We are looking forward to seeing everyone on Thursday for another great school year together!
First day of school:
- School reopens this Thursday 31st August at 8.30am.
- It is a full day of school. Parents of children starting 1st class should note that their child will finish at 2.10pm each day now.
- The other school on our campus, Citywest and Saggart CNS, is reopening this week also. Therefore, please leave the campus as early as you can after leaving your child to school - the campus will get extremely busy from 8.40am.
- Unfortunately, due to being on a shared campus, we cannot facilitate classroom visits or teacher introductions on the first morning. Please see details below of two events coming up to facilitate this and thank you for your understanding in this matter.
- A reminder that our photography policy allows parents to take photographs, as long as there are no photos of individual children (apart from your own) and no sharing of photos including via social media, unless its a photo of just your child, with no other child visible in the background.
Important dates for your diary:
- Wednesday 6th September - visit your child's classroom and meet other parents - 12.30pm for Senior Infants and 1.30pm for 1st class parents
- Classroom visits for parents of children in 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th class will be organised for later in September, after those classes move into their new rooms
- Monday 11th September - Junior Infants start on a full school day, 8.30am to 1.10pm each day. All parents are asked to be mindful of increased traffic in the car park this week and to leave the car at home if possible.
- Monday 11th September - after-school activities programme commences
- An evening in September, date to be confirmed - Information Evening for adults only - attend a talk by your child's teacher, in your child's classroom, and meet all staff and other parents
Please walk to school:
- Please walk, jog, cycle, scoot or even take the LUAS to school if you can at all. With over 700 families accessing our campus each day, every family that leaves the car at home helps everyone get to school safely.
- Walk on the paths only, never on the road.
- When near cars, adults should walk nearest the cars in case children are not tall enough to be seen by the driver.
- We recommend wearing high-vis jackets when walking. All children were supplied with a free high-vis jacket in Junior Infants. If you missed this or need a new one, please let us know and we will order a new one for your child.
- If you must drive, please car pool if you can so as to reduce the number of cars entering the campus.
- Loop system remains in place - enter via the Entrance gate only and exit via the Exit gate only. One-way driving on the campus only. If you need to go back, you must drive out and back in again.
- Drop-off facility continues 8.30 to 8.40am each day, starting on the first day of school. More volunteers are needed. Please reply to this email to volunteer, even if its just for one day that you can help!
- No parking at any time of day in the drop-off zone or by the fence opposite the front of the building. Parking is in designated spots in front of the building or in the large car park to the left of the Entrance gate only.
- There is NO parking for parents after the drop-off zone. Parking in this area is for staff members, buses, creche staff and drivers with a permit pass from either school displayed clearly on their dashboard. We do not have staff members available to monitor this so please obey this guideline. Parking in this area puts you, your child and our most vulnerable children at risk. Please don't do it. This applies to ALL times of day, not just morning time.
- No parking on the road outside the school campus, at any time or for any length of time, even to drop off a child.
- Be considerate to pedestrians and other drivers. Give way. Everyone is under pressure and kindness saves lives.
School start time:
- School doors open at 8.30am each day. The school does not take responsibility for any child before the teachers collect the children after the bell goes at 8.30am. No child should ever be left unsupervised on the school campus. Kidorama Academy provide before-school care in our school building at a very reasonable cost.
- If you arrive before 8.30am, please accompany your child to their line and wait with him/her.
- Children arriving after 8.30am on any day should enter via the main door of the school.
- Children arriving after 8.40am on any day must be accompanied in to the building and signed in.
Where to wait for your teacher on the first morning only:
- Mary Treasa's Senior Infants class - wait with your child at the external door of the classroom, which looks out over the Drop Off zone and is the classroom closest to the PE Hall.
- 1st class - children should line up at the main door of the school, behind the children starting Senior Infants, Laura's class on the right as you approach (i.e. closest to Citywest and Saggart CNS) and Martha's class on the left as you approach (i.e. closest to our Senior Infant classrooms)
- All other classes - children should line up where they lined up in the mornings last year.
- Children new to the school - if you are joining us in 5th class, please join the 5th class line at the main door of the school. If you are joining us in another class, please go into the play yard on the first morning. I hope another child or parent will help you out and show you where to go but if not, don't worry, our support teachers will be available to point you in the right direction from 8.30am!
- The children will be taught on the first day where to line up on future days.
Collecting your child at the end of the day - first week:
- Mary Treasa's Senior Infants and Sarah C's Senior Infants - please line up at the outside door directly into your child's classroom. At 1.10pm, the teacher will open the door and dismiss the children one by one. Please do not knock on the classroom window or engage your child's attention before this time. The teacher is trying to teach and needs every child as focussed as possible.
- Sarah OT's Senior Infants - please collect your child exactly as you did last year, via the main door of the school
- 1st classes - leave via the school yard.
- 2nd and 3rd classes - leave via the front door of the school.
- 4th class - will leave via the external door to their temporary room, which is on the left as you approach the main door of the school
- 5th class - will leave via the external door to their temporary room, which is at the end of the building facing onto the staff car park
- Important - from 1st class: Children are not matched to parents in the same way they were in the Infant classes. While the teacher will oversee the children leaving the school, it is the parent's responsibility to have someone at the school on time to collect their child from school. You should also ensure that your child knows what to do if there is no-one there to collect him/her or if they are uncomfortable leaving with the person who says they are to collect them. In the early days of 1st class, we will pay extra attention as the children leave but this does not change the responsibility of each parent to be there on time.
Change of clothes for school:
While we cannot accommodate changing bags for individual children, apart from those with particular care needs, we do maintain a general store of clean clothes for any child who might need them. We always appreciate donations of clean clothes for this store, in particular elasticated-waisted trousers and underwear. These can be left in to the school office at any time.
Anyone keeping an eye on our website over the summer will have noticed a number of new appointments to our school. We are delighted to welcome the following staff members to our school:
- Laura M teaching Junior Infants
- Laura B teaching 1st class
- Tadhg teaching 2nd class
- Ruth and Stephen as Support teachers
- Lindsey and Louise as Special Needs Assistants
- Two more teachers yet to be appointed, both of whom will join as Support teachers
Building work delays
As is now typical at this time of year, our building work, which will see 8 new rooms provided for our school, as well as additional yard space, is not yet complete.
The delays are not as significant as in previous years, however, and we expect to move in to the new rooms gradually over the coming 2-3 weeks. Massive thanks to foreman Andy and all the team at Coyne Group for their spectacular work on this during the month of August.
Access to the corridor of our "new wing" is extremely limited this week and we will have no access to our PE Hall for the coming fortnight, as work on a new boiler progresses.
As you may imagine, we are using every available space for teaching and learning and unfortunately will not be able to accommodate parents waiting between drop-off and collection times inside our building for the foreseeable future.
We are very excited to move into our new accommodation. We have never before taken over 8 classrooms in one year and moving will be a big task. Thank you in advance for your cooperation and patience during the move.
Change of details or circumstance:
- It is most important that you let us know if your contact details change, including, for example, if your phone is out of order. It is vital that we can contact you immediately in case of emergency.
- If you have a change in family circumstance and your child has parents living in different homes, please let us know so that we can ensure both parents receive important notifications.
- If your child will not be returning to our school, please let us know immediately. We have waiting lists for most classes and could reallocate that school place to a child on the waiting list.
- If your child will not be at school on Thursday 31st August but will be returning in September, please let us know in advance so that we do not reallocate that school place in error.
- If you have not already paid the full amount of school expenses, please do so this week, via the link sent by email. A number of parents have contacted me regarding a payment plan and those can proceed as planned. If you wish to organise a payment plan, please contact me in confidence.
- The school can no longer access cash payments. Please do not put Nicola in the awkward position of having to refuse. Accepting cash puts school staff at risk, both on the premises and on the journey to the bank. Online link/bank transfer is our preferred way of accepting payment. If you cannot do that, a cheque or money order is acceptable also.
- 1st to 5th classes - reminder that there are items for parents to purchase ahead of the start of the new school year. Lists are available on our school website in two different formats.
Communications from the school:
- One main communication tool is our school website, www.citywestetns.ie. Please visit regularly, particularly the News page and your child's class page.
- Another preferred communication tool is email. It is your responsibility to check your emails and to read the emails from us. Please mark the email as "Read" at the bottom of each email.
- When the teachers meet their classes at 8.30am each morning, their focus is on greeting the children and setting them up for a successful day of learning. If you have something to talk with the teacher about that will take more than a few seconds, please make an appointment via the school office.
I am very much looking forward to seeing you all on Thursday morning and to working with you in the care and education of your child(ren) over the coming year.