Take some time out for yourself and join our online Yoga Class.
This is open to all Parents/Guardians of students in our school.
Beginning Monday November 16th and running for five Monday’s, 10am – 11am.
Please contact Ms. Doyle at hscl@phcol.ie or 087 – 0950451 to book your place.
Numbers are limited so don’t delay.

CKLP is organising a free online workshop for parents called Get Autism Aware. Registration for the workshop is via the Eventbrite link below. The workshop will be delivered by Dr. Susan Crawford  and you can read Susan’s profile here;

 https://www.getautismactive.com/about-get-autism-active/

 

The workshop is a collaboration between the Ability and SICAP programmes of CKLP who wish to offer support to the parents of children/young people with autism. There is an opportunity to submit questions in advance of the workshop to laura@countykildarelp.ie and Susan will try to address as many questions as is possible within the timeframe available.


 

Winners of our Covid 19 poster/essay competition

A picture of four of our five competition winners receiving their Naas Gift Cards; 
Ryley Castillio- 2nd year; Katelyn Coffey- 3rd year; Eben Abraham- 3rd year; Stephy Regi Paul- 5th year
A huge thank you to the Parents Association Library Sub Committee for their support and sponsorship of the prizes.
Congratulations to all the winners!

Dear Parents/ Guardians,

 

I hope this finds you well and that your sons and daughters are well settled back to school at this stage.

Thank you for your ongoing support as we continue to keep everyone as safe as possible in challenging circumstances. Our priority is the continuing education of all of the young people in our care and we compliment teachers and students on the high levels of work and engagement taking place. We have a blended learning model in place which will ensure the continuity of teaching and learning in all circumstances.

 

We have received some queries about the temperature in the building, toilet access, canteen facilities and after school study.

 

Regarding the temperature in the building, the heat is on but the windows and doors are open. The World Health Organisation have advised that ‘Ventilation is an important factor in preventing the virus that causes Covid 19 from spreading indoors…In all workplaces, schools and tourist accommodations, there should be fresh, clean air.’

We advise students to have a school jacket or at least a black jacket which they may wear in class if they are cold. We would also advise that students wear thermal underlayers to keep warm. It is not ideal but we believe that closing windows would be a serious risk to the health and safety of all at the moment.

In addition, while we strongly advise that students go outdoors during breaks, we have allocated spaces indoors to year groups and given access to classrooms for senior students who wish to stay indoors during breaks. We ask senior students to respect this privilege by ensuring rooms are clean and tidy when they leave them.

 

One of our measures when reopening the building was to open the toilets on all floors. Students were asked to cooperate and respect this. The majority of students have done so. However, a minority caused serious damage to the boys toilets on the 3rd floor and we have had issues of groups of students flocking to toilets at the break between classes. Apart from the fact that a maximum of 4 students may access toilets at any one time due to physical distancing, students know the procedure is to go to their next class and get teacher permission to use the toilets.

Consequently the toilets are locked briefly between classes and reopened once class begins.

 

We have a new canteen provider. They are Rafter’s Cafe and operate in other schools in the locality. They plan to open the canteen on the 19th of October.One of our requirements was a provider who could provide a cashless service. Rafters have developed an App which will allow students pre order and pre pay for their food in the canteen. There will be a dedicated queue for pre ordered food. There will also be a second service counter to reduce queues. Students will also be able to order on the day and pay by card or cash if necessary.

As part of the School Meals Programme students can access free breakfast before school in the mornings. They will be able to select 2 items from the breakfast menu.

One of the things we have noted since we reopened without canteen facilities is the reduction in litter. Please encourage your son/daughter to use the bins provided and to clean up after themselves.

 

We have received queries from students, particularly 6th years about the resumption of evening study. At the moment KWETB are still advising no after school activities. However we hope to be in a position to offer evening study to 6th year students after mid-term break.

We will keep you updated on this.

 

In the meantime, I thank you again for your ongoing support. Please continue to encourage students to maintain physical distance at all times, to wash and sanitise their hands regularly and to wear a mask correctly. Please check out the short video on our website made by the 6th year Prefects to highlight this.

We ask all students to make a great effort in the coming weeks to limit their social contacts, not to congregate in large groups and to please follow  public health advice for the good of the whole community.The next few weeks will be crucial in determining the type of Winter we will experience.

 

Finally, our Open Night for incoming 1st years will be virtual this year. A video showcasing the school will be available on our website this Thursday evening the 8th of October. 

 

Kind regards,

Caroline Herity

Principal

Dear Parents/ Guardians,

I hope this finds you all well.

As we move into our fourth full week of school I would like to thank you for your ongoing support and cooperation in keeping everyone as safe as possible in the current environment.

I would like to update you on how things have been going.

Students have been exceptionally good at wearing a face covering while in the school building.We note many students with their ziploc containing mask, wipes, hand sanitiser and we thank you for that.

The one way system is working, though we have had to tweak it as we used it.

One pinch point was the end of break and lunch time. While we were staggering the start of break time we are now also staggering the end of breaks and it is working better.

The weather has been kind to us and we have great outdoor space. We have taken delivery of 18 outdoor picnic tables with two more to come. We also have a large outdoor covered area under construction which will allow for an outdoor canteen/ classroom even in poor weather.

Most students go outside at break time and get a break from face coverings. This is good but also challenging. Young people gravitate towards each other during down time and physical distancing is proving a challenge.

The school is open and comprehensive training and planning is ongoing for blended learning in Piper’s Hill so that learning can continue in all situations. It is only fair that I alert you to the fact that teacher absences will be high this year and finding replacement staff is extremely challenging. Please be assured that when a teacher is out we do our very best to ensure continuity of teaching and learning. All teachers will make work available to students through Google Classroom. Work can also be corrected in this way.

One of our measures to ensure physical distancing is to allow students to wear their PE uniform on the day they have PE. We are confident from our risk assessment that this is a good measure. However we have noticed that this measure is being abused by many students. I refer you to our uniform policy at phcol.ie and ask you to please ensure you know the day your son/daughter has PE. On this day only, they should wear black tracksuit bottoms and a red Pipers Hill polo shirt. This is the only acceptable PE uniform.On all other days they should wear full school uniform and, while a white school polo shirt is acceptable, the myriad of tee shirts and multi coloured jackets being worn are not. We urgently request your support on this matter.

Traffic on the Kilcullen Road and in the campus has been an issue for a few years now. For two years we have engaged in ongoing discussions with KWETB and Kildare County Council to try to resolve matters to no avail. We understand the frustration of those stuck in traffic daily but must respectfully remind drivers to act responsibly at all times. Please do not allow young people exit cars until parked safely. Please do not pull into cycle lanes or make u turns on the Kilcullen Road. Our biggest concern is that a child will be injured or worse if some current driver behaviour does not change.

We have also been in ongoing discussions with Bus Eireann and private bus companies. We are satisfied they are now very clear that buses do not move off early because of the staggered end to our school day. There should be no need for students to rush to the bus at the end of the day as the drivers have given an undertaking to remain at the stop until 4.10pm.

The following are some of the ways we really appreciate your ongoing support

Please talk to your son/daughter about maintaining physical distance from their friends during break times

Please encourage them to frequently wash their hands and use hand sanitiser and continue to follow the one way system.

Please do not come to the school unless you have an appointment. If your son/daughter forgets something please phone us- do not come to the school.

Please use the Way to Pay online service.

It is extremely important that students are not sent to school if they feel unwell. Please keep your child at home if they are sick. All work can be accessed on Google Classroom.

Please let us know if there is a Covid 19 positive case in your household. This will be dealt with in confidence but will help us act and plan while we wait for HSE contact.

Please link in to our website and social media platforms. All updates and important announcements will be posted there.

If dropping or collecting your son/daughter to school please observe all safety measures on the roads.

Please ensure your son/ daughter is wearing full and correct uniform each day.

Please continue to encourage your son/daughter to avoid congregating in large groups and attending events in each others homes. It is really essential that all young people follow Public Health Advice both in and out of school if our measures are to work.

We have been trying to adhere to our calendar by putting scheduled meetings and events online. To date the Guidance information evening for parents/ guardians of 5th years and the 1st Year Welcome Evening can be seen online through our website.

We are currently working on a video to showcase our school for Open Night which was due to take place on 8/10/20.

Our Admissions Notice for 2021/22 will be published on the 21/9/20 and we will be accepting applications for 1st Year 2021 from the 2/10/20

A new company has been awarded the canteen contract. We will be planning with them in the coming weeks for a safe reopening of our canteen facilities.

We are awaiting KWETB advice on restarting evening study, homework club, extra curricular activities. 6th years and 3rd years will be prioritised for evening study.

Finally, we remind you that the school will be closed next Monday, 28th of September.

Thank you for taking the time to read this and may I thank you most sincerely for your ongoing support. We cannot do it without you.

I hope you stay safe and well

Kind regards,

Caroline Herity

Principal

Dear Parent/ Guardian,

Just a quick update on how things are going since we reopened the school a week ago.
We are delighted to have our students back in school with us and they have been a credit to you all.
Our planning and procedures are working well so far but as we see more students in the building at the same time we will be in a position to update these if necessary.
We have seen great compliance with the requirement to wear face coverings. Please assure your son/daughter that should they forget to bring one we have a supply of disposable masks. These are available at the front office, from myself or the Deputy Principals, from Year Heads and Tutors.
May I also commend students on the lack of litter throughout the school. It is so important that each person cleans up after themselves. As I said in a previous email it is neither safe nor fair to expect the cleaning staff to pick up partially eaten food.
The one way system is working well, although it takes a bit of getting used to. However, we are requesting that you would talk with your young person again about physical distancing.
This is working very well in class but we really need students to be more aware of the physical space between them before and after school, at break times and when on the corridors. 
They may just need to be reminded that maintaining physical distance from others is a measure to safeguard the health of the entire school community. We are asking that each student take personal responsibility on this matter.
Please also ensure students are attending school in full and correct uniform. PE is on one day a week and it is only on this day that black tracksuit bottoms and a red school polo shirt may be worn. 
Please also ensure your son/daughter wears either a school jacket or a black jacket.
We are encouraging students to get out in the fresh air as much as possible. The order has been placed for a covered outdoor canteen area and we will be taking delivery of 13 more picnic tables next week. Some class groups will also be making outdoor furniture. We have lots of outdoor space and we ask you to encourage your young person to get out doors as much as possible. 
Again, I would like to thank you for your ongoing support.
Kind regards,
Caroline Herity
Principal
Letter to Parents re day to day running of school
Student Checklists based on School Response Plan
Return Schedule 2020-21 (1)