number of our pupils attend Temple Street hospital for various different reasons. Given the current pandemic we didn’t think it wise to be collecting all these coins from the children. So this year, in lieu of the normal fund-raising, the Board of Management will make a small donation to Temple Street on behalf of school.
  • The children will get their holidays for mid-term break on Friday October 23rd. It is a normal school day i.e. Junior & Senior infants finish at 1.30pm and all other classes finish at 2.30pm. School re-opens on Monday November 2nd.
  • There will be a Cash4Clobber collection on Monday November 9th, after the mid-term break. Bags will not be brought into the school building, given the current public health situation. Instead we would ask that all bags be left in the shelter in the bottom yard on the morning of Monday November 9th. As the bags will be left outside until the truck comes to collect them, please make sure the clothes are in plastic bags that are properly tied up and have no holes!

Miss Waldron’s 4th class:

We are delighted to welcome Mrs Neasa Duffy who will be teaching the girls after the mid-term break.

Parent / Teacher meetings:

In the past parent / teacher meetings would have taken place in the weeks between Halloween and Christmas. This will not be possible this year, given the current public health situation. The current plan is to hold these meetings in Term 3, but obviously this will have to be reviewed closer to the time and will depend on the public health situation at that time.

Seesaw:

  • It is understood that remote learning is not being actively considered by government, but staff have to prepare for all eventualities. We thank families for their feedback in the last survey and are taking on board constructive feedback from this. Seesaw will be the main platform that will be used should we be instructed to close again.
  • Teachers have been using class time to explain how the platform works to the children, so we trust this will help both you and your child get established with Seesaw.
  • Parents can view their child’s eportfolio on Seesaw by downloading the app and using the access codes provided by the class teacher. There is some lovely artwork to be seen there – not to be missed!
  • When requested you will be able to upload your child’s work using Seesaw. It will be securely saved on the platform and will be easily accessible by the class teacher so they can correct pupils’ work.
  • If you have children in more than one class please note that each child will have their own individual log in details which are connected to their individual classes. Therefore it is important that you keep the learning codes for each child to enable logging in and out.
  • There is a “family app” within Seesaw but this app just facilitates the parents in contacting the teacher. Each class is seen as a separate entity or account.
  • It is possible for children to use one device, but they must sign in & out with their unique codes.

Aladdin:

  • Please make sure that you have downloaded the Aladdin app and have notifications switched on, as teachers may be using it to correspond with you during the school year.
  • If your child has been absent from school please record the reason for the absence on the Aladdin app (you will need to wait until teacher has marked your child absent first, before you will be given the option to record the reason).

Team Hope Christmas Shoe Boxes:

  • The Christmas Shoebox Appeal is an annual campaign where thousands of individuals in Ireland donate shoeboxes filled with gifts to children affected by poverty in Africa and Eastern Europe. It is an opportunity to share a little joy and excitement with children who live in circumstances where these can sometimes be in short supply.
  • This year due to COVID-19 they are moving the appeal ONLINE!
  • Every €20 donated will allow Team Hope’s partners in Africa and Eastern Europe to purchase items for shoeboxes locally, which will then be packaged and delivered directly into the hands of children.
  • To make a VIRTUAL BOX of your own with your child you can visit www.teamhope.ie at any time and choose the items you would like to add. Your child can also personalise their shoebox by adding a colouring page they have completed, to the box. (Just follow the steps online).
  • If you are interested in taking part in the Christmas shoe box appeal; go www.teamhope.ie and choose “Christmas Shoe Box Appeal”. When you are submitting your details you can type in “Scoil Chroí Naofa” in the “Company Name” field.

Dealing with a suspected case of Covid-19 in the school:

If your child becomes unwell at school and presents with symptoms associated with Covid-19, we will follow the procedure that is set out in Section 9 of the “SCN Covid-19 Response Plan”. (You can view this on the school website: Parents Hub / School Re-opening 2020 / SCN Covid 19 Response Plan).

This involves:

  • Bringing your child to a designated area within the school. This area is called an “isolation area” and every school is required to have such an area identified to deal with a potential case of Covid-19
  • We will contact you and ask you to collect your child as soon as possible
  • Please note that the school is not required to inform anyone that your child has been removed due to his / her symptoms. This procedure is purely precautionary.
  • If you have other children in the school, they do not have to be removed from the school at this point.
  • You are required to contact your GP to discuss concerns & we would ask that you keep the school updated on the advice given by your GP. The next steps will depend on the advice given to you by your GP
  • If your child is referred for a test, all other members of the household that attend the school should remain at home
  • If your child is confirmed positive for Covid-19, the HSE will begin the process of contact tracing. This will most likely mean that the school will be contacted to assess the Public Health Risk.

FROM THIS POINT ONWARDS, THE PROCESS WILL BE LED BY THE PUBLIC HEALTH HSE.

  • The school cannot take any action in relation to exclusion, part closure or full closure unless the Public Health HSE determine that the action is required.
  • If any action of this nature is required, the HSE will liaise with the school to provide clear guidance to the school community.
  • If the school has not been contacted by the Public Health HSE in relation to a confirmed case in the school community, then contact with the school has not been deemed necessary.

Case of Covid-19 outside school:

  • We must again thank all the parents who are playing their part and adhering to the public health guidelines.
  • There will be Covid-19 positive cases among pupils & staff which will be identified outside of school, which is what happened with the recent case. The person in question was not at school during the infectious period and therefore we have not been contacted by the HSE, as they have not deemed it necessary.
  • As Principal of Scoil Chroí Naofa my duty is to the pupils, staff and parents of this school. For this reason I will advise the school community of such cases, so that you are all fully informed. Keeping our school community safe is the number one priority and I am very grateful for your vigilance and co-operation.
  • It is a distressing time for families who are dealing with a suspected or confirmed case and all pupils and their families are entitled to confidentiality.
  • The school cannot & will not make the name of a pupil with a suspected or confirmed case known to the public.
  • Unfortunately, we have no control over exchanges on social media, where information based on hearsay is shared.
  • We would respectfully request that parents who choose to communicate about this issue on social media should consider how these comments could be misinterpreted.
  • Please refrain from naming pupils and their families on these platforms.
  • We will continue to implement the measures set out in the school’s Covid-19 Repsonse Plan to provide a safe learning environment for our pupils and a safe and healthy workplace for all our staff, from community transmissions.

Samhain Shona daoibh go léir !

Fergal Naughton

Principal

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