Petition is successful with 434 signatures
To: Joe McHugh & Eoghan Murphy
Help our school... grant extension for Shellybanks educate Together teachers
We won!! Extension given. True community spirit and Board superpower help.
Grant an extension today for Shellybanks Sandymount Educate Together school regarding student number directives. Stop us losing a teacher this Friday!
Why is this important?
Shellybanks - Educate together school has 9 pupils arriving in December.
We currently fall 4 students short of numbers.
It is a brand new building in Sandymount. It represents all religions.
As a developing school it is expected to have more pupils - There is currently a directive from the Department of Education requiring developing schools to have a total of 5 additional pupils more than a fully developed school.
This makes it harder for the 4%, yes only 4%, of multi denominational schools to get started.
Shellybanks are only asking for an extension to December - given the current Brexit climate the term extension should be very clear.
Allow our students teachers and school to thrive.
Health and safety will not allow the classes be combined - so its not safe for the students!
In December there will be the required (additional) number of students in the school.
Please support this petition to get change Fast. Thank you
There is currently a directive from the Department of Education requiring developing schools to have a total of 5 additional pupils more than a fully developed school.
i.e. In our situation, as a developing school, we are required to have 281 students to retain 11 class teaching posts, while a developed school is required to have 276 to retain 11 class teaching posts. As of the deadline mandated by the Dept of Ed, our total enrolment had unexpectedly dropped to 277, which meant we were just 4 students short of retaining 11 class teaching posts.
What this now means for Shellybanks is that the Department expects us to divide some of our year groups into multi-grade classes in order to distribute our children across 10 classrooms. While this is far from ideal, in normal circumstances it could be accommodated. However, in our current premises, our fire certificate does not allow us to accommodate these mandated class sizes from the Dept. In other words, we find ourselves in an impossible position, because the Dept. says the rules are we need 281 students, but the fire cert means we can’t combine classes.
We have known and prepared for the loss of a teacher in 1st class since August and have been communicating this situation to those families and staff affected. We are now challenging the decision made to lose the second post.
So the Dept. is asking us to obey one rule, while they choose to ignore another, namely Health & Safety. We simply refuse to put our students and staff at risk in this way!
Our Board of Management appealed to the department based on these health and safety concerns. In past appeals, we have been successful in retaining our teaching posts. However, in this instance, the Dept. is simply taking the post from the school, with no recognition of the Health and Safety, and, critically, with zero direction as to how we can safely accommodate teaching and learning.
We have also informed the Dept.that we expect an additional 9 pupils to enrol before Dec 2019 and have requested an extension based on this information, but to no avail.
At this stage we have exhausted all avenues & resources over an extended period to try to overturn this decision, but the Department will not grant an extension, nor accept our appeal until the numbers are met.
See below for additional timeline of events
This is incredibly frustrating and disappointing, and we want to assure you that the safety of the children as well as minimising disruption in teaching and learning are our number one priorities.
What We Ask Of You
We need you, our community and parent body, to support us by reaching out to our TDs and local representatives to explain the situation, so they can raise this through the relevant government channels. Please feel free to show them this communication from the Board of Mgmt.