Dear Parents / Guardians,
We hope all is well with you this fortnight. Our news is as follows:
- Welcome: Welcome back to all our existing parents. We look forward to meeting with you and working closely with you again during the year ahead. We would like to extend a very warm welcome to our new parents who are joining the Bunscoil Bhríde school community for the first time. We look forward to getting to know you and your child.
- Aladdin Connect: All new parents have been sent the link to download the Aladdin Connect app. Please ensure you have downloaded the app to your device. Please note that it is possible for both parents to download the app (where applicable). All communication from the school will be sent via the app. We ask that all parents check the information recorded about your child on the app and make any necessary changes. Please ensure that there are at least two emergency contacts listed for your child. Please phone the office immediately if you are having any issues downloading or accessing the Aladdin Connect app.
- Improvements to our school: It has been a busy summer at Bunscoil Bhríde. You may have noticed that we have had new windows and blinds fitted to the original part of the school building. I can also confirm that all areas within the school are sparkling, with our caretaker Nigel having carried out a thorough deep clean, with all floors polished. I want to thank Nigel for getting our school so spick and span for our re-opening and also our secretary, Catríona and our SNAs; Laura, Evelyn, Olive, Lisa and Sinéad, who organised and co-ordinated our book rental scheme and ensured all classrooms were ready to receive children this week.
- STEPtember: This year we will again participate in the STEPtember challenge. As a school community, we are aiming to achieve a minimum of 10,000 steps each day. All classes will use our walkway (walking track around our large yard) as we make strides towards our daily step goal.
- Home-School Partnership: We strongly value thesupport of parents inhelping us to realise the potential of each and every child in our care. In order for us to achieve this goal, it is vital that parents work alongside the teachers and help to support the work being done at school. Checking and signing your child’s homework journal, regularly listening to reading, checking sounds/tables etc. and most importantly, speaking positively to your child about school and its importance will be of enormous benefit to your child. We recommend that you take a look at the “Help My Kid Learn” website www.helpmykidlearn.ie, developed by the National Adult Literacy Agency for parents of children aged 0 – 12 years. The purpose of the website is to provide fun activities that parents can do with their children, to develop their literacy and numeracy skills. In an effort to get to know your child, all teachers will be distributing a short questionnaire about your child in an effort to gain a head-start in getting to know her. Should you have any queries about your child’s progress or any concern or query during the year, please do not hesitate to contact the school to arrange an appointment with your child’s teacher. We look forward to developing a strong partnership in your child’s education.
- Late Arrivals/Early Departures: For health and safety reasons, should a child need to leave the school building during the day for any reason, e.g. dentist, medical appointments, etc., or should a child arrive late to school, this must be recorded on Aladdin. It is possible for parents to inform us on the Aladdin app that your child will be picked up early from school. Catríona will be recording late arrivals / early departures on Aladdin. The reason for the late arrival / early departure must also be recorded – please inform Catríona when you phone the school. We would ask that children are only taken out of school early if absolutely necessary. We appreciate your cooperation in this matter.
- Absences: Under the Education Welfare Act 2000, where a child is absent from school on a school day, the parents must notify the school of the reasons for such absence. We require parents to record the reason for the absence on the Aladdin app. You will receive a push notification when your child is marked absent at school. You will then be prompted to input the reason for the absence. We are required under the Act to notify Túsla of any child being absent for 20 days or more. Our student administration system (Aladdin) automatically sends texts to parents reminding them of this when a child reaches both 10 and 15 days of cumulative absences.
- Reminder: No medicinesare allowed at school. If your child has a medical condition for which medicine/inhaler etc. must be administered, please contact the school, as Board of Management approval must be granted for this. Please see our administration of medication policy at www.bunscoilbhride.ie for more information.
- Cuts: We will routinely apply plasters to cuts. It is the responsibility of parents to notify the school in writing (for the attention of the Principal) if they do not wish for plasters to be applied to their child (e.g. if the child is allergic to plasters).
- NUT ALLERGIES: We have a number of children in the school with severe nut allergies. Children are therefore not allowed to bring nuts or any products containing nuts into the school. This includes peanut butter, chocolate spreads etc. We ask parents to be vigilant in this regard, as any contact with nuts for these children can be potentially lethal.
- Infant Induction Meeting: Our Junior Infant teachers, Ms. Ryan and Ms. Gleeson will hold a short meeting with parents of the new Junior Infants next Tuesday 13th September at 11am in the school. The purpose of the meeting is to inform parents of the teaching approaches that will be used and the content that will be taught in Junior Infants. This will give parents the opportunity to meet with Ms. Ryan and Ms. Gleeson, voice any questions they may have and get some ideas as to how they can support their child’s learning at home. We strongly encourage all parents to attend the meeting if at all possible, or to have some member of the child’s family attend. Home-time forJunior Infant pupils willmove to the permanent time of 1.30pm from the following day; Wednesday 14th September.
- Parents of Infant children: As you can imagine, teachers have to be extremely cautious at the gate when releasing children into the care of adults. If your child is being collected at 12pm / 1.30pm by another adult that is not you, or by the crèche, please send a message to your child’s teacher (this can be done by clicking ‘Send Notice’ on the Aladdin app).
- New staff: I would like to take this opportunity to welcome our new teachers; Ms. Meighan Banks (5th & 6th class), Ms. Zita Dillon (1st class) and Ms. Aoife Gleeson (Junior and Senior Infants) to our staff.
- Book Rental: There are a very small number of families who have not yet paid the September Collection, which includes inclusion in our book rental scheme. The payment link was sent out again yesterday. Please note you also have the option of paying the 24-hour Allianz Pupil Personal Accident Insurance, which we strongly recommend. Please phone the office if you are having difficulty paying through the app / link sent out. I am asking all parents who are having any financial difficulties to phone me in confidence either today or tomorrow so that arrangements can be made for your daughter. Please note that if you wish to avail of the Allianz 24-hour Pupil Personal Accident Insurance it must be paid by 16th September. This insurance provides cover for any medical or dental costs arising from an accident in or out of school during the year e.g. in the event of your child having to attend A&E due to an accident, the attendance fee is fully covered – please phone the office for the claim form.
- Headlice: Please check your child(ren)’s hair on a regular basis for headlice, treat where necessary and please inform the school if you have found headlice in your child’s hair so that we can inform the parents of the other children in the class. Long hair must be tied up in school. With all parents following the regular checking routine, we will hopefully minimise the chance of children in the school getting headlice.
- Tin Whistle classes: All children from Third to Sixth Class will begin tin whistles lessons next week. Please ensure your daughter has her D tin whistle at school every day. We would ask you to encourage your child to practise regularly at home.
- Oral Language: The theme for the month of September is ‘Sentence Structure and Tenses’. All classes will be focusing on this theme for the month and we would ask that you support us at home, by encouraging and modelling use of full sentences and correct tenses.
- Google Suite for Education: All our senior children (third to sixth class) use Google Suite for Education (Google Classroom / Drive / Docs / Slides etc.). While our existing fourth to sixth class pupils already have their login details, our third class and children who have just joined fourth to sixth class will be given login details in the coming days, following the granting of consent by parents on the Aladdin app (only for pupils who have not yet been assigned Google logins). Please ensure that you have ticked any permissions pertaining to your child on the Aladdin app (under ‘Permissions’). Over the summer, we acquired a new whole-class set of tablets for use at the senior end of the school. This is in addition to our existing whole-class set of chromebooks in use at the senior end and our two other sets of tablets for use by the infant and middle classes.
- Parking: I am aware that there are lots of new parents using the church carpark to drop-off / collect children. Please see the plan of the church carpark attached which highlights the rules for the safe use of the carpark at school drop-off / pick-up times. Please share this information with anyone who drops off / collects your child. Parents are asked not to park in the yellow boxes, in the wheelchair parking spaces or between the wheelchair parking spaces. Parking is in a single row alongside the Noone Engineering wall and in THREE ROWS along the middle white lines. There should be absolutely NO DRIVING AROUND THE CHURCH. Let’s keep everyone safe! Also, let’s all remember we are a Green School (with ten Green Flags!). If at all possible, we would encourage as many families as possible to leave the car at home and children to walk or cycle to school.
- School website: Please check out our school website www.bunscoilbhride.ie. It contains lots of information about what’s going on at Bunscoil Bhríde and lots of photos of the events that take place. Photos of the new classes will be added shortly. Teachers will also shortly begin updating their class blogs (located under the ‘Our Classes’ tab on the homepage.
- Dates for the Diary: We look forward to a very busy, productive and exciting year at Bunscoil Bhríde. While many of our normal activities were curtailed over the last two years due to Covid, we hope to have lots of events back in the diary this year. Please keep an eye on the Calendar tab on Aladdin over the coming weeks as we will be adding important upcoming events. We hope to be able to hold concerts for all of our classes this year, to bring back Grandparents Day in February and to host our first Parents’ Day. All these events will be highlighted in the Aladdin Calendar once dates have been confirmed.
- Please see the message below that I have been asked to share with you all from the Garda Cyber Crime Bureau to assist parents when using social media to post online photos of their children,.
“September sees school children return to education and proud parents publishing images of their children in uniform to social media platforms. However, online abusers are browsing the same images for any information they may use to contact and exploit those children. If you are posting your child’s school images online, restrict who has access to the images and where they are posted. At the same time, sanitising the images of identifying content will offer an additional layer of protection. #GNCCB #BeCyberSmart “