“The most critical part of managing the risks of COVID-19 related to schools is doing everything practical to avoid introduction of COVID-19 into the school. If the infection is not introduced it cannot spread. The risk of introduction is related to how common the infection is in the community served by the school at a given time. If the infection is uncommon in the community then the likelihood of introduction is much lower”
- The school has a responsibility to make effort to ensure the safety, health and well-being of all members of our school community – children, parents and staff. This plan has been formulated to better ensure that the school can exercise that duty of care.
- Assuming it is in keeping with public health advice and guidelines issued by the Department of Education and Skills, it is preferable for all children to return to school for all five days of the school week and for a full school day. This plan has been formulated to achieve that aim.
- It is not possible to eliminate the risk of infection. However, with the co-operation of all members of our school community, it is possible to minimise the risk of the virus being introduced to school and the consequent risk of its spread.
- As well as co-operation, the flexibility and goodwill of all will be required to ensure the plan can be implemented.
- All children return to school and classes operate within a bubble system
- The school is split into 4 groups with each group having different starting times, break times, lunch times and finishing times.
- Groups will be colour coded to their bubbles’ entrance points and remain in these bubbles throughout the day. There are 4 colours with staggered times.
- The day will include 1 x 10 minute break minute and 1 x 30 minute break
- Each class will line up on their colour at their arrival time to be collected by their teacher, maintaining social distance
- Hand sanitiser will be available at all entry/exit points and in all class, staff room and support and isolation rooms. There will be two isolation rooms to be used when there is a suspected case, one in the library and photocopying room.
Logistics for School Start, Finish and Break Times (Click here for 1 page pdf)
8.40 – 2.20
8.50 – 2.30
9.00 – 2.40
9.10 – 2.50
4 colours for 4 entrances and exits
- Red – Hall door
- Yellow – Main Entrance
- Green – Pond Entrance
- Blue – Basketball Court Entrance
* All children line up in their bubbles on the bottom yard, by colour code, and are collected by their teachers at their designated staggered times and escorted into their classrooms through their designated, colour coded door.
Basketball Court Entrance
|Group A: 8.40
||Junior Infants (S.C.)
|Group B: 8.50
||Ms. S. Browne
||Junior Infants (S.W.)
|Group C: 9.00
||Mrs. Matthews/Ms. Cruise
||Ms. M. Browne
|Group D: 9.10
Junior Infants Week 1 and 2
Start time 9.40-11.40 and 9.55 – 11.55: Drop off and Collection point at top yard and brought into and out of school gate in Woodland Area.
Collection Point to be reviewed after the settling in period.
Junior Infants “Normal Time” will resume once they have settled in. Date to be Confirmed. Normal hours will be
Mr. Curran 8.40am to 1.20pm
Mrs. Whelan 8.50am to 1.30pm
Ms. Gavin’s class will finish their school day at 1.20pm.
Ms.S.Browne’s will finish at 1.30pm.
To settle the First Class pupils in to their longer day Mr. Gibson’s class will finish at 1.50pm and Ms.McGreal’s class will finish at 1.30pm until Friday September 4th. Normal Hours as per this document will resume from Monday September 7th.
Newcomers to the School:
Start time of 9.30am on Sept 1st only and parent /guardian may accompany the child to the Main Entrance where they will be welcomed by staff members.
Group 1: 9.50 – 10.00
Group 2: 10.10 – 10.20
Group 1: 11.20 – 11.50
Group 2: 12.00 – 12.30
*Newcomers to the School: Start time of 9.30am on Sept 1st only and parent /guardian may accompany the child to the Main Entrance where they will be welcomed by staff members.
Group 1: 9.50 – 10.00 and 11.20 – 11.50:
Ms Gavin, Mr Bolger, Ms S Browne, Mrs Mulholland, Ms Cooney, Ms McGreal
Mr. Bolger main entrance
Ms. S. Browne (through door at Ms. O’Hara’s class at break)
Ms. Cooney (around by back of school through door at BB court)
| Ms. McGreal – Hall Door (area beside GNS)
Ms Gavin (through door at Mr Curran’s class at break)
Mrs. Mulholland – main entrance
Group 2: 10.10 – 10.20 and 12.00 – 12.30
Mr Moloney, Mrs Matthews/Ms Cruise, Mrs Quinlan, Mr Clancy, Ms O’Hara, Ms M Browne, Mr Gibson, Mrs Sheehan
| Mr. Moloney – Main Entrance
Mr Clancy – Up by pond and through own door
Ms. M Browne (around by back of school through door at BB court)
| Mr. Gibson – Hall Door (area beside GNS)
Ms. O’Hara – Door on Infant Corridor
Mrs. Quinlan – Main Entrance
Mrs. Matthews/Ms Cruise – Hall Door
Mrs. Sheehan (around by back of school through door at BB court)
Arrival at school
- Each group should aim to arrive at the school at their exact start time
Group A – 8.40
Group B – 8.50
Group C – 9.00
Group D – 9.10
- We ask for co-operation with these times as it will mean that the numbers congregating on school grounds at any one time will be minimised.
- Each child should line up at their designated point with social distancing observed.
- The class teacher will invite the children to enter the building via their designated, colour coded entrance point at the appropriate time.
- No adults, other than staff members, should enter the school yard.
- Messages for teachers can be sent by email or by phoning the school office.
- In so far as possible, please walk or cycle to school.
End of School Day
- Adults, who are collecting their children from school at the end of the day, should wait at the designated exit point for their child’s class at the child’s exact finish time.
- When the school day for that class is over the following arrangements will apply –
- Junior Infants -2nd Class – the class teacher, SNA and Support Teacher will bring the children to the school yard and will release the children into the care of the adult who is there to collect them outside the school gates at their designated collection points
- 3rd – 6th Class – the class teacher escorts the class to the school yard for dispersal.
|Designated Collection Points at End of School Day
Gate at lower/staff car park
Single gate at top yard
Double gate at top yard
Top of top yard, coming from Woodland Area/Auburn Road
Collection of Children during the School Day
If an adult has to collect a child during the course of the school day, the following arrangements will apply:
- When the adult arrives at the school, they should either phone the office to alert the office that they have arrived.
- The child will be brought from their class to the adult by a member of staff
- The adult who is collecting will be asked to sign the child out
- No adult should enter the school building, unless invited to do so
Dealing with a suspected case of Covid-19
Pupils should not attend school if displaying any symptoms of Covid-19.
- High temperature
- Shortness of breath or breathing difficulties
- Loss of smell, of taste or distortion of taste
If a pupil displays symptoms of Covid-19 while in the building, the following are the procedures will be implemented:
- Parents/guardians will be contacted immediately
- The child will be accompanied to the designated isolation area via the isolation route by a member of staff. The staff member will remain at least 2 metres away from the symptomatic child and will also make sure that others maintain a distance of at least 2 metres from the symptomatic child at all times
- A mask will be provided for the child presenting with symptoms, if one is available. He/she should wear the mask if in a common area with other people or while exiting the premises
- An assessment will be made as to whether the child who is displaying symptoms can immediately be brought home by parents and call their doctor and continue self-isolation at home
- The school will facilitate the child presenting with symptoms to remain in isolation, if they cannot immediately go home, and will assist them by calling their GP.
- The child presenting with symptoms should be advised to cover their mouth and nose with the disposable tissue provided when they cough or sneeze and to put the tissue in the waste bag provided
- If the child is well enough to go home, the school will arrange for them to be transported home by a family member, as soon as possible, and advise them to inform their GP by phone of their symptoms. Public transport of any kind should not be used
- If they are too unwell to go home or advice is required, the school will contact 999 or 112 and inform them that the sick child is a Covid-19 suspect.
- Arrangements will be made for appropriate cleaning of the isolation area and work areas involved.
The HSE will inform any staff/parents who have come into close contact with a diagnosed case via the contact tracing process. The HSE will contact all relevant persons where a diagnosis of COVID-19 is made. The instructions of the HSE should be followed.
Children who should not attend school
If your child is in one of the following categories, they should not attend school –
- Children who have been diagnosed with Covid-19
- Children who have been in close contact with a person who has been diagnosed with Covid-19
- Children who have a suspected case of Covid-19 and the outcome of the test is pending
- Children who have been in contact with a person who has a suspected case of Covid-19 and the outcome of the test is pending
- Children with underlying health conditions who have been directed by a medical professional not to attend school
- Children who have returned home after travelling abroad and must self-isolate for a period of 14 days
- Children who are generally unwell
- We advise all parents and staff that they must comply with current Public Health Guidance in relation to travel and should restrict their movements for 14 days if they have been to a location outside of the countries on the green list.
Supporting the Learning of Children who cannot attend school
If a child is not able to attend school for an extended period of time, the class teacher (and/or the learning support teacher, where relevant) will suggest activities to support the child’s learning at home which will be shared with parents.
Impact of a Suspected or Confirmed Case of Covid-19 in a Class
If the school is notified that a person in your child’s class has a suspected or confirmed case of Covid-19
- The parents of all children in the class will be notified
- Public health advice will be sought and followed
- In so far as possible, it is requested that children will bring their own pens, pencils, colours, rubbers, etc., to school in their own pencil case on the first day to avoid the sharing of equipment. Pencil cases are to remain in school. Teachers will let parents know when new stationery is needed.
- For children in Junior and Senior Infants, the school will provide necessary equipment
- It is further requested that all items have the child’s name on them for ease of identification.
By necessity, some classroom equipment needs to be shared including tablets, laptops and the equipment used for structured activities and play in Infant classrooms. Cleaning of such shared equipment with wipes or other cleaning products will take place at regular intervals to minimise the risk of the spread of infection.
Children will be segregated in yard in their own class bubbles. Yards will be supervised by class teachers, learning support teachers and SNA’s working within those bubbles. Colour coded Entrance and Exit to yard will be adhered to. Children are allowed to re-enter the building to access First Aid and/or go to the toilet using their class entrance and exit point. Permission must be granted from the teacher on yard and all admittance noted on yard list.
Learning support will be provided mostly through in-class support to minimise movement of staff and children throughout the school. The provision of support will be organised to ensure our support teachers will work within the confines of a bubble.
- Where a support teacher is working alongside a class teacher in a classroom, both teachers must be mindful of maintaining social distance from one another.
- Where children receive support in one of the SET rooms, social distancing of 1 metre will be maintained between children and 2 metres between child and teacher where possible.
- The tables and chairs in SET rooms will be wiped clean in between different children attending.
It is envisaged that PPE will be worn by staff in general, staff who are attending to particular care needs and who are administering first aid will wear appropriate PPE including gloves and face masks.
Teacher Absence and Substitution
In the event that teacher is unable to attend school, every effort will be made to secure a substitute teacher for the class. If a substitute teacher is not available, SET teachers will be diverted where necessary.
Curriculum and Wellbeing
The curriculum advice from DES/NCCA is “Slow Down to Catch Up”. There will be a focus on Literacy Numeracy, Wellbeing and PE for the first few weeks of school.
Where possible, PE should take place outdoors and use of equipment should be confined to the sets that have been distributed to class groupings. If the PE hall is being used by class groupings, common touch points should be cleaned at intervals throughout the school day and the hall must be well ventilated.
In line with current guidelines no extracurricular activities will take place at this time. This issue will be kept under review.
Clean uniforms and tracksuits to be worn as usual.
Access is restricted and all parents/guardians MUST make an appointment to visit. Where possible, a phone call may suffice but if not, or a face to face meeting is required then approval must be granted by the Principal for the person to enter the school. Contact tracing forms must be completed and visitors must adhere to social distancing, wearing of a mask and hand sanitisation.
There will be no transfer of equipment from home to school after Day 1. Homework will not be given until the first week in October where it will then be through an online platform.
Emergency Contact Details
It is imperative that the school is furnished with a list of up to date contact information in the event of a suspected Covid Case.