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Fortnightly Bulletin 4th November 2021

Dear Parents / Guardians,


We hope all is well with you this fortnight. Our news is as follows:


Friendship Week: Friendship Week is being celebrated in the school this week. The emphasis is on creating and extending friendship, with the motto ‘to have a friend, you have to be a friend’. Children in all classes are being encouraged to make new friends within their classes, with lots of fun activities taking place. Tomorrow we will hold a whole-school assembly to mark the end of Friendship Week, either in the yard if the weather allows or via Zoom in our classrooms. A survey on ‘Feeling Safe and Happy at School’ has been sent to all parents of children from 2nd to 6th classes. We would be very grateful if you would complete it with each of your children who are in these classes.

Bluebells Day: We will celebrate our first ever Bluebells Day to raise awareness of autism tomorrow. I want to thank Ms. Rowley who has organised this event for our school. Bluebells Day will be a non-uniform day, with all children invited to dress in blue and to make a small donation (€1 / €2) towards the purchase of play equipment for our Bluebells playground. All classes will learn about autism on the day and will get the opportunity to visit the Bluebells Classroom and see our fabulous new sensory room first hand. A photographer from the Leinster Leader will visit the school tomorrow. Photographs will be of groups of the children and will never include names. Please email the school, or phone the office today if you do not wish your child to be photographed for the newspaper.


Science Week: Science Week will take place next week and we look forward to celebrating it here in the school with lots of science activities taking place in all classes Photographs of Science Week will be available to view on our website www.bunscoilbhride.ie


Local History Trips: Historian, Sarah Myers will take four of our classes on a local history tour of Rathangan next week. Ms Ruttledge’s fifth and sixth class and Mr. O’Sullivan’s sixth class will embark upon their historical tour of the town on Tuesday while Ms. Fitzpatrick’s fourth class and Ms. Millane’s fifth class will go on their history walk on Thursday. All four classes will also visit the rath and learn of its history. We look forward to hearing all about what they learn. Photos of the history tours will be available to view at www.bunscoilbhride.ie


Christmas Annuals: All children have today received order slips for Christmas Annuals. If you wish to order a Christmas Annual for your daughter (optional), please complete the slip and pay via the e-payment link that will be sent to all parents tomorrow. Completed order slips must be returned to the school by Friday next, 12th November and payment must also be made by this date. Payment must be made via the e-payment link (no cash accepted). The payment request will remain on your payment page until Friday (even when you have paid). It will expire on Friday the 12th.

BLAST Artist in Residence: I am delighted to inform you that our school has been one of the few schools in the county awarded a fully funded 20-hour BLAST Artist in residence opportunity via the new BLAST Artist in Residency Programme 2021/22. This is a fantastic opportunity for our school. The artist Brian Cregan has been assigned to work with our school. I want to thank Ms. Ruttledge for all of her work in coordinating our involvement with the programme. We look forward to planning with Brian how best to utilise this residency and will keep you updated.


Active Schools: As part of our Active Schools initiative, all classes in the school have begun taking part in “Fyffes Fit Squad”, led by Ms. Ruttledge and her Active Schools Committee. The initiative aims to promote exercise in school and there are lots of prizes up for grabs. Fyffes will be awarding the title of ‘Ireland’s Fittest School’ and the Grand Prize of €5000 worth of P.E equipment to the school who earns the most banana points when the campaign finishes at the end of April 2022. Along the way, there will be other prizes to be won. All classes will be encouraged to complete different exercises and fitness challenges each week, the photos of which will be available to view on our school website www.bunscoilbhride.ie


School Self-evaluation: This year we are examining spellings and how we assess spellings in our school as part of our school self-evaluation. We are eager to get the views of parents on how their children are finding the learning of spellings. We have sent a link to a survey to all the parents of children from 1st to 6th class and would be very grateful if those of you who have children in these classes would take the time to complete this survey. Your feedback is greatly appreciated.


Coats: Please ensure your child comes to school every day wearing a coat. Please ensure she also has a fleece / warm hoodie stored in her bag that she can wear over her uniform jumper in the classroom when she feels cold. (Our heating will be on all day during winter, but with the requirement on schools to keep windows open to maintain ventilation, the classrooms will get cold, despite the radiators being on).


New members of staff: I would like to warmly welcome to our staff, Ms. Janet Geraghty, who has begun teaching 2nd Class (Room 9) and Ms. Shauna O’Hara, who is acting as a Special Education Teacher in the school from Monday to Wednesday every week, covering our newly allocated CLASS hours (Covid Learning and Support Scheme).


Oral Language: For the month of November, our whole-school Oral Language theme is Giving and Following Directions. All classes will be engaged in activities based around helping the children to competently give and follow directions. This is something that you can quite easily work on at home with your child(ren). It is only through school and home working closely together that we can achieve the very best outcome for your child(ren).


Christmas Shoe Box Appeal: A reminder to all those who wish to participate in the Christmas Shoe Box Appeal that TOMORROW is the day on which they should be dropped to school. They will be collected by a representative of Team Hope tomorrow morning.


Parent-Teacher Meetings: I would like to thank those of you who have already booked your Parent Teacher Meeting timeslot on the Aladdin Connect app. If you have not already done so, please book your time to speak with your child’s teacher as soon as possible. If you need assistance with this, please phone Catríona in the office.


Bicycles: We love to see children cycling/scooting to school. There is a bicycle rack at the main door of the school and another to the rear of the school available for the parking of bicycles/scooting. As bicycles are parked here at the owners’ risk, we strongly advise that they are locked while parked.


Children First Awareness Week: Children First Awareness Week is taking place from 1st to 7th November 2021. Children First promotes the protection of children from abuse and neglect, by setting out what individuals and organisations need to do to keep children safe, and how to deal with concerns about a child’s safety or welfare. Society has a duty of care towards children, and everyone should be alert to the possibility that children they are in contact with may be abused or at risk of abuse or neglect. If you are concerned about a child or young person, you should contact Tusla social work department. Organisations classed as providers of relevant services under the Children First Act 2015 are required to complete a risk assessment and must have a Child Safeguarding Statement in place. More information on keeping children safe in our communities is available at gov.ie/childrenfirst


Books: It’s that time of year when many of you may be thinking of purchasing books as Christmas presents. When books are purchased from Scholastic (https://www.scholastic.ie/), your child’s school earns free books. When you shop, if you enter ‘Bunscoil Bhríde’ as your child’s school, we receive 20% of your spend in credit, towards the purchase of books for our school.


Kind regards,
Maria Rogerson