Newsletter June 2022
As we come to the end of a very busy school year, may I thank you all, pupils and parents for your ongoing enthusiasm and support and wish you all the best for a wonderful summer break.
When we returned to CNS after the summer we were not sure what to expect! After the previous two years and all the closures, we were hoping to make it through the year. Despite the challenges and the discomfort of mask wearing for both pupils and staff, everyone remained positive. We were all back and although there were children in and out we made it to the end of the year without any unplanned closures. My thanks to the staff who kept the Seesaw up and running so that although some children missed some time through illness or self-isolation, with parental support, they managed to, more or less, keep up with their class. Where pupils missed topics or themes we put in extra support for those children. We recognise that with the challenges created by the pandemic there were children who needed to access bursts of support who would otherwise not have needed to do so.
There was a huge amount of traffic on our school website as the teachers posted weekly updates on what has been going on in their classroom on a weekly basis. We have been so busy with all sorts of activities going on in school. We even managed to get out of CNS and have our Annual Sports Day, Graduation, End of Year Service and School Tours.
A big ‘thank you’ also to the Parents Association for all they have done this year. They brought in Woolly Farm as a pre-Christmas treat and organised the much missed Pancake Day. Our Disco was back and the ice-cream van paid a visit. Parent Coffee mornings and New Parent and New Infant Visits returned. We are so appreciative of all the fun the PA bring to CNS.
We held a very successful D.I.Y. S.O.S. Day and our school and playground are looking better than ever! I think everyone has a new appreciation of the work that William has to do to keep CNS in such good order!
As we look forward to the next school year we are planning to create a ‘Hub’. This will be a re-branding and re-arranging of our computer room to create a more multi-purpose space. This will be a library/tech room/chill out space. We are looking forward to this all coming together next term to see this evolve…
Class Teachers for 2021-22 are as follows:
|Junior Infants||Ms Hannah McGuckin|
|Senior Infants||To be confirmed.|
|1st Class||Ms Holly Gray|
|2nd Class||Ms Ingrid Duncan|
|3rd Class||Ms Suzanne O’Brien|
|4th Class||To be confirmed.|
|5th Class||Ms Kelly Caldbeck|
|6th Class||Mrs Aoife McMurdock|
We have been so fortunate to have had such a wonderful and committed staff with us in CNS this year. We thank them all particularly those who were with us in a temporary capacity – Ms Clarke, Ms Kilbride and Mr Whitehead. You have all been absolutely wonderful and have fitted so well into CNS. I would also like to thank the teachers who helped us out this year when substitute teachers were so difficult to find –Ms Hastings and Ms Denner. At this time, there are a few ‘gaps’ in positions for next year. We will be holding interviews over the next couple of weeks. As soon as I can provide clarity around teachers for next term I will do so via email.
Mrs McMurdock will continue to co-ordinate support next year and Ms Furney, Ms Leopold and Ms Deane will be the support team. They will be on hand to support any pupils who need a little extra help.
Ida, Maria, Catherine and Joanne will be with us helping and supporting staff and pupils around the school. Elaine will be back in her office keeping everyone organised. William will be busy keeping the school building and grounds in shape. My thanks, as ever, to both Elaine and William who have been working hard all year and who will be busy over the summer as we prepare to re-open on 30th August.
We are delighted that our new rector Rev Colin McConaghie was appointed in time to host our usual ‘End of Year Service’. We have been keeping him very busy around the school since he joined the parish.
The link to the stream is below. This stream will not appear on the Parish’s YouTube channel or in YouTube searches so only those with the link will have access to the live stream during or afterwards to watch back.
We wish all of our students and their families all the best for a wonderful summer break.
We wish our current 6th Class well as they move on to secondary school and we look forward to welcoming our pupils, old and new, to CNS on 30th August.
Wishing everyone a happy, healthy and relaxing holiday!
Have a wonderful summer.
Stay safe and well,
Newsletter May 2022
We are all delighted to be able to host many of our usual Summer term activities. So happy to be back to normal!
Our school tours are back. Dates are below. Class Teachers have sent out details, times and consent forms to their classes. Please ensure you have signed and returned these asap.
Junior & Senior Infants/1st Newbridge Farm 3rd June
2nd /3rd Red Hills 9th June
4th /5th Clara Lara 31st May
6th Surfdock on 27th May
& Tayto Park 13th June
6th Class are also going to Tayto Park on 13th June with funding from their very successful Junior Entrepreneur Project. They will attend an awards ceremony via Zoom on the 14th June.
1st Class are going to attend the ‘Agri-Aware’ farm at Bloom on 2nd June.
Cricket has resumed for 5th and 6th class with a combination of coaching in school and in Castleknock College grounds. We are delighted to have Brian, from Cricket Leinster, back with us.
The Annual Sports Day will take place on Tuesday 7th June in Castleknock College Grounds commencing at 10am. Details have been circulated separately. We look forward to a fun-filled day and hope for dry weather!
Jack Chambers Visit
Jack Chambers, Minister for Sport will visit the school on Mon 23rd May and will speak to 6th Class.
School reports will be posted home in June. All pupils should bring a large A4 size stamped self-addressed envelope (for each individual child) to their teacher on/before Friday 10th June.
Book rental and Voluntary Contributions
There are still outstanding Book Rental and Voluntary Contributions. We are still accepting payment for this academic year so if you need to check if you have paid, please contact the office. We attach the details for each payment for your information.
School Food Fair/Fun Day
Our school Food Fair and Fun Day will take place on Thursday 16th June. This is a fun day for all pupils and family and friends are also cordially invited. The PA will be on hand with tea and coffee and there will be food from different countries and games/activities in the yard from 10am. Further details closer to the date.
Footwear in the Yard
Please can all students wear suitable shoes to school. Please be aware of the dangers of wearing loose fitting or open toe sandals. We hope to be out as much as possible if weather is fine.
We look forward to welcoming the Parents of our incoming infant class (Sep 2022) on Thursday 9th June. We hope to have our new infants in to visit CNS and see their classroom and meet their Teacher and new friends on Friday 10th June.
Our annual School Disco for pupils from 4th-6th class will be hosted by the PA in CNS on Friday 17th June.
6th Class Graduation
Graduation will take place on Thursday 21st June. Details will be sent out to 6th Class parents closer to the date.
We hope to have a good response to the Board of Management’s request for DIY SOS. There are plenty of jobs which need to be done and all the help, skilled and unskilled is very welcome. Further details to follow.
Class Group Photos for all classes, have been taken over the past 2 weeks and will shortly be available to order. A separate form will be sent home in due course.
End of Year Service
We hope to hold our End of Year Service and Presentation of Awards on Thurs 23rd June 12pm. This will be confirmed when the new Rector has been consulted. We welcome Rev Colin McConaghie to the Parish and look forward to welcoming him to CNS.
We present trophies and cups at our end of year service. If you have these at home please can you arrange to have them engraved with your child’s name and returned to the office as soon as possible.
Dates for your Diary
7th June 10am – Sports day Castleknock College
9th June – New Parent’s Evening
10th June – New Junior Infants Visit to CNS
16th June 10am –Food Fair and Fun Day
17th June– School Disco 4th-6th
18th June – DIY SOS Day
21st June- 6th Class graduation
23rd June- End of Year Service
24th June – School closed for Summer Holidays
It is almost the end of our Spring Term and we are looking forward to our Easter Holidays! School closes at 11.30am on Friday, 8th April and re-opens on Monday 25th April.
Parent’s Association Many thanks to our wonderful PA who hosted a Coffee Morning on Monday for the Junior and Senior Infant parents. It was lovely to see people back together, in person, in the Parish Centre. The PA have also organised a wonderful Easter raffle and we look forward to handing over the prizes at assembly on Friday morning.
Welcome. We wish to extend a warm welcome to or new pupils, Nika, Anastasia, Andrey, Sofia, Ostap, Marta and Taras who have joined us from Ukraine. We are delighted to have them with us in CNS and happy to say that all our pupils are going out of their way to welcome and support them.
Tidy Towns. Our local Tidy Towns Committee gave us some native Irish Trees to plant. We planted a few in school and our lucky Senior Infants and 3rd Class pupils brought trees home to plant in their gardens. William and Senior Infants have also been busy planting wild flower bed in the school.
Student Teachers. We have been very fortunate to have had a number of student teachers with us on placement over the past few weeks. (Including Mr Hayes a past pupil!) It has been lovely to have them with us sharing all their new and exciting ideas!
Inspection. Our own teachers and pupils were in the spotlight last week when our own school inspector from the Department of Education came to carry out an inspection. I am happy to say that she was very impressed with our ‘fabulous children’ and their ‘engaging, well organised and motivating teachers’. Well done everyone!
Sport. Swimming has resumes after Easter thanks to the PA. We have had some rugby coaching, for all classes this term. Ms Gray has organised a fun football tournament for pupils in 4th – 6th class over the past week to the delight of all.We hope to have some cricket coaching after the break. Mr Whitehead will be doing some soccer/football coaching after school next term too. Our Annual Sports Day has been booked for Tuesday, 7th June in Castleknock College grounds.
Book Launch. Congratulations to the pupils who were in Ms Furney’s 4th/5th Class last year. They took part in a project involving 10 primary schools across the diocese which explored the link between our churches and our schools. The beautiful book which is a culmination of this work was launched in Christ Church Cathedral last Friday evening. The book is wonderful and a credit to all those involved.
Projects. A very big ‘Well done!’ to all our pupils who produced, yet again, outstanding work in their projects. The skills involved in doing a project are many and we are very proud of you all!
‘Stay Safe’ Teachers will be completing this programme with all classes from Senior Infants to 6th after Easter. Please make sure you sign and return the accompanying worksheets as they are sent home. It is particularly important that this programme is fully complete with our children after the disruption experienced over the last two years.
Covid Thank you to ALL parents for your cooperation and on-going vigilance. Covid is still circulating widely and we must continue to work together to keep it out of school if at all possible.
Suitable clothing. With the anticipated improvement in weather next term, pupils will be reverting to the wearing of shorts and sandals. May I remind parents that shoes with open toes are not suitable in the school playground. I would also ask that pupils are appropriately dressed and do not come to school in very short shorts or belly tops. (I have also noticed that some pupils are wearing make-up and fake nails. Make-up is not permitted and fake nails are a Health and Safety issue.)
Additional Support. We are hoping to have some additional support teaching in place after Easter. We will, of course, need to give some additional English Language Support to our new pupils and I would like to assure parents that this will not have an impact on the pupils who are already in need of support teaching.
I would like to offer additional support to pupils who do not usually attend learning support classes but who may have missed a topic/topics due to self-isolation or Covid. If you feel your child has such a ‘gap’, could you please let me or the class teacher know? We will try to get some targeted support for them as soon as possible.
Wishing everyone a Happy Easter and a lovely break! My thanks as ever, to all the staff for their patience, hard work and support to all!
We are all busy in CNS and looking forward to Midterm break and some brighter weather.
February is Friendship month and 3rd Class hosted our assembly on Friendship last Friday (4th February). We learned about kindness and how to be a good friend. We also learned about Special Olympics Ireland and how they work to encourage participation from all whatever their level of ability. We are collecting €2 from pupils this week to send to support this month’s cause.
February is also project month. 1st and 2nd class will be doing project work in school with their teachers. From 3rd-6th Class pupils will produce their own individual projects. We look forward to seeing their great work in March.
Voluntary Contributions and Book Rental Fees
There are still a small number of parents who have not paid their Book Rental and Stationary fee (€70 Juniors/Seniors and €60 1st-6th). If you omitted this, please pay as soon as possible.
Many thanks to all who have paid their Voluntary Contributions. Despite additional funding from the DES for enhanced cleaning, costs continue to increase. If you are unsure if you have paid please contact the office.
We are delighted to have a number of TY students with us over the next few weeks. These are past pupils who have come back to give a hand and we are always happy to see them and hear how they are getting on. We also have a number of Student Teachers joining us on placement. They will be working in classes under the supervision of their class teachers. We are happy to support them in their training and know that our pupils will enjoy their time with us.
We are so pleased to announce that we will be providing some Spanish lessons for all pupils in 3rd-6th Class following Midterm break. Details to follow shortly.
Rugby coaching is taking place for all classes Junior Infants – 6th Class for the next few weeks. Thanks to Ariel our coach and the IRFU for this.
6th Class are making customised water bottles and keyrings. Watch out for details and order forms which will be sent home shortly.
Dates for your Diary.
School closed for Midterm Break – School closes for midterm break on Friday 18th Feb at normal closing time– re-opening Monday 28th February.
St Patrick’s Weekend – With the additional ‘bonus’ bank holiday this year, school will be
closed from Wed 16th – Fri 18th March inclusive.
Easter Holidays – Mon 11th April – Fri 22nd Apr inclusive.
Newsletter December 2021
6th Class are undergoing cycle training at present. Please remind your children about the need to take great care when cycling on the road or the narrow pavement outside the school. Watch out for elderly pedestrians or buggies etc. Many thanks to The Cycling Safety School who are teaching Cycle Safety Skills to 6th Class this term.
This year we filled 98 shoe boxes for distribution to needy children in Africa or Eastern Europe. Many thanks to all who contributed shoe boxes for this very worthy cause. Thanks to Joyce Grainger who co-ordinated the collection of the boxes.
Capuchin Friary– Christmas Care Packages & Art Raffle for the Homeless
Last year we collected over 70 Christmas care packages for the homeless and we hope to exceed this target in December. Elaine Watters (in the office) is donating one of her original framed paintings and Phoenix Park framed photographs for a raffle to raise funds for Brother Kevin’s charity. We will forward details shortly on the above.
Annual School Carol Service
We are unable to hold our usual carol service and Christmas plays this year. However we will be presenting a festive treat on video to show everyone what we are up to in school. Details to follow.
We are looking forward to an orchestra visit tomorrow (Thursday 2nd Dec). All pupils will have the opportunity to enjoy some festive music and entertainment in the playground.
5th and 6th Class completed their 8 weeks programme for Kid’s marathon and medals were awarded last week.
Christmas Jumper Day
We would like to invite pupils to wear Christmas Jumpers to school on Friday 10th December. This was great fun last year and helped us all get into the Christmas spirit! We are asking everyone to contribute €2 towards Temple St, Crumlin, Connolly & Tallaght Children’s Hospitals.
The latest guidance is for pupils from 3rd-6th classes to wear masks in school. Thanks to all Parents who have already begun this! We will be encouraging everyone to participate, as much as possible in our struggle to ‘make it to Christmas’.
Thanks to the Parents who have paid their Voluntary Contribution (€125 per child/€250 per family). If you would like to check if you have paid please contact Elaine in the office 01-8202611.
Many thanks to the BOM for the purchase of new interactive screens which have been installed in Junior Classes,
Parent Teacher Meetings
We would like to thank parents for attending the recent PT meetings via Zoom. Whilst the experience was not quite the same as in person, they mostly ran on time and in many cases both parents were able to attend.
We have been selected to host a Student Teacher on placement in Junior Infants. We are delighted to welcome Niamh Marriott to CNS and we know our pupils enjoy her time with us. Any queries, please speak to Ms McGuckin as she will remain with pupils and have overall responsibility during this time.
May I remind all parents that car parking is not permitted in the car park in front of
the school at any time. This is reserved for staff only. There is ample car
parking available to the rear at St. Brigid’s N.S. Please be respectful of our neighbours when on St Brigid’s Property.
Please remind all pupils to bring coats to school during this spell of very cold weather. It is very cold indoors with windows and doors open so extra layers are required. I would ask that ‘shorts’ are put aside until warmer weather returns! Please make sure coats and jackets are clearly labelled.
Many thanks to our hard-working Parents Association. They are in CNS today putting up two new Christmas trees to bring some festive cheer and they have some fun planned for the weeks ahead.
Santa & School Closure
We look forward to our annual visit from Santa on Wednesday 22nd December. School will close on that day at 11.30am and re-open on Thursday 6th January. May I thank all the staff for all their hard work and dedication to CNS.
I would like to wish you all a Happy and Peaceful Christmas.
OCTOBER 2021 NEWSLETTER
We are closing tomorrow for our midterm break and the school will close at the usual times of 1pm and 2pm. We are asking parents to collect and bring home the book boxes over the break. Thankfully the recent outbreak of Covid-19 appears to be an isolated case, however cases in the community are very high and we would prefer to be prepared! All of the boxes could do with a ‘tidy up’ as there may be all sorts of ’treats’ lurking in there.
As we look forward to our mid-term break, we look back over what has been a very busy month!
Tree Day Well done to 3rd Class who had a visit on the 7thth Oct from Éanna Ní Lamhna and representatives from The Tree Council to celebrate National Tree Day. The event was filmed and featured in RTE News 2Day TV programme where 3rd class proved to be very knowledgeable.
Goal Jersey Day took place on Friday 8th October. Thank you for your contribution of €2 for our Goal Collection. We raised €341.60 for Goal. Thank you for your support.
The commemorative photograph funded by the PA is hanging in pride of place in our front hall.
Kids Marathon 5th and 6th Class are training for Marathon. They are covering the distance of a marathon by running laps of the yard over a period of weeks.
Canon Paul Retirement
Best wishes to Canon Paul Houston who retired. We dedicated a special assembly to him and presented him with some gifts from the children and BOM. We look forward to hearing about his travels.
Halloween The Parents Association will be providing treats and for our Halloween Fancy Dress Competition on Friday 22nd Oct. All pupils are asked to dress up. No scary costumes please!
Reminder: We are supporting ‘Trick or Treat for Temple St’ tomorrow so please bring in €2 per child to support this worthy cause.
Our Halloween raffle takes place during assembly tomorrow. Thanks to the PA for these wonderful presentation baskets. The cost to enter is 1 strip of tickets for €1 or 6 strips of tickets for €5. You can still buy tickets tomorrow!
‘Hope’ Shoeboxes We will fill shoeboxes for distribution to children in need across the world. This is a very worthwhile initiative. Details will be sent home before mid-term break. The date to return these is Friday 5th November.
Cycle Safety An 8 week cycle safety course will commence for 6th Class pupils after Midterm.
Illness in School
As we are all working very hard to keep illness out of the school, please do not send your child to school if they have any of the following symptoms
*A temperature of 38 degrees or higher
*A sore throat
*A tummy bug (vomiting or diarrhoea) in the past 48 hours
If your child becomes unwell during school hours we will ask you to take them home promptly.
We thank you for your co-operation in this matter.
Travel over Midterm
We are aware a large number of people will be travelling over midterm. Please be mindful that you may be exposed to Covid-19 and be non-symptomatic and we encourage you to follow www.dfa.ie guidelines on your return.
Head Lice This is a recurring problem at present. Please could all parents check their children’s hair regularly and treat accordingly. These pests require everyone to be vigilant.
Book Rental and Stationary: Thank you to everyone who has paid their Book Rental and Stationary money already. May I remind any parents who have not paid their Fees (Juniors/Seniors €70 and 1st-6th €60) to do so as soon as possible. If you are unsure if you have yet paid please email Elaine in the office to confirm payment.
GDPR forms: If you have not already returned your GDPR and General Permission form to the office please do so over midterm break as it is essential that we have this for every pupil.
Behaviour & Supervision Please remind all pupils that climbing on fences/gates & cycle racks is strictly forbidden. Please be respectful of St Brigid’s school and do not enter their yard or ours before 2pm at pick-up time. Good manners and behaviour are expected from all pupils at all times!
Coats May I remind all pupils to wear/bring coats to school as the weather is turning colder and please make sure they are clearly named. Please do not send your child to school wearing shorts as the classrooms are well ventilated with doors and windows open to circulate fresh air.
Important Dates for your diary
Mid Term Break! School will be closed from Friday 22nd October at normal closure times and will re-open on Monday 1st November.
Fri 12th Nov –Early Closure
We are required by the Dept of Education to close early for staff training on the New Language Curriculum. We will be closing at 12pm for all pupils on Fri 12th Nov.
Parent/Teacher Meetings for Senior Infants to Sixth Class will take place on Zoom in November. Details to follow.
Welcome or welcome back to Castleknock N.S. An especially warm welcome to all new staff and pupils. I hope your association with the school will be a happy one. In addition to 25 new Junior Infants, several other children have joined classes this year.
From September 2021, the school staff and classes are as follows:
Principal: Sandra Moloney
Junior Infants: Hannah McGuckin
Senior Infants : Karen Clarke
1st Class : Holly Gray
2nd Class: Aaron Whitehead
3rd Class: Ingrid Duncan
4th Class: Sharon Leopold
5th Class: Katharine Deane
6th Class: Aoife McMurdock
Special Education Teachers:
Emma Furney, Kelly Caldbeck, Sylvia Kilbride
Special Needs Assistants: Ida McIntosh, Maria Matthews, Catherine Traynor, Joanne Jameson.
School Administrator: Elaine Watters
Caretaker: .William Denner
School opens for reception of pupils at 8.20 a.m. No Responsibility is accepted for pupils arriving at the school before this time. Classes commence at 8.40 a.m. for all pupils. Classes end at 1.00 p.m. for Infants. Classes end at 2.00 p.m. for 1st to 6th classes.
We would appreciate it if adults could continue to wear face coverings on school grounds and remind everyone that there is a one-way system in operation around the building to help us maintain distancing and avoid crowds.
Please collect pupils promptly at the end of the school day. Should you be unavoidably delayed, please phone the school office before 2pm.
St. Brigid’s N.S. have very kindly given us permission to use their car park once more. In the interests of safety gates are to be kept locked. If using this access please remember that gates ore unlocked at
8.20 -8.40 a.m. and 2.00 – 2.10 p.m.
Please pass through their yard quickly and quietly as they may have classes out in their yard.
Remember that riding of scooters or bicycles is not permitted in our playground or St Brigid’s playground. We would ask parents and pupils to dismount at the gate on Health & Safety grounds. Please do not block the pedestrian gate of St Brigid’s school or permit children to play on railings or around St Brigid’s cycle racks.
Under the Education Act 2000 we have to inform the Dept of Education if your child is absent for 20 days or over in the school year. Please be on time for roll call in the morning and fill out a form if your child is absent (Forms are available on our website or will be issued by the class teacher on their return to school). If your child arrives late (after 8.40am) please fill in the late book in the office.
We attach an important GDPR and Permission form for your attention. Please return by Fri 17th in hard copy format. If your child is unwell at school we will contact you at home or work, so that you may bring your child home or to a doctor. It is vitally important therefore that we have up-to-date contact telephone numbers for parents, relatives or others who may look after your child in your absence. If your child is unwell please do not send him/her to school spreading infection to others. We have to be particularly vigilant at this time due to the risk of Covid-19.
If your child suffers from a condition which warrants the dispensing of medicine during school hours – please get and complete an Indemnity Form and advise teacher how to cope with any signs of the illness. Return Form and Medicine to Class Teacher. Children may not have medicines in school bags. Please let us know if your child is allergic to any material or substance. Epipens and Inhalers are kept securely in school. Please ensure full details are provided if your child requires either of these,
CNS is a NUT FREE ZONE. A number of pupils suffer from nut allergies. As they can be life threatening, please make sure your child’s lunch is nut-free.
Healthy Lunch Policy
We have a healthy lunch policy and we would appreciate it if could be adhered to by one and all. We hope to try the www.lunchbag.ie this year. Details will be circulated shortly.
Headlice make an unwelcome visit to school occasionally. Please notify the school as we can alert parents and hair can be checked and treated if necessary. Those with long hair should be encouraged to tie it up when possible. It is recommended that all children are checked regularly and treated as required.
Code of Behaviour
Remember that good manners and good standards of behaviour are expected from pupils at all times in school.
Mobile phones are banned in school and on the school bus. This is a directive from the Dept of Education, Board of Management and Bus Eireann. Electronic devices including Ipads, Ipods, Nintendos, Guns and Knives are NOT PERMITTED in school.
Should a child need to make contact with a parent during the school day, a call can be made from the school office. We thank you for your support in this matter.
Lost property is kept in the main hall. Please let us know if your child has misplaced any items.
Reminder re Birthday Celebrations
Please feel free to send in a nut free and individually wrapped birthday treat (tot home baked) for each number of the class on your child’s Birthday if you wish.
Book Rental & Stationary Money
A separate note has been circulated about Book Rental & Stationary money. Thank you to all who have already paid their fee and we would be grateful if any outstanding fees are paid by Friday 17th Sep.
School Term 2021-22
School re-opens Thursday 26th August
October Mid Term Break: Monday 25th Oct – Friday 29th Oct (inclusive)
Christmas Break: School closes Wednesday 22nd Dec and school re-opens Thursday 6th January
February Mid Term break: Mon 21st Feb – Fri 25th Feb (inclusive)
St Patricks day Thur 17th March and Fri 18th Mar school closed
Easter Break Mon 11th Apr-Fri 22nd April (inclusive)
May Bank Holiday closed Monday 2nd May
June Bank Holiday closed Monday 6th June
School Closes for Summer holidays Friday 24th June
Summer Newsletter 2021
As we come to the end of another unusual school year, may I thank you all, pupils and parents for your ongoing enthusiasm and support and wish you all the best for a wonderful summer break. Our extended break after Christmas, due to a surge in Covid 19, meant a return to distance learning and we were all back on ‘Seesaw’. My thanks to the BOM who had ensured that all staff were furnished with new laptops, and so, this time, we were more prepared.
All the staff had upskilled and the online provision, uploaded on Seesaw, was of a very high quality. Support teachers looked after their pupils via Zoom and SNA’s also made contact with their pupils by phone. We uploaded our weekly assembly in an effort to keep everyone connected and Class teachers began class zooms doing everything from ‘Show and Tell’, Quizzes and ‘Tráth na gCeist’. 6th Class even took part in the Junior Achievement Programme – ‘The Power of Design’ via Zoom. Although we coped fairly well, we were all more than delighted to return, with our boxes following the Easter break!
Our school website was upgraded this year and we put it to great use. We were very conscious that parents had to remain outside the building and so we uploaded pictures under each class every week. Although the usual trips and outings were not possible and although visitors were not permitted, we made the most of every opportunity and teachers and pupils were as creative as possible! There certainly seems to have been lots of activity in and around the school! Getting outside the gate to visit the grass area at the rear of St Brigid’s carpark and a walk up the village to see the new sculpture were exciting events! When we went out in our masks to get the photograph taken by the drone, we realised the Junior Infants had never used their internal classroom door!
A big ‘thank you’ also to the Parents Association for all they have done throughout the year. They have been busy and we are all really looking forward to using our new iPads after the summer. They booked an ice-cream van as a treat for the children and they are helping to arrange a special ‘send – off’ for our 6th Class Graduates. We are also looking forward to our 300th Anniversary drone photograph. We are also looking forward to seeing the wonderful ‘virtual tour’ of CNS.
Class Teachers for 2021-22 are as follows:
Junior Infants Ms Hannah McGuckin
Senior Infants To be confirmed.
1st Class Ms Holly Gray
2nd Class To be confirmed
3rd Class Ms Ingrid Duncan
4th Class Ms Sharon Leopold
5th Class Ms Katharine Deane
6th Class Mrs Aoife McMurdock
Staff changes: Our best wishes go to Mr O’Connell who is leaving us for a year.
Ms Culbert is leaving us to work closer to her home and family. Ms McNutt is leaving us to pursue a career in business.
We are so sorry to see them go, they have been wonderful to work with and they will all be missed. We wish them well and look forward to hearing how they are all getting on. We hope that Mr O’Connell will return to us in September 2022.
We have been so fortunate to have had such a wonderful and committed staff with us in CNS this year. We thank them all particularly those who were with us in a temporary capacity – Ms Furney and Ms Caldbeck. You have both been absolutely wonderful and have fitted so well into CNS. I would also like to thank the teachers who helped us out this year when substitute teachers were so difficult to find – Ms Scannell, Ms Kidd, Ms Payne and Ms Hastings. At this time, there are a few ‘gaps’ in positions for next year. We will be holding interviews over the next couple of weeks. As soon as I can provide clarity around teachers for next term I will do so via email.
Mrs McMurdock will continue to co-ordinate support next year and I we will continue to support all those who are receiving support this year.
Ida, Maria, Catherine and Joanne will be with us helping and supporting staff and pupils around the school. Elaine will be back in her office keeping everyone organised. William will be busy keeping the school building and grounds in shape. My thanks, as ever, to both Elaine and William who have been working hard all year and who will be busy over the summer as we prepare to re-open on Thursday the 26th August.
We will be unable to host our usual ‘End of Year Service’ this year. However we will upload a recorded Assembly/Service to Seesaw and send home the link. We would like to mark 6th Class’s time with us in CNS and wish all of our students and their families all the best for a wonderful summer break.
We were joined by the RTE News2day crew in August 2013 when the current 6th Class started school – they will return on 25th June to capture them as they leave. No doubt it will air that afternoon for those who would like to see 6th Class as they were then and as they are now – years have flown and how they have grown! We will be hosting a short Graduation Evening, socially distanced and by invitation only on Wednesday, 23rd June. The PA are helping us by providing some treats. We wish them well as they leave us to start a new chapter in their young lives and hope that they will stay in touch and share their successes with us. We are proud of the young people we have had with us and I would like to commend them for the way they have dealt with the disappointments that this year has meant for them. Many of the outings and events which are eagerly anticipated as part of Rang a sé had to be cancelled. Luckily we managed a fantastic tour – just!
As I write this, we are unsure what position we will be in restriction wise at the end of August. We expect that the rules about face-coverings and social distancing will be in place. We plan to have all 5th and 6th Classes back together and all pupils will return to school, with their book boxes and they will be seated in ‘pods’ in their classrooms. We expect that we will need to continue to keep classes separate in the playground and that they will continue to enter and leave their classrooms through separate entrances as this year. We will be in touch with all families in August to confirm these details and any other changes should they occur. We will also be circulating the ‘Return to School Health Declaration Form’ at the same time.
We wish our current 6th Class well as they move on to secondary school and we look forward to welcoming our pupils, old and new, to CNS on Thursday 26th August.
Wishing everyone a happy, healthy and relaxing holiday!
Have a wonderful summer.
Stay safe and well,
Spring Newsletter 2021
We are now in our Summer Term and delighted to say that all of our pupils are back in CNS.
We continue to wash hands and sanitise at every possible opportunity and to date we remain Covid free.
Please be aware that although the weather is improving, with open doors and windows, classrooms are chilly. We would ask you to dress children appropriately for example a warm hoodie/fleece is still needed most days.
May I remind parents that they need to have trophies and cups engraved and return them to the school office. If you or someone you know has a school trophy or cup at home, could you ensure it is returned to school as soon as possible.
As many of you are aware Mrs McMurdock has not returned to school and she continues to work remotely. We have been fortunate to have Ms Scannell filling in for us on Mondays and Fridays. Ms Scannell is an experienced teacher and she has been helping out with benchmarking pupils and delivering lessons under Mrs McMurdock’s guidance. We plan to have another fully qualified substitute, beginning in May to work with Mrs McMurdock’s groups. She will work under the direction of Mrs McMurdock and follow her plans closely. It will also allow some flexibility to provide cover for meetings and to assist with assessment as needed. I would like to thank Mrs McMurdock for all her work via Zoom – not easy! However it has worked well for her groups as she knows them well and they look forward to seeing her ‘on screen’! Thanks also to our team of SNA’s who have helped facilitate this. All IEPs and Support plans will be reviewed in May. Mrs.McMurdock will be in touch with those parents to organise zoom meetings.
Thank you to our new PA who have organised an ‘Exercycle’ challenge for next week. Pupils have been given sponsor cards and allocated team colours. We would ask for your support with this venture and look forward to cheering or teams on in the yard during active week.
Our school website has been completely overhauled and updated. Many thanks to Mrs McMurdock and her husband for doing this for us. Our old website was struggling to cope with the volume of posts we were uploading. We are updating the website weekly so that parents can check it to see what is happening in each class during the week.
Pupils from 1st -6th Classes are taking part in this 6 week programme via Zoom. They are learning about design, their community or starting up a business and they are finding it fascinating.
This programme takes place this term. Please make sure to sign and return the worksheets as they come home. This is a very important personal safety programme and we were unable to complete it last year due to school closure.
Sadly we do not know when cricket will return to school. Phoenix Cricket Club have provided details of their upcoming summer camps for all ages in July (see attached flyer for more details).
Many thanks to all those who have paid their voluntary contribution. It is not too late if you have forgotten to do so!
To date we remain ‘covid free’. May I thank parents who have kept their children at home when they have complained of feeling unwell, and urge all parents to do the same. Erring on the side of caution has helped limit the spread of all the usual bugs and colds too.
We have had swift nesting boxes installed as part of a joint project funded by Fingal County Council and Castleknock Tidy Towns. We are hopeful that some swifts may take up residence in our yard – we will be watching as swifts return to our shores!
We are hoping that Elaine will be able to take class photographs for Junior Infants, Senior Infants and 6th Classes, in a ‘Covid safe’ manner over the next few weeks. Details to follow.
The carpark at the front of the school is strictly for STAFF ONLY. We have had a number of incidences lately where cars are pulling in at the front and reversing out into the road putting children and parents using the footpath at risk. This cannot continue.
Dates for your Diary.
May Bank Holiday – Mon 3rd and Tue 4th May school closed.
Newsletter December 2020
Parent teacher meetings will not take place this term. However, we are aware that parents are anxious to know how pupils are getting on this year. The staff have written ‘Autumn Reports’ for all our pupils. These include details you would traditionally have received at our Parent Teacher meetings in November. Each child will bring home their school report on Monday 30th November.
Our thanks to Joyce Grainger who visited the school via Zoom to explain how to take part in Team Hope’s Christmas Shoebox appeal. If anyone would like to participate the details are available online and a virtual box can be sent this year (www.teamhope.ie)
Christmas 2019 Shoe Box Appeal
Many thanks to parents who have paid their Voluntary Contributions of €125 per pupil (capped at €250 per family). It will be put to good use as the cleaning and heating bills are considerable with Covid-19 regulations. If you would like to check if you have paid please contact Elaine in the office by phone or email.
Goal Jersey Day
Thanks to everyone who supported our Goal Jersey Day recently. We raised €311 euro towards this worthy cause.
Virtual Panto at The Helix – ‘Sword in the Stone’
The PA have kindly agreed to sponsor a virtual trip to The Helix Panto ‘The Sword in the Stone’ which will take place on Friday 18th December during school hours.
Christmas Jumper Day
This will take place on Friday 11th December this year in aid of Crumlin Children’s Hospital. We will be joining in the fun here in CNS and contributing €2 each to this worthy cause as we wear our festive woollies to school on that date. Look out for pictures on our website!
Many thanks to the PA who have funded a number of Zoom workshops for our pupils. We hope to host zoom workshops on the subject of ‘Online Safety’ for pupils from 3rd-6th Class before Christmas. Our Christmas cards are on their way and will be sent home to everyone who ordered shortly. We would ask that children do not exchange Christmas cards in class this year due to Covid.
The PA have also organised lovely CNS Hoodies for 6th Class – they all look so smart!
Virtual Santa Claus Visit
The PA are in contact with Santa Claus and plans are underway for his ‘socially distanced’ visit! This year instead of games and toys we will be adopting animals from Dublin Zoo for each class. Thankfully they will only be in CNS via Webcam.
As I write this newsletter I am reminded of all the ‘usual activities’ at this time of year. Sadly so many will not be possible. We will, however, be doing all we can to make this a special Christmas too! No Christmas plays or Carol Service this year, however we will be putting regular updates on the website to mark the occasion.
We have a lovely new sign at our gate and we are hoping to mark our 300th Anniversary by putting in an ‘Outdoor Classroom’. I have approached the Phoenix Park and they have promised to give us tree stumps to use as seats. Fingal have promised to give us some bark to put down underfoot. Would anyone be able to help out with collecting tree stumps our bark? Would anyone have any contacts who might give help/ advice around removing turf and soil in order to create our new outdoor space? It seems that the school is going back in time with a plan to teach the children outdoors when possible!
Irish Food from A-Z
Congratulations to Dr Vanessa Woods (Aunt of Hugo, Max & George) who launched her book ‘Irish Foods from A-Z’ in CNS last week and it was featured on RTE News2Day. This is linked to the Primary Science Curriculum and will be distributed to all primary schools in Ireland shortly.
Short Story Competition
If anyone has an entry for the short story competition, please email it to email@example.com on or before 11th December.
Thanks to CNS Staff & Parents
My thanks to all the staff and parents for their help & support in keeping the school ‘Covid free!’ We will be sending home ‘Covid-19 Return to School Health Declaration’ forms with all pupils at the break.
Dates for your Diary
Christmas holidays begin on Tuesday 22nd December at 11.30am and we re-open on Wednesday 6th January.
May we all stay safe and well and enjoy a wonderful Christmas!
OCTOBER 2020 NEWSLETTER
As we look forward to our mid –term break, we look back over what has been a busy month! We are all experts in cleaning and sanitising. Happily we are all safe and well.
Tree Day Well done to 3rd Class who had a visit from the Tree Council of Ireland on Thursday 1st Oct with Éanna Ní Lamhna and representatives from RTE News2day. Minister for land use and Biodiversity Pippa Hackett also attended and planted a tree to mark 300 years of CNS. The event was filmed and featured in RTE News at 6.01 News and News 2Day TV programme where 3rd class proved to be very knowledgeable.
Money Matters: Thank you to everyone who has paid their Book Rental and Stationary money already. May I remind any parents who have not paid their Fees (Junior/Senior infants €70 and 1st-6th €60) to do so as soon as possible. Elaine will be issuing receipts shortly to all who have paid. If you are unsure if you have yet paid please contact Elaine in the office to confirm (Tel 01-8202611). It is imperative that fees are paid this year as costs this year are spiralling!
Goal Jersey Day will take place on Wednesday 14th October. Please contribute €2 for our Goal Collection. There will be a box for coins at the door of each classroom (beside the sanitisers). We would like to support this Charity as they have been badly affected by Covid restrictions.
Community Garda Our Community Garda will visit the school on Monday 12th Oct. He will speak to 4th and 4th/5th about Halloween and safety.
Supervision Please remind all pupils that climbing on fences/gates & cycle racks is strictly forbidden. Please be respectful of St Brigid’s school and do not enter their yard or ours before1pm and 2pm at pick-up time.
Coats May I remind all pupils to wear/bring coats to school as the weather is quite inclement and please make sure they are clearly named. All pupils will be out in the yard at break if at all possible. We recommend that no shorts are worn by pupils after midterm. Many thanks to Parents for wearing Facemasks and Coverings on the grounds of CNS– it is appreciated!
In these uncertain times we are not sure how Halloween will be safely celebrated this year. We cannot host our usual competition and assembly. However we are aware that the children really enjoy the ‘dressing up’. We will have fancy dress on Friday 23rd Oct as usual. However, this year we will not be allowing any masks or accessories – a costume and face paint is fine. The P.A. will be providing some treats and our thanks, as ever, to them for their support.
Parent /Teacher meetings cannot take place in the usual way this year. We will be sending out written reports on children’s progress in November.
This year we will be unable to go out as we usually do so the P.A. are funding some workshops for Junior and Senior Infants via Zoom with artists on 21st and 22nd October. We are really looking forward to this.
A big thank you to parent Dr Grace O’Keeffe who insisted 4th and 4th/5th Classes to tell them about the history of schools in Ireland, particularly the history of CNS. It was fascinating! Well done to our pupils who wrote a letter a letter of invitation and thanks.
6th Class will have a virtual workshop on Climate Change on Tuesday 20th October. We are looking forward to this.
Virtual Tour of Dublin Zoo
1st and 2nd Class will take part in a Virtual tour of Dublin Zoo in class on Wed 11th November.
Mid Term Break! School will be closed from Friday 23rd October at normal closure times and will re-open on Monday 2nd November. Buses will run as normal on that day.
Stay safe and well!!!
Newsletter Nov/Dec 2019
We have been selected to host Student Teachers on placement in Junior Infants and 1st Class. We are delighted to welcome them to CNS and we know our pupils will enjoy their time with us. Any queries, please speak to the class teacher as they remain with pupils and have overall responsibility during this time.
Retirement & Appointment of Staff Members
Best wishes to Mrs Kelliher and Mrs Reid who retired earlier this term. The BOM hosted a lunch to mark their retirement. Both teachers kindly presented a cup each to the school for presentation at our Annual Awards Ceremony in June. The ‘Reid Cup’ will be presented to the best team overall at Sports Day. The ‘Kelliher Cup for Literacy’ will be presented to the pupil who has worked hard and made great progress. We are delighted to receive these cups and look forward to presenting them in June.
Congratulations to Ms Aoife McMurdock who has been appointed Deputy Principal. I am delighted to have her as part of the Management team and we wish her well in her new role.
Annual School Carol Service
The Carol service takes place in St Brigid’s Church, Castleknock on Sunday 15th December at 11.30am in St Brigid’s Church. The Parent’s Association will provide refreshments in the Parish Centre following the service. The school carol service will be in aid of Temple Street Children’s Hospital and St Brigid’s Parish. We are looking forward to a lovely morning and all classes are working hard preparing for it. Our school choir will be performing also. Many thanks to all for their hard work.
Sixth Class will be singing carols outside St. Anne’s Church, Dawson Street on Thursday 12th December from 11am-12pm. This annual event raises money with ‘Black Santa’ and supports many local charities.
Good luck to First, Second and Fourth classes. Their wonderful plays will take place on Tues 17th December beginning at 7.00 p.m. They seem to get better each year. Many thanks to Aoife our Drama Teacher and all the staff for all their hard work.
This year we filled 118 shoe boxes for distribution to needy children in Africa or Eastern Europe. Many thanks to all who contributed shoe boxes for this very worthy cause.
Parent Teacher Meetings
We would like to thank parents for attending the recent PT meetings and for your patience if left waiting after your scheduled time.
Book Rental & Stationary
Thanks to the majority of parents who have paid their Book Rental and Stationary Fee of €60 per pupil (€70 for Junior Infants). All receipts have been given at this stage. If you would like to check if you have paid please contact Elaine in the office 01-8202611.
Last month we had yet another visit to CNS by members of the G.A.A. team and the Sam Maguire Cup during assembly.
Hour of Code
2nd Class pupils will take part in an ‘hour of code’ hosted by DCU students on 26th November.
Internet Safety Workshops
These will take place for all classes on 6th December. Many thanks again to parent Jenny O’Connor for doing this.
This year 6th Class participated in a ‘Goal Workshop’ and on ‘Jersey Day’ we raised €358 for Goal. Well done to all our pupils who supported it.
6th Class will tour Farmleigh on Wed 27th Nov. Many thanks to Lorna Leatham for organising this for us.
May I remind all parents that car parking is not permitted in the car park in front of
the school at any time. This is reserved for staff only. There is ample car parking available to the rear at St. Brigid’s N.S. Please be respectful of our neighbours when
on St Brigid’s Property.
A big thank you to the team of parents, grandparents and past parents who came to school to help teach knitting. Many thanks to pupils who knit dozens of Christmas decorations which were sold at the Parish Winter Fair.
On Wednesday 13th November, 5th and 6th class completed the final mile of their Marathon in Morton Stadium, Santry. They each received a T Shirt and Medal. Well done to all.
Some members of 5th Class will take place in a ‘Europe Quiz’ in Blanchardstown Library on Wednesday 27th November. Good luck to them this week!
If your child is unwell, please keep them at home, particularly if they are vomiting, it is recommended that they remain at home for a minimum of 24 hours generally and 48 hours post-vomiting. Bugs and germs multiply very quickly in warm classrooms and it is difficult to avoid infection or re-infection. Please remember to sign in/out in the office if late and return Absent Forms when returning to school after an absence.
Please remind all pupils to bring coats to school during this spell of very cold weather. Please make sure they are clearly named.
Many thanks to The Cycling Safety School who are teaching Cycle Safety Skills to 6th Class this term.
Many thanks to our hard-working Parents Association. As part of Science Week, they organised a CSI Forensics workshop for all classes.
The PA also held a Movie Night in the Parish Centre on Saturday 23rd Nov. This was well supported and greatly enjoyed by all. They are busy planning fund raising activities such Christmas cards. They will be providing refreshments after our plays and our carol service and we appreciate their support. Special thanks to those who are retiring from the P.A. in January. We look forward to their AGM in January. More details to follow.
Our new Board of Management commences its new term in December. Many thanks to the outgoing Board for all their work on behalf of the CNS. It is very much appreciated.
Christmas Jumper Day
We would like to invite pupils to wear Christmas Jumpers to school on Thursday 19th December. This was great fun last year and helped us all get into the Christmas spirit! We are not asking for donations at this event this year as we will be sending a donation to Temple St Children’s Hospital following the Carol Service.
Santa & School Closure
We look forward to our annual visit from Santa on Friday 20th December. School will close on that day at 11.30am and re-open on Monday 6th January. May I thank all the staff for all their hard work and dedication to CNS. I would like to wish you all a Happy and Peaceful Christmas.