Enrolment & Admission Policy

The Board of Management of St Audoen’s National School hereby sets out its Enrolment and Admission Policy in accordance with the provisions of the Education Act 1998 and the Board trusts that by so doing, parents will be assisted in relation to enrolment matters. The Chairperson of the Board of Management or the Principal Teacher will be happy to clarify any matters arising from this policy.

Decisions in relation to applications for enrolment are made by the Board of Management of the school.

The school depends on the grants and teacher resources provided by the Department of Education and Skills and it operates within the regulations laid down, from time to time, by the Department. The school Policy has regard to the resources and funding available.

This policy aims to ensure that the appropriate procedures are in place to enable the school

  • To make decisions on all applications in an open and transparent manner consistent with the Ethos, the Mission Statement of the school and legislative requirements
  • To make an accurate and appropriate assessment of the capacity of the school to cater for the needs of applicants in the light of the resources available to it and
  • To put in place a framework which will ensure effective and productive relations between students, parents and teachers where a student is admitted to the school.

 

 

Context, Resources, School Organisation & Curriculum

The school supports the principle of equality for all students regarding access to and participation in the school.

The school respects the diversity of traditions, values, beliefs, languages and ways of life in society.

The school acknowledges the right of parents to send their children to a school of the parent’s choice, subject to the resources available to the school including classroom accommodation, class size, teaching resources and financial resources and subject to the capacity of the school to provide for the needs of any applicant or student. It will make every effort to secure those resources – where the resources cannot be secured the school may refuse admission.

The school is staffed in accordance with the DEIS (Band 1) pupil – teacher ratios sanctioned by the Department and any additional teaching hours sanctioned by the Department in respect of curricular concessions, special needs, special programmes etc.

The capacity of the school to implement its desired curriculum, its broad range of educational programmes, its breadth of extra-curricular activities, its school plan and policies are dependent on the resources it receives.  Consequently, in determining its activities and programme for any school year the school must have due regard to the teaching, management and administrative resources and the accommodation, equipment and funding available to it.

 

Policy Considerations

The Board of Management of St Audoen’s National School reserves the right of admission if such admissions contravene Departmental guidelines on class size, etc.

The school will not refuse a child on the basis of ethnicity, special education needs, disability, political or religious beliefs, family or social circumstances, provided the necessary supports are in place in the school.

The Board of Management of St Audoen’s National School, respects the rights of the existing school community and the children already enrolled. Consequently, the Board of Management reserves the right to determine the maximum number of children in each class, bearing in mind:

  • Integration of children from Special Classes to Mainstream Classes
  • Health & Safety Concerns regarding Staff and Children
  • Available classroom space
  • Educational needs of the children
  • Presence of children with special needs
  • DES class size directives (The recommended class size in St Audoen’s NS  is  22:1 This will be adhered to in so far as possible, maximum class size being 25)
  • Appropriate Supports and Resources are available
  • Time of school year

 

Procedures – Application, Enrolment Criteria & Decision / Appeals

  • Failure to fully complete forms may result in refusal to admit a student.
  • In applying the criteria for enrolment, the school will take into account Gender Balance Male / Female and limitations in the size of classes.
  • Admission to the school is subject to the resources available to the school including classroom accommodation, class size, teaching resources and financial resources  and subject to the capacity of the school to provide for the needs of those who apply for admission. Where the school lacks the necessary resources to meet the needs of any applicant or student, it will make every effort to secure those resources-where the resources cannot be secured, the school reserves the unfettered right to refuse admission.
  • It is the responsibility of parents / guardians of any child to inform the school of any such needs on the enrolment application form for the child’s own welfare. In this context the school authorities will have equal regard for the welfare of all the students and their right to an education in an atmosphere that is not detrimental to their physical, emotional, moral, social or intellectual development.  Failure to fully complete the application form, failure to supply any relevant information requested by the school or failure to make reasonable arrangements to meet with the school authorities to discuss the application may result in a child being refused admission to the school.

 

Application for immediate admission in the current school year

  • Application forms are available from the school Reception.
  • Failure to fully complete forms will result in refusal to admit the applicant.
  • The behaviour record of a student in their previous school shall be considered.
  • The attendance record of a student in their previous school shall be considered.

 


Junior Infant Enrolment Procedure

The registration process is initiated on receipt by the school of a fully completed application form. This form must be signed and dated by one or both parents or guardians.

Date of application, child’s date of birth and copy of birth cert, address and telephone contact number must be provided for entry into the School Record of Applications File. 

Telephone calls or personal school visits concerning enrolment will be facilitated, but are not in themselves enrolment applications.

Entry in the School Record of Applications File means that an application will be considered in Term 2 (Spring time) of the relevant enrolment year, and will be evaluated on the basis of the criteria outlined in this policy.

Following this evaluation, the Principal will make a recommendation to the Board, listing proposed enrolments for the forthcoming year. Once an enrolment list is approved by the Board, all applicants will be notified in writing of the outcome and if refused admission will be notified of their entitlement to appeal under Section 29 of the Education Act 1998.

 

Please note:

Applications for admission to the Junior Infant Class must be made by December 20th of the year prior to which it is expected that the child will start school.

For example; Applications for Junior Infants for the Academic Year 2018/2019 should be made on or before Wednesday December 20th 2017.

Any applications after this date will be accepted and filed in the School Record of Applications File but may only be included if places are still available following the initial criteria.

Children must be at least four years of age on school commencement.

Junior Infant Applications will be accepted any number of years in advance of admission but does not guarantee admission. Priority criteria will be applied.

 

If the number of children on the List of Applicants exceeds the number of places available, the following prioritising criteria are used:

 

Criteria

1. (i) Priority is given to children attending St Audoen’s Pre School or (ii) brothers and sisters of children currently in the school or (ii) brothers and sister of children who have attended the school in the past.
2. If places are still available then places will be allocated on the basis of age, starting with the oldest applicant whose applications were made prior to the advised application date: December 20th of the year previous. 
3. If places are still available then places will be allocated to children of parents/grandparents who are past pupils of the school. If the class is oversubscribed within the application of this particular criterion, then those whose primary residence is furthest from the school will be eliminated first. 
4. Children of current teaching staff. 
5. If space is still available, class numbers are completed from the full List of Applicants, which is compiled and ordered according to the date of the original application.  The criteria are listed in order of priority when spaces are allocated under criterion 1 and space is still available, then criterion 2 comes into play and so on.  This prioritisation proceeds until all places have been allocated. 

 

 

Enrolment to SI – 6th Classes

 Applications for Classes for SI – 6th will be held for a maximum of two years, thereafter, if a place has not become available, parents/guardians must re-apply or notify the school in writing of their wish to continue with said application.

 

Criteria

1.(i) Priority is given to brothers and sisters of children currently in the school or (ii) who have attended the school in the past.
2.Families whose primary residence is in the immediate area of Meath Street Parish, starting closest to the school and radiating outwards from the school within the Parish
3. Children of parents who are past pupils of the school.
4. Children of current teaching staff.
5. If space is still available, class numbers are completed from the full List of Applicants, which is compiled and ordered according to the date of the original application.  The criteria are listed in order of priority when spaces are allocated under criterion 1 and space is still available, then criterion 2 comes into play and so on.  This prioritisation proceeds until all places have been allocated. 

 


The Enrolment of Children with Special Needs

  • Children with special needs will be resourced in accordance with the level of resources provided by the Department of Education and Skills to the Board of Management, their parents/guardians must provide the school with the report of an educational psychologist which recommends placement in a school like ours before registration can take place.
  • The Department of Education and Skills may recommend that pupils with special needs attend our resource teacher for a specified time per week. They might also allocate a special needs assistant for the child.
  • Notwithstanding the availability of such resources, parents of children who are unsatisfied with the level of educational provision in our school are advised to consider a special school is designed and resourced to specifically to cater for the needs of children with special educational needs.

 

The Enrolment of Children in ASD Classes

Subject to sufficient places being made available in the ASD class, the criteria for enrolment to the ASD class are as follows:.

  • All relevant reports and assessments must be given to the school prior to the child enrolling.
  • An Enrolment Application Form provided by the school should be fully completed by the parents/guardians on behalf of the child.
  •  A recent psychological assessment or a report from a member of a multi-disciplinary team should be provided. A multi-disciplinary team may consist of a Clinical Psychologist, Occupational Therapist, Speech & Language Therapist, Social Worker and a Physiotherapist. (“Multi-Disciplinary Team”). Please note all reports in operation on a child should be provided to the school for assessment by the Admissions Team. The withholding of reports from the school Admissions Team may invalidate an Enrolment Application at any time.
  • The child must have a primary diagnosis of Autism / Autistic Spectrum Disorder by the psychologist or a member of the Multi-Disciplinary Team.
  • There must be a recommendation by a member of the Multi-Disciplinary Team in the report that a special class placement in a mainstream school is both necessary and suitable for the child;
  • The child must be 4yrs of age on or before the 1st September if enrolling at Junior Infant level. The classes cater for children of Primary School age only – i.e. four years to thirteen years.
  • The parents of the child must accept and agree to the school’s Code of Behaviour and the terms of this policy.
  • An Acceptance letter must be returned to the school within the required time period.
  • Children should be resident within the Catchment Area which is defined as being a resident at a postal address within Dublin 8. Due to the shortage of ASD Classes applications from Dublin 2, Dublin 6 and Dublin 7 will be included in our ‘catchment’ area. All applications will be considered based on the complex need of the child.

 

Please note that fulfilling the enrolment criteria does not necessarily ensure enrolment if sufficient places are not available and/or sufficient classroom space is not available.The Board of Management policy states that the school at present can accommodate a maximum of two classes for children with Autism. The Department of Education & Skills states that the ratio for each class is a maximum six pupils to one teacher.

  • This policy states that the parents/guardians of the prospective candidates for the class must meet the principal, the class teacher and any other relevant parties before the child starts school.
  • The Board of Management reserves the right to refuse enrolment if they believe the school cannot meet the needs of a particular child.
  • The Board also reserves the right to suspend or expel a child under ‘Health & Safety’ regulations and in conjunction with the school ‘Code of Behaviour’

 

In the event that the number of children that apply for a place is greater than the number of places; such places will be filled on review of Enrolment Applications received in the following order of priority:

1: Current students of the school/students in the mainstream school 

2: Children living within the Catchment Area (which is defined as being a resident at a postal address within Dublin 8 – see criteria above) 

3: Children living outside the Catchment Area

 

Code of Behaviour:

It is accepted that children with special educational needs may display difficult, defiant or oppositional behaviours. All efforts will be made by the school to manage such behaviour using various strategies and through the implementation of the child’s IEP: Individual Education Plan.

 

 

Integration & Discharge Considerations:

The school promotes a policy of integration with age appropriate peers on a social level and ability appropriate on a curriculum level. It may not always be possible to integrate children in their age equivalent class due to the age profile of the children.

The level of integration/ reverse integration that each child receives in St. Audoen’s National School is collectively decided upon by those professionals who deal with the child each day i.e. teachers (both special education teachers and mainstream), the principal and support staff.

The views of other interested parties such as Psychologists, Speech Therapists and Occupational therapists will be taken into account when making these decisions. Parents will be consulted on an ongoing basis and their feedback will play an integral part in deciding upon the appropriate level of integration.

Pupils who are fully integrated into mainstream (usually by the time they reach mid – senior cycles) are discharged with their class groups. Discharge from an ASD Class may also occur if the school authorities and relevant professionals, in consultation with parents / guardians, feel that the child’s placement is not appropriate.

 


Refusal to Enrol and/or a Decision to Exclude

The school reserves the right to refuse enrolment/admission to any student where either –

  1. The student has special needs such that even with additional resources available from the Department of Education & Skills and the Department of Health, the school cannot meet such needs and/or provide the student with an appropriate education.
  2. The school endeavours to support each child on an individual basis and ensure that it is an appropriate school placement for the child. However, if it is the opinion of the Board of Management that the student poses an unacceptable risk to the health and safety of other students, to school staff or to school property, a decision may be made not to enrol the child and/or to exclude the child from the school.

 

Code of Behaviour:

All pupils, including special needs pupils and non special needs pupils are subject to the School Code of Behaviour and Health & Safety Statement.  Where a child’s behaviour impacts in a negative way on the other children in an ASD Class or a Mainstream Class, to the extent that their constitutional right to an education is being interfered with as judged by the Board of Management of the School, the school reserves the right to advise parents that a more suitable setting should be found for their child.

 

Please Note: Receipt of acknowledgement of an enrolment application by the school does not constitute an offer of a place nor does it guarantee a place in the school. It is simply the recording of an application for admission to our school. Decisions in relation to applications for enrolment are made by the Principal/Board of Management in accordance with our enrolment & admission policy.

This is an abbreviated version if the Enrolment Policy for the purpose of our school website, full policy available from the school.

Aug. 2017