Admissions Policy

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 26th February 2020.  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 Scoil Iosef Naofa 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.

 

2.    Characteristic spirit and general objectives of the school

Scoil Iosef Naofa is a Catholic co-educational primary school with a Catholic ethos under the patronage of the Bishop of Killaloe, Most Rev. Fintan Monahan.

“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, a living relationship with God and with other people; and
  • including the intellectual, physical, cultural, moral and spiritual aspects; 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 Scoil Iosef Naofa 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

Scoil Iosef Naofa is a Roman Catholic School. We believe that each child is an individual with individual talents, abilities and needs. Our goal is to ensure, while promoting the gospel values of justice, respect, acceptance and equality, that each child acquires the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for the challenges of the world.

This Shared Vision is a ‘living document’ and is reflected in everyday practice.

 

School Philosophy

Our vision of the community of Scoil Iosef Naofa primary school can be symbolised by the shape of a triangle. The sides are all linked and interdependent.

On the first side are the families from which the school grows. Parents and teachers together identify their aspirations for their children. On the second side we see the children and possibilities and avenues open to them. We in school, the third side plan a course of action and make available the educational tools to help realise the hopes of our community for our children.

The school community of Scoil Iosef Naofa primary school, comprises of home and school working together with mutual respect, and is the best chance for our children’s future. The school is the key resource to improving the quality of life in the community; in turn the community is a rich resource from which to draw educational assistance.

Each child is a unique and special person created by God. They come to school, supported by their parents, in order that they will be able to learn to make the best uses of their talents and gifts that god has given them. The main purpose of the school is to enable this desire on the part of the pupils and their parents to become a reality. The school does this by promoting the highest quality of teaching and learning for its children.

This vision of education can be expressed in the form of these general aims:

  • To enable the child to live a full life as a child and to realise his or her potential as a unique individual.
  • To enable the child to develop as a social being through living and co-operating with others and so contribute to the good of society in Roscrea.
  • To prepare the child for further education and lifelong learning.

 

Aims:

The school community seeks to achieve the objectives in order to develop each pupil’s talents and gifts. These aims are achieved by seeking ways to help pupils to:

  • Foster an understanding and critical appreciation of the values (moral, spiritual, religious, social and cultural) which have been distinctive in shaping Irish society and which have been traditionally accorded respect in society.
  • Nurture a sense of personal identity, self-esteem and awareness of one’s particular abilities, aptitudes and limitations combined with a respect for the rights and beliefs of others.
  • Promote excellence and equality in the development educational potential of all pupils, including those who are dis-advantaged through economic, social, physical or mental factors.
  • Develop knowledge, skills and attitudes, a spirit of inquiry and the capacity to analyse issues critically and constructively.
  • Develop expressive, creative and artistic abilities to the individual’s full capacity.
  • Foster a spirit of self-reliance, innovation, initiative and imagination.
  • Promote physical and emotional well-being.
  • Provide pupils with the necessary education and training to support the country’s economic development and to enable them to make their particular contribution to society in an effective way.
  • Create tolerant, caring and politically aware members of society.
  • Ensure that Ireland’s young people acquire a keen appreciation of their local, national and European heritage and identity.
  • Foster in pupils a global awareness and a sense of responsibility for the long-term care of the environment.

The above objectives have to be taken with the following considerations:

  • The particular circumstances of the school.
  • The stage of development of the children.
  • Differences between children due to variations in intellectual and physical ability, personality etc.

 

3.    Admission Statement

Scoil Iosef Naofa 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.

Scoil Iosef Naofa 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 of the Catholic faith and it is proved that the refusal is essential to maintain the ethos of the school.

 

Note for Parents: the inclusion of the above wording was mandated by the Education (Admission to Schools) Act 2018.

 

Schools with special education class(es)

Scoil Iosef Naofa is a school which has established 2 special classes, with the approval of the Minister for Education and Skills, which provides an education exclusively for students with a category or categories of special educational needs specified by the Minister and may refuse to admit to the class a student who does not have the category of needs specified.

 

4.    Categories of Special Educational Needs catered for in the school/special class

Scoil Iosef Naofa with the approval of the Minister for Education and Skills, has established 2 classes to provide an education exclusively for students with Autism.

 

 

5.    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)
  2. 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
The special class attached to Scoil Iosef Naofa provides an education exclusively for students with Autism and the school may refuse admission to this class, where the student concerned does not have the specified category of special educational needs provided for in this class.

 

6.    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:

  1. Applicants with siblings currently enrolled in the school (including stepsiblings, resident at the same address), priority eldest;
  2. Children residing in the parish, priority eldest;
  3. Children of staff members, priority eldest;
  4. Random selection (independently verified).

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:

(Priority to eldest in accordance with the above criteria – or as determined by BoM)

 

7.    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:

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

other than in relation to a student’s prior attendance at—

(I) an early intervention class, or

(II) an early start pre-school, specified in a list published by the Minister from time to time;

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

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

(other than in relation to:

–       admission to our special class insofar as it is necessary in order to ascertain whether or not the student has the category of special educational needs concerned and/or

 

(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, with exception of;

·       (1) siblings of a student attending or having attended the school

·       (2) parents or grandparents of a student having attended the school.

 

In relation to (2) parents and grandparents having attended, a school may only apply this criterion to a maximum of 25% of the available spaces as set out in the school’s annual admission notice).

(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).

8.    Decisions on applications

All decisions on applications for admission to Scoil Iosef Naofa 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.

9.    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).

 

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

In accepting an offer of admission from Scoil Iosef Naofa, 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.

 

11. 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 Scoil Iosef Naofa 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

 

12. 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).

 

13. Waiting list in the event of over-subscription

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 in Scoil Iosef Naofa 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 Scoil Iosef Naofa 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.

 

14. 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.

 

15. 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:

Applications for enrolment during the school year will be considered subject to school policy, available space and the provision of information concerning attendance and the child’s educational progress.

Such applications will be dealt with on a case-by-case basis but will normally only be considered for admission on the first day of each new term unless the applicant is newly resident in the area.

 

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:

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 Scoil Iosef Naofa 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 Scoil Iosef Naofa 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. 

Junior Infants, with the exception of students transferring from another school, may only be admitted to the school prior to 31st of August of the relevant year.

 

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

This rule applies to all schools.

The board of Scoil Iosef Naofa 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.

 

17.  Arrangements regarding students not attending religious instruction

Our school is of a Catholic ethos and, in keeping with that ethos, children of all or no other faith are welcome to apply to this school.

We respect the decision of parents to withdraw their child/children from taking part in the religious education curriculum, religious ceremonies, school Masses, etc.

The following are the school’s arrangements for students, where the parent(s)/guardian(s) have requested that the student attend the school without attending religious instruction (etc.) in the school. These arrangements will not result in a reduction in the school day of such students:

A written request should be made to the Principal of the school. A meeting will then be arranged with the parent(s)/guardian(s) of the student, to discuss how the request may be accommodated by the school.

18.   Reviews/appeals

Review of decisions by the board of Management

The parents/guardians of 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 parents/guardians of 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.

 


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