About Us! St. Marys NS is a Catholic school under the patronage of the Bishop of Meath. We have six teachers on staff, two of whom are job- sharing. Our children are divided into four class groups: Infants, First and Second, Third and Fourth, Fifth and Sixth. We have a Learning Support teacher to help and encourage those children who need extra help, because of learning difficulties or because of being exceptionally gifted.
Our Priorities At St. Marys, we endeavour to instil a joy of learning and a determination to succeed in all our students. Progress in closely monitored, and parents are informed formally of their childs progress twice a year, during parent-teacher meetings and by written report. Parents are welcome to make an appointment with their childs teacher at any time (within reason) to discuss their childs progress. To make an appointment, just phone the school secretary between 9.20 AM and 1 PM any day except Thursday. Alternatively, just leave a message on the phone and well get back to you.
Sporting Activities There is a strong tradition of hurling in Collinstown, and the school enjoys a good relationship with the local GAA club, Lough Lene Gaels. We take part in the Cumann na mBunscoil championship, the Mini-Sevens, various blitzes and a Lunchtime League
Other Activities Some children have little interest in GAA games. We attempt to cater for the physical education of all pupils through a variety of activities (games, athletics, dance etc.) in weekly PE classes. Children from First Class up also go swimming every year. We have some fine musicians in the school and have taken part in choral and instrumental competitions (e.g. Scór na bPáistí)
Behaviour Policy We will look at the school Behaviour Policy under the following four headings: Attendance Homework Behaviour in School Bullying
Attendance Regular attendance is crucial for learning. Under the Education Welfare Act (2000) we are legally obliged to report any child who is absent for more than 20 days to the National Education Welfare Board. The Act also requires parents to notify the school in writing (a note in the journal is fine) of the reason for a childs absence if the child misses school for one day or more. It is surprisingly easy to miss 20 days (e.g. through illness) and notes help us to keep track of the reasons for a childs absence
Homework Homework is given on a regular basis to all classes, although junior infants receive little or no homework during the first term. Parents are asked to supervise their childrens homework, but not to do it for them! If you are unsure as to how best to help your child with homework, ask your childs teacher. If, for some reason (illness, absence from home etc.) homework cannot be completed, please write a note to the teacher in your childs school journal.
Behaviour in school Pupils should be courteous and friendly at all times. They should show respect for teachers, parents and other pupils. Aggressive behaviour, pushing, biting, punching, kicking and overly rough play will not be tolerated. Swearing and name-calling are prohibited. School property and the property of others must be respected. Stealing, damaging or defacing of property is regarded as a serious offence. Pupils are expected to wear the full school uniform each day. This consists of a blue polo shirt, a navy v-necked jumper, and a navy skirt, pinafore or trousers. These can be bought in any store, as we dont have a crest or design on them. Black shoes must be worn. Navy tracksuit bottoms and runners are allowed on PE days. Please supply your child with slippers (black plimsolls are good) for indoor wear.
Behaviour in school (2) Punctuality is important. School begins at 9.20 AM for all pupils. Infants go home at 2.00 PM, all other classes at 3.00 PM. For the first two weeks of school, junior infants go home at 12.30 PM, to allow them to adjust. Pupils may not climb the trees, walls or roof of the school for obvious reasons. Mobile phones are prohibited in school. If your child needs to have his/her phone for a particular reason, please state this in writing to the Principal. If permission to have the phone is granted, it is understood that the phone will be switched off. Breach of this rule will lead to confiscation.
Behaviour in school (3) The following articles are not permitted on the school premises: Dangerous objects (e.g. knives, sharp objects, aerosols, matches, lighters or any object that is considered a danger to pupils or staff.) A childs own toys, unless with the permission of the class teacher. Crisps, sweets, fizzy drinks, gum, glass bottles Tipp-ex or any other correctional fluid.
Bullying Bullying is defined as repeated and systematic aggressive behaviour – physical, verbal, or psychological – directed by an individual or group towards others. Individual incidents of aggressive behaviour, although not to be condoned, do NOT constitute bullying. St. Marys NS does not tolerate unkind actions or remarks, even if these were not meant to hurt. Procedures for dealing with bullying (i)All allegations of bullying will be taken seriously and investigated by the class teacher. (ii)Serious cases will be reported to the Principal. (iii)Those involved will be interviewed individually and then collectively. (iv)Communication with parents will be necessary if behaviour continues. Teachers will keep a written record of all serious incidents of misbehaviour. If meetings between teachers, Principal and parents does not resolve the issue, suspension may be considered.
Parental Involvement As partners in the education process, parents are always welcome at St. Marys NS. We would ask, however, that you make an appointment to see your childs teacher, so that the teacher can give you his/her undivided attention. We have a vibrant Parents Association who help us by running the school Book Rental Scheme,fundraising, providing lifts, organising social events for parents and offering suggestions for the improvement of the school to the Principal and Board. Please get involved – youll find it very rewarding. If you have any particular skills or talents that you feel you could share with the children, please let us know.
Keeping in Touch At the start of the year, you will be asked to supply us with numbers (mobile and landline) at which you can be reached. You will also be asked to supply us with the name of someone who you trust to act in loco parentis if we cant get in contact with you. We communicate by notes, text and our website. Please make sure we have your current mobile number and check your childs bag/journal every evening for notes. Its a good idea to check the website once a week for updates.
Permission Form At the beginning of the year you will be sent a checklist of activities and other thing that we need your permission for. This saves us issuing multiple notes through the year. Please tick the box beside each statement to indicate your approval.
Book Rental Scheme The Parents Association operates a book rental scheme which has proved very popular among parents, as it reduces costs considerably. The costs are: Junior Infants – First Class 35 Second Class – Sixth Class 50 We ask for a contribution of 15 per child to cover photocopying and art and craft materials. Capitation and maintenance grants to schools have been slashed over the last three years, making this contribution more vital than ever. Parents pay 7 per child for 24-hour insurance. This covers children in school, at weekends, during holidays etc.
Miscellaneous If anyone other than a parent is collecting a child, we require prior notification (in writing or by phone) from the parent. This is to ensure your childs safety. If your child suffers from any allergy or has a metabolic condition e.g. epilepsy, diabetes, hepatitis etc. that we should know about please inform us. All information will be treated with the utmost confidentiality.