Newsletter - October 2018
Dear Parents and Guardians,
We are almost at the half-way point of our first term and what a busy time it has been! We finally made the move into our new building and all of the staff have been extremely busy getting us settled in. It has not been an easy move and ideally, we would have had the summer to set up the school but it was not to be. We still have a long way to go but I am very pleased that we recently took possession of the PE Hall and we are hopeful that we will receive the other areas in the near future.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our students, staff and you, the parents for your support during the move. The phone lines are now up and running using the Internet as we are still waiting on Eir to install cables to the school. We hope there will be no more issues with communication.
Our Homework/Study Club begins after the midterm break. It will run two days per week (Monday and Tuesday) from 3:45 -4:45pm. Students must sign up and it is offered on a first-come first-served basis. Places are limited so students who are interested should sign up through their tutors.
There are many extra-curricular clubs up and running in the school. The range of activities on offer is fantastic and this is a testament to our staff and the commitment they have to the students in the school. I would like to remind parents/guardians that it is the responsibility of students to inform their parents if they are staying late for clubs, training etc. It is not possible for us to allow students to ring home each day.
Thank you to all of the first-year parents who attended the recent Wriggle iPad Training evening. It was great to meet with you all. I would like to remind all parents to familiarise themselves with the iPad Acceptable Usage Policy on the website and to discuss responsible usage with your son/daughter. The school carries out regular iPad checks to encourage appropriate usage of ICT. If you have any queries or concerns about Apps, emails etc, please email email@example.com
Thank you to the Parents Council for hosting the recent coffee morning. We will be in touch in the near future about our AGM and we are always looking for new parents to get involved. It is really important that we have strong parental involvement as the school grows and develops.
Good attendance and punctuality are important life skills for us to instil in our students. The school opens at 8:15 am each morning and students should be in school no later than 8:25am in order for them to use their locker and be in tutorial for 8:30am. Students who arrive late twice in a week or three times in a month, will be asked to attend an after-school learning opportunity every Thursday from 3:35-4:05 pm. We all have occasional days whereby we are late; however, we hope our Punctuality Drive will encourage students to be on time each day.
We recently had two Department of Education inspectors visit the school for a subject inspection. They found the teaching and learning standard to be of a very high quality and they noted the exemplary behaviour of our students. We are really proud of the standard of education that we are achieving in Bremore ETSS. Our staff are fully committed to innovative and effective practice and it is very affirmative to have this recognised by the Inspectorate.
All students should bring a healthy and nutritious lunch with them each day. This will help sustain them through their busy day and support their learning. Every Monday and Tuesday, we have a tuck shop open and students can buy rolls, salads etc. We hope to have a fully operational canteen following a tender process.
3rd Year Information Evening
We look forward to welcoming our third-year students and parents this Wednesday evening for an Information session from 6:30-7:30 pm.
The third-year students are our first cohort to participate in State Examinations and we wish them every success in their studies this year. The evening will focus on information about examinations, study skills, student wellbeing, Transition Year etc. so please try your best to attend.
All teachers are engaged in ongoing assessment of students learning. Indeed, here at Bremore ETSS, we also encourage students to be engaged in self and peer assessment to support them to recognise and take responsibility for their own progress.
Formal Winter Assessment weeks take place for each year group. During this time, students will participate in classroom tests. The results of these will be shared with students and parents through a written report, which will be posted home. The reports will also be shared on VS Ware. Each year group also has one parent-teacher meeting per year and students are encouraged to attend with their parents/guardians. If you have any concerns about your child’s progress, please do not hesitate to contact the school to discuss this with the relevant subject teacher, Tutor or Clann Leader.
Winter Assessment dates:
3rd Year: 12th – 16th November
1st and 2nd Year: 26th – 30th November
First Year Subject Options
All first-year students are currently in the process of sampling their subject options. It is important that all parents have logged into VS Ware using the login details provided to you. Towards the end of November, your son/daughter will be invited to choose their options in order of preference and this must be completed through your VS Ware account.
Lithuanian Heritage Language Class
Bremore ETSS are delighted to have been chosen to be part of the Heritage Language Initiative run by the Department of Education. We have been allocated a Lithuanian Language teacher, Jurgita, and students have the option to attend Lithuanian Language classes every Tuesday after school. As an Educate Together school, we are delighted that heritage languages are being formally recognised and promoted. We would love if the Language Initiative could be offered to other students in the future.
This Tuesday, we welcome the Lithuanian Ambassador in Ireland to Bremore ETSS. All families with Lithuanian Heritage are invited to the launch of the Initiative and we look forward to meeting with you and celebrating your culture!
Second Year Junior Cycle Information Evening
All second-year students and their parents/guardians are invited to a Junior Cycle Information Evening on Thursday 8th November at 7pm. This session will outline the significant changes to the Junior Cycle and key dates for Classroom Based Assessments which take place throughout the year, and form part of the new Junior Cycle Profile of Achievement. Looking forward to seeing you all there.
Code of Positive Behaviour
Our school promotes a Restorative Practice Approach towards managing conflict. When difficult situations arise, we endeavour to use these as learning opportunities and to develop relationships and skills amongst our students. Good discipline supports learning and a safe environment is essential.
Behaviour outside of school
In recent weeks, there have been some external situations happening which have had potential to affect our school environment. We ask all parents to support the school by talking to their children about their behaviour outside of school and in the local community. Whilst we cannot be responsible for behaviour which happens outside of the school, we do aim to support conflict resolution and work with those involved. All members of our school community, whatever their social, cultural, belief or background, are expected to work together in an atmosphere of dignity and respect.
Council of Europe ECW Conference - Oslo
We are thrilled to have been recognised for our democratic practice in Bremore ETSS. The Council of Europe Education Department have invited one staff representative from Bremore ETSS to present at the conference ‘Democratic Schools for All’ in Oslo this November. The recognition comes from our whole-school approach to being democratic in our practice. Keep an eye on our Twitter page for more news on this!
The following committees are now back up and running in the school, Student Council, Relationship Keepers, Green Schools, Amber Flag, LGBTI+, Development Education. These student-led committees provide an opportunity for listening to our student’s voice and to include them in the development of the school.
Mid-Term Awards Celebration
All students are invited to express themselves through fancy dress next Friday 26th October as we finish up for the Mid-Term break. This invitation is not exclusively for Halloween fancy dress. An Awards Assembly for students will also take place, recognising the achievement and hard work of our fantastic student cohort. Wishing you all a very happy and safe midterm break.
Kathy Jones, Principal.