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A chairde fáilte romhaibh thar n–ais ar scoil.  Tá súil agam go raibh samhradh iontach agaibh.  I would especially like to welcome our thirty three new Junior Infants who joined the school for the first time and the two new students who have joined different classes up the school.   We are looking forward to having them as part of our school community and hope they all enjoy all their years at Four Masters NS. There are now 280 children enrolled here so you can imagine it is a very busy place.
I would remind all parents of school uniform and would like to thank all parents for having their children ready and dressed suitably with black runners/ shoes for school.
We are delighted to welcome Mr. Paul Gallagher as a new permanent member of staff, Mrs Mc Grath who will be working with the Special Education Teaching Team and Ms. Corr who will be covering Ms. Dolan’s maternity leave.  We are looking forward to the new school year.
Le gach dea ghuí
John Britton  

Opening and Closing Times:
The school will open to receive pupils at 9.20 am.  No responsibility is accepted for pupils arriving before that time.  Formal classes begin at 9.40 am.  It is important that parents are aware that no arrangement exists for the supervision of their children who arrive at the school, whether by school bus or otherwise, before the official opening time.  The same rule applies if children remain on school grounds after official closing time.
A significant number of children are arriving before 9.20 a.m. and it is important for parents to be aware that they are unsupervised until 9.20 a.m. Schools are not party to the School Transport Scheme and the fact that the children are conveyed to or from school by bus does not impose any additional obligations on the school or teachers.   The period from 9.20 – 9.40 is assembly time during which homework may be corrected, announcements made etc.  Classes end each day at 2 pm for Infants and at 3 pm for all other classes.  In the case of children travelling by the school bus, the school cannot accept responsibility for escorting them from the bus to the school or from the school to the bus.  

Parent/Teacher Communication:
All visits by parents to speak to teachers must be made by appointment through the school secretary. The school is very large now and teachers have a duty of care to their pupils from once the school opens at 9.20 a.m. and therefore cannot be talking to parents as well as carrying out this duty. Messages can be conveyed via school diary.   An exception will be made for the parents of the New Junior Infants provided the visit is about a matter that can be dealt with in a minute or two, otherwise an appointment is necessary and must be made through our school secretary Bernadette.   If parents need to call in with lunches, forgotten homework etc.  they also need to do so by calling to school office and Bernadette will deliver the lunch/homework for them.  This is a child protection matters and to avoid the unnecessary disruption of classes all of which are very busy places.  All children who are being picked up early from school must be collected from school office also.  Parents who wish to contact the school outside of school hours may now leave a message on the school answering service.  

We at Four Masters NS expect the highest level of discipline in our school so as to promote a positive learning environment where all children can learn in a safe and happy environment. Therefore at the moment we are revising our Code of Behaviour targeting certain school rules especially 'treating all adults, children and property in a respectful way'. We would encourage all parents/guardians to discuss this with their children and we will be sending out our revised school code of behaviour when it is completed.

School Attendance:
Under the Education Welfare Act 2000 every school must notify the National Education Welfare Board if a child has missed a total of twenty days in the school year, even if those absences are accounted for by letter.  The roll call in Four Masters National School will be recorded electronically in all classrooms at 10.20 a.m. each morning.  As well as recording pupil presences and absences, lateness will also be recorded.  School opens at 9.20 a.m. each morning and the period from 9.20 a.m. – 9.40 a.m. is assembly time.  Any pupil who arrives after 9.40 a.m. will be recorded as present but also late.  If your child has an appointment with doctor, dentist or other health professional and will not be at school for roll call at 10.20 a.m. then you must provide the teacher with a copy of the appointment the day before or otherwise your child will be marked absent.  Our homework diaries have a section at the back where absence notes may be written by parents and the teachers will cut out these and keep them in the school.  All notes to cover sickness must be dated and number of days absent stated.  They may have to be shown to Education Welfare Officer if a child has missed twenty days or more.

Class Allocations for 2018 – 2019:
The class teachers are as follows:
Junior Infants: Mrs  Mc Sharry
Junior/Senior Infant Split: Ms Fitzpatrick
Senior Infants: Ms Corr
1st Class: Mrs Mc Gurrin
1st and 2nd Class: Mrs Gaffney
2nd Class: Ms Fallon
3rd Class: Ms  Rooney
3rd Class: Mrs Rooney
4th Class: Ms Mitchell
5th Class: Ms Daly
6th Class: Mr Gallagher
Special Needs Teaching Team: Ms  Gallagher, Ms Kenny, Ms O’Reilly, Ms Kneafsey, Ms Mc Kenna &  Mrs Mc Grath.
We have kept classes as small as possible at Infant and Junior level, in line with Department of Education and Skills guidelines.

Notes Regarding Infants:
Junior Infants should be escorted to the classroom door in the morning.  Parents should then leave as soon as possible so that the teachers can get on with settling the children.  All infants, both Junior and Senior should be collected from the school at 2.00 p.m.  Infants are escorted to the school gate at 2.00 p.m.  and should be collected by a parent.  Parents are asked to identify themselves to the teacher at the gate as it is very difficult for the teacher to match each child with the correct parent, especially at start of year.  If weather is very bad parents are asked to come to classroom door for their infant children.  If parents send another person to collect the child, and that person may not be known to the teacher, a note should be sent with the child in the morning.  So as to avoid confusion, we request that all infants’ clothing is clearly marked with the child’s name.

Healthy Food Policy and Treats on a Friday:
Our school is committed to the implementation of a healthy food policy. At present we allow the children to bring one small treat on a Friday. However some children are bringing in large bags of sweets/chocolate which is not allowed. A treat is a small bar of chocolate/small bags of sweets/a few biscuits/chocolate yoghurt. We expect parents to adhere to this policy in the coming year.
Items that are not allowed for lunches during the week include: biscuits, chocolate yoghurts, yoghurt with sweet mix (e.g. Crunch corner with chocolate balls), chocolate spread, energy drinks, fruit winders or chocolate flavoured cereal bars.

School Uniform:
Children must wear their full school uniform on all days with the exception of PE day.  Full uniform for boys
consists of a navy trousers, navy jumper, white shirt and navy tie.  Girls can wear the same or can choose to wear a navy pinafore / skirt instead of trousers.  Footwear is black or brown shoes and appropriate runners on PE day. PE uniform consists of a plain navy tracksuit with a white polo shirt (no branded tracksuits allowed).
A number of children are missing their ties.  These can be purchased at Good Buys opposite Supervalu.

Do This In Memory:
“Do This In Memory” information meeting for parents in Kinlough Community Centre Monday 17th September at 8 p.m.   Enrolment mass for Second Class will be celebrated in Saint Aidan’s Church, Kinlough on Sunday 23rd September  at 11a.m.

School Calendar:
A calendar showing school openings and closures for the school year 2018 –2019 is now available.  Dates on which the school is open will be circled.

P.E. Days for Pupils:
The following is a provisional timetable for P.E.  It may have to change to facilitate external coaches.
Junior Infants (Mrs Mc Sharry) - Tuesday
Junior Infants & Senior Infants (Ms Fitzpatrick) - Monday
Senior Infants (Ms Corr) - Friday
First Class (Mrs Mc Gurrin) - Monday
First Class & Second Class (Mrs Gaffney) - Thursday
Second Class (Ms Fallon) - Wednesday
Third Class (Ms Rooney) - Thursday
Third Class (Mrs Rooney) - Tuesday
Fourth Class (Ms Mitchell) - Monday
Fifth Class (Ms Daly) - Friday
Sixth Class (Mr Gallagher) - Wednesday
On PE days children wear a plain navy tracksuit bottoms, white polo shirt and their school uniform jumper is fine. Children must also wear runners for their PE lesson.  Brand name tracksuits / bottoms are not allowed.

Change of Contact Details:
Please inform Bernadette, the school secretary, of any changes to your contact details.  It is very important to have up to date phone contact details in the event of any illness, accident or school information.

Please feel free to browse our website to view photos of school tours, Junior Infants and other news of ongoing events in the school: www.fourmastersns.com

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