Agreed Report from BoM

Agreed Report Board of Management Meeting – 24th March 2021

A Board meeting took place via Zoom on Wednesday 24th March 2021 at 7:30pm

The meeting was opened by Chairperson Kevin McCarthy. Martin Delaney led the opening prayer for the meeting.

Minutes of the previous meeting were read, proposed and seconded.

Principals Report

Principals Report was presented. It included the details of the staggered return to school in line with the latest Covid 19 restrictions. The report also included details of staffing, enrolment, curriculum, IT, ethos, extracurricular and fundraising. See some of the following details from the report. 

 See some of the following details from the report.

Return to School   

The majority of pupils in Le Chéile 1 and Le Chéile 2 returned to school on Monday 22nd February.  It was very quiet around the school that week. Then the following Monday, 1st March pupils from Junior Infants to second Class returned to school along with their teachers.  Finally, on Monday March 15th pupils from third to sixth class returned to school.   It is great to have all the pupils back in school and obviously we all hope that schools can remain open for all the pupils for the rest of the year.  In general, the teachers have focused on just getting the children settled back to school and creating a good routine with them again. We agreed as a staff that there shouldn’t be a lot of homework as the children settled back into school.

On Thursday 4th March we celebrated World Book Day with the junior classes.  We kept it low key this year as the children had only returned to school the previous Monday.  For Seachtain Na Gaeilge we had a Lá Glas on Tuesday 16th March.  The children wore something green in and each class paraded around Slí na Sláinte in front of the rest of the school.  We have also introduced a Gaeilgeoir na Seachtaine every Friday to encourage pupils to speak more Irish around the school.  

As the junior classes returned to school on March 1st WLR did a few different pieces on the return to school here in Cappoquin.  They played some of our children and their parents talking about returning to school after the closure on their news bulletins that morning.  They also had a news article along with photos and a video of some of the pupils in the school yard on their website.

To celebrate National Tree Week (21st to 27th March) each class went on an outing to Glenshelane.  Junior Infants to second class went to the woods on Tuesday 23rd March, then earlier today (Wednesday 24th March,) 3rd to 6th class and the two Le Chéile classes went to Glenshelane. Every class had a picnic there too.   The feedback from the children and teachers was very positive. Thanks to Mark Mason Financial Services for sponsoring costs associated with hiring the bus for the outings. 

On Friday 26th March we will announce the winners of our photo competition entitled ‘Nature’ which was run during February when the children were learning from home.  There will be two overall winners, one junior and one senior, who will both receive a €20 voucher for Easons. One winner from each class will be given an Easter Egg.  Thanks to the Cappoquin St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee for sponsoring the prizes. 

We welcomed two new pupils to the school on Tuesday 16th March, Alicia Stokes started in 5th class and Rico Stokes started in 4th class.

Ethos

James Casey suggested that we ask some of the 6th class pupils to read out prayers and reflections over the intercom on the day of the holidays as a means or marking Easter. 

Active Schools

For active schools we are focusing on the fundamental skill of jumping during March. 

Fundraising

Cappoquin Camoigie Club are running a fundraiser over the Easter holidays and they are kindly donating half of the proceeds to the school.  The club feel that there are a lot of connections between families in the school and the club.  The fundraiser is called ‘Run, Walk, Skate to 1998.’ They are aiming to clock up 1998 km over 4 days.

The camogie club also applied to the Sports Capital Grant Programme for funds for sports equipment.  They also included the school in that application.  The club haven’t heard back yet if they were successful in their application. Thanks to the club and to Elaine McCarthy for including the school in that application.

Cappoquin Affane GAA Club recently donated €500 to the school, proceeds from a quiz they ran in 2020.  Thank you to the GAA club for that donation.

Moss – Cleaning the roof of the school

During the last week of February there was very heavy rain and water was leaking in through the ceiling in the hall and in the PE equipment room.  We believe that the moss on the roof and in between the slates was the cause of the leaks.  Dave Mason and his team spent three days cleaning the roof and clearing the moss. Thanks to the soccer club for allowing us to use the astro pitch for break times for the junior classes on those days of Thursday 4th and Friday 5th March.

IT

Website –  We are going to let the new website go live on Monday 12th April. 

Wifi speed- broadband – fibre.  I had applied to Imagine for their free Broadband initiative for rural schools.  They got back to me to say that Cappoquin wasn’t covered in their schools initiative.  I had better news from the PDST (Professional Development Service for Teachers,) so an upgrade to our wifi was put out to mini-tender and that is where it is at presently.  The PDST would expect that once the tender is awarded, the upgrade should happen reasonably quickly after that. The wifi was really poor again when we returned to school especially in the Le Chéile section of the building.  Keith Dransfield came in and he improved the situation.

 

Child protection – Principals Oversight Report

This report was presented by the Principal

 

Health and Safety

  • Weekly battery checks of the defibrillator are being carried out
  • Monthly checks on break glass units, fire extinguishers, emergency lighting and RCBOS are being carried out and James Casey tested all them on Monday 15th March. (Guardian Fire Service carried out a service of fire alarm system with James Casey present on Wednesday 17th February.
  • First Aid supplies have been checked

Covid 19●Mary Flynn and Mary Casey monitor PPE supplies and resources for Covid 19 and Mary Casey orders when necessary.  We had to buy extra masks for return in February/March as more staff were to wear the medical grade masks.

  • Martin went back over cleaning checklist with cleaners on return to school.
  • The teachers are now sanstising the children’s desks each morning after the school boxes are removed from the tables.

Enrolment

A detailed discussion took place on enrolment in the school and the staffing schedule for 2021/2022 school year as a result of our enrolment figures for 2020/2021 school year. We were only three pupils short of retaining 8 classes across mainstream. An appeal will be made to the Department of Education to see if the school can retain the 8 classroom teachers in the mainstream setting.  Efforts will be made to contact local representatives about the possibility of new families moving to our catchment area and about potential future enrolments for the school.

 

Finance

Financial Report was presented by Treasurer

 

Policies.

The ASD Admissions Enrolment Policy was approved.

 

A vote of sympathy was expressed to the family of Mike Bennett on his recent passing.

Agreed Report Board of Management Meeting – 10th February 2021
​A Board meeting took place via Zoom on Wednesday 10th February 2021 at 7:30pm
The Chairperson, Kevin McCarthy, opened the meeting by welcoming everybody with a special welcome to Fr. Gear.  Fr. Gear replaces Fr Arthure as a patron nominee on the Board following Fr Arthure’s recent retirement.  Fr.Gear led the opening prayer for the meeting.
Minutes of the previous meeting were read, proposed and seconded.


Principals Report
Principals Report was presented. It included details of Covid 19 guidelines from the government and Department of Education. The report also included details on remote learning. See below for further information from the report. During the Christmas holidays it was first announced that there would be a three-day extension to the holiday period and schools would reopen on Monday January 11th.  Then on January 6th it was announced that schools would remain closed for mainstream pupils until February 1st and that remote learning would take place.  It was also announced that date the Special schools and special classes would re-open on January 11th along with leaving cert classes in post primary schools. However, a day later on January 7th this decision was reversed and an announcement was made that all schools for all pupils would remain closed and education would take place via remote earning for all pupils.  On January 7th a staff meeting via zoom was held with all the teachers.  We made plans and arrangements for our remote teaching to start the following week.  The teachers went into the school individually at different times between 7th and 9th January to organise books, resources and the children’s’ boxes. The teachers were going to teach remotely using the online platform Google Classroom and they agreed to copy everything onto Aladdin Connect for parents as a back-up.  We decided to use Aladdin Connect as well as a back-up to Google. Every family should have been guaranteed to receive the lessons from the teachers that way. Contact was made with parents to collect the boxes belonging to the children on Sunday 10th January.  Thanks to a number of SNAs who came into the school to help with this on the day.  Overall, the collection went well. On January 14th the government announced a phased return for children in special schools and a return to school for those in special classes in primary schools and children with significant additional needs in mainstream primary classes, beginning on Thursday 21 January. Then again on 19th of January this decision was reversed.  Also on morning of January 19th we had another staff meeting via zoom.  We planned for that expected opening on 21st January and we reviewed our online learning. Some of the classes were going to trial using zoom once a week to check in on the children.  After a few weeks every class trialled at least one zoom check in call with their class before our next staff meeting which was on Friday 5th February.  It was agreed at that meeting that all classes would have one live video call check in with their class every week except the week of the mid-term.  On February 1st the government informed that special classes in mainstream will re-open on Monday 22nd February. 
Child protection – Principals Oversight Report
This report was presented by the Principal


Health & Safety
An email was forwarded to all the BOM members prior to the meeting in relation to the final report from the Department Inspectorate on supporting the safe provision of schooling (Covid 19 Inspection.) In terms of Health & Safety there is no new report following on from the previous meeting as we were only physically in the school for four days since the last BOM meeting.
James Casey is going into the school on Thursday 3rd February to meet someone from Guardian Fire Service who will check and service our fire alarm system.  A number of different staff members have been in to check on the school building since Christmas.


Retirement Gift for Fr Arthure
The Chairperson purchased the gifts for Fr. Arthure’s retirement in Clonmel Garden Centre.  Fr. Arthure’s wish was to plant a tree in his honour on the school grounds.  A Mountain Ash was purchased to plant in the school as a memory to all ther service given by Fr Arthure to the school. 

Enrolment
Enrolment Forms were sent out to the pre-school and a discussion about school enrolment was held. 

Re-opening Le Chéile (22nd February)
The return to school of Le Chéile on Monday February 22nd  was discussed as was   the Supplementary Home Tuition Programme announced by the government recently.  Preparations are being made for the re-opening of Le Chéile on February 22nd and risk assessment will be reviewed to ensure the school is compliant with the latest Covid 19 guidelines.

Irish Water
The Principal is corresponding with Irish Water with the aim of ascertaining the possible cause/s for the school’s large water bill from last year.

IT –Remote teaching & Online Learning – Devices- Wifi 
There was a discussion on remote teaching and home school learning.  A small number of devices were lent out to families who requested them.

Financial Report
Financial Report was presented by Treasurer

Congratulations were extended to Ms. Laura Roche on the birth of baby Alex last week.

A vote of sympathy was expressed to the family of Tom Burke on his recent passing.

Conclusion
The Chairperson thanked all in the school community (parents and staff) for all their patience during this current time.

Agreed Report Board of Management Meeting – 16th December 2020

​A Board meeting took place via Zoom on Wednesday 16th December 2020 at 7:30p.m. The meeting was opened by Chairperson Kevin McCarthy.

Minutes of the previous meeting were read, proposed and seconded.

Correspondence

A thank you letter from Bríd Duggan to the Board was acknowledged. She thanked the Board most sincerely for their beautiful gifts to her to mark her retirement. Bríd also thanked the Board for their support for the last year since the current BoM was in situ.

A Christmas Card and donation of €200 from Mount Melleray to the school was acknowledged by the Board.

Principals Report

Principals Report was presented. It included details of staffing, curriculum, IT, ethos, extracurricular, sport and fundraising. See some of the following details from the report. 

Drama– Ms Roche and 5th Class were busy over the last few weeks rehearsing and practising for a play.  Towards the end of last week and all this week the class are performing the play each day and inviting a different class in to watch it.  The 5th class are really enjoying themselves and so are the classes who have gone to the hall to watch the performance.

Art – Credit Union Competition-Five pupils from the school won prizes for the Lismore & Cappoquin Credit Union Art Competition. Well done to our 5 winners!

Ethos– Fr Gear held a Mass to remember all our deceased relatives and friends in Affane on Friday 20th November which Brigid Murray recorded live and James Casey gave every class link to zoom to watch the mass.  Fr Gear celebrated Mass with 6th Class in the school hall on Tuesday 8th December to celebrate the Feast of the Immaculate Conception.  Thanks to Mary Flynn and James Casey for putting up the crib and the Advent Wreaths in preparation for Christmas.

Extracurricular- Blue and White Days – There was great colour and excitement in the school in the lead up to the All Ireland Hurling Final.  Firstly Ms Veale organised the 6th class to draw their own portraits as fans and Taylor Murray (Waterford GAA pro) displayed the portraits in the stands in Páirc Ui Chaoimh on Saturday 21st November for Waterford’s All Ireland quarter-final against Clare.  Then in preparation for the All Ireland semi-final we had a Blue and White Day on Friday 27th November.   We had a second Blue and White Day on Friday 11th December before the All Ireland Final.   €220.45    was collected for Club Déise.    The school was also chosen as one of the schools by Centra Ireland to have portraits of fans in the stand for the All Ireland Final.  This time every class were involved and they all produced 100 great and colourful portraits.  Thanks to Mary Flynn for putting all the putting up and thanks to Jacinta Uniacke for donating the lovely blue Santa for the final.

Sport Barry Dunne GDA for Waterford GAA came to the school on Tuesday 8th December and on Tuesday 15th December. On both days Barry coached gaelic football skills and fundamental movement skills with six different classes.  Thanks to the soccer club for allowing us to use the astro for break times for some of the classes on those days.

Active Schools- For active schools we are focusing on the fundamental skill of dodging during December. 

Fundraising-The Sale of Work wasn’t possible with Covid restrictions and Tom Kelleher said he would prefer not to proceed with the Super Valu raffle this Christmas either because of Covid restrictions. He is willing to look at it again possibly at Easter or another time.  Laura O Rourke offered to sing online and to raise funds for the school through Go Fund Me and we accepted that offer.   The staff and pupils are going to wear Christmas jumpers to school this Friday (18th December) and we will make a contribution to St Vincent de Paul in Cappoquin.  

Child protection – Principals Oversight Report

This report was presented by the Principal

Health & Safety / Risk Assessments

Weekly battery checks of the defibrillator are being carried out

Monthly checks on break glass units, fire extinguishers, emergency lighting are being carried out

Fire extinguishers were serviced in October

First Aid supplies have been restocked

Mary Flynn and Mary Casey monitor PPE supplies and resources for Covid 19 and Mary Casey orders when necessary.

IT

​ The Principal informed the meeting that the school are in the process of hiring designers to create a new website.

In terms of Wifi speed and broadband the Principal is disappointed with the service currently in the school.   Keith Dransfield has been in the school a few times to try help with some of the wifi blackspots and Keith along with another IT specialist will come back into the school at some stage in the new year to ensure our Ubiquity system is working properly.  However, before they come in for that job we need to get much better broadband speed into the school.  We currently get our broadband through PDST Technology and this is how most schools get their broadband but our wifi isn’t near fast enough for a school of our size.  Our download speed coming into system is 14.4 mbps and upload is 0.6 Mbps which would be fine for an individual house but not for a whole school.

Finance

Financial Report was presented by Treasurer

Policies

The Child Protection Child Safeguarding Statement & Risk Assessment were updated as Martin Delaney replaces Bríd Duggan as the DLP.

Health & Safety Policy was approved.

Congratulations

Congratulations were extended to Aisling Fennell on the birth of her baby girl, Ella.  ​