Only six students show up for first day back amid fears school will close

Parents in a Co Louth community feel they have been "left with no option" but to remove their children from the local school.

Scoil Náisiunta Bhríde in Faughart, Dundalk reopened its doors on Wednesday and just six students showed up, according to one concerned parent - independent.ie.

Parents are pulling their children out of the school after an inspection report last year made a number of critical findings. A local councillor said the perceived inaction by the Department of Education following the inspection is "part of the problem".

The school's website is "down for maintenance" today following the controversy.

Parents in the area have been left "devastated" by the situation and are now considering sending their children to other schools.

"While each parent registered their wish to stay, the uncertainty that this would bring to their children's lives means that our community will now be dispersed out of the parish and around the town of Dundalk and parts of it's hinterlands," one parent wrote on Facebook.

It follows an inspection by the Department of Education earlier in May which made a number of critical findings.

The department's inspection followed a Whole School Evaluation (WSE) report which was published in March.

Almost 30pc of parents disagreed there was a good atmosphere in the school, according to the report.

While almost 60pc agreed "teaching is good in the school," 27pc disagreed and 10pc said they "don't know".

The department's subsequent report said that action should be taken "as a matter of priority" to "rebuild trust within the school community and to improve enrolment".

Cllr Conor Keelan (FF) is a past pupil of the school and has been liaising with parents in the area.

"There are parents who I know who had been intending to send children there and are no longer going to do so," Cllr Keelan told Independent.ie.

"I’m a past pupil so I am aware of the concerns arriving from the WSE report. As a past pupil, I would be very sad to see it close. The inaction by the Department of Education following the inspection is part of the problem."

The school's Board of Management was dissolved last May and the school patrons, the Archbishop of Armagh, appointed a single manager as a replacement.

A spokeswoman for the Department of Education said “responsibility for implementing recommendations in an inspection report rest, in the first instance, with the management and patron of a school… Following the completion of the inspection, senior officials from the Department of Education and Skills held a meeting with the school management and the patron of the school concerning the issues identified during the inspection.”

“The patron then began the process to obtain the Minister’s approval to dissolve the board of the school and to appoint a single manager to manage the school on the patron’s behalf however, the board resigned and a single manager was appointed by the patron in June 2017 to manage the school,” the department said.

“It is the responsibility of the manager of the school, acting on behalf of the school’s patron, to take the steps necessary to addresses the issues identified in the inspection report and to ensure that provision in the school is improved.”

“The Department understands that the manager has begun this work, and the Department does not wish to comment further on the steps that the manager is taking in this specific case.”

Scoil Náisiunta Bhríde has not responded to requests for comment.

Read more news of Dublin.

students Dublin
If you notice an error, highlight the text you want and press Ctrl + Enter to report it to the editor
I recommend
No recommendations yet

Comments

Comments are designed to communicate and discuss the features of an enterprise or event, as well as to find out the interesting questions on it.

Society
It was a double act in the Pepper household as twins Aidan and Kate collected their Leaving Cert results. Aidan notched up an impressive 602 points which included five H1s at Pobalscoil Neasáin, Baldoyle, Dublin. He is hoping to go on to study medicine, while his twin sister is hoping to go on to social work in Blanchardstown IT. "I'm hoping Monday will go my way, I already have my HPAT results from earlier in the year," said Aidan. Meanwhile, Kate scored...
Society
The former 'Dragons' Den' entrepreneur Sean O'Sullivan made more than €30m from an initial €1m bet on a bike-sharing company that has been sold to Uber for close to €200m. O'Sullivan, whose SOSV venture fund is one of the most active in the world in financing early-stage startups, took an early punt on Jump Bikes in 2014, supplying most of the company's €1m startup capital. It took part in a second €8m funding round in January this year with eight other in...
Society
The number of Leaving Certificate candidates scoring high points for college entry has jumped since the changes to the exam grading system and CAO points scale. Figures from the CAO show that 11.9pc of students achieved between 500 to 599 points this year, compared with 9.6pc in 2016. There are also other candidates with 600 points, and even more if they have the 'honours' maths bonus. The total proportion of students with 500 or more is 13.2pc this year,...
Society
A MAN in his 20s has died and a teenage girl is seriously injured in hospital after a car left the road and ended up in a field last night. The crash happened sometime between 10pm and 11.20pm on a rural road in Westmeath - writes independent.ie Gardai in Mullingar are investigating the single vehicle road traffic collision on the Castlepollard to Collinstown Rd R395 on Wednesday. "The collision occurred at Deerpark, Bratty - approximately 1.5 miles from C...
Society
More than 57,000 students have receivedthe results of their Leaving Certificate exams at their schools. This is the second year that sees candidates measured according to a new marking structure, with a smaller number of numerical grades replacing the old alphabetical system - writes rte.ie According to the State Examinations Commission, seven students achieved Higher Level Grade 1's in eight subjects this year. It said that last year, eight students achie...
Incidents
A 27-year-man has died following a road crash near Mullingar in Co Westmeath last night. The man was injured after the car he was travelling in hit a ditch and ended up in a field at Deerpark, around 2.5km from Castlepollard, some time between 10pm and 11.20pm. He was taken to the Midlands Regional Hospital inMullingar, where he was later pronounced dead. An 18-year-old woman, who was also in the car, was taken to the same hospital. Her condition is descri...
Society
A Medical Council inspection of nine hospitals has found that some interns were asked to perform duties above their grade. It says some trainees at Galway University Hospital alleged they were also left unsupervisedwhen a consultant was absent for a week. However, the report says that the hospital was complying with required criteria and the trainees knew who their clinical supervisors were. At other hospitals, the council found thatmedical registrars refu...
Society
A study by the Simon Communities has found a severe shortage of properties for people who rent using Rent Supplement and Housing Assistant Payment (HAP) payments. The charity saidincreases in rent payment limits introduced in 2016 were no longer effective - writes rte.ie The study, carried out in May, found that just 8% of properties available to rent were within the Rent Supplement and HAP limits. It also showedthat in eight out of the 11 areas examined,...
Society
An Post is to seek up to 300 voluntary redundancies in a cost-cutting plan that may also see it move its headquarters from Dublin's historic GPO. The organisation said its voluntary severance programme will be open to 1,200 of its corporate and support office workers, around 950 of whom are currently based in the GPO. An Post said that a recent change in work practices identified more than 250 roles that could be eliminated. As part of the change, the orga...