Message from Principal of Clogher Road Community College Lesley Byrne

September 2020 is fast approaching, and the St. Kevin’s Community is looking forward to opening our doors as part of the Educate Together network, and there is a great energy in the school as we prepare for this.

One of the most visual signifiers will be our name change.  We have had an extensive period of consultation with students, parents, staff and the wider community, and we are delighted to announce that Clogher Road Community College will be opening its doors in September 2020.

Visitors’ Evening
We are delighted to invite you to our Visitors’ Evening on Thursday May 7th at 6.30pm. Please email us on info@stkevins.cdetb.ie if you intend to attend, so we have an approximate idea of numbers on the night.

New Developments in the School
We were delighted to be able to add Music to the curriculum this year and the uptake is very encouraging. Our Music department is flourishing, all our students have the opportunity to take part in one on one music lessons with tutors from the Royal Irish Academy of Music, and upcoming performances include being guest performers at the Belvedere College Music Evening.  

    

Language Exchanges and Global Networking
We had our inaugural German Exchange with Ochsenhausen, where 12 of our students stayed with families in the beautiful Bavarian countryside, a truly wonderful experience for all involved.  And we are excited to be hosting our new German friends back in Dublin at the end of March.  

As part of a programme to grow our global network, two of our students spent a week in Boston College on the Ever to Excel programme during the summer.  We are also developing links with one of the top performing schools in Salford in the UK, and 20 of our students are visiting the school for a soccer tournament in March. 

The Lynott Library

The Lynott Library is host to many creative and cultural endeavours; our Dungeons and Dragons literacy initiative is proving very popular, we hosted 12 schools for a chess tournament, and many of our local primary schools took part in an Ancient Roman Civilisation workshop.  Our TYs are currently enjoying their experience of a 12 week taster in Classical Studies. 

If you have any queries, please contact me:

Lesley Byrne
Principal,
St. Kevin’s College
Clogher Road,
Crumlin,
Dublin 12
Ph: 01 4536397
info@stkevins.cdetb.ie

One of the most exciting additions has been our aquaponics system. We are committed to increasing student awareness of sustainability and climate justice, and our closed aquaponics system is an innovative and thought provoking way to encourage debate, research and action on how we source our food, what impact our actions have on the oceans and how the future of urbanisation is green. We are very lucky to have such space around us and the allotments and our horticulture modules for first year complement this important work.

As part of our Digital Literacy Plan, we introduced coding as a short course for First Years.  This has been met with resounding positivity and we are delighted to celebrate winning the Leinster Championship at the VEX robotics competition.  Over the February midterm one of our two computer rooms is being upgraded to be a project based learning hub complete with 3D printers.  



We are also in the process of converting one of our spaces into a sensory room, to support some of our students who would benefit from the opportunity to have quiet time out sessions during a busy school day.  

Our newly renovated Guidance Office on the top floor is alive with conversations, plans and dreams being made into reality for our 6th years who are exploring options from law and teaching to apprenticeships and job opportunities. We are very focused on the individual and encouraging them to explore what drives them rather than what points dictate to them.  Our school minibus driver has been kept busy with trips to and from different campuses giving them a taster of college life. A new feature to the guidance programme has been lunchtime talks, where different representatives from universities or the world of work meet our students during lunch and share their experiences with them.

We were delighted to host the Ambassador to Thailand, Tony Cotter, who gave an enlightening talk on Ireland’s role on a global level.  He also presented the school with a UN flag and a copy of the Sustainable Goals.  

Our basketball team have been training hard in our gym for their upcoming final in March; there is great excitement around the school for it and we look forward to going as a school community to support them in the National Basketball Arena.

Finally, wellbeing is at the heart of everything we do here, and we are delighted to be one of only ten schools in the country wo is nominated as Jigsaw’s One Good School.  This is a comprehensive support that has involved student led workshops, training of peer mentors to deliver programmes to younger years, staff self care workshops, and we had the first of three parent support mornings that was really welcomed by our parents.  

We welcome visitors at any stage. If you would like to take a visit, meet some of our students or teachers please feel free to contact the school on info@stkevins.cdetb.ie and we hope to see you at our Visitors’ Evening on May 7th at 6.30pm.

Follow our journey on Instagram @st.kevinscollegecrumlin or on twitter @stcrumlin

 

23Mar/20

Update on the ETHX Campaign: Wrap-Up

Dear Parent,

We’re writing today with our last update to you all. The ETHX campaign was formed to address the lack of second-level, multi-denominational, co-educational schools in Dublin 6, 6W, 8 and 12. We feel that the situation has changed sufficiently that it’s time to dissolve the campaign. So read on for updates, links to further information and our wrap-up message!

Harold’s Cross Educate Together Secondary School – Educate Together were awarded the patronage of the secondary school planned for the Harold’s Cross Greyhound Track site after the parental preference process. The school will open in September 2020. Please see full information here

St. Kevin’s College to become a CDETB/Educate Together second-level school. Please see further information from the Advisory Group on the change management process here. We have been advised that the Advisory Group intends to issue another update in Term 3. Please also see further information from the school’s new principal, Lesley Byrne, here , including an invitation to their planned Open Evening in May.

The campaign truly was a group effort, and the committee is very grateful to everyone who gave their time, came to meetings, came to the protest, spoke or wrote to their political representatives, shared information with their friends and peers, or helped in any other way – thank you! 

The mailing list will be deleted after this message is sent. 

As one last action, can we suggest that you inform yourself about these two new schools and help spread the word in your community that we have better options now!

On behalf of the committee, we wish to send all the best to you and your families.

Róisín Kelly
Chairperson

 

24Jun/19

Letter 07 06 19 to Forward Planning Unit

Letter 07 06 19 to Forward Planning Unit

The ETHX committee have written a letter to the new Principal of the Forward Planning section in the Department of Education in the hope that she will have a fresh and pragmatic approach to our concerns regarding the planning of the new post-primary school at Harold’s Cross. We outline our concerns in this letter and appeal to the new Principal to address the following issues:

• Discrimination with the regards to access to education.
• Fragmentation of existing school communities to the detriment of children’s health
• No choice and no voice for parental preference

Letter 07 06 19 to Forward Planning Unit

10May/19

Letter from the Office of the Minister for Education & Skills

Despite the HUGE support for our campaign, the response from Minister for Education Joe McHugh to change the school planning district for the new HX secondary school to includeD8/D12 was a NO!

Please read the letter from the Office of the Minister for Education & Skills and respond how you wish to the Minister.

The ETHX campaign will be sending an update on how we will proceed with the campaign. We will continue to challenge this. We appreciate your continued support.

07May/19

Freedom of Information request

Information released by Department of Education & Skills, under a Freedom of Information request by Sophie Nicoullaud, Green Party local candidate.
These tables show that the secondary schools in Dublin 6 are only oversubscribed because children travel from Dublin 8 and Dublin 12 (among other areas).
The new school planned for Harold’s Cross should include Dublin 8 and Dublin 12 in it’s catchment area.
29Apr/19

Letter to the Minister April 2019

Dear Minister,

As a group we are disappointed that apart from one holding email (April 4th) we have received no acknowledgement or substantive engagement from the Department on the issues raised at our meeting on February 13th last.  While the group were not expecting an immediate response and understand that there may be complexities in balancing various interested parties’ rights, it was represented to us at the meeting that there would be engagement and an open line of communication with the Department and Minister through your office.

We had felt positive following the meeting and believed we were no longer in the frustrating position of having no engagement or response from the Department, as had been the case with the current Minister’s predecessor. It is this lack of meaningful engagement by public representatives and lack of transparency with the system that results in groups such as ours who are seeking to engage in a process in a respectful way feeling marginalised.  We have always attempted to address these issues through advocacy and participation on a principled and reasonable basis and expected similar in return. The matter is not simply a policy issue for us but something that directly affects us and goes to the root of our inalienable constitutional rights as parents. It cannot simply be put on the backburner as when it comes to giving our children access to the best education possible time is of the essence.

The parents and primary school children of Dublin 8 and Dublin 12 deserve choice and a voice and full unfettered access to the new secondary schools being opened in their local community on the same basis as their more privileged (when it comes to choices in education) neighbours.

I am sure the Department acknowledges that it makes sense to ensure that catchments surrounding proposed new schools service the local communities to which they are adjacent, where those local communities (Dublin 8 and Dublin 12) are severely lacking in real and sustainable choice for second level education.  Having to travel through and well past those areas in the densest traffic in the country to access choice in education is ludicrous.

We are not looking for a redraft of the guiding principles being followed by forward planning.  We are seeking a level of logic and flexibility by having the two school planning districts of Dublin 8 and Dublin 12 included in the catchment for the Harold’s Cross school.  Other schools have a catchment comprising four school planning districts and catchments have in the past been revised.  Such a move would demonstrate clearly that the Department is willing to engage with parents (give credence to parental preference) and children and believes that all local children are entitled to access new schools being opened on an equal footing to their neighbours. It would identify the current minister as one not afraid to embrace change and understanding the central role of education in ensuring children’s wellbeing.

We would be grateful if you could bring this and previous correspondence to the Minister’s attention and we await your response or at the very least an indication of when we can expect further engagement from the Department on the issue.

Kind regards

ETHX Committee

05Apr/19

New schools serving school planning areas

School Planning Area  Served* No. of Students* Opened/Opening* Location of school/Status
Dublin 2, 4, 6 and 8 1000 2018 Permanent location will be Rosamund Park, Sandymount, Dublin 4.
Educate Together awarded patronage.
Dublin 6, 6W and Clonskeagh (D.14) 1000 2020 Planned location: Harold’s Cross ‘Greyhound’ site, Dublin 6.
Patronage process to start imminently.
Dublin 2, 4. 600 2021 DIT School of Music building, Rathmines, Dublin 6 being acquired apparently.
Patronage process will probably run in Q1 2020.

*Source: Department of Education & Skills Press release, April 2018. https://www.education.ie/en/Press-Events/Press-Releases/2018-press-releases/PR18-04-13.html

25Mar/19

Call to Action – March 2019

Dear Parents,

It is over a month since our meeting with Minister Joe McHugh and representatives from the Department of Education and Skills. In that time, we have received no official follow-up on expanding the catchment area of the Harolds Cross school site to include Dublin 8 and Dublin 12.

The Department of Education and Skills repeatedly tell us that Dublin 6/6W schools are oversubscribed, while Dublin 8 and 12 schools are undersubscribed, but a recent Freedom of Information (FOI) request has yielded a staggering result. Dublin 12 represents the 2nd largest population of post-primary school going children in Dublin 6/6W. Combined with Dublin 8 (a growing primary school population that we will see peak in 2025) they account for 21% of the Dublin 6/6W post-primary school going population.

Currently one in four children migrate from Dublin 12 daily to access post-primary schools and education in Dublin 6/6W.

Why is this?

The ETHX committee and working groups have decided on three core actions for the coming month. Our goal is to grab the attention of the Minister and the Department of Education and Skills, and to push our issue to the top of their agenda.

Action 1: Political Representation

We need to maintain pressure on our political representatives. The Department of Education and Skills will not budge on this issue. Only political pressure and parent power will see the catchment increased to include Dublin 8 and 12.

Please click here to view a template letter/email that you can personalise and forward to your local political representatives.

In addition, with local elections fast approaching, we would ask you to raise the issue with any political representatives canvasing in your area.

If our campaign is printed on their literature, we would ask you to call them out on it and to challenge them on any actions on our behalf, what results they have had and how they are going to communicate on this issue once they have left your doorstep.

Action 2: Social Media

We the parents have met in large numbers; now we need to give our children, the students and future students, the chance to be heard.

We are making a call-out for content for our social media platforms (Facebook and Twitter).

All formats will work: short videos, pictures, drawings and quotes. Here are some suggested questions that might help when putting a piece together:

– What is your name? (optional)
– What is your postcode? (optional)
– What do you want to be when you grow up?
– What are your favorite subjects in school?
– What do you enjoy most about school?
– When you think about school, what is most important to you?
– How do you travel to school?
– Who do you travel to school with?

Please send all content to ethxschool@gmail.com and we will post it to our Facebook site and share it on Twitter.

If you wish to tweet as a parent on our campaign, please feel free to include some or all of the following hashtags are #ETHX, #parentpower, #ittakesavillage, #ireland2040, #nochild2020.

Please be sure to include our Twitter handle, @ETHXCampaign, as well as @McHughJoeTD and @education_ire the Minister’s and Department of Education and Skills handles.

Action 3: Grow our Network

On a local level, we are looking for campaign representatives in primary schools in D6, D6W, D8 and D12.

We need to demonstrate to the Minister and Department of Education and Skills that we represent a large number of voters. Also, it is important that parents in all types of schools know about the campaign and that there might be a secondary school alternative available soon for their child.

Suggestions to promote the ETHX campaign in your primary school are listed below:

– Send a message to class WhatsApp groups or email lists about the campaign
– Put up posters on school noticeboards  or local boards
– Give a talk at the next PTA meeting about the need for another secondary school (or invite someone from the ETHX campaign committee to talk)

We understand that each school is different in terms of communication routes, culture etc, so you may need to adapt the above for your school environment.
The campaign committee is available to help you with information, posters, drafting messages etc as needed.

This is a national issue, not just a local one. If you know of any communities with children/young adults who cannot access a local school due to catchment area please ask them to get in touch ethxschool@gmail.com, we want to hear from them and we want to work with them.

We look forward to hearing from you and thank you in advance for all your contributions and efforts.
Please do get in touch if you have any questions.

Kind regards,

Deirdre & Roisin
Chairperson & Secretary.
ETHX Campaign

What is the ETHX campaign about?

Choice and a Voice: Over 150 children will leave Educate Together primary schools in Dublin 8 and Dublin 12 in 2025 to a dearth of post-primary educational choice. There is no non-fee paying, co-educational, multi-denominational second-level school offering a full Leaving Certificate in our local area. Our children are being unfairly prejudiced and discriminated against. We as parents need to make choices for our children’s education that make no sustainable, geographical or demographical sense. At the moment, for example, children from Dublin 8 have to travel to Sandymount (to Sandymount Park ETSS, approx. 5km away) or Blackrock (to Newpark Comprehensive, approx. 10km away) for continuity of ethos. By excluding Dublin 8 and Dublin 12 from the catchment area, we will have no voice in the upcoming patronage survey and continue to have no choice in the post-primary education we desire for our children.
Community Continuity: We are extremely concerned about the exclusion of Dublin 8 and Dublin 12 from the catchment area for the proposed post-primary school in Harold’s Cross. The current catchment area is listed by the Department of Education & Skills as Dublin 6, Clonskeagh and Dublin 6W. Our community is being fragmented and dispersed, and our children are being denied the opportunity to create lasting friendships from primary school through to Leaving Certificate. This site represents a real and viable solution to our needs, and would provide our children with a harmonious transition to second level, and the continuity in education and community that they deserve.
Parental Preference: The ETHX campaign represents a cohesive solution to the patronage and demographic demand regarding the provision of a new second-level school at the Harold’s Cross site. As evident in the demographic spread of our mailing list (750+) and active committee members (45+), our campaign has significant support from parents of children attending a majority of primary schools in the Dublin 8, 12, 6 and 6W areas, where there is a proven lack of access to a co-educational, multi-denominational, democratic, second-level school.
09Mar/19

PUBLIC MEETING 31st January 2019

Will you help us change the minds of politicians and the Minister for Education on the new Harold’s Cross second-level school catchment area? Children from Dublin 8 and 12, and not just Dublin 6 and 6W, should be eligible to attend this school in their locality.

The ETHX campaign will hold a public meeting in the Griffith Barracks school hall on Thursday 31 January at 7.30pm. Politicians and public representatives will be there. We will be there. Will you? We really need your support.

Please sign up to attend on the night by clicking here.

23May/18

Letter to Minister Bruton 18 May 2018

Minister Bruton,
Department of Education and Skills,
Marlborough Street,
Dublin 1,
D01 RC96

Ref: 1801593 /KM

Dear Minister Bruton,

We refer to our letter of the 16th March 2018 and we are disappointed that we have received no response to date.

Since that letter the Department of Education and Skills announced a number of new schools in April. While we welcome the announcement, the exclusion of Dublin 8 and Dublin 12 from the catchment area for the proposed school in Harold’s Cross (or indeed any school) is most disheartening and in our view lacks logic.

We have however noted the reference to a “Regional Solution” being applied to Harold’s Cross proposed school and we are calling formally on the Department to use this to extend the catchment area to Dublin 8 and Dublin 12, two areas totally neglected in the provisions of appropriate second level school options.
As previously stated we are a group of parents resident in Dublin 6, Dublin 6W, Dublin 8 and Dublin 12 with children attending a variety of primary schools together in the area.
There is a lack of access to a co-educational, multi-denominational, democratically run, non-fee paying second level school in our area to service the needs of our Community. There is no harmonious transition to second level available to this community.

We are ready and can provide the Department of Education and Skills with a cohesive solution to address patronage and demographic demand for this geographical area. We have a database of over 1,000 parents resident in the Dublin 6, Dublin 6W, Dublin 8 and Dublin 12 area who clearly in the interest of inclusivity, request a secondary school under the patronage of Educate Together in and to serve this geographical area. The children of this geographical area are not currently catered for by any second level school with a similar ethos which is co-educational, provides a full curriculum and is not feepaying. The Harold’s Cross site presents a real and acceptable solution in this regard.

Please note that this is a formal expression of need and confirm that it has been noted bythe Department of Education and Skills and will be seriously considered. Please can you provide us as a matter of urgency with clarity on the above? In addition, we would like an opportunity to meet with you to give you more information on our membership, campaign and the appetite in the area for a co-educational, multi-denominational, democratically run, non-fee paying second level school. We attach our position paper, which illustrates clearly how we can help you as Minister of Education to meet with some of the aspirations in your programme in Government with regards to education.

Yours Sincerely,

______________ __________________

Deirdre Brennan , Asumpta Sweeney
ETHX