Cregmore National School

School Note. Friday, May 22nd


May 22nd 2020.

Dear Parents, Guardians, Pupils and Colleagues.

I hope this note finds you all well, safe and content.

For the past number of weeks I have set up an “office” in the garage, complete with table, chair, laptop, phone and music booster. The garage faces South East and welcomes the morning sun in through the double door, making it a very special, though basic, place to do some work. This morning however is different. The wind and rain are in complete contrast to what we have been used to, and yet there is something very comforting about watching the leaves sway on the trees and the white horses dance on top of the sea. It also makes us appreciate just how fortunate we have been in recent weeks, enjoying an extraordinary spell of beautiful weather.

It has been very noticeable generally that restrictions have been slightly lifted in recent days and for me personally it is now great to have daily access to the school without the worry of being stopped for breaking the law. It is also very reassuring to see several more people coming and going about their daily business, Yes indeed, each day we are getting closer and closer to some form of reality and though life will never be the same as we knew it, we will adapt and the changes we are forced to make will soon become the norm. In other words, we are getting through this, and we are all doing a great job. Ni neart go cur le cheile.

Today, I have two main points to discuss.....

First and foremost, it is great to see that Gerry Melia has recommenced working on our running track and additional fencing around our playing pitch. As you are aware we had applied for a Sports Capital Grant to construct and upgrade our Astro Turf pitch. However, this grant was rejected, (as I'm sure a lot of pending grants will be, given the present economic climate). But in truth we have never depended on grant aid to progress our school, and over the years we have put in place prudent financial management structures and worked closely with Athenry Credit Union. Therefore, at the moment we are considering going ahead with the Astro Turf, pricing a variation of options and seeing if we can reach the repayment targets without overstretching our annual school budget. I firmly believe that schools, clubs and organisations will have a major role to play in reintegrating young people back into the society that they have been so alienated from for so long and that exercise, sport and fun activities will all play a major role in this. Therefore, never before will sporting facilities, leisure centers and playgrounds be so important in communities and for that reason we are eager that the pupils of our school will be given every opportunity to reestablish themselves along with their friends and also to care for their physical and mental wellbeing. I will keep you updated on the decision of the Board of Management, but it is our wish to extend our Astro Turf, making it large enough to accommodate two classes at each time. Furthermore, having an indoor hall, an Astro Turf pitch and a running track will certainly benefit not only the children who attend our school, but also local sporting clubs and indeed our Foroige members.

Secondly, tomorrow, Saturday, May 23rd was to be a very special day for Fr John, Ms O Carroll, (Niamh), and her 27 gorgeous pupils. They were to make their First Holy Communion. I was thinking of such an occasion this morning and now realise how significant a day it is in the lives of these children, and their families. Apart from the most sacred aspect of receiving the Body Of Christ for the first time and further aligning oneself with the Church, it is also a very significant personal and family day. Little boys and girls prepare with their teacher all year for this event. It is a constant reminder every day in the classroom and the preparation mass and First Penance adds further to its significance. It is also a time in the lives of these pupils whereby they are given special recognition. They have come through the very formative years of school and are now being encouraged to be independent, decision makers, socially aware, responsible, take their rightful part in society and most of all feel respected, cared for and deeply loved. It's for that reason that beautiful clothes are worn, hair styles created, food prepared, gifts exchanged and most important of all, parents, family members, cousins, grandparents, friends and neighbours all invited to celebrate and acknowledge the individuality, beauty and achievement in reaching this milestone in their little lives. I am deeply saddened for each and every pupil in Rang 2 and their families. I have regularly visited their classroom since September, and the sense of calm, respect, inquisitiveness, good manners, work ethic and indeed happiness is something to behold. Niamh has an extraordinary way of making each and every little boy and girl feel special and her gentle persona and absolute love of her class is most evident. Therefore I would like Eoghan, Stan, Iarlaith, Emily, Chloe, Sam, Harry, Ailbhe, Matthew, Emily, Cillian, Niamh, Aishling, Ruairi, Grace, Shay, Charlotte, Joseph, Donncha, Emma, Oisin, Kinga, Michael, Hazel, Molly, Sara and Gabriele (and not forgetting their wonderful teacher Niamh and Fr John) and their previous teachers, Paul, Breda and Caroline, that we are dedicating out thoughts tomorrow to them; that we love and respect them all dearly; that we are extremely proud of them and feel very privileged to have such a marvelous 2nd class in our school; that we miss them….and that we promise that we will celebrate their First Holy Communion in the near future. I was very pleased and indeed grateful to receive an individual photo of each class member during the week, and please see our website and view the lovely video that Mary so kindly put together. It is our little way of acknowledging this unique class of pupils and of reassuring them of our love for them.

So, to conclude, I hope you all have a lovely weekend, and please continue to adhere to the advice of the HSE. I am very grateful to all the teaching staff and the SNA’s who are in contact with their pupils on a regular basis. A special mention to Rita who has really had a very busy week organizing additional support for next year and to Margaret who is ever vigilant and hard working. Thank you.

By the way my number is 0879651498 should any of you wish to contact me with any concern or query. I am only too glad to help anyone in any way I can.

Kind Regards, Joe

Jun 26
Summer Holidays
Aug 31
School Re-Opens
Oct 23
Mid-Term Break
Dec 22
Christmas Holidays
Cregcarragh, Claregalway, Co. Galway, H91YD28.
091 799 037
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