MAINSTREAM ENROLMENT POLICY
A. GENERAL INFORMATION
Scoil Chaitríona Junior Renmore, Galway is a Catholic co-educational primary school under the Patronage of the Roman Catholic Bishop of Galway.
Scoil Chaitríona Junior has a total teaching staff of 37 teachers. This includes 20 class teachers, 9 learning support/resource teachers, 4 special class teachers, 3 full time language support teachers and an administrative principal. The special classes cater for children with specific speech and language disorder and moderate general learning difficulties.
Scoil Chaitríona Junior is a co-educational junior school, catering for children from Junior Infants – 2nd class. Children with special needs are taught in the special classes, as described above and within mainstream classes.
Scoil Chaitrona has a long tradition of welcoming and serving all pupils and does not discriminate on the grounds of gender, family status, religion, age, disability, ethnicity, asylum seeker / refugee status, sexual orientation, or special educational needs.
Scoil Chaitríona Junior is an inclusive school.
This policy aims to ensure the appropriate procedures are in place to enable the school to make decisions on all applications based on legislative requirements. It was formulated by the Board of Management, Staff and Parents with input from Scoil Chaitríona senior school, THE Patron, the Education Welfare Service and the Special Educational Needs Organiser (SENO).
Relationship to the Characteristic Spirit of the School
Scoil Chaitríona Junior is a Catholic Primary School which endeavours to engage every pupil to actively participate in all school activities in a caring, secure and happy atmosphere. This policy is in keeping with the mission statement of the school, which strives to fulfill the intellectual, physical, spiritual, moral and emotional needs of each child, supported by a professional staff in partnership with parents and the wider community.
Scoil Chaitríona Junior 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.
Within the context and parameters of D.E.S. regulations and programmes, the rights of the Patron as set out in the Education Act, and the funding and resources available, the school supports the principles of:
(a) inclusiveness, particularly with reference to the enrolment of children with a disability or other special educational needs;
(b) equality of access and participation in the school;
(c) parental choice in relation to enrolment;
(d) respect for the diversity of values, beliefs, traditions, languages and ways of life in society.
Scoil Chaitriona Junior opens for pupils at 8.40 and closes at 14.30. Classes begin at 8.50 a.m. The annual school calendar, outlining school holidays, is made available to parents each year in the month of September.
Parents seeking to enrol their children in Junior Infants in Scoil Chaitríona Junior are requested to return a completed Enrolment Form with original Birth / Adoption Certificate along with proof of address (utility bill) to the secretaries’ office as soon as possible but no later than the first day of the academic year eg September 1st.
Children who wish to transfer to Scoil Chaitriona Junior from another school within the city may only enroll up to and including September 30th, upon receipt of completed Application Form along with a signed letter of acceptance & compliance with the Code of Behaviour (Form )
Late enrolments will be accepted if the pupil is new to the area (with proof of address, utility bill etc), transferring from outside the city.
Applicants to Special Classes
Procedures relating to the enrolment of children with special needs to special classes are outlined in the appendices.
Provision of key information by parents:
Applications will only be accepted on the basis of a fully completed and accurate Enrolment Form. A specific enrolment application form will be provided by the Board of Management and the following information will be sought:
· Pupil’s name, address, date of birth.
· Pupil’s PPSN number
· Names and addresses of pupil’s parents/guardians.
· Contact telephone numbers
· Contact telephone numbers, in case of emergency.
· Details of any medical conditions of which the school should be aware.
· Details of any legal orders of which the school should be aware.
· Baptismal Certificate for Catholic children
· Previous schools attended and reason for transfer.
· Any other relevant information, including any such information as may be prescribed under the Education Welfare Act, 2000.
· Any concerns raised by previous schools around the child’s behaviour
· Any additional Special Educational Needs the child has and any reports which may be available
· Completed Primary Online Data form in compliance with the Department of Education requirements.
By completing the enrolment form of Scoil Chaitríona Junior, the parents and pupils are agreeing to abide by school policies, procedures and the Code of Behaviour which may be reviewed from time to time.
As a condition of enrolling a child, the parents / guardians are required “to confirm in writing that the Code of Behaviour so provided is acceptable to them and that they shall make all reasonable efforts to ensure compliance with such code by the child” Section 23 (4) of the Education Welfare Act 2000 (form B)
Prioritising children for enrolment
In the event of the number of children seeking enrolment in any given class/standard exceeding the number of places available, before the start of or during the school year, and the B.O.M. being unable to provide suitable accommodation, or recruit the required teaching staff, the following criteria will be used to prioritise children for enrolment.
· Sisters and brothers of children already enrolled in Scoil Chaitriona Junior, giving priority to the oldest. This will include step sisters, step brothers living at the same address.
· Children living within Renmore parish, giving priority to the oldest.
· Children of current school staff, giving priority to the oldest.
· Children whose home address is closest to the school, as measured by a straight line on an O.S. map, if the child is normally resident outside the Renmore Parish boundary.
· Priority will be given to children whose 4th birthday falls prior to June 30th of year of enrolment in Junior Infants.
A decision in writing or ‘Text a Parent from the Principal and Chairperson will be issued to parents / guardians within 21 days of receipt of applications, form A and form B (which is the signed letter of offer and agreement of compliance with the Code of Behaviour).
As a general principle and in so far as is practicable, having regard to the school’s enrolment policy, children will be enrolled on application, provided there is space available.
The board of management reserve the right to refuse enrolment or transfers from other schools in the case where a child has been suspended if it is deemed that he/she would pose an unacceptable risk to other pupils, school staff and / or school property. A written refusal will be issued.
In the event that a decision on enrolment is not made within 21 days, the parents may write a letter of appeal under the Education Welfare Act 2000 to the Chairperson.
Decisions in relation to applications for enrolment are made by the Board of Management of Scoil Chaitriona Junior, in accordance with school policy. Applications for enrolment should be lodged prior to June 1st and will be replied to by June 21st of the year of enrolment.
Enrolments will be taken for the 30th of September each year until classes are full in seniority of age.
While recognising the right of parents to enrol their child in the school of their choice, the Board of Management of Scoil Chaitríona Junior is also responsible for respecting the rights of the existing school community and in particular, the children already enrolled. This requires balanced judgements, which are guided by the principles of natural justice and are taken in the best interests of all children. Assisting the school in such circumstances, the Board of Management reserves the right to determine the maximum number of children in each separate classroom, bearing in mind:
a) Size of, and available space in, classrooms.
b) The educational needs of children of a particular age.
c) Multi-grade classrooms.
d) Presence of children with special educational/behavioural needs.
e) D.E.S. maximum class average directive which currently determine a maximum average of 22 children per class.
Parents who are dissatisfied with the enrolment decision, may appeal to the Board of Management. It must address, in writing, to the Chairperson, stating the grounds for appeal, and lodged within ten days of receiving the refusal. The Chairperson will issue a written response. Parents, if unhappy with the result of this appeal, may appeal to the department of education and Skills on the official form provided by the DES. This appeal must be lodged within 42 days of receipt of the refusal from the school to enrol. Details on appealing decisions on enrolment under section 29 of the Education Act ( as amended by Section4 of the Education (Miscellaneous Provisiona) Act, 2007, are available on the Department’s website at www.education.ie ( Circular 22/02 Processing of an Appeal).
All appeals and decisions of the school management will be dealt with in an equitable manner, and in accordance with fair procedures.
E. TRANSFER OF PUPILS
When the enrolment offer has been accepted by the parent, information concerning attendance and the child’s educational progress must be forwarded from the previous school (Section 28, Education Welfare Act 2000).
Pupils data (stored on the Primary Online Database) will be shared with new schools of pupils if they transfer out of Scoil Chaitríona Junior.
F. SCHOOL BOOKLET & CODE OF BEHAVIOUR
The Board of Management of Scoil Chaitríona Junior will append its school handbook and the Code of Behaviour to this policy. Details of the policy in relations to suspension & expulsion are included in the Code of Behaviour.
This policy is endorsed by the Diocesan Administrator (in the absence of the bishop) and adopted by the Board of management of Scoil Chaitríona Junior on ________ February 7th 2017.
It is published on the schools website and reference to where it can be accessed will be printed on the enrolment form for parents.
G. EVALUATION AND REVIEW
The Board of Management will monitor the implementation of this policy and it will be reviewed annually in order to maintain effective management of the admissions process.
H. COMMUNICATION AND RATIFICATION
This policy was reviewed in and ratified by the Board of Management in February 2017.
It is communicated to parents via the school website, www.renmorejunniorschool.com. Copies are available for viewing in the Principal’s office.
Signature of Principal: __________________________________ Date: ______________
Signature of Chairperson: __________________________________ Date: ______________