We welcome you and your child to our school and hope that you will have many happy years with us.

This booklet gives an overview of our school and explains many of our school procedures.  We ask you to familiarise yourselves with them and discuss them with your child. Please ensure that any adult bringing or collecting your child to/from school is also aware of them.

We revise the booklet annually and welcome any suggestions you may have.


____________________________

Patricia Clerkin
Principal

April 2016

 


Terms used in this brochure 

Dublin 7 Educate Together
National School

D7ET or D7ETNS

Board of Management

BOM

Dublin Institute Technology

DIT

Ethos programme in ET schools

Learn Together

Educate Together

ET

Department of Education and Skills

DES

Grangegorman Development Agency

GDA

National Education and Welfare Board

NEWB

National Council for
Curriculum and Assessment

NCCA

National Council for Special Education

NCSE

Parent Teacher Association

PTA

 


Mission Statement

Learn Together to Live Together
Ag Foghlaim le Cheile

Dublin 7 Educate Together (D7ET) is committed to the ethos and values of our patron body Educate Together.

Our D7ET school community is committed to fostering a school environment that is: 

  • A place where we are welcomed and in turn are welcoming of others.
  • A place where we are treated with respect and in turn treat others respectfully.
  • A place where we feel happy and safe.
  • A place where we are encouraged to achieve our full potential.
  • A place where our self esteem and self confidence can flourish.
  • A place of quality teaching and learning.
  • A place where a love of learning is nurtured.
  • A place where we can be ourselves and in turn allow others to be themselves. 

Ethos of Educate Together Schools

Multi-denominational

Children of all social, cultural and religious backgrounds have equal access to D7ET and will be equally respected. ET schools are committed to an ethical education curriculum, the “Learn Together Programme”, during the daily period set aside by the state for a school patron’s religious education programme.

Co-educational

Our school is committed to encouraging all children to explore their full range of abilities and opportunities irrespective of gender.

Child centred

We aim to ensure that children’s needs strongly influence the decision making process of the school.

Democratically managed

We encourage active participation by parents in school whilst positively affirming the professional role of the teachers.


History of our school

As a result of the determination of a group of parents, our school started in September 2000. We opened with 47 pupils and three teachers, spending our first two happy years in a Georgian house on Henrietta St., rented from the Kings Inns.

We quickly outgrew this accommodation and moved to St Joseph’s School for the Deaf in Cabra in September 2002. From the foundation of our school, the planned campus for the Dublin Institute of Technology in Grangegorman was identified as a suitable site for our permanent premises. Since September 2009 we have been located on Fitzwilliam Place North, which is a quiet part of the DIT campus, away from the ongoing building work. The G.D.A. have appointed Grafton Architects as the design team to begin the process of building our permanent building on the new DIT campus. We hope to move into the new building during the summer of 2017.

  


 School Procedures

 

Absences
After School Classes
Attendance & Punctuality
Bicycles
Birthday & Party Invitations
Board of Management
Book Rental Scheme
Buggies & Prams
Clothing & Dress Code
Custody Orders
Denominational Instruction
Enrolment
Head Lice
Health & Safety
Home Time
Home – School Communication
Homework
Learn Together Programme
Lunches

Medicines – Administration of
Mobile Phones
Morning Arrival
Parents/Guardians Contact Details
Parents Teacher Association (PTA)
Parental Involvement
Parking
Patronage
Payment of Money
Personal Property
School Bags
School Calendar
School Day
School Office
School Policies
Sibling Aftercare
Toilets
Visitors to the School
Website

 

Absences

The National Educational Welfare Board (NEWB) was established under the Education Welfare Act 2000. It obliges parents / guardians to inform the school in writing when their child is absent, stating the reason.

In Junior and Senior Infants we ask parents to send a note to the class teacher. It should be dated and give the date/s of the child’s absence. In first to sixth classes please write the note in the homework journal. If a child does not bring a note to school on their return after an absence the class teacher reminds them to bring one the following day. It may be necessary to follow this up by contacting the parents directly by phone. Please do not phone the school office if your child is absent unless they have a contagious illness or are absent for a prolonged period.

 

After School Classes

Several private classes are held after school hours on the school premises, for pupils in 1st - 6th class. A committee of parents organises these activities and without their hard work these classes would not be possible.

People who provide private classes on the school premises agree to the Board’s policy for these activities and sign a contract. They must also familiarise themselves with the relevant school policies. They are all Garda vetted. They are responsible for the children at all times while on the premises.

All enquiries regarding these classes are to be made directly to the After School Classes committee or the course instructor and not to the school office or staff. Information regarding these classes is displayed on the Notice Board in the entrance foyer.

Attendance & Punctuality

We encourage our pupils to attend school regularly and punctually and this is monitored by class teachers, deputy principal and principal. If we have concerns we will discuss them with parents and offer support to improve attendance and punctuality. Either when we are concerned about a child’s absences, or when a pupil has been absent for 20 days during a school year, schools must inform the education welfare officer, who may contact parents. If a teacher is concerned about a child’s punctuality they keep an individual time sheet for that child and the matter is raised with parents. Our end of year reports state the number of days a child is marked absent during the school year.

Bicycles

Bicycle racks are located inside the school gates. Children who cycle or scoot to school should lock their bicycle or scooter to a rack. The school does not accept responsibility for bicycles and scooters parked inside the grounds. Children should leave promptly with their bicycles and cycling is not allowed, either for adults or children, in our school grounds. Bicycles and scooters should not be left on the school grounds overnight.

Birthday & Party Invitations

We have learned from experience that it is not a good practice for invitations to be given out on the school premises (this includes the school grounds). It can be a cause of great upset, especially for younger children.

Board of Management

Our BOM is constituted in accordance with the rules of the DES. It has eight members who are appointed for a period of four years.

The structure of boards in all national schools is:

  • 2 patron’s nominees - two nominees of our patron ET.
  • 2 parents’ nominees - two parents elected from parents of pupils in the school, one mother, one father.
  • 1 teacher nominee - elected by the teaching staff.
  • The school principal.

This core board co-opts

  • 2 community representatives - two people from the wider community.

The BOM holds an annual school meeting when it reports on its work and future projects.

Book Rental Scheme

We operate a book rental and borrowing scheme for some textbooks (please see your child's booklist).

The care of all materials, personal and those belonging to the school and others is stressed and encouraged on an ongoing basis. Children will be provided with a plastic bag or wallet to bring home books belonging to the school. Please don’t put lunch or drinks into these bags. Your help in encouraging them to care for these books would be greatly appreciated.

Buggies

Unfortunately we do not have an entrance lobby area large enough to accommodate buggies and as our pupil numbers are increasing each year the entrance corridor is getting busier and more crowded in the mornings. In the interest of health and safety we request that buggies are either left outside the front door or else in the lobby at the bottom of the stairs near the offices. Buggies are not to be brought into classrooms.

Clothing

We do not have a school uniform. We advise against children wearing “good clothes”, as they cannot play freely or engage in some activities if they have to be over careful of their clothes. We recommend footwear with a Velcro fastening for children who cannot tie their own laces. Please put a double knot on laces. Children should wear footwear with a good grip. Some “fashion” shoes have slippery soles and higher heels and for safety reasons these are not advisable. If children wear unsuitable footwear to school, they may not be able to participate in PE or outdoor activities.

We often take children on outings during the day so please make sure that they bring a coat or jacket to school, preferably with a hood. Children may be unable to go on an outing if they don’t have suitable outdoor clothing, and would remain in school. When buying a coat or jacket for your child check that they can open and close it themselves.

Our pupils are from age 4 – 12/13 years and we expect children to come to school dressed in an age appropriate way. We do not allow “beach wear”, off-the-shoulder, bikini/ short tops, short shorts, etc. Make up, including nail varnish, is not allowed for pupils in any class. Children are not to wear t-shirts or sweatshirts with offensive words, slogans or pictures on them. All of the above also applies to Halloween fancy dress day, party days, school tours, school photos, afterschool classes and sports events.

Custody Orders

It is important that you let us know if a child’s parents don’t live together. It is assumed that regarding all school communications the parent with whom the child lives will keep the other parent informed. If this is not the practice please let the principal know. If there is a custody arrangement regarding your child we need to be informed.

Denominational Instruction

Ours is a multi-denominational school. Parents who wish their children to receive instruction in a particular denomination may, with the board’s approval, organise instruction classes on the school premises after school hours. The school has no role in the organisation of these classes or the supervision of children attending them. The same requirements for these classes as those for the afterschool classes apply.

Enrolment (refer to policy)

Children are enrolled on a first come first served basis. We do not operate a sibling policy. We recommend that children and siblings are entered on our pre-enrolment list as early as possible.

Head Lice

Head lice are a common problem in primary schools. Please check your child’s head regularly and if you discover any “little visitors“ don’t be embarrassed to let us know. When we are aware of an outbreak we inform parents and no individual child is identified. Long hair should be tied back while children are in school.

Health & Safety (refer to policy)

As this section could take up an entire booklet please familiarise yourself with our policy which is on our website. Copies are available on request from the school office.

Home – School Communication (refer to policy)

A child’s happiness and progress in school is enhanced by a positive home school partnership. If you have any issues or concerns relating to your child please discuss them first with the class teacher. If you need to meet the teacher please make an appointment in advance so s/he can arrange with a colleague to supervise the class and meet you without any distractions.

Individual parent-teacher meetings are held for all classes. If you have an important concern please don’t wait until then to talk to the teacher. In turn be assured that if a teacher has a concern s/he will contact you. Each year a written report on your child’s progress, attendance and punctuality during the previous school year will be sent to you at the end of June. This report if intended for the attention of parents/guardians of the named child.

A weekly information letter is emailed to all parents who sign up to receive it each Thursday. There may occasionally be notes on other days so please check your child’s bag regularly.

We use Text a Parent, which is a group system, to contact our parent body if the need arises unexpectedly. Only the first parent on the contact list receives the text. If you wish to change the parent who receives the text please send a note to Catherine in our school office.

Home Time

Home time for Junior and Senior Infants is 1.10 pm.

Home time for classes 1st - 6th is 2.10 pm.

Junior & Senior Infants are handed over one by one by a teacher to the collecting adult. Please do not take children from their line until it is their turn to be handed over.

We advise you to discuss with your child what to do in the event of the collecting adult being late, where to wait, safety etc. It may be possible for you to contact another parent who will wait with your child until you arrive. We recommend a “buddy system” for parents.

If your child has to leave school early please notify the class teacher in writing stating the time and reason. If you will be collecting your child early please inform the class teacher beforehand.

If somebody other than a parent or regular childminder is collecting your child please let the teacher know in writing/in person. There will be a notebook on the teacher’s desk for this purpose. It is also important that we know whether your child is familiar or not with the person who may be collecting them.

Homework (refer to policy)

Please familiarise yourself with our homework policy. Homework is an important part of your child’s work.

It serves several purposes:

  • consolidation of school work
  • an opportunity to develop independent work
  • enables parents to observe their child in a working situation.

If for any reason your child does not do their homework, or if homework is not completed on the actual evening because of a special occasion, teachers may require it to be done later. Please write an explanatory note in their homework journal, as we do not accept a verbal excuse from pupil about this. Journals are signed by parents or the supervising adult when it has been completed.

We include the following tips from the Irish National Teachers Organisation’s booklet “Your Child in the Primary School”.

  • Establish a homework routine.
  • The child should be sitting comfortably at a table.
  • Homework time should include oral as well as written work.
  • If your child is working independently be available to help and show an interest in what is being done.
  • Praise your child’s efforts at every opportunity.
  • If you feel yourself becoming impatient with your child, stop.
  • If your child is persistently having problems with homework talk to the class teacher.
  • Encourage your child to keep their books and copies clean and tidy.

Helping your child with their homework is not the same as doing the homework for them. If your child comes into school with homework done correctly but not understood, this is of no benefit to them. In this case the teacher may be unaware of any difficulties. It is best to write a note in the journal saying they tried their best but could not do the work.

Learn Together Programme

In all ET schools, the daily period of time set aside for the patron’s religious education programme is used to teach its Ethical Education Curriculum. This programme is called “Learn Together” and is published by ET. The programme is divided into four strands:

Moral & Spiritual Development Justice & Equality
Belief Systems Ethics & the Environment

Parents may buy (10 euro) or borrow a copy of the curriculum from the school office.

 

Lunches (refer to policy)

In line with our Health Lunch/Eating Policy, children are not to bring fizzy drinks, sweets, chocolate and crisps to school. They may bring a few treats on party days and tours - you will be told in advance about these days in writing. Children do not share food, even on party days, to avoid any risk to children with food allergies. In a class where there are specific food restrictions, the parents will receive a copy of “Allergy Management Plan” for that class. The school is a NUT FREE ZONE.

Dublin City Council supplies milk and sandwiches daily, and fruit three times a week. Occasionally these lunches don’t arrive so children should always bring some lunch and drink. A strong lunch box (not a zipped lunch bag) that will fit into a school bag and can be opened easily, is recommended, as food lying in school bags can be squashed. It is also more hygienic and less messy if children eat food directly from the box. Many parents put a piece of kitchen paper into the lunchbox, especially for younger children. The children bring home all uneaten food. This way you will know what your child has eaten. They also bring home all their own packaging and other rubbish.

Please give your child lunch and drink containers that they can open themselves and use without spilling. Beakers with a wide base are much safer that high, narrow ones. Children are not to bring glass bottles or flasks with hot drinks/soup to school.

Medicines – Administration of (refer to policy)

If your child has a particular medical or allergic condition it is imperative that you let us know in writing and fill out the necessary documentation, available from the office. You also need to keep the school informed of any changes in your child’s condition/medication, etc.

Mobile Phones (refer to policy)

Children are only permitted to bring mobile phones to school if a parent feels that it is absolutely necessary and permission has been granted by the principal. At the start of a school year parents and children are required to fill in a form requesting that a mobile phone be brought to school. These forms are available, at the request of parents, from the principal and must be filled out each year.

All such authorised phones must be switched off between 8.30 am & 2.10 pm while the child is in school and while at after school classes. If a child switches on a phone while in the building or grounds it will be removed from them and returned only to a parent. Permission to have it in school may be withdrawn.

We also request that parents do not make or receive calls while on the school premises. Camera phones are not to be used in the school at any time.

Morning Arrival & Punctuality

The front gate is opened at 8.20 am and children and adults are not to enter the school grounds before this time. Children should arrive punctually. It is upsetting for a child to arrive late and be disruptive to a class. We request that you do not enter the class room until there is a teacher present. If you arrive at school after 8.40, please say your goodbyes outside the school’s entrance door and do not accompany children beyond this point. In very wet or bad weather, we may have to ask adults to drop children at the outside door, in the interests of health and safety for all.

The period 8.30 – 8.40 am is reception time. Parents are very welcome to visit their child’s classroom at this time. Please don’t bring buggies to classrooms. They can be left in the entrance foyer beside the stairs. Younger siblings are also welcome to visit their sisters or brothers classroom between 8.30 and 8.40 am. They are to be supervised at all times by the accompanying adult. The class teacher has no responsibility for children who are not pupils in the school. They are not to be left unattended in a classroom while an adult visits another classroom or the office.

Children who arrive late may be marked absent. Once the DES roll has been called it cannot be altered.

Parents/Guardians Contact Details

Parents / guardians supply the school with their up to date addresses and phone numbers, contact numbers for child minders, and the name of another person in the event of parents not being available. It is essential that people listed are available daily to respond to contact by the school. If any of the details on the child’s personal information form changes, please inform the school office.

A contact book is compiled by the school secretary and updated as necessary. A copy is kept in the school office and the principal’s office.

Parent Teacher Association

We have an active PTA, which supports the work of the BOM and the staff. They organise a range of social and fundraising events, informative talks for our school community, and more. A BOM member liaises between PTA and BOM, and a staff member between them and the staff. The work of this association greatly enhances the sense of community and common purpose among parents, children and staff as well as enabling the school to buy additional resources.

Parental Involvement (refer to policy)

We welcome involvement from parents who may have an interest or skill, suitable for a school setting, that they would be willing to share with the children during school hours, e.g., sport, drama, art, computers, nature, or give a talk on a particular topic.

Parents are welcome to become involved in:

Activities that take place during the school day 8.30 am - 2.10 pm:

These are organised in collaboration with the principal, and a decision made as to which class may be appropriate. Sometimes it is better if the parent doesn’t have a child in the class in which the activity takes place.

Activities that take place after school hours:

These activities are approved by our BOM, and organised in collaboration with our Afterschool committee/PTA. Please send in a note if you are able to hold a class or offer help.

Parking

There is no parking in the school grounds for parents and guardians. At our request, Dublin City Council has waived the disc parking on the stretch of road near the Bring Centre until 9am. Please do not park directly outside our school gate, on Fitzwilliam Place, on the corners or on the short stretch leading to the arch of Stanhope Street Convent. Our board has ongoing communication with stakeholders, including valid complaints, about parents parking unsafely and in an inconsiderate manner. We have regular consultation with Dublin City Council and An Garda Síochána as our lease stipulates that our board monitor parking near our entrance.

Patronage

D7ET is under the patronage of Educate Together (ET), an organisation whose activities are regulated by its memo and articles and whose decisions are made at general meetings of its members. This has created a transparent and accountable model of patronage that is defined in clear legal terms. The fundamental legal concept of ET patronage is that a school board of management (BOM) is bound to operate a school that has equality of access and esteem for all children, irrespective of the social, cultural and religious backgrounds of their families.

Please see the ET website for more information: www.educatetogether.ie.

Payment of Money

Requests for money will always be in writing. If you are paying in cash please send in the exact amount in a sealed envelope, with your child‘s name, class and indication of what the payment is for on the front of the envelope. There is a locked post-box outside the office and envelopes should be left here, unless it is specified that it is to be paid to the class teacher. Boxes are emptied every morning. Please put payment for afterschool classes into the locked post box outside the first junior infant classroom.

Personal Property

It is important that names should be written clearly on all clothing and personal belongings. Please ensure that your child can recognise her/his own belongings. By the end of each term we have a large box of lost property that "nobody" owns and we send it to a charity shop.

In the interest of safety jewellery should be kept to a minimum. We don’t allow long chains, necklaces, rings, bracelets or long earrings as they can catch in clothing during playtime and cause injury.

We do not take responsibility for personal property brought to school and we do not recommend that children bring toys either for indoor or outdoor use from home. Children are not to bring spray cans/cosmetics to school. Children are not to bring electronic games or any music playing equipment (e.g., MP3 players, iPods) to school.

School Bags

We recommend that all children from Junior Infants to 6th class have a strong decent-sized school bag, preferably one that will stand upright and will hold their lunch and materials. Children should have a bag that they can carry comfortably on their backs. We request that pull along bags on wheels are not brought to school. We are conscious of minimising the weight of children’s bags. We operate a book rental scheme, so many of the books needed in the senior classes are left in school. You would be surprised at how many non-essential school items some children carry around in their bags! Each child in 5th and 6th classes has a basket under their table for the storage of specified items. Children bring home only materials needed for homework each evening and their library book if appropriate.

School Calendar

The school year for all primary schools is 183 days. A calendar will be sent home at the end of the school year listing closures.

This calendar will also be posted be on the school website.

School Day and Timetable

The length of the school day is determined by the DES.

8.30 am

School opens (The gates will open at 8.20)

8.30 am

Reception time
Social and activity period.     Parents can visit classrooms during this time.

8.40 am

Tidy up                                       Parents leave  (first buzzer  *)

8.45 am

Teaching and learning time           Second buzzer **

10.10 am

Sos beag / little break

10.20 am

Teaching and learning time

11.50 am

Sos mor / big break

12.20 pm

Teaching and learning time

1.10 pm

Home time for junior and senior infants

1.10 pm

Teaching & learning time

2.10 pm

Home time for 1st – 6th classes.

Children go to the yard, during the two breaks, weather permitting. Otherwise they are supervised in the school by teachers.

School Office

This is open from 8.30am - 2.30pm on school days. Our secretary’s breaks are 10.30 - 10.40 and 12.30-13.00 each day, so the office may be unattended during these times.

Our school phone number is 894 3111. Our email address is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

School Policies

Please see our school website for details.

Paper copies are available on request from our school office

Sibling Aftercare (refer to policy)

Unfortunately we do not have a free room for the school year 2016-17 and so we will not be able to facilitate this service.

Toilets

Each classroom has two toilets. Your child is sharing toilet facilities with other children. Please discuss with your child the importance of personal hygiene, particularly flushing, hand washing, aiming directly into the toilet bowl (boys) and leaving the toilet clean for the next user. Liquid soap is supplied in all toilets. We require every pupil to bring their own small towel (face cloth size) for their own personal use. Children keep this in their school bag. Please ensure they change it regularly.

Visitors to the School

All visitors to the school should use the designated entrance at the front door. They should make themselves known to the principal or secretary in the school office immediately.

Website

Our school website address is: www.d7educatetogether.com. We sometimes include pictures of pupils in our classroom blogs and school events on our school website. If you do not want your child to appear on our website please let us know in writing.