Admissions Policy

Scoil Bhríde

Scoil Bhríde is a co-educational Junior School which caters for pupils from Junior Infants through to Second Class under the patronage of the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin. The school is subject to the Rules for National Schools of the Department of Education and Science. Pupils who complete their junior school education in Scoil Bhríde generally proceed to finish their primary education in Holy Trinity Senior National School. Scoil Bhríde is managed on behalf of the Patron and the Department by a Board of Management.

This policy is being written in conjunction with our Mission Statement.

Applying for a place in Scoil Bhríde

This admissions policy has been adopted by the Board of Management of Scoil Bhríde and is set out in accordance with the provisions of the Education Act 1998, the Rules for National Schools, the Education (Admissions to Schools) Act 2018 and procedures established from time to time by the Board of Management.

Parents/Guardians who apply for a place for their child in Scoil Bhríde are required to provide the Board of Management with any information which the Board deems necessary to ensure it can fulfil its mission. Inaccurate, incomplete or misleading information may invalidate the application.

The Board of Management is bound by the Rules for National Schools which provides that pupils may only be enrolled from the age of 4 years and upwards (with the exception of children in the Early Intervention Class who can enroll from the age of 3 years), though compulsory attendance does not apply until the age of 6 years.

Applications for Admission to Mainstream Classes

The Board of Management may decide on an annual closing date for application for admission to Scoil Bhríde Junior Infant Classes and will give reasonable notice of that closing date on the school website and otherwise. (It is usually the second Friday in January of the year of admission).

The Board of Management has determined criteria for admission of pupils to Scoil Bhríde and these criteria are set out hereunder. The criteria are based on

1.      The primary responsibility of the Board to cater for the children of Holy Trinity Parish and

2.      A desire to give effect to family friendly policies allowing children of the parish community to attend school with their brothers and sisters.

In the event of the number of children seeking enrolment in any given class/ standard exceeding the number of places available the following criteria will be used to prioritise children for enrolment:

  1. Brothers and sisters of current pupils in Scoil Bhríde or Holy Trinity school or who have attended Scoil Bhríde in the past.
  2. Children resident in Holy Trinity Parish.
  3. Children of current Scoil Bhríde and Holy Trinity staff members.
  4. Applicants not covered by numbers 1-3 above.

In the event that applications still exceed availability, places will be allocated on the basis of age i.e. priority will be given to older children.

Late applications will not be considered until applicants receiving first round offers have accepted or rejected them. Late applications will then be placed at the bottom of the appropriate category.

Enrolment Criteria for ASD Classes

Enrolment in Scoil Bhríde for the purpose of attending an ASD class is subject to the standard criteria by the Department of Education and Skills, following a diagnosis of autism as defined by DSM V. Our Autism Classes are non-cognitive specific. Thereafter the following criteria apply:

  1. Brothers and sisters of current pupils in Scoil Bhríde or Holy Trinity school or who have attended Scoil Bhríde in the past.
  2. Children resident in Holy Trinity Parish.
  3. Children of current Scoil Bhríde and Holy Trinity staff members.
  4. Children who live in the adjacent parishes of Baldoyle, Raheny, Ayrfield, Kilbarrack, Coolock and Kinsealy.
  5. Applicants not covered by criteria 1 – 4 above.

Subject to criteria outlined above for our Early-Intervention Class children will be prioritised by age. Youngest children will receive priority.

Children will only transition from one class to another following a review. All names, along with reports and recommendations from their teachers will be brought to the board of management at the April or June meeting annually. An ASD Committee, comprising the principal, teachers and a board member, will be established in the school to examine the reports, recommendations and liaise with the ASD class teachers.

Section 29 Appeal

A parent has the right to appeal the decision of the school in the event that their child does not secure a place. For more information see: http://www.education.ie/en/Parents/Services/Appeal-against-Permanent-Exclusion-Suspension-or-Refusal-to-Enrol/

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Policy ratified by the Board of Management

Signed: ________________________________   (Chairperson) Date: ____________

Footnote: The Board of Management of Scoil Bhríde reserves the right to revise or amend this policy in response to changing needs or circumstances.

Appendix A

Scoil Bhríde Mission

Scoil Bhríde is a Catholic Primary School under the patronage of the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin.

Scoil Bhríde cherishes the individuality of every pupil and every staff member.

Scoil Bhríde strives to develop the spiritual, intellectual, artistic, physical, emotional and social potential of each individual pupil while helping him or her to lead a full life as a child.

Scoil Bhríde endeavours to provide all pupils with many and varied educational, social and cultural experiences in order to equip them to develop as mature well-rounded citizens.

Scoil Bhríde strives to create a happy, friendly atmosphere where all pupils and staff are valued equally, regardless of gender, civil status, family status, age, race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, and membership of the traveller community. 

Scoil Bhríde encourages respect, honesty, understanding and courtesy towards others among pupils, staff and the wider school community.

Scoil Bhríde recognises parents as the primary educators of their children and encourages communication and involvement in a spirit of mutual trust and understanding.

Scoil Bhríde endeavours to provide a safe and healthy school environment for all pupils, staff and the wider school community.

Appendix B Information

Denomination

Scoil Bhríde is a Roman Catholic school under the patronage of the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin. As a Roman Catholic school, Scoil Bhríde aims at promoting the full and harmonious development of its pupils: intellectual, physical, cultural, moral and spiritual, including a living relationship with God and other people. The school models and promotes a philosophy of life inspired by belief in God and in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  Scoil Bhríde provides religious education for its pupils in accordance with the doctrines, practices and traditions of the Roman Catholic Church and promotes the formation of the pupils in the Catholic faith.(Please see Protocol re Opting out of Religious Education).

Patron

The Archbishop of Dublin

Management

Scoil Bhríde is managed on behalf of the Patron and the Department of Education and Skills by a Board of Management which is representative of parents, the teaching staff, the Patron and the community at large.The Board of Management is subject to the Rules for National Schools laid down by the Department of Education and Science.

Staffing

Scoil Bhríde is currently staffed by a Principal Teacher, 16 Class Teachers and a Special Education Team (SET) of 6 teachers. Our ASD classes are staffed by two teachers and 6 SNAs. We have 3 SNAs in the mainstream school. (Staffing levels can change due to increase /decrease in enrolment, needs of the school and/ or changes of policy implemented by the Department of Education and Skills.)

Funding

Scoil Bhríde is funded by the Department of Education and Skills. In addition occasional funding for projects approved by the Board of Management is provided through the Parents’ Association.

Curriculum

Scoil Bhríde follows the curricular programmes prescribed by the Department of Education and Skills, which may be amended from time to time in accordance with Sections 9 and 30 of the Education Act (1998).

School Hours

The school opens for the reception of pupils at 8.50am.  Children in Junior and Senior Infants are dismissed at 1.30pm; First and Second classes are dismissed at 2.30pm.

Respect for Scoil Bhríde Code of Behaviour

Children enrolled in Scoil Bhríde are required to co-operate with and support the Board of Management’s Code of Behaviour as well as all other policies on curriculum, organisation and management. The Board of Management places Parents/Guardians responsible for ensuring that their child(ren) co-operate with said policies in an age-appropriate way.  Parents are required to sign the Code of Behaviour at the beginning of Junior Infants or if their child joins the school at a later date.

Appendix C Enrolment Procedures

Applying for a Place in Scoil Bhríde (Mainstream School)

Parents/Guardians who wish to apply for a place for their child in Scoil Bhríde are required to complete an application form on behalf of the child. Completion of application does not guarantee a place in Scoil Bhríde.

Broadly speaking, the Board of Management requires the following on behalf of applicants –

  • Full name and permanent home address of child
  • Proof of address in the form of a household bill no older than 6 months
  • Religious denomination
  • Birth Certificate
  • Names and addresses of parents/guardians of applicant
  • Contact telephone numbers
  • Contact numbers in the event of unavailability of parents/guardians
  • Whether applicant has attended preschool

In addition to the above information parents/guardians of applicants are requested to provide the school with information on factors which may, in any way, influence the educational wellbeing of the child while at school. This information should be updated in response to changing circumstances.

An application form may be completed at any time during the school year but, in order to assist school planning, parents/guardians are requested to return forms to the school not later than the second Friday in January each year.

Consideration of Applications

In the event of the number of children seeking enrolment in any given class/ standard exceeding the number of places available the criteria 1-4, as laid out on page 1/2 of this document will be used to prioritise children for enrolment: Priority will be given to older children.

The Board of Management reserves the right to determine the maximum number of pupils in each class – subject to the class size recommendations of the Department of Education and Science.

Notifying Parents/Guardians

The Board of Management will inform parents/guardians of applicants to Scoil Bhríde by letter if their application has been successful within two weeks of the closing date for applications.  In the event that a number of applicants refuse places a second round of letters will be sent. At this time letters to those not securing a place will be sent stating that the child will be placed on the waiting list. It would be hoped that the entire procedure would be completed by the end of February.

Admission Day/Date 

In general Junior Infants will be admitted to Scoil Bhríde on 1st September each year.  Pupils may be enrolled in other classes subject to the Rules for National Schools, the school’s enrolment policy and local agreements with other schools.

Pupil Transfer from Other Schools

Pupils may transfer to Scoil Bhríde from other schools subject to school enrolment policy. 

The Education Welfare Act (2000) contains some specific new provisions in relation to the transfer of pupils, including the requirement that information concerning attendance and the child’s educational progress should be communicated between schools.

Enrolment of Pupils with Special Needs into Mainstream Classes

In order to assist the school in identifying the particular educational and training needs of a child with a disability or with a special educational need, the Board of Management may request a copy of the child’s medical and/or psychological report or where such a report is not available, may request that the child be assessed as soon as possible.

It may be necessary for the Board of Management to defer enrolment of a child pending the receipt of an assessment report and/or the provision by the Department of Education and Science of appropriate resources to meet the needs specified in the psychological and/or medical report.

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Enrolment of Pupils to the ASD Classes

Children may gain admission to an ASD Class following submission to the Board of Management of appropriate documentation from approved services e.g. Early Intervention Services, HSE Beechpark or St. Michael’s House. The application must be accompanied by a written psychological report recommending placement in an ASD class.

Children in our ASD Classes will be resourced in accordance with the level of resources provided by the Dept. of Education & Skills and the HSE. These resources may include, for example, access to the provision of any or a combination of the following: speech therapist, occupational therapist, behavioural therapist, home liaison nurse, psychologist, and psychiatrist. If the above services are not available or deemed inappropriate to the suitability of the placement or to meet the needs of the child this will be considered in the annual review.

All placements for children in our ASD classes are subject to an annual review by the Board of Management in consultation with the ASD Committee, external services and the Dept. of Education Inspectorate.

Other considerations

The maximum class size in the each ASD class is six pupils.  If the number of children on the list of applicants to enrol exceeds the number of places available, the criteria as laid out on page 2 of this document will apply once a confirmed diagnosis of Autism has been provided by a qualified, approved professional and acceptable to the criteria as laid down by the National Council for Special Education (NCSE).

Fulfilling the enrolment criteria does not necessarily ensure enrolment if;

  • Necessary resources pertaining to the enrolment are not available
  • Sufficient classroom space is not available
  • The Board of Management decides that the school is unable to adequately meet the needs of the child as advised by the ASD Committee
  • Taking all of the above into account the Board of Management reserves the right of admission.
  • The Board of Management is the final arbiter of enrolment based on the needs of the applicant and the ability of the board to fulfil its mission

The first year will be used to;

  • Assess the child’s educational needs
  • Develop an I.E.P. to address identified needs
  • Assess whether the child’s placement is appropriate

Aims of our ASD classes

  • To provide a quality driven, appropriate educational service to all children, within the requirements of all recent legislation pertaining to Special Needs Education 
  • To enhance the communicative and social skills of the children
  • To strive towards the integration of children in our ASD classes into mainstream education, having regard for levels of disability, available resources and suitability for such integration

Discharge Policy    

It is school policy to facilitate the discharge of pupils from our ASD classes once they have reached the age of nine or have completed 5 years in total between the two ASD classes. Pupils who reach the age of nine after September 30th in any year will be permitted to complete that academic year (provided they have not completed 5 years). This means a June discharge in the following year. Discharge may also be recommended at any stage if the Board of Management, after consultation with the appropriate agencies and the parents/guardians, feels that placement is not appropriate. Discharge from the ASD class may also happen if a pupil is fully integrated into the mainstream school.

Notifying Parents/Guardians

Parents will be notified regarding placements in the ASD classes on a case by case basis.

Appendix D             Protocol on opting out of Religious Education

The following need to be noted:

    1. It is impossible to opt out of a Religious Ethos
    2. Parents are ultimately responsible for the supervision of their children if they opt out of religion class or sacramental practices
    3. However Scoil Bhríde will accommodate any child opting out of Religion classes to the best of their ability by:

a. being aware of the wishes of the children/parents

            b. meeting with parents to discuss how the opt out may affect the child and to

                make suggestions how the child might occupy themselves during Religion

                class.