Dear Parents,

We would like to thank you and the students for your support in ensuring our first full week of school ran very smoothly. The students’ level of compliance with our regulations around the wearing of face masks, the use of bathrooms, remaining at home if symptomatic etc. has been exemplary. Their cooperation in general with what teachers are asking of them in school has been outstanding. We are very proud of them. Please see below some important updates:

Leaving Certificate Results
This morning we met with and acknowledged the performance of a group of our students who achieved in excess of 550 points in the Leaving Certificate. With 30% of our entire 6th Year group achieving 450+ points, 15% of our students achieving 500 or more points and 12 students exceeding 550 points our results have continued along the exceptional lines of previous years. We would like to thank all our staff for their dedicated work in supporting our students throughout their senior cycle programme. Overall, year on year, our results continue on a very upward trajectory. As we start a new academic year our aim is to continue building on and improving on our previous achievements.

As stated above we would like to express our gratitude to parents for their conscientious efforts to keep students at home if they are symptomatic. Parents are reminded not to send their child if your child has:

• a temperature of 38 degrees Celsius or more
• any other common symptoms of coronavirus such as a new cough, loss or changed sense of taste or smell, or shortness of breath
• been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus
• been living with someone who is unwell and may have coronavirus

Parents are asked to note please that where your child has a test for Covid-19 and the result is negative they can only return to school if they are symptom free.

Please click on the link below for further information:

Information from HSE for parents

Covid-19 App
We refer you to the parents update of 28 August 2020 and the section under key Covid messages. Please note it states that “staff and students are encouraged to download and use the Covid-19 Tracking App.” For clarity the use of the Covid-19 App is not mandatory.

O Crualaoi’s
This morning in tutorial classes our class teachers distributed smart-fobs to every student in the school. Please click on the link below to view the details of how parents can log in to activate the smart-fob. You will then be able to place the lunch order for your child. Orders placed today or over the weekend will be available to collect here in school on Monday. We will inform students of the designated collection points on Monday morning. Parents are asked to note the following important information:

• This is an optional system. There is no obligation to use this system and students are free to continue to bring their own lunch to school.
• The school is not collecting any data. Therefore you are advised to review the data settings when setting up your account.
• Only online purchases are available currently. If in the future Covid restrictions are eased students will be able to purchase ‘on the day’ in the canteen using the smart-fob.
• It is important to note that there is a €5 cost to replacing the fob so students are advised to mind it carefully, particularly at the moment where it is not being used on a daily basis in school.
• We would like to thank our Parents Council and O Crualaoi’s for their financial contribution to ensuring each student account has a credit balance of €10 when activated.

School Canteen Leaflet

School Canteen Leaflet 2

Classroom Markings
Having surveyed many of our classrooms we are reassured that, when set up properly, 1m social distancing, as required by the Roadmap for the full reopening of schools, can be obtained in the vast majority of our classrooms. However, we are aware that students, when transferring from class to class, move the desks and chairs they have been sitting on which disrupts the classroom layout. In an effort to address this issue, we have committed to taping the floors in classrooms to clearly mark where precisely the students’ desks should be in order to ensure 1m social distancing. The tape being used is the same tape that has been put down on our corridors and it will be laid by Woodland Print so the markings should be long-lasting and robust. Work on our 1st Year classrooms where our student numbers are largest is being completed today. Our next area of focus will be the our 6th Year classrooms and we will continue to work through classrooms as required. We are currently looking at solutions for a number of our computer rooms where social distancing is proving difficult. In the interim, as per the Roadmap, staff and students must continue to wear a facemask.

Sanitizing Wipes
A reminder that students must bring their own wipes to school and will be required to wipe down the desk and chair they are at each time they enter a classroom. This will ensure that the desk/chair is properly sanitized by the student himself/herself before the class begins. We anticipate that a small packet of wipes (between 30-50 wipes) should be sufficient for the week and we are confident that this procedure will ensure proper cleaning of surfaces in classrooms.

A reminder that face masks are compulsory for all students when in class. Students may use a visor when on the corridors (for example transitioning between class rooms) or in the outdoor areas at break times. A reminder to students that, when in the outdoor areas at break times, students must put back on their face mask or visor once they have finished eating their lunch.

We have yet to receive our delivery of reusable face masks. We apologise for the delay in providing these to staff and students. We are waiting in excess of 3 weeks for completion of this order.

A reminder that students are allowed to wear their school tracksuit on the day that they have PE. Please note leggings, non-school track suit ends etc. are not permitted. We ask for your co-operation with this rule please.

Board of Management
Our 1st Board of Management meeting of the new school year takes place next Monday 14 September. The Agreed Report will be circulated to the school community through the school website next week following the meeting.

Thankfully, to date we have no major setbacks during our school reopening. We hope to begin reintroducing some of the ‘normal’ elements of our schooling the week beginning Monday 21 September. This will be done on a gradual, phased basis but we hope to have returned to some degree of normality around books, photocopying, printing etc. before the October mid-term.

We hope you have a nice weekend.

GCC Senior Management