Admission Policy of Fermoyle National School

 School Address: Fermoyle, Lanesboro, Co Longford.

 Roll number: 13320P

 School Patron/s: Bishop of Ardagh and Clonmacnoise,

 Most Reverend Francis Duffy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.    Introduction

 

This Admission Policy complies with the requirements of the Education Act 1998, the Education (Admission to Schools) Act 2018 and the Equal Status Act 2000. In drafting this policy, the board of management of the school has consulted with school staff, the school patron and with parents of children attending the school.

 

The policy was approved by the school patron on        .  It is published on the school’s website and will be made available in hardcopy, on request, to any person who requests it.

 

The relevant dates and timelines for Fermoyle N.S. admission process are set out in the school’s annual admission notice which is published annually on the school’s website at least one week before the commencement of the admission process for the school year concerned.

This policy must be read in conjunction with the annual admission notice for the school year concerned.

The application form for admission is published on the school’s website and will be made available in hardcopy on request to any person who requests it.

 

 

2.    Characteristic spirit and general objectives of the school

 

Fermoyle N.S is a Catholic primary school with a Catholic ethos under the patronage of the Bishop of Ardagh and Clonmacnoise, Most Reverend Francis Duffy.

 

“Catholic Ethos” in the context of a Catholic primary school means the ethos and characteristic spirit of the Roman Catholic Church, which aims at promoting:

 

  • the full and harmonious development of all aspects of the person of the pupil, including the intellectual, physical, cultural, moral and spiritual aspects; and
  • a living relationship with God and with other people; and
  • a philosophy of life inspired by belief in God and in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus; and
  • the formation of the pupils in the Catholic faith,

and which school provides religious education for the pupils in accordance with the  doctrines, practices and traditions of the Roman Catholic Church, and/or such ethos and/or characteristic spirit as may be determined or interpreted from time to time by the Irish Episcopal Conference.

In accordance with S.15 (2) (b) of the Education Act, 1998 the Board of Management of Fermoyle National School  shall uphold, and be accountable to the patron for so upholding, the characteristic spirit of the school as determined by the cultural, educational, moral, religious, social, linguistic and spiritual values and traditions which inform and are characteristic of the objectives and conduct of the school.

 

Mission Statement

Fermoyle National School is a Catholic school which nurtures a positive, co-operative educational environment.  The family, the school, the teachers, the Board of Management and the local community form a social continuum and provide a context of social interaction in which the child’s development takes place. Fermoyle N.S. as an organisation strives to achieve the highest possible standards in all we do while at the same time upholding the catholic ethos of our school.

 

The climate in our school is one of trust, respect, love, joy, care, concern, support, welcome, understanding and acceptance where learning and teaching are enjoyed. A holistic education is provided, and every effort is made to nurture the innate love children have for learning. We help our pupils to acquire knowledge, skills and practical abilities and the desire to use them. Self-esteem and confidence are qualities that we seek to instil. While recognising that children have different abilities and learning styles every effort is made to help children reach their full potential. Opportunities are provided for children to discover and develop their talents. Efforts are made to ensure that children taste success regularly.

 

We celebrate difference, and nurture tolerance and respect for all children. With us, respect is the key component.  Each person is special and unique. All children irrespective of gender, race, or culture are given equal opportunity to participate in all aspects of school life. The school is a microcosm of society within which all children, their languages, beliefs, traditions and cultures should be embraced. We nurture in our pupils a sense of cultural identity and an appreciation of the diversity of cultures which exists on the island of Ireland.  Children are taught Irish and encouraged to use Irish informally in daily conversation. Through music and dance children enjoy learning about our Irish traditions and culture.  Children from other countries in the school are encouraged to teach us about their culture and traditions. Every day we learn from each other.  As we teach we learn.

 

 

OUR AIMS

Every child will value themselves as a unique individual with special qualities and strengths.

Every child will take responsibility for their actions and have a respect and understanding of the beliefs, values and needs of others in the local and global community.

Every child will achieve the highest standards of which they are capable through developing their skills, knowledge and understanding across a creative and inspiring curriculum and become a life-long learner.

Every child will be actively involved in their own learning through self-evaluation and awareness of learning goals.

Every child will be a highly motivated, skilled and resilient learner, able to be reflective on their learning and willing to accept constructive comments and guidance.

Every child will welcome new experiences and be courageous in their learning, which will develop their confidence to tackle challenges, solve problems and make mistakes within a secure environment, independently or collaboratively.

 

3.    Admission Statement

 

Fermoyle National School will not discriminate in its admission of a student to the school on any of the following:

 

  • the gender ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
  • the civil status ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
  • the family status ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
  • the sexual orientation ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
  • the religion ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
  • the disability ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
  • the ground of race of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned,
  • the Traveller community ground of the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned, or
  • the ground that the student or the applicant in respect of the student concerned has special educational needs

 

As per section 61 (3) of the Education Act 1998, ‘civil status ground’, ‘disability ground’, ‘discriminate’, ‘family status ground’, ‘gender ground’, ‘ground of race’, ‘religion ground’,  ‘sexual orientation ground’ and ‘Traveller community ground’ shall be construed in accordance with section 3 of the Equal Status Act 2000.

 

 

 

 

Fermoyle N.S. is a school whose objective is to provide education in an environment which promotes certain religious values and does not discriminate in relation to the admission of a student who has applied for a place in the school in accordance with section 7A of the Equal Status Act 2000.

 

Fermoyle N.S. is a school whose objective is to provide education in an environment which promotes certain religious values and does not discriminate where it refuses to admit as a student a person who is not Catholic and it is proved that the refusal is essential to maintain the ethos of the school.

 

 

 

 

 

Special Educational Needs

 

Children with special educational needs are welcome to enrol in our school and every effort will be made to provide them with an appropriate education as well as to include them in every aspect of school life. Pupils with special needs will be resourced in accordance with the level of resources provided by the DES and/or National Council for Special Education (NCSE). In the event that an applicant has special educational needs, a copy of the applicant’s medical/psychological reports and/or a professional assessment of the applicant’s needs must be submitted, so that an application for resources can be made.

 

Following receipt of such reports the Board of Management shall assess how Fermoyle N.S can meet the needs specified in the report. If further resources are required the Board of Management will, prior to enrolment, request the DES and/or S.E.N.O. to provide the required resources. These may include any combination of the following: visiting teacher service, resource teacher for special needs, special needs assistant, specialised equipment or furniture, transport or other services.

 

 

 

 

 

 

4.    Admission of Students

 

This school shall admit each student seeking admission except where –

 

  1. the school is oversubscribed (please see section 6 below for further details)

 

  1. a parent of a student, when required by the principal in accordance with section 23(4) of the Education (Welfare) Act 2000, fails to confirm in writing that the code of behaviour of the school is acceptable to him or her and that he or she shall make all reasonable efforts to ensure compliance with such code by the student

 

 

 

All denominational schools

Fermoyle N.S is a Catholic school and may refuse to admit as a student a person who is not of Catholic religion where it is proved that the refusal is essential to maintain the ethos of the school.

 

 

 

 

 

5.    Oversubscription

 

In the event that the school is oversubscribed, the school will, when deciding on applications for admission, apply the following selection criteria in the order listed below to those applications that are received within the timeline for receipt of applications as set out in the school’s annual admission notice:

 

Where the number of applications for Junior Infants, exceeds the number of places

available, the School will offer places in the priority order of 1 through to 5 of the

categories outlined below in order to determine admission into Junior Infants for up

to and including 30th September of the year of admission.

Category 1: Siblings of present pupils

Category 2: Siblings of past pupils

Category 3: Applicants whose primary residence is in Lanesboro (Rathcline) parish

Category 4: Children of current school staff

Category 5. All other applicants

If an applicant falls into a number of priority categories listed above, s/he will be

included in the priority category which affords her/him the highest priority

 

 

In the event that there are two or more students tied for a place or places in any of the selection criteria categories above (the number of applicants exceeds the number of remaining places), the following arrangements will apply:

 

 

If the maximum number of admissions is reached in any one of the categories

outlined above, a selection process will apply whereby places will be offered

to complete applications beginning with the oldest eligible applicant in that

category and proceeding in descending order of age from the oldest to the

youngest until all remaining available places have been filled. If during this

selection process, two or more applicants have the same date of birth, the

school will apply a random selection process to these applicants only, in order

to establish to whom places in that category will be offered. This random

selection process will be witnessed by the Board of Management.

 

• A waiting list for unsuccessful applications will be compiled and applicants

will be placed on the list in the order of priority as set out above. Where a

vacancy becomes available, applicants on the waiting list will be offered a

place in accordance with the order of priority the applicant has been placed

on the list. A place on the waiting list expires on 30th September of the year

of admission.

 

• Incomplete applications will not be considered, and applicants will not be

placed on the waiting list.

 

• In a particular year, an applicant may fulfil the enrolment criteria and be

offered a place, and parents of the applicant may accept the place. If

subsequently the applicant’s parents decide not to send their child to school

that particular year, the applicant’s place cannot be deferred. Instead the

applicant must reapply for the following year and will be offered a place if they

fulfil the enrolment criteria for that following year.

 

 

6.    What will not be considered or taken into account

 

In accordance with section 62(7) (e) of the Education Act, the school will not consider or take into account any of the following in deciding on applications for admission or when placing a student on a waiting list for admission to the school:

 

Points (a) to (g) must be included here by all schools. There are limited exceptions to some of these (highlighted in red below) and schools must retain the exceptions that apply to them and delete those that do not:

 

(a)  a student’s prior attendance at a pre-school or pre-school service, including naíonraí,

 

 

(b)   the payment of fees or contributions (howsoever described) to the school.

 

 

(c)    a student’s academic ability, skills or aptitude.

 

(d)   the occupation, financial status, academic ability, skills or aptitude of a student’s parents.

 

(e)    a requirement that a student, or his or her parents, attend an interview, open day or other meeting as a condition of admission.

 

 

(f)    a student’s connection to the school by virtue of a member of his or her family attending or having previously attended the school.

other than categories 1 & 2 or the selection criteria

 

(g)    the date and time on which an application for admission was received by the school,

 

This is subject to the application being received at any time during the period specified for receiving applications set out in the annual admission notice of the school for the school year concerned.

This is also subject to the school making offers based on existing waiting lists (up until 31st January 2025 only).

 

 

7.    Decisions on applications

 

All decisions on applications for admission to Fermoyle N.S. will be based on the following:

  • Our school’s admission policy
  • The school’s annual admission notice (where applicable)
  • The information provided by the applicant in the school’s official application form received during the period specified in our annual admission notice for receiving applications

 

(Please see section 14 below in relation to applications received outside of the admissions period and section 15  below in relation to applications for places in years other than the intake group.)

 

Selection criteria that are not included in our school admission policy will not be used to make a decision on an application for a place in our school.

 

8.    Notifying applicants of decisions

 

Applicants will be informed in writing as to the decision of the school, within the timeline outlined in the annual admissions notice.

 

If a student is not offered a place in our school, the reasons why they were not offered a place will be communicated in writing to the applicant, including, where applicable, details of the student’s ranking against the selection criteria and details of the student’s place on the waiting list for the school year concerned.

 

Applicants will be informed of the right to seek a review/right of appeal of the school’s decision (see section 18 below for further details).

 

 

9.     Acceptance of an offer of a place by an applicant

 

In accepting an offer of admission from Fermoyle N.S, you must indicate—

 

(i) whether or not you have accepted an offer of admission for another school or schools. If you have accepted such an offer, you must also provide details of the offer or offers concerned and

 

(ii) whether or not you have applied for and awaiting confirmation of an offer of admission from another school or schools, and if so, you must provide details of the other school or schools concerned.

 

10. Circumstances in which offers may not be made or may be withdrawn

 

An offer of admission may not be made or may be withdrawn by Fermoyle N.S. where—

  • it is established that information contained in the application is false or misleading.
  • an applicant fails to confirm acceptance of an offer of admission on or before the date set out in the annual admission notice of the school.
  • the parent of a student, when required by the principal in accordance with section 23(4) of the Education (Welfare) Act 2000, fails to confirm in writing that the code of behaviour of the school is acceptable to him or her and that he or she shall make all reasonable efforts to ensure compliance with such code by the student; or
  • an applicant has failed to comply with the requirements of ‘acceptance of an offer’ as set out in section 10

 

 

11. Sharing of Data with other schools

 

Applicants should be aware that section 66(6) of the Education (Admission to Schools) Act 2018 allows for the sharing of certain information between schools in order to facilitate the efficient admission of students.

Section 66(6) allows a school to provide a patron or another board of management with a list of the students in relation to whom—

 

(i) an application for admission to the school has been received,

 

(ii) an offer of admission to the school has been made, or

 

(iii) an offer of admission to the school has been accepted.

 

The list may include any or all of the following:

(i) the date on which an application for admission was received by the school.

 

(ii) the date on which an offer of admission was made by the school.

 

(iii) the date on which an offer of admission was accepted by an applicant.

 

(iv) a student’s personal details including his or her name, address, date of birth and personal public service number (within the meaning of section 262 of the Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005).

 

12. Waiting list in the event of oversubscription

 

In the event of there being more applications to the school year concerned than places available, a waiting list of students whose applications for admission to Fermoyle N.S. were unsuccessful due to the school being oversubscribed will be compiled and will remain valid for the school year in which admission is being sought.

 

Placement on the waiting list of Fermoyle N.S. is in the order of priority assigned to the students’ applications after the school has applied the selection criteria in accordance with this admission policy.

Applicants whose applications are received after the closing date, outlined in the Annual Admission Notice, will be placed at the end of the waiting list in order of the date of receipt of the application.

 

Offers of any subsequent places that become available for and during the school year in relation to which admission is being sought will be made to those students on the waiting list, in accordance with the order of priority in relation to which the students have been placed on the list.

 

 

13. Late Applications

 

All applications for admission received after the closing date as outlined in the annual admission notice will be considered and decided upon in accordance with our school’s admissions policy, the Education Admissions to School Act 2018 and any regulations made under that Act.

 

Late applicants will be notified of the decision in respect of their application no later than three weeks after the date on which the school received the application.  Late applicants will be offered a place if there is place available.  In the event that there is no place available, the name of the applicant will be added to the waiting list as set out in Section 13.

 

 

14. Procedures for admission of students to other years and during the school year

 

 

The procedures of the school in relation to the admission of students who are not already admitted to the school to classes or years other than the school’s intake group are as follows:

Children wishing to enrol into classes that already exist, or children seeking to transfer to

Fermoyle N.S. from other schools, are enrolled subject to this Admissions Policy and the

availability of places within the school taking all relevant circumstances into account, e.g.

needs of the existing pupils, presence of pupils with special educational needs, integration

of pupils with special educational needs, presence of pupils with behavioural needs, cap

on class sizes as provided for in this policy, space in classrooms, health and safety

considerations etc.

It is advised that parents who seek enrolment for child/ren or who seek to transfer a child/

children from another school should apply to Fermoyle N.S. in advance of the

commencement of the school year. If the number of applications received exceed the

number of available spaces in any class from Senior Infants to Sixth Class, then the

enrolment categories outlined in the ‘Enrolment Criteria for children seeking a place in

Junior Infants’ section will apply.

 

 

 

 

Prior to the board of management making a determination on the enrolment of a child into

any class from Senior Infants to Sixth class (or Junior Infants once the academic year has

started) Fermoyle N.S. will post registration forms to applicants’ parents / guardians and

request (where applicable):

• Reports from previous schools

• Birth certificate

• Educational, psychological or other relevant reports

Parents / guardians will be informed of a decision on enrolment applications within 21

days of receiving completed applications. Applications that have not included reports

requested by Fermoyle N.S. will not be considered complete.

 

 

 

 

The procedures of the school in relation to the admission of students who are not already admitted to the school, after the commencement of the school year in which admission is sought, are as follows:

• The following criteria apply when an application for enrolment during the academic

year is under consideration:

▪ That optimum arrangements of existing pupils for teaching and learning purposes

are maintained.

▪ That a place exists in the relevant class(es), taking all relevant circumstances into

account, e.g. needs of the existing pupils, presence of pupils with special

educational needs, integration of pupils with special educational needs, presence of

pupils with behavioural needs, cap on class sizes as provided for in this policy,

space in classrooms, health and safety considerations etc.

▪ Only pupils on the established waiting list for the relevant academic year will be

accepted into Junior Infants prior to 1st October of that year (should a place

become available).

▪ An application for enrolment into Junior Infants after 1st October and for the

remainder of the academic year, will only be considered where a vacancy exists,

the applicant was already enrolled in another primary school and is/was in

attendance at that primary school for not less than 20 school days and the

maximum number in the junior classroom does not exceed 30 pupils.

 

• An applicant will be enrolled in an age appropriate class where the foregoing and

following criteria have been met and provided there is not a refusal to enrol:

1. The School is provided with a fully completed, signed and dated enrolment

application form which is available from the school office and on the school’s

website [www.fermoylens.ie] together with all required documentation.

2. The applicant will be required to provide relevant reports, references, reports

detailing the applicant’s behaviour record from the school from which the

applicant proposes to transfer or the School last attended by the applicant.

3. Failure to provide the documents referred to above will mean an application is

incomplete.

4. A separate form must be completed for each applicant, if applicable.

 

▪ Acceptance by the school office of the application does not mean that same will be

processed.

• Applications which are incomplete, not signed, not dated and/or do not include the

required documentation will not be processed.

• Applicants who are not successful in securing a place will be placed on a waiting

list in date order of receipt of completed applications.

• A place on the waiting list expires at the end of the academic year for which the

application was made.

• Incomplete applications will not be considered, and applicants will not be placed on

the waiting list.

• Submitting inaccurate information on an application form or in accompanying

documentation will render the application void. Where a place has been offered,

this will result in the offer of the place being withdrawn and the place being

reallocated. In the case of placement on a waiting list, it will result in removal from

the waiting list.

• Written notification of the decision regarding the application will be issued to the

parent(s)/ guardian(s) of the applicant within 21 days of receipt of the fully

completed, signed and dated application form provided all requested documentation

has also been provided.

• Parent(s)/ guardian(s) of applicants who have been offered a place must inform the

school in writing of the acceptance of the place within 10 school days. Failure to do

so will result in the place being forfeited and reallocated.

• Any contact or lobbying of school personnel or board members regarding admission will disqualify an applicant.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

15. Declaration in relation to the non-charging of fees

 

This rule applies to all schools.

 

The board of Fermoyle N.S or any persons acting on its behalf will not charge fees for or seek payment or contributions (howsoever described) as a condition of-

  • an application for admission of a student to the school, or
  • the admission or continued enrolment of a student in the school.

 

 

16.  Arrangements regarding students not attending religious instruction

 

 

The following are the school’s arrangements for students, where the parents or in the case of a student who has reached the age of 18 years, the student, who has requested that the student attend the school without attending religious instruction in the school.  These arrangements will not result in a reduction in the school day of such students:

 

• Students will complete other curricular work assigned by the class teacher

during religious instruction time for all other pupils.

Or

• Students will complete other curricular work assigned by the class teacher

in another teacher’s classroom during religious instruction time for all other

pupils.

A written request should be made to the Principal of the school. A meeting will

then be arranged with the parent(s) or the student, as the case may be, to discuss

how the request may be accommodated by the school.

 

 

 

 

 

17.  Reviews/appeals

 

Review of decisions by the board of Management

The parent of the student, or in the case of a student who has reached the age of 18 years, the student, may request the board to review a decision to refuse admission. Such requests must be made in accordance with Section 29C of the Education Act 1998.

The timeline within which such a review must be requested and the other requirements applicable to such reviews are set out in the procedures determined by the Minister under section 29B of the Education Act 1998 which are published on the website of the Department of Education and Skills.

The board will conduct such reviews in accordance with the requirements of the procedures determined under Section 29B and with section 29C of the Education Act 1998.

Note:  Where an applicant has been refused admission due to the school being oversubscribed, the applicant must request a review of that decision by the board of management prior to making an appeal under section 29 of the Education Act 1998.

Where an applicant has been refused admission due to a reason other than the school being oversubscribed, the applicant may request a review of that decision by the board of management prior to making an appeal under section 29 of the Education Act 1998.

 

 

Right of appeal

Under Section 29 of the Education Act 1998, the parent of the student, or in the case of a student who has reached the age of 18 years, the student, may appeal a decision of this school to refuse admission.

An appeal may be made under Section 29 (1) (c) (i) of the Education Act 1998 where the refusal to admit was due to the school being oversubscribed.

An appeal may be made under Section 29 (1) (c) (ii) of the Education Act 1998 where the refusal to admit was due a reason other than the school being oversubscribed.

Where an applicant has been refused admission due to the school being oversubscribed, the applicant must request a review of that decision by the board of management prior to making an appeal under section 29 of the Education Act 1998. (see Review of decisions by the Board of Management)

Where an applicant has been refused admission due to a reason other than the school being oversubscribed, the applicant may request a review of that decision by the board of management prior to making an appeal under section 29 of the Education Act 1998. (see Review of decisions by the Board of Management)

Appeals under Section 29 of the Education Act 1998 will be considered and determined by an independent appeals committee appointed by the Minister for Education and Skills.

The timeline within which such an appeal must be made and the other requirements applicable to such appeals are set out in the procedures determined by the Minister under section 29B of the Education Act 1998 which are published on the website of the Department of Education and Skills.

 

The Board of Management ratified this policy on the _____________ of ______________

Signed: Patricia Boyce (Principal)