• College online graduations should not be a replacement graduation during COVID-19
    It is important because as many of us it will be a once in a lifetime achievement which should be proudly received and celebrated not virtually.
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    Created by Roisin Foran Picture
  • Keep the cycle lane on Shannon Bridge
    Covid 19 infection rates are rising again. The crisis is not over and requirements for social distancing are still vital. Any removal of mobility measures designed to facilitate safe movement into the city is dangerously premature. Shannon Bridge is a crucial transport corridor for schools. Over 3,500 children will soon travel to schools directly served by Shannon Bridge. Provision must be made for safe active travel to these schools. This is mandated by the National Transport Authority, Green Schools Ireland, and the Department of Education; The Department of Transport guidelines state 'use public transport only for essential journeys, walk or cycle if possible.' The COVID-19 Response Plan by the Dept. of Education for the safe and sustainable reopening of Primary and Special Schools states 'promote alternative means for children to get to school in a safe way, including walking, cycling and more generally in reducing the impact on public transport'. (July 2020). The Green Schools Plan 'An Ideas Document for Safe Access to Schools' also reiterates the need to prioritize active travel, including walking and cycling, and suggests the implementation of 'a cycle bus or walk-and-stride facilities'. (July 2020). In installing a cycle lane to provide safe travel for cyclists and a safer passage for pedestrians along the pathway- now insulated from motor vehicles- the Council has acknowledged the need for such infrastructure. Removal of such infrastructure is a retrograde step for the Council, when other local authorities across the country are introducing cycle infrastructure to support people who cycle and those that want to cycle but feel its unsafe to do so due to fear of accident, driver hostility and current route layout. Up to 40 children and parents from the Cycle Bus (which serves 2 primary schools in the city centre) use the inbound lane to cross the Shannon each morning on route to school and work. Before the lane was opened exclusively to cyclists and pedestrians, these children shared a lane of traffic with cars, vans, buses and HGV’s on a daily basis. It was, all would agree, the most unsafe aspect of the Cycle Bus’ journey each morning. If Limerick wants to support the increasing numbers of people cycling, then the Council must support 'people first' measures like maintaining a safe segregated cycle lane on one of our bridges.
    915 of 1,000 Signatures
    Created by Limerick Cycle Bus Limerick Cycling Campaign Limerick Pedestrian Network Picture
  • Stop quarry application near new special needs school
    The noise pollution, dust, and traffic a quarry only 1/2 a kilometre away from the school would create throughout the day would be detrimental to the peaceful, quiet, and healthy learning environment needed for students with special needs. This is a new school being built, and nearly completed, at a location designed especially for these special students with various disabilities. The quarry application must be denied as such to protect the rights of these disabled students with special needs.
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    Created by Tracy McGinnis Picture
  • Restore Portlaw Bus Service
    Public transport is essential. 2000 people in Portlaw have no bus service since March. This is extremely worrying not just for those without cars but with Schools and Colleges gearing up for return in less than a month,people need real public transport. The wider community also need to access urban centres for work,healthcare and services.
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    Created by Una Dunphy Picture
  • Restrictive Intervention and seclusion of children and young people with additional needs; NI
    Schools across Northern Ireland are entrusted with the learning and well being of some of the most vulnerable children into their care. The recent private member's motion tabled by Alliance Party's Mr Chris Little, Member of Local Assembly and Department of Education Committee Chair, highlights the need to discuss the use of unregulated restrictive interventions and seclusion applied to children with additional needs and learning disabilities across schools in Northern Ireland. As a parent of a child who experienced unregulated restraint and seclusion in his previous special school, I would encourage you to consider the everyday harm caused by restraint and seclusion. I urge you to understand the importance of addressing this issue and to take action by asking your MLA to support the motion as an urgent non- political matter which affects all children and young people in receipt of education and support services. The current policies for managing behaviours of concern in schools stem from disciplinary guidance which is used to deal with misbehaviour or truancy. In practice this means children with additional emotional and support needs routinely experience restrictive interventions that range from coercive practices, to restraint and seclusion (including use of dark rooms) to manage and control behaviours of concern, frequently described as "challenging behaviour". Restrictive intervention are often applied without malice, as a result of training provided to schools and support staff. Such training is reportedly delivered to train teachers and support staff in how to intervene with children by the use of restraint or seclusion in a crisis. However, lack of adequate resourcing reportedly results in the use of 'crisis management' strategies on a daily basis - without regulation, recording or reporting to parents and families. This causes distress and everyday harm for our children and young people. Deescalation training and low arousal approaches such as those outlined by Professor Andy McDonnell (www.studio3.org) are examples of alternative strategies best suited to a child-friendly educational environment. These techniques offer an earlier intervention approach to support and reduce the need for hands on or confrontational and distressing physical interventions. Low arousal approaches to support prevent everyday harm. In contrast the reliance on the use of restraint or seclusion in health, social care and schools has been shown to traumatise children and young people who are often already vulnerable due to disabilities. There have to date been several reports published on the significant physical injuries, emotional trauma, and in some tragic cases even death. Reports below from Ireland and UK:- https:///www.challengingbehaviour.org.uk/driving-change/rrisclaunch.html http://www.inclusionireland.ie/content/news-items/1707/launch-shining-light-seclusion-and-restraint-schools Scotland and England have been campaigning on the prevention of restraint and seclusion. Beth Morrison of PABSS/ICARS worked alongside the University of Warwick analysing case studies from many families where their children had experienced significant harm on a daily basis by the use of restraint or seclusion in the course of their education. The harrowing findings of this report was launched at the House of Lords by Lady Sheila Hollins in February. The Department of Education have a Nurture Initiative to support the social and emotional needs of children with behaviour difficulties, which might otherwise create barriers in their education. We ask that restraint and seclusion be eradicated from all but last resort/crisis interventions. Instead of restrictive practices, ''nurturing'' children and young people with additional needs and learning disabilities seeks to provide a hands off, harm free environment. Thank you for supporting children and young people with additional support needs and intellectual disabilities, ensuring a safer, supported education where every child can thrive. Show your support on Twitter #EverydayHarm. See the British Association of Social Work NI's Twitter post - in opposition to restrictive interventions bit.ly/2Pe5IE0 and the supporting briefing paper for the private member's motion bit.ly/3jVLoQp "Difference is of the essence of humanity and therefore respect for that difference should be very very normal and very common" John Hume, Nobel Laureate.
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    Created by Deirdre Shakespeare
  • Private Small Bus Operators Of Ireland
    Our industry moves Ireland , school children,Airports, train stations ,Ports ,Government Departments infant when groups of people need to be moved around we are the industry that does it . We are the ones that move Ireland with out us no one gets to their destinations in one vehicle . Our full size bus takes 6 cars of the road for every full size Coach .We transport school children on a daly basis .Our precious daily cargo is people dont wait till its to late when the operators are no longer in business . School transport have been totally ignored in relation to getting back on the road and having extra cleaning time cleaning equipment and not funding. Refund on vehicles that have been parked up since March on road tax,cvrt or extenstions Allowing this industry claim vat on all business like our counter parts in Northern Ireland.
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    Created by Silverlining Coach Hire Picture
  • Keep our schools safe- face masks strongly advised!
    Public Health advise currently advises on social distancing of 2m and the wearing of face masks/coverings in public settings when indoors. Schools fall into this category and it is very apparent that social distancing will not be possible at 2m and unlikely in many settings at 1m. We need to afford our students and teachers and school ancillary staff the same HSA and health guidelines as other workers. Let’s keep our schools safe and open- the virus is airborne and therefore the safest return to school includes the wearing of face masks/coverings In classrooms and crowded indoor school settings.
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    Created by Siobhan Ní Dhubhlainn
  • Revoke Green Card for NI travel to Eire.
    This is important because no such issue is being considered with regard to Scotland, England or Welsh borders within UK, or with UK, Welsh or Scottish travel to the South of Ireland. NI is being penalised on our own Island, to travel within our island, on the back of a BREXIT that the majority of NI Citizens voted against in the first place. This is our chance to stand and take our place today in the fight for tomorrow and demand Boris Johnson, Taoiseach and the NI Assembly Ministers listen to and seriously reconsider this decision.
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    Created by JsaJsa O'Neill Picture
  • Sign Language and Braille taught in Primary and Secondary schools
    It is important that we teach all children equally, as the education system as it stands is particularly ableist. As Sign Language and Braille are both universally used, this would aid the global communication of all children and teenagers throughout the course of their lives. It is just as important as English within our education system.
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    Created by Ava Ní Mhoildearg
  • Funding Essential to Fully Reopen Schools
    Parents for Change is a grassroots activist group helping parents assert their voice in Irish society. The right to education is at the forefront of our constitution. Schools are important for the social, emotional and educational development of our children. Schools also provide the economic benefit of stable and cost-effective childcare in a society with a desperately inadequate childcare system. There has been a glaring omission in the roadmap to opening Irish society: schools. There are less than 7 weeks left until the start of the next educational term, yet there is no definitive plan for the education of our children. If the rest of Irish society can open safely, then so too can our schools, with the proper planning and investment. Other countries have shown us that this can be done safely and current HSE research suggests that schools are not a high risk setting for Covid 19. Where there is political will, there is a way. Parents are no longer willing or able to juggle working from home, caring for children and home schooling. Parents accepted this as an emergency measure, but this is no longer acceptable. Plans for blended learning are not a sustainable option for parents or children. The Covid 19 crisis has highlighted many inadequacies in the Irish educational system: years of systemic underfunding; poor pupil/teacher ratios (one of the highest in the OECD); poor school infrastructure including small classrooms; the use of prefabs and no hot water etc. The Department of Education needs to show decisive leadership on the issue of schools reopening fully. Schools cannot operate in a vacuum and direction must come from the top down. Parents for Change supports teachers, principals and teachers’ unions in their drive to open schools safely and are therefore advocating for immediate funding packages to be made available. If funding is in place schools can: · Open fully in September 2020. · Hire more teachers/SNAs to reduce class sizes and allow for social distancing. · Use substitute teachers to fill in for staff absences due to Covid or other illnesses. · Build temporary or permanent structures on school grounds to allow for smaller classes/social distancing. · Hire alternative venues for classes to allow for social distancing (local sports clubs etc). · Hire more cleaners. · Improve cleaning and hygiene standards, including availability of hot water. · Provide face coverings if age appropriate. · Implement strong policies on personal responsibility and sickness within the school community. · Arrange staggered pick up and drop off times for pupils. · Provide safe school transportation. · Provide technology to pupils where necessary to allow them to participate in online learning if in social isolation/quarantine. · Provide extra support for vulnerable children where there might be limited capacity for teaching in the home and ensure they are not left behind. If blended learning is used, it must be for short, specific time periods (e.g. educating children during social isolation/quarantine). Parents need to be able to access government funded paid leave from work during this period and the government must negotiate this with employers. Schools, ECL and childcare are the bedrock of the economy and should be treated like frontline, essential services. Without them, parents cannot participate in the economic recovery of our country. We must invest now in education both for the health of our economy and our nation. We cannot afford not to. Please sign our petition.
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    Created by Jane Toolan
  • Prioritise school re-openings in September 2020
    Remote learning is not a feasible long term substitute to in-school education. Re-opening of schools should be prioritised over the aviation and tourism industries.
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    Created by Molly Hurley
  • Outdoor Education as a COVID solution
    As children return to school in Ireland, the risk of a second wave of COVID will grow. Most schooling means spending long hours, indoors, in close contact but it doesn't have to be that way. A way to minimise this risk, whilst benefiting from nature, is to teach outdoors as much as possible. This has already been done in previous pandemics and is now being tried in Denmark, USA and UK amongst other countries m as part of the covid response. There are many co-benefits to child well-being in spending more time outside, such as nurturing a closer connection to nature and fighting obesity. I am calling on the government to consider this as part of the return to school and to provide resources to schools to build suitable outdoor class shelters. See: https://childhoodbynature.com/the-case-for-learning-outside/
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    Created by Lorna Tevnan