As part of our work this term we are re-evaluating the school self-evaluation work undertaken in the last three years in Maths. Parents may remember that we surveyed parents three years ago and as a result of that consultation, pupil focus groups and staff discussion a number of changes and improvements were agreed. The main areas were with regard to maths language, homework and problem solving. We are now asking parents to complete the following survey forms.gle/a3H13erQ7t656nER8 which will assist us in evaluating the success of these changes and to plan for further improvements going forward. The survey is short and we hope as many parents as possible will complete it by the closing date of Friday 15th May.
Under the 2018 Admissions to School Act, which was commenced by the Minister for Education and Skills this February, every school in Ireland must draft a new Admissions Policy. As part of drafting the admissions policy schools must consult with the patron, staff and parents of children currently in the school.
You will have noted that our March newsletter asked for submissions from parents regarding school admissions by Friday 3rd April. The Board of Management has now extended that date, given the current Covid19 emergency to Tuesday 5th May.
To assist parents in making a submission the Board of Management has now published the draft Admissions Policy on this website. To access the document please click on the following link < https://docs.google.com/document/d/e/2PACX-1vS7kY1ZG83XgAE7QIpn6Y6huYDZJ-j-5MsVP7LbGNeksghxNOdGkeFpK5fdVg7ssA/pub
When you have read the draft admissions policy you can make a submission by accessing the following link https://forms.gle/tYQEQkakxAQUKrRo6
Once consultation is completed the Board of Management will forward the policy to the patron who will either approve or return the policy for further modification. When approved the policy will replace our current enrolment policy and will govern all applications for admission to the school. Any queries regarding this consultation can be forwarded to email@example.com
It is hard to believe that five weeks have passed since we were all last in school and that Easter is now over. This week marks the first week of the third term, one which we always look forward to in school with its longer, warmer and brighter days not to mention First Holy Communion, outside lessons, school tours and of course rounders. This year will be different however and at this stage we can only hope that the efforts made by the majority of people in recent weeks will mean that restrictions can be lifted and our school will be allowed to open in the coming weeks.
In the meantime all our staff are anxious to assist children and parents without putting any further pressure on families. After listening to parental opinions through our survey the class teachers will structure weekly learning which will be available on our website every Sunday evening. The teachers are also exploring SeeSaw an online learning platform which will allow teachers to interact and communicate with children and parents. Special Education teachers will also use SeeSaw to interact with their pupils and support their learning, so please make sure that you have registered. We hope parents will use these resources to support them in continuing their children's learning but we do recognise that every family's situation is different and parents should not put unnecessary pressure on themselves.
If parents have any query regarding teaching and learning they can contact class teachers through SeeSaw while all general queries can be addressed to the school email, firstname.lastname@example.org or the school mobile which will be available everyday between 10am - 11am Monday to Friday.
Outside of the closure of school buildings which effects teaching and learning all other aspects of school management and administration continue and preparations for next year have begun. In this regard parents are reminded that submissions regarding a new Admissions Policy for the school are still being accepted up to 5th May by email to email@example.com. We will also be seeking parental input on our review of maths which will take place this term, the link for the survey will issue in the coming weeks.
Until school re-opens we will be staying in touch with our families as mentioned mainly through this website, our school app (Aladdin), SeeSaw, facebook, email, phone and text. Please make sure that you access these communication channels to ensure that you stay up to date. If the school can be of assistance to you please do not hesitate to get in touch. We look forward to meeting with everyone again in The Heath National School, hopefully later this term. Until then, take care.
After surveying parents, details in previous posting below, the school is putting a plan in place to facilitate children's learning in the third term should the current closure be extended by the government.
Today Wednesday 8th April all parents should receive an email from class teachers. The email will detail each class teacher's arrangements for delivering learning content from Monday 20th April until schools re-open. It will also explain to parents how they can contact teachers regarding teaching and learning issues should they need guidance. It is important to note that all non-teaching and learning issues should be referred to firstname.lastname@example.org or phone the school mobile (086-1806094) between 10am - 11am Monday to Friday.
Based on the positive feedback received from parents regarding the Seesaw learning platform the teachers have decided to use this application as our distance learning platform for all classes. Details of how to register and access the application are detailed in the email teachers are sending to parents. It is very important that parents understand that they must provide consent for their children to use this application. To simplify matters for parents during this health emergency, we will take it that you are granting consent for your child to use Seesaw if you register to use the application with the class teacher. Your child will not have access unless you request it for them. Seesaw will enable teachers to set work for children, assess children's work and communicate with both children and parents. More details on Seesaw are available at www.seesaw.me.
There is no obligation on parents to sign up to the Seesaw platform and work for the children will also be posted on this website under the relevant classes in this tab. It is our intention to post revision work for the first fortnight after Easter however if the closure continues into May there may be a need to begin posting some new content for children. This will be flagged with parents in advance.
We hope that schools will re-open on the 20th April however if they remain closed we hope that the above arrangements will assist both children and parents to continue learning. We understand that everyone's circumstances are different and there is no pressure on any parent or child to complete the work we will suggest. We look forward to seeing you all again soon and wish you health and happiness this Easter. If you have any query don't forget you can contact us at any time on email@example.com or by phone 086-1806094 between 10am - 11am Monday to Friday.
The staff would like to thank parents for the great response to our parental survey. In total 135 responses were received. The results of the survey were analysed and discussed by staff during last weeks staff meetings and used to help the staff decide on an approach to learning after Easter in case schools do not re-open. The main messages taken from the survey were that parents would like more guidance, greater structure to the work, a balanced approach, ability to communicate with staff and an understanding that all parents are in different situations with different challenges.
In brief the survey showed that the majority of the children are well and happy and that most parents are coping well with home learning although there are challenges varying from balancing work and childcare/learning to motivating children, knowing what learning content to do and remembering a few words of Gaeilge. Most parents have established a routine and accessed the learning resources provided on this website. Seesaw, padlet, website links such as Duolingo, Kahoot, Twinkl and school book publishers and suggested activities have been found to be most useful. With regard to work being completed parents indicated that the core subjects of English, Irish and Maths are being well covered with the majority of children also engaged in physical activity, arts and life skills on a regular basis. It was great to see that 90% of the children are reading daily. From the ICT perspective 95% of our homes have broadband and 96% report having at least one internet enabled device that children can use.
It is very heartening but not surprising to see the level of parental commitment to supporting their children's learning. Everyone indicated a willingness to set aside time even though they may be working and are trying to balance many competing demands on their time. Going forward most parents (77%) indicated that they would like a more structured timetable of work should schools not re-open.The following file contains the results of the general questions from the survey.