12th August 2021
Dear Parents / Guardians
I hope that you and your family are well and that your son is enjoying the last few days of the summer holidays. I also hope that he is well rested and looking forward to joining his new school.
Our priority as a school is to ensure that the school is as safe as possible for our students and staff.
Safety measures introduced at St. Macartan’s include;
- A thermal (temperature) check and facial recognition camera system
- Copper coating on all regular touch surfaces like door handles and touch plates
- New toilet arrangements as well as new arrangements for breaks
- Desk screens for classrooms
- Snoods (face coverings) for all staff and students
- Enhanced cleaning and waste disposal regimes for classrooms
- New classrooms for larger class groups
- Installation of medical grade sanitisers for all classrooms and common areas.
- Base rooms for all classes for use before school, mid morning and lunch breaks.
- Improved bus and parent parking arrangements.
- Improvements to Google for Education to assist with possible blended teaching and learning.
Wednesday August 25th will see our incoming first years in the school for induction. The Induction Day is simply an opportunity for our new students to familiarise themselves with the school and their fellow first years.
The Induction Day will begin at 10.00 am and end at 1.00 pm. Students do not have to wear their school uniform on Wednesday August 25th. There is no school bus service available on that day. (Students should bring a light lunch)
First years will be in school again on Thursday 26th and Friday 27th. To give our new students an opportunity to get to know each other and their new school, there will be no other year groups in the school on those days.
School buses will be available to take students to and from school on August 26th and 27th. Students will be in a position to familiarise themselves with their bus, the driver etc. Staff will assist the students after school on Thursday with getting the correct bus at the school bus layby etc. Staff will meet with parents who collect students from school to assist with parking and pick up arrangements.
On the 26th our new students will meet with their year head and tutors. They will also be placed into their class groups. Students will be given their school books, introduced to the school’s online facilities and timetable on that day also.
To allow for staff inservice on Monday August 30th, our first years will not have school on that day and will return to school on August 31st.
Unfortunately, under current health and safety guidelines and to limit the congregation of students on our corridors, students will not have access to lockers and will have to bring a limited number of copy books and note books to school on a daily basis in a school bag. School books will remain at home.
Students are encouraged to bring a digital device to school so that they can access their school books online. This device may be a chromebook, laptop, mobile phone or tablet. School bags, digital devices, etc. will be left in the students tutor room during breaks. Once again to avoid the congregation of groups on corridors etc. students will meet in their tutor room before class in the morning and at break times. Students will also be encouraged to walk outside on the school grounds during breaks when weather permits.
Additional canteen facilities will be available on a staggered basis to allow for appropriate social distancing. Students are also encouraged to bring a lunch to school which can be consumed in the tutor room or outdoors.
On their arrival at school each morning, students will have their temperature checked and recorded as present using a thermal scanner and facial recognition system . This device is similar to that used in airports, work settings, etc. and is a measure aimed at trying to prevent students and staff who are ill from spreading illness in the school. If you have any concerns about this system, please feel free to contact me at school.
I propose to hold an online meeting for our first year parents in the coming weeks i.e after our first years have had a chance to settle into school. This will be an opportunity for you to raise an issue or concern with us at school. If there is anything that you would like to address with me in the short term, please feel free to contact me via the school office or by email at email@example.com. Your son’s Year Head will be Mr. Mark Duffy.
Our official school uniform supplier is The Fabric Centre Monaghan. The school jacket is available through the school website and at this link. The official school jacket forms part of our school uniform. When ordering the jacket, I encourage you to include your son’s initials.
I wish you well for the coming academic year. Please remember, if you have any concerns you should always feel free to contact the school. The first year administration charge (€165) as outlined in my previous letter to you may be paid through the school office or by using this link.
Is mise le gach dea ghuí