Colette

Colette

Tuesday, 24 May 2016 12:57

New Parents' Evening Tuesday 21st May

All our parents of New Junior infants and those of children coming into older classes are invited to an information meeting here in the schoool on Tuesday 21st MAy at 7;30 in the hall. You will be given a welcome pack, filled with information booklets and sheets which will answer many of the questions that you have about the practical running of the school as well as curricular, extra curricular activities and about our Educate Together ethos. Colette and Tom will talk to you about the school, the school day, the calendar and traffic management.  The new Junior Infant teachers will talk about how you might prepare your children for school and a little about Aistear and the Junior Infant curriculum. Gemma, our Home School Community Liaison teacher, will talk you you about how you might become involved in our very busy parents programmes and how you might get involved in in-class support. Honor from the PTA will talk toy you abourt what they do and how you might wish to become involved in their committee. Tea and Coffee will be served . We look forward to meeting with you all and to getting to know you. 

Friday, 20 May 2016 14:23

Mary Poppins preparations

The countdown is on to our most ambitious production yet. The children are feverishly rehearsing  and teachers, Barry our caretaker and his brother Darren are busy preparing a very elaborate and professional set. Stage One, building the set from scratch yesterday. Stage two, undercoating and priming today. Further updates on the way. Look out for tickets to the show. Parents of cast members invited to the Gala performance on Thursday 2nd June and all others interested parents on Friday afternoon. 3rd June. Exact times to follow. BY the way, the face you see looking over the back drop is Darren not Barry. They look almost the same. Don't spill any paint now!

 Esker Educate Together National School has just been awarded a Science Foundation Ireland Discover Science and Maths Plaque of STEM Excellence for the 2015/16 academic year. We are thrilled to see that all of the science, technology, engineering and maths work, carried out in our school has been acknowledged and celebrated with this award. I know that the children really enjoyed taking part in the Awards programme this year. A most hearty congratulations to 6th Class Green and their teacher Deirdre who organised and led the programme in the school this year. I know that Deirdre also wanted to thank Niamh who was responsible for our success in this area over the last two years and gave invaluable advice to Deirdre who was leading the application for the first time. Well done to all involved.

 

 

 

 

Wednesday, 18 May 2016 15:40

RSE Meeting Parents of 4th 5th and 6th

Over the next few weeks the school will be covering a module called Relationships and Sexuality Education (RSE) as part of our ongoing Social, Personal and Health Education (SPHE). The aim of the programme is to provide children with structured opportunities to develop their knowledge, attitudes, values, beliefs and practical skills necessary to establish healthy personal relationships as children and subsequently as adults. As a school community we acknowledge that parents have a pivotal role in the education of their children and most particularly in this aspect of the curriculum.

In order for you to familiarise yourself with the content we have placed our policy and plan on the school website, eskeretns.ie. You can access the RSE documents from the parent section of our website under the heading policies. In this document and PowerPoint explanation you will find the specific content for your child’s class outlined along with general information about the programme.

The material covered will be delivered by the class teachers from Junior Infants to 3rd class.

 It has been decided by the RSE steering committee to split the boys from the girls in 4th class for the more sensitive areas of the programme. The class teachers will talk with the girls and Tom (Deputy Principal) will talk with the boys. Parents in 4th class will be asked to sign a consent form for these lessons.

 For 5th class and 6th class children, we have invited ACCORD, an agency which has experience and expertise in this area to speak to the children. These lessons, delivered by Accord to 5th class and 6th class separately will take place here in the school during the school day on May 24th . Parents of 5th and 6th classes will be asked to sign a consent form to allow their children to take part in these lessons. Although Accord is a Catholic organisation, there will be no religious message delivered with the programme. We recognise the diversity of our families and we recognise and appreciate their different values and morals regarding RSE. Accordingly the steering committee feels that it the duty of parents to ensure that their own religious and moral values will be central to what they teach at home.

 We strongly advise that all parents and parents of pupils of 4th, 5th and 6th class attend the meeting tomorrow night Wednesday 18th May in the school.  Colette will present the 4th class programme and a speaker from Accord will present the 5th and 6th class programme and will be available to answer any questions that you may have.

We also strongly advise that you allow your children to participate in these lessons to ensure that the information they receive is factually correct and is delivered in a safe environment. Children receive messages from television, advertising, videos, magazines and computers from their friends about this subject. Parents may not even be aware or, or indeed may not like, the messages their children get from informal sources. We believe that it is preferable that this information is presented accurately and sensitively by a professional educator.

 

Please do not bring your children with you to this meeting as it is reserved for parents only.

Please find reports from our Board of Management meetings and the principal's reports to these meetings under the Board of Management tag in the  "About us" section of this website. An agreed report from the minutes and the principal's report to the Board  will be uploaded to keep all our parents informed of the workings of the Board and the schoo. Once again may I remind you about the translate button on this site if you wish to change the text into another language  

Pupils

There are 419 pupils in the school, 229 boys and 190 girls.

Staffing; Deirdre Kelly back from Maternity leave on 17th  February

Noeline Morgan going on maternity leave on March 5th

Kate Fenton covered both

Big difficulty getting subs

Projected numbers

We will be taking in 28 in each of the Junior Infants. We need a minimum of 411 next year and we are very likely to have more than that. There are a higher number of children with special needs coming in this year. Extra resources have been applied for in all cases that we know of. All children from old enrolment list have been offered. On 1st March we ran the Common enrolment system round 1., Each of the four schools had some spaces. We had 14. So 14 new children have been offered places. Waiting for them to accept. Round 2 will go out later in the month just before EASter holidays

Curriculum Issues

School Self Evaluation: School Planning and the Introduction of Guided reading

At the moment we are implementing vocabulary development in literacy and problem solving strategies in Numeracy. These initiatives are continuing. All children from 2nd to 6th have been individually tested and graded at levels appropriate to their instructional level. Two days a week two teachers go into each class to do reading with small groups. Going well so far. tDear Principal,

The Inter Departmental Group Report on the Future Investment in Childcare in Ireland, which reported to Government in 2015, included a recommendation to invest in After School childcare and some limited funding was secured in Budget 2016 by the Department of Children and Youth Affairs to improve such provision for children.

For information purposes and to inform future policy in this area, the Department of Education and Skills is conducting a baseline survey on current provision of out of school hours services in Primary Schools.

We are also very interested in your expert views on how this provision can be improved and developed in the future and would appreciate your timely response.

 

It would be greatly appreciated if you would take a few minutes to complete this short survey at the link below:

 

https://www.research.net/r/afterschoolsurvey2016

 

Best regards,

 

Early Years Education Policy Unit

Department of Education and Skills

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 Music Generation

Sourced ready steady sing programme Once a week high quality singing lessons, heavily subsidised U2 actually.  One euro per child per week. in 2 fourth classes. 18 weeks from now to June once a week, 680 euro paid for by the PTA. Teachers speak very highly of the course so far. If its good we will do it for two fourth classes every year.

Eoin Shanahan from The PDST did a whole day in-service for teachers on Vocabulary Development and Phonological awareness : Very good

Mary Poppins

Auditions for main parts and rehearsals have begun on a production of Mary Poppins for the end of the year. Children from 2nd to 6th choose into it Friday afternoon rehearsals in golden time

After school clubs

Football, drama, art, keyboard, tin whistle, Irish dancing, chess, basketball.

Catholic instruction underway. Islamic instruction not happening this year.
Homework club twice a week for selected children run by Leah and Liz.

1916Centenary Programme

March 15th has been designated Proclamation Day for all schools in Ireland. On this day there will be a flag raising ceremony, children will sing the Irish National Anthem and the actual proclamation (or part of it) will be read out. We will also be reading from our own schools “Proclamation for a New Generation” which we are working on at the moment. ^th Class are presenting an assembly/drama about 1916 to all classes from 1st to 6th

On the same day we will have our Junior ceili and Ceolchoirm and our senior ceili and ceolchoirm .

Junior Parent teacher meetings took place 9th and 10th February. All PT meeings now completed

Mobile Library coming to 3rd class 4th class and 5th class one Thursday of every month from January to June. Very lucky to get them

Commemorated the 2nd Anniversary of Paul Kilgarriff on 17th February. We had a minute’s silence in the school and I read out some of the children’s memories. We also decorated his tree and put up some information and photos on our school website. I contacted Paul’s mother on the day and sent a message to Leo.

Focus Ireland This term our PTA and student council decided to choose Focus Ireland as our school charity. A BIG thank you to all of our school community for donating lots of toiletries, canned foods, new hats and gloves and even money to the appeal.

 Last week, members from our PTA with the children from the student's council met up to make boxes for the homeless. Included in each box was shampoo, soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, tea or coffee and a little treat. We also made food bags for families. A representative from Focus Ireland will come to a school assembly this week to talk to the children and to accept the donations.

Pupils council also arranging another fundraiser for a cancer charity in the near future

Green School Flag

Monday 22nd February  was a very important day for our Green School Committee in Esker ETNS.  We had a visit from an inspector from An Taisce. For the past two years the committee have been working towards earning our second Green flag for Energy. To earn this flag we had to prove that we could reduce the amount of energy that we use in the school. To do this we had to carry out an environmental review in October 2014 on the amount of energy that we use in the school. We then monitored this for 3 months. We had to come up with an action plan of how we were going to raise awareness and to change the attitudes of our pupils and staff to reduce the amount of energy that we used or wasted in the school. We then carried out another environmental review in October 2015 and monitored this for November and December. We did a direct comparison on these three months and found that we had used significantly less gas and electricity in the school compared to 2014, despite having more electrical appliances and more children in the school.

The inspector was very impressed with the Green School committee. She interviewed them thoroughly along with our parent reps, Virginia and Farzana. The committee showed her all their work, our notice board and all the work that separate classes have done this year. She was very impressed and commented on their knowledge on the subject and their enthusiasm and motivation to make a difference to the environment.The inspector said that she will be writing her report this week and recommending that we receive our second green flag for energy. She also commented on how clean our school was and noticed that we are maintaining our first flag – litter and waste.

Congratulations again. A great big thank you to Gemma who organised and co-ordinated the very active and enthusiasitic  committee, to the  children, parents and teachers who  made that  improvements to energy efficiency  throughout the school. 

 

 

Thursday, 05 May 2016 10:25

Agreed report March 2016

Esker Educate Together

BoardofManagement Agreed Report 

March 3rd 2016

 

 

 

 

Venue

Esker ETNS

 

Date of Meeting

3/3/2016

 

Minutes taken by

Catherine Hare

 

Apologies (initials)

 

 

Present (initials)

JZ, MR, SD, SR, ZP. PM  CK, CH

 

Time Meeting Opened

7.30 pm

Closed

9.30pm

 

ISSUE:

DECISION    /    ACTION:

BY:

 Minutes of previous meeting

 

Minutes proposed, adopted and signed

Proposed by J.

Seconded by S.R

Peggy

Matters arising

Traffic Management

Robert Fraser from ABM builders will be installing poles around the turning circle next week. We will also be installing a 25- metre line of poles down the driveway and 2 10- metre sections (where?)This is to prevent u-turns.

 

A text was sent today reminding parents not to park in the disabled parking space.

 

Agreed report +sections of Principal’s Report will be uploaded to “About Us” section of website following every BOM meeting.

 

Peggy

Correspondence

 A request for extra facilities for storing bicycles has been received from PTA. There is no objection in principle to this but further details regarding the  location and size need to be supplied before this can proceed.

 

 

Colette/Peggy

Finance

Financial report given by Sandra.

The school is in the process of switching banks so funds are currently divided between two accounts.

 

Sandra

 

Child Protection/Anti Bullying Report

No incidents of bullying to be reported.

3 Child Protection reports made , 1 accepted by Child protection service, 2 to be monitored here in the school

 

Peggy/Colette

Career Break Applications

 

 

 

 

Sherpa Kids Application

Applications to extend Career Break have been received from Emma Stewart, Ruth Coughlan and Gráinne Ring. These requests were granted.

 

 

 

 

Video presentation and powerpoint by Lucan franchisee of Sherpa Kids Alan Campbell.

It is considered good practice for primary schools to provide this type of after care service. The cost was discussed. It is possible that the DES may offer a grant to subsidise the cost.

 Sandra, Zydrunas and Shandanah speaking as parents felt positive about the proposal.

The Board agreed to invite A.C to survey parents to assess the demand for the service and make a presentation to the parent body. It would be necessary to get firm commitment as to the terms of the care provision from S.K before any contract would be signed. It would also be necessary to examine the S.K insurance policy.

The Board agreed that a condition of the service being provided would be that there would be a minimum of two adults present at all time.

 

 

Peggy

Request from Muslim Community for use of rooms after school

A request has been received from Zachariah from Muslim Community for use of rooms for private Arabic and religious education classes 5 days a week.

The application was accompanied by a letter of recommendation from a number of interested parents. This letter contained a testimonial re Zachariah and a request that the Board would accommodate this service.

Colette explained that it is generally not possible to make classrooms available as they are used daily by teachers for preparation and also are used to store information of a confidential nature.

 The hall is currently in daily use after school. Resource rooms are currently used after school three days a week. If Sherpa Kids is given the go-ahead the resource rooms will be used daily.

The Board agreed to offer a resource room one day a week from 4pm -8pm to this community.

Colette/Peggy

Photocopier Report

Photocopying Contract

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

.The board agreed to commence the new contract from 1st May 2016, which will include access to three photocopiers, one upstairs, one downstairs and one exclusively for the office

 

 

 

Colette/Peggy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Principal’s Report

Principal’s Report presented and adopted. The report included

Info on student numbers, staff numbers and changes (maternity leave etc.) Common enrolment policy, Staff CPD, 1916 Celebrations, Mary Poppins, Seachtain na Gaeilge, PT meetings, Mobile library, The anniversary of Paul Kilgarrif, Focus Ireland Fundraiser, 2nd Green School Flag.

 

Full Report attached

 

 

Colette

Percentage for Art

This project is underway. 38,000 euro is available to the school to commission a piece of artwork. The school is required to set up a committee and employ an art consultant to manage the project.

Our art consultant is Fergus Cronin. The committee includes representatives from the Board, teaching staff and parents.

Fergus Cronin has lots of ideas representing the ethos/culture of the school. He is doing a lot of work on our behalf and not taking a fee, only expenses.

The next stage is to invite artists to bid for the project. The Board will consider four bids. Some funding will be offered to the bidders to cover expenses (make model etc). This should leave about 35,000 for the actual project. The hope is to have a decision made (if possible) by end of the school year.

 

Colette

Educate Together EGM

An EGM (Extraordinary General Meeting) was called in relation to the financial affairs of Educate Together. Colette attended. E.T is getting very little funding from the State. The Board of E.T is seeking donations of 140, 000 euros. The purpose of the EGM was to give permission to E.T to ask schools for a donation of 1,000 euro, or more. This motion was overwhelmingly supported at the EGM.

The donation was discussed. Sandra said we were in good position to make a donation at the moment as there is a good revenue stream from rental of the hall. Peggy said the request is likely to be once-off and for this reason suggested a donation of 2,000.

Sandra proposed 2,000.

Colette seconded.

 

Colette

Data Protection/CCTV

Colette sent out a copy of the draft policy. Ratification of the policy is to be deferred until after it has been reviewed. Jackie to liaise with Marie, who has the authority to communicate with Custodian on behalf of the Board.

Marie

Request for towels/lawnmower

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next meeting

Paper towels have been requested for hygiene reasons

Concern was expressed over the amount of waste this would generate together with the ongoing cost. A decision was taken to trial children bringing in their own towels. Paper towel dispensers will be installed in adult toilets. Hand sanitisers will also be installed.

Jackie has a contact in this business and will seek information.

 

Barry has requested a ride-on lawnmower at a cost of 1,200 euro. The Board agreed to this purchase.

 

 

Thursday 21st April

Colette

 

 

Signed: _________________________________________________________________

 

 

Dated:_____________________

 

Principal’s report 21st January 2016

Pupils

There are 421 pupils in the school, 232 boys and 189 girls.

Staffing; 16 class teachers, 1 principal, 1 Homeschool community liaison, 4 EAL, 2 resource and 3 GAM teachers

Projected numbers

We will be taking in 28 in each of the Junior Infants. We probably need a minimum of 411 next year and we are very likely to have more than that. Delighted with the reduction of numbers we should be in a position to reduce some of our class sizes going forward.

Curriculum Issues

·         Mother Tongue Week: week where we emphasise the importance of the child’s home language-lots of different activities with Parental involvement. Parents teaching songs to groups. All the classes worked on a particular country, learning about that language and country and doing artwork to decorate the hall and the school, celebrating what a truly international community we are. Children were given passports and went around to see other classes, learn a couple of facts about the country they were doing and get their passports stamped.  Parents came in to read to language groups in their home language.

·         Mother tongue concert. What a wonderful way to end our first term with a very successful Mother tongue concert. Thanks to Virginia and Zedd who taught the Lithuanian Da Gaideliai to Lithuanian speakers; Serena for her Christmas song, Mos Caciun mosul bun for the Romanian group;   Karolina for the Polish song, Domowa Piosenka; Monserrat for Bata Mi for the children speak Yuroba and Shandana for Pakistani anthem in Urdu. There were even parents who performed themselves. Thanks to Sophie who gave a haunting rendition of an eighteenth century traditional Mandarin song about the beautiful jasmine flower, Mo Li Hua. Her performance with the Mandarin group brought tears to our eyes. This was wonderfully contrasted with a stirring performance by our new family, the Mastrominicos from Italy who performed a rousing Italian song Me so ‘mbriacato as well as preparing a group for an extremely lively traditional Italian dance, the Tarantella, which was greatly enjoyed by the dancers and audience alike. Class teachers also prepared the children with many different language performances also, including the Latvian chant Es bi j puka, O le le from the Congo, Hung chai may may from China. Adula, a traditional Ugandan chant, Ta San Nichloas ag teacht as Gaeilge, Frere Jacques in ten different languages, Jambo (Swahili) from Kenya, Padesneig from Poland  and  La Vague Noire from France. The two 4th classes did a wonderful Bollywood style dance Jai Ho which was a firm favourite with many of the audience. Second class did a great version of Hello to all the children of the world. Bell ringers and tin whistle players added to the merriment on the day.

 

·         New Language Curriculum

DES are introducing a new language curriculum in all primary schools commencing next September. The new Primary Language Curriculum/Curaclam Teanga na Bunscoile for English and Irish has been developed by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA). This curriculum is for teachers of pupils of all abilities in the junior primary years, i.e. from junior infants to second class inclusive. Teaching of English and Irish.

School Year 2016/17

There will be an initial emphasis on the Oral Language/Teanga ó Bhéal strand. From September 2016, this strand will begin to be implemented for infants to second class.

School Year 2017/18

From September 2017 the Reading/Léitheoireacht and Writing/Scríbhneoireacht strands will begin to be implemented for infants to second class alongside the oral language strand.

School Year 2018/19

From September 2018, there will be full implementation of all strands for infants to second class.

School Year 2019/20

From September 2019, implementation of Primary Language Curriculum/Curaclam Teanga na Bunscoile for third to sixth class will begin.

Year 1 November 2015 to June 2016

Familiarisation with the curriculum and initial preparation for schools, introduction to and planning for teaching and learning using the learning outcomes and the progression continua of the oral language strand. Implementation will involve

a) a half-day information seminar for school Principals (facilitated by PDST), followed by a half-day school closure for in-school, whole-staff CPD through use of on-line supports. This will take place on Wednesday next here. School closed at 12;pm

and b) one subsequent full-day seminar for school Principals and one other teacher (facilitated by PDST),

followed by a second half day school closure for in-school, whole-staff CPD through use of on-line supports. Substitution for attendance at seminars, where required, will be provided.

SO for this school year two early closings, one next Wednesday and the other to follow further training for myself and Catherine (Literacy post holder)

School Self Evaluation: School Planning and the Introduction of Guided reading

At the moment we are implementing vocabulary development in literacy and problem solving strategies in Numeracy. These initiatives are continuing. We have also decided to roll out Guided reading, which is a very specific way of teaching reading. Children are tested prior to grouping and then they are very tightly grouped according to their reading and comprehension levels. Classes from 2nd to 6th will be involved in this new initiative. Each class will have help from a member of the support staff twice a week to implement four groups using the 5 step classroom plan for guided reading. Involves a huge investment of personnel and funds. We have purchased about €10,000 worth of books which we are currently getting covered. We are asking the PTA oto cover the cost of covering the books , which is happening at the moment. All children from 2nd to 6th have been individually tested and graded at levels appropriate to their instructional level

Music Generation

Sourced ready steady sing programme Once a week high quality singing lessons, heavily subsidised U2 actually.  One euro per child per week. in 2 fourth classes. 18 weeks from now to June once a week, 680 euro paid for by the PTA. Teachers speak very highly of the course so far. If its good we will do it for two fourth classes every year.

Mary Poppins

Auditions for main parts and rehearsals have begun on a production of Mary Poppins for the end of the year. Children from 2nd to 6th choose into it Friday afternoon rehearsals in golden time

After school clubs

Football, drama, art, keyboard, tin whistle, Irish dancing, chess, basketball.

Catholic instruction underway. Islamic instruction not happening this year.
Homework club twice a week for selected children run by Leah and Liz.

SEN Applications

Parents have flagged concerns about 6 children coming into the school in September, some autism and some Speech and Language issues. I am meeting with parents of all of them this week with a view to seeing what resources we might have in place for September. SEN applications have to be in during February.

 

      Below are a list of dates that you should note for your diaires. the final half term in the school is very busy.   

      Art class for parents – Making props for Mary Poppins – Wed 11th at 9.30am

·         Grandparents Day (8.30 – 11.00) on Thursday 12th May

·         Relationships and Sexuality Parents (4th 5th and 6th ) Information evening Wednesday 18th May at 7:30pm

·         New Junior Infants parents night on Tuesday 24th May at 7:30pm

·         PTA book sale on Thursday 26th May

·         Santry Athletics Monday 23rd  Monday 30th May: Athletics team interschool competition

·         Mary Poppins various performances First week in June

·         Mary Poppins Gala evening performance Thursday 2nd June 7:30 pm

·         Internet/mobile phone  safety talk for parents on Thursday   9th June at 7.30pm

·         Sports Day on 16th June

·         6th Class graduation, Thursday 23rd Jun

      School closes on Thursday 30th June for summer holidays  and reopens for the new school year on Thursday 1st September 2016

 

 

   

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