Please note the following dates and times, which have been confirmed with Fr Emlyn for the Sacraments of Reconciliation, (First Confession) and First Communion.
First Confession- Children will receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation, on Thursday, 13th May @ 11 am. Only pupils and teachers will be in attendance for the Ceremony. Children should wear full school uniform.
First Communion- First Communion will take place on Saturday, 22nd of May as follows:
Miss Hughes’s Group at 11 am
Miss Murphy’s Group at 2 pm.
Each child can be accompanied by 2 guests.
We ask that you are in the chapel and seated 15 minutes before the ceremony begins.
I wish to thank you for the dedication and commitment you have shown in following the programme of online learning provided over this past number of months. I am very aware of the emotional impact that home learning has had on many and the provision of such learning has had on staff. Hopefully we have reached the end of this arrangement and can progress towards a more normal future.
Following on from the announcement by the Education Minister, Peter Weir on Tuesday 16th March, I write to remind you of procedures and protocols for the return of all children to school on Monday 22nd March.
In relation to returning to school we must continue to observe guidelines to reduce the threat of any further outbreaks of the COVID-19 virus
Four drop-off and pick-up points will remain:
Nursery car park for a Nursery child and older siblings
Front on the school for Year 1& 2 children and older siblings
Main school car park for Year 3 & 4 children and older siblings
Ti Chulainn car park where children can enter school grounds at the green house entrance for year 5, 6 and 7 children.
We will be asking children to come into school between 8.45 am and 9.30 am. This should allow the children to filter into school.
Classes will operate in Social bubbles as far as possible. Dinners times will remain as normal but only those taking school dinners will eat in the Dining Hall, where pupils will be seated in their class bubbles. Normal procedures for Nursery dinners will remain, were Nursery pupils will be served dinner in their own Classroom.
Break times and lunchtimes will be arranged in a manner that will ensure that just members of that class are playing together in a Social Bubble in the playground, each class will be assigned a separate play area.
We will continue to insist that children wash their hands at key times in the school day – when they come in, at break-time, before lunchtime, after lunchtime and before home-time.
We will be working within the Social Distancing advised by the Education Authority.
Normal pick-up times will be maintained:
1.30 pm for Nursery
2 pm for P1- P3
3 pm for P4 – P7
Pupils uniform, school bags and homework
Pupils can attend school in uniform or PE kit. They should not bring in school bags but can take in a pencil case which is to remain in school. Pupils cannot be sharing their equipment with others. Pupils should bring in a packed lunch in a lunch box or bag and a water bottle.
Cash handling in school
Payments should be placed in a sealed envelope and submitted to the class teacher by your child.
Visitors/parents to the school
There will be no visitors/Parents permitted into the school until further notice.
All payments should be made on the first day of the week. £2.50 for Nursery and £2.60 for all other children.
Afterschool clubs and activities
There will be no after-school activities or games until further notice.
After school supervision is available from 2- 4 pm for those who need to avail of this service. For Nursery children 1.30 to 2 pm £1
Safer Internet Day 2021 “Together for a better Internet”
Each year in St Mary’s we recognise the importance of Safer Internet Day by hosting Parents’ and Pupils’ workshops.
So this year we are asking families to take time to explore the Internet Safety tab on our school website where you will find links to information and stories related to this year’s theme “Together for a better Internet”
And why not check out tomorrow’s C2K Newsdesk story line made famous by ex president Donald Trump “Fake News”
The Ring of Gullion ,“Dragons in the Hills” Project have teamed up with local artists to bring an exciting art competition for all classes to take part in. The theme is: “Reptiles, Amphibians and Habitats”, it’s a great excuse for everyone to get outside, have a explore of some likely habitats,- ponds, marshy ground, stone walls, … Why not take some photos, and then once back indoors get experimenting with different media, paint, pastels, collage – choose the piece you are most happy with and submit a photo via the link given below!
All work must be submitted by 17th March There are some great prizes up for grabs!
It is planned that First Holy Communion will take place on Saturday, 22nd May in St. Mary’s Church, Mullaghbawn. First Penance would normally take place during Lent, however until we know if and when the current restrictions are to be lifted we cannot arrange a date for this. We will update you as soon as the situation changes and we have more information.
This week Mrs. Murphy and most of Primary4/5 will be working from home as they are self-isolating. The pupils’ work-at-home packs, complete with a Google Classroom guidebook, are ready for collection. Siblings may take the packs home with them or parents can collect them from the front door during the hometime period 2 – 2.30pm tomorrow. The 5 pupils who were absent last Tuesday, and who therefore do not have to isolate, only need their GC guidebook brought home, as they may return to class this Wednesday 14th October after the deep clean. All other pupils and their teacher are due back at school on Wednesday 21st October. Shortly after this date it is anticipated that Mrs Murphy’s P5s will celebrate their First Holy Communion. Fingers crossed it’s Third Time Lucky!!
As of today, 6/10/20, both First Holy Communion services scheduled for the 10th and 17th October are still expected to take place. Naturally this is assessed on a daily basis as the health and well being of every pupil and member of staff is our paramount concern. We have no control over community transmission of Covid 19 but we are doing everything within our power to keep our school a safe place of learning.
To date one pupil and one staff member have tested positive for Coronavirus. A very small number of other staff and pupils are isolating at home under PHA regulations following “close contact” or negative results.
Fortunately, the one positive pupil was not at school for several days prior to showing symptoms and being tested. Accordingly, the PHA said their considerable absence from school ruled out the possibility of transmission. However staff took the precautionary measure of deep cleaning their classroom as well as toilets, cloakrooms and the Main Hall.
One member of staff, who had limited direct contact with a small number of pupils also tested positive at the weekend, again this followed an absence from school for a number of days. Under PHA guidance the parents of those pupils involved were directly contacted yesterday and informed of the situation and are subsequently following the regulatory advice to self isolate.
Pupils and Staff have been and continue to work in “class bubbles”. They avoid entering other classrooms and are undertaking daily additional cleaning of their work areas. We have taken direction from the EA cleaning services and have had an onsite visit from their consultant cleaning officer who further advised on every aspect of contact management.
Some parents have informed us of the decision to keep their own children at home due to concerns over rising cases in the community, or indeed due to someone in the family testing positive and we thank them for keeping us fully aware of all developments.
Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected and we wish our pupils and colleagues a safe return to school when the full isolation period has been exceeded.
As yet, Primary 5 remains unaffected, and 44 children are pinning their hopes on two momentous occasions being able to take place very soon. We ask our patrons to keep assumptions and speculation at an all time low to spare these families undue stress on the lead up to these dates. Please keep checking our school website where information will be posted as soon as anything changes and /or contact the school directly to speak to Miss Mulkerns or Mrs Murphy if you have further questions.
We will continue to keep the situation under daily review and update you if there are any changes in circumstances.
Stay safe, and help keep each other safe. We really are in this together.
Smiles from those nominated in their classes for “Pupil of the Week” this week. Well done to everyone and keep up the great work. A special well done to Mrs Murphy’s P4/5 Class who were all nominated!!!
(Those missing from today’s post we will catch up with on Monday for a photo and post).