I am sure many families welcomed the news of restrictions easing. Being able to connect with friends and family, along with being able to move around a little more freely has been a relief. It is important that we continue to follow the community guidelines to ensure everyone remains safe and well.
For schools, little has changed in our guidelines from CECV. We continue to enact actions that promote a COVID safe School. I ask that families continue to support the following:
- Physical distancing and wearing of face masks
- Not access school buildings. (only the office area if necessary)
- Not to gather/socialise at entry and exit points of the school
- If unwell stay at home. If students are unwell please keep them at home
- No playing on the playground before or after school
The school will continue to:
- Practise good hygiene, including maintaining regular cleaning
- Promote outdoor ventilation
- Limit school access to visitors
- Reduce mixing of classes
- Follow all guidelines for adults wearing masks, physical distancing, conducting online meetings/professional learning
- Not hold level, school assemblies or liturgies
- Manage safe school arrival and departure for students
The following changes will take place:
- Small group ( up to 10) kinder students may attend school onsite to participate in the transition to school program. Families will be contacted regarding details of when this will take place. Kinder students will not mix with school students.
- Year 6 Graduations for students can take place onsite, however parents/carers and other family can not attend. Online video access for families will be available.
- As of Monday 9 November students can be dropped off at school from 8:40- 9:00am. Classrooms will be opened at 8:45am and school will begin at 9:00am.
- As of Monday 9 November students can be picked up from 3:30- 3:45pm
NORMAL SCHOOL START AND FINISH TIMES BEGINNING MONDAY 9 NOVEMBER
I am hoping in the coming weeks, further restrictions for schools will be lifted. I will keep you informed of any future developments.
We welcome Laura Bailey, our new office manager, to our school. Laura has previous administrative experience in a University setting and is now learning about how Primary Schools operate. Unfortunately due to COVID restrictions, many families at this stage may only get to talk with Laura on the phone or correspond by email. I am sure in the weeks ahead as restrictions are lifted further you will get to see and know Laura.
School Fee Statements
School fee statements will be emailed out this week.
Teachers are requesting that students now leave Ooshies at home. Many students have been swapping ooshies at school and later regretting the decision to swap. We are encouraging students to engage in physical play and activities at lunchtime and playtime. Thanks for your support with this.
Hats and Sunglasses
Hats and sunglasses need to be worn this term. Sunglasses are available to purchase from the school office for $10:00. Hats are available from our uniform supplier PSW.
THE TEACHER WHO INSPIRED ME
I was late, as so often had been the case in our long relationship, and I expected to be greeted by the same generous, forgiving smile, writes Fergal Keane. I was no longer a schoolboy but a hostage of the grown-up life with all its complications and competing timetables.
Now approaching his room at the Bon Secours hospital in Cork I could tell that I was too late. Br Jerome had passed away.
In the far-off days of the 1970s when he was my headmaster, Br Jerome Kelly would sanction repeated lack of punctuality by directing many of those who offended towards some socially useful labour. I remember winter afternoons picking up rubbish on the Mardyke Walk next to Presentation Brothers College. "Don't return, boy, until it’s all clean as your conscience”, he would declare.He never used violence to impose his will. His force of personality was quite enough to achieve any necessary end.
Br Jerome came from a small farming community in West Cork, living on an impoverished peninsula where hard work, thrift and a sense of community were primary virtues.
He joined the Presentation Brothers in the 1960s and became a missionary in the West Indies. As a teacher in Trinidad, he taught many of those who would go on to become government ministers, judges and prominent civil servants.
He was a force by nature. By the time he came to Cork in 1969, Presentation College was drifting peaceably but aimlessly, a haven for the children of the city’s merchant classes, a noted rugby nursery but of limited academic prowess. It was a private school with a reputation among other schools for a degree of snobbery.
Br Jerome arrived like a whirlwind, brimming with energy and ideas. Exam grades improved but that was only one part of his revolution.
He built a television and radio studio, correctly anticipating the media revolution to come. I had my first experience of broadcasting at Pres.
I was the child of a broken home, often in trouble for attention seeking in the classroom. Br Jerome was patient with me when many others might have kicked me out of school. Years later when I asked him why, he replied: “That Fergal was a troubled boy." It was his duty, he said, to keep faith with my possibility as a person.
Within a year of arriving, Br Jerome set up the Share organisation - Schoolboys Harness Aid for the Relief of the Elderly-which would go on to build 200 homes for the elderly poor of Cork City.
His pupils raised some of the money through an annual Christmas fast, while Br Jerome used his immense powers of persuasion to push the city council to provide the rest of the funding.
Just as important were the visits we made after school, often accompanied by Br Jerome, to sit with those elderly people living in poverty and loneliness.
In the Ireland of the 1970s - still in thrall to more reactionary voices - his example provided me with an inspiring model of Christian witness. All of this was done with a boisterous sense of humour and an acute understanding of the psychology of teen aged boys.
Br Jerome was my teacher, my role model, and my friend. I am a lucky person to have known him.
By Fergal Keane
THE TABLET 17 October 2020
Book Week 2020
The Weirdest, Craziest Book Week Ever!
Curious Creatures, Wild Minds.
Who would have thought that we would have been unable to celebrate the way we usually do, but St Catherine’s Children still celebrated the love of Book Week in so many different ways in their classrooms.
Second Hand Uniform Update
We have an abundance of stock at the second-hand uniform shop and if you are wanting to
purchase something to get you through this last little bit of term after a growth spurt in
home learning its likely we can help. Below is an indication of what is available
Girls summer dresses in a range of sizes- EUC
Boys shorts up to size 10 – EUC
Boys long pants up to size 10 – GUC to EUC
Track pants in a range of sizes- GUC & EUC
Sports shorts – EUC
Polos (short and long sleeve) – GUC
Sports jumpers – GUC
There are lots of girls and boys short and long sleeve shirts in a range of sizes, but these
usually have some sign of wear and tear. They make great seconds or back-ups, or if you
know they would have a hard life regardless, you are welcome to take your pick.
Unfortunately only two skort/ sports skirt in small sizes, and a few wool jumpers ranging in
size and condition.
If you have friends or siblings starting in 2021, there are a range of items that are like new in
To make a purchase contact the office to make a time – only one person is allowed in the
shop at any time. We would ask that you leave the shop in the condition in which you found
it which is hopefully tidy and ready for the next person.
Don’t forget that if you have items to donate, you can ‘trade’ these for bigger sizes if