St Kevin’s Junior National School’s Enrolment & Admissions Policy for our ‘Orchard ‘ Special Early Intervention Class for Pupils with Autism
The Ethos of. Kevin’s Junior National School
St. Kevin’s Junior N.S. is a Roman Catholic Junior Primary School under the patronage of the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin. St Kevin’s Junior School provides religious education for pupils in accordance with the doctrines, practices and traditions of the Roman Catholic Church and promotes the formation of the pupils in the Catholic faith.
As a Roman Catholic school, the school aims at promoting the full and harmonious development of all aspects of the pupil: intellectual, physical, cultural, moral and spiritual, including a philosophy of life inspired by belief in God and in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Catholic school provides religious education for the pupils in accordance with the doctrines, practices and tradition of the Roman Catholic Church and promotes the formation of the pupils in the Catholic faith.
The school recognises the central role of the family as the primary educator of the child and accepts and supports the constitutional right and duty of parents to provide for the religious, moral, intellectual, physical and social education of their children, whilst remaining mindful of the School ethos.
Context of St Kevin’s Junior School & our Special Class for children on the Autism Spectrum.
The decision to provide a special class for children with a definite diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in the parish of St Kevin’s Junior School was taken by our Board of Management of our school in conjunction with the Principal teacher and staff in March 2017.
The decision to provide a special class for children with ASD in our school was taken primarily to cater for children resident in the parish of St Kevin’s Junior School.
The decision was taken to provide an education in a mainstream setting for children whom have a diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD), who fulfil the enrolment criteria and for whom a place may be made available to cater for children resident in our parish. Students on the spectrum will be integrated with mainstream school activities were appropriate.
The Board of Management notes that it is open to any primary school to set up such a class and therefore does not see its self, providing a service for the entire community.
The staff of St Kevin’s Junior School is committed to developing each child’s spiritual, intellectual, emotional, creative and physical potential in an atmosphere of trust, acceptance and love.
We aim to offer a positive meaningful education experience, which allows the child to develop to his/her own potential in an environment that offers clarity, predictability and calm.
After a period of observing, assessing and interacting with the child, an Individual Educational Plan (IEP) will be developed in consultation with parents and relevant professionals. This will be reviewed on an ongoing basis and will highlight priority learning needs. These needs will be targeted through the provision of a broad and balance curriculum in a specific setting that has been designed and created to meet the needs of children on the Autism spectrum.
Our Early intervention class aims to offer an autism specific learning environment within a mainstream catholic co-educational junior school. This setting facilitates optimum inclusion as part of the school community, with access to mainstream activities or reverse integration as deemed appropriate.
Special Early Intervention Class for Pupils with Autism
Children attending this class are aged between 3 and 6 years. Class size will not exceed six at any time. Children may remain in this class for a maximum of two years; the upper age limit being five years on enrolment.
Children who have reached their 6th birthday on or after 1st of September of the year of enrolment will fall outside the inclusion age.
The composition of the class may be any combination of 3, 4 and 5 year olds.
Following two years in the Special Early Intervention Class children will return to their own parish school or a school of the parents’ choice and by the parents’ arrangement.
There is no automatic transfer from the Special Early Intervention Class for pupils with Autism to St. Kevin’s Junior School.
Applicants shall be considered for admission to the Special Early Intervention Class for Pupils with Autism having met the following criteria:
- The child chronological age is between 3.5 and 5
- Diagnosis of autism (DSM V)
- Children can remain in the Early Intervention Class for a maximum of two years.
- The child is living within the school’s parish catchment area, Holy Trinity Parish Donaghmede.
Subject to sufficient places being made available in the special class the criteria for enrolment to the class, incorporating the Dept. of Education and HSE policies are as follows:
- An enrolment application form (pre-admission for Special Class for children with A.S) provided by the school should be completed by the parents/guardians on behalf of the child.
- This enrolment application form should be accompanied by an original birth certificate and all other supporting documentation as referred to in the section “Procedure for Enrolment”
- The enrolment application must include a recent psychological assessment or a report from a member of a multi-disciplinary team. A multi-disciplinary team may consist of a Clinical Psychologist, Occupational therapist, Speech & Language therapist, Social Worker and a Physiotherapist (Multi-Disciplinary Team). Please note all reports on a child should be provided to the school for assessment by the Admissions Team. The child must have a primary diagnosis of Autism/ Autistic Spectrum Disorder without significant intellectual impairment made using the DSM-V or ICD 10 or equivalent by a clinical psychologist or a member of the multi-disciplinary team. If the child also presents with a general learning disability, if must fall within the mild range (this diagnosis must also be made using a professional recognised clinical and psychological; assessment procedure).
- There must be a recommendation by a member of the multi-disciplinary team in the report that a special class placement in a mainstream setting is both necessary and suitable for the child.
- All children enrolling in the Early Intervention Unit or Special class setting must be between the chronological age of 3.5 to 5 years.
- The Board will prioritise children who reside in St Kevin’s Junior School’s parish i.e. The Parish of Holy Trinity, Donaghmede or catchment area see Appendix 1 & 2. This allows children living locally to access the class which will negate unnecessary travelling and allow suitable children to attend a school in their local area.
- All Acceptance Forms issued by the school must be returned to the school before the required time frame.
- Parents will be notified of the Board’s decision in writing to the address provided on the enrolment form.
- Parents or Guardians are then required to confirm, in writing, their acceptance of a place in the school for their child within two weeks of the offer.
- In the event that no written acceptance is received, within the two weeks, the application process will be brought to an end and this will be communicated to the parents/guardians in writing.
- Successful applicants may be asked to attend the school on a given date in order to identify, and plan for, the educational needs of the pupils.
Decisions in relation to admissions are made by the Board of Management of St. Kevin’s Junior School on the recommendation of the Principal, our Special Class Teacher, a second member of our management team and in accordance with school admissions policy.
The Board will have regard for the relevant conditions prescribed by the DES concerning class size, staffing provisions, accommodation, physical space, health and welfare of children and eligibility for admission.
The Board reserves the right to refuse an application for admission, in exceptional circumstances, as stated in the Education Act of 1998, (Section 29).
Procedure for Enrolments:
The enrolment must be accompanied by all of the following supporting documentation:
1. An original Birth certificate.
2. An original utility bill as proof of address. These must be dated within the last 3 months and must be one of the following:
- ESB Bill
- Gas Bill
- Landline Telephone Bill
- NTL/ Virgin Media Bill
N.B. if the school does not receive this documentation with the enrolment form the application will not be processed or considered by the school. It is the responsibility of the parent(s)/guardian(s) to ensure that all supporting documentation is correct and is received by the school. The withholding of reports from the school Admissions Team may invalidate an Enrolment Application at any time.
Where the number of children who apply is greater that the number of places available in the Special class.
In the event that the number of children that apply for a place is greater than the number of places available, such places will be filled on review of the enrolment applications received following this order of priority:
A. Children currently enrolled and attending infant classes in St Kevin’s Junior National school who meet the above criteria and whom have received recommendations from their current class teacher and Special Educational Teacher supported by our Principal through the school’s support plan model, recommending a child to transfer to our special class setting.
B. Children living within the Parish/Catchment area of Holy Trinity, Donaghmede (see Appendix 1&2)
C. Children living outside the parish of Holy Trinity, Donaghmede.
In the event of the number of children in category A exceed the number of places available, children within this category will be offered a place according to their chronological age, with the youngest applicants given a place.
In the event of the number of children in Category B exceed the number of places available, children within this category will be offered a place according to their chronological age, with the youngest applicants given a place.
In the event of the number of children in Category C exceed the number of places available, children within this category will be offered a place according to their chronological age, with the youngest applicants given a place.
All unsuccessful applicants will be placed on a waiting list until the 30th of September 2017, in accordance with the above criteria for places that may become available.
Unsuccessful applicants will be informed by post of their right place on the waiting list. All unsuccessful applicants have a right of appeal under section 29 of the Education Act, 1998 within 42 days from the date of the decision by the Board of Management.
Applications for places in the Special Class made after 20th May 2018 will not be considered.
The Right of Appeal
Parents or guardians have the right to appeal a refusal by the Board to admit their child.
The Board’s decision will be given in writing and the reason for the refusal will be clearly stated.
The parents or guardians will be informed of their right to appeal the decision, and be supplied with the Appeals Application Form. (Circular 22/02)
The appeal will be made to The General Secretary, Appeals Administration Unit, Department of Education and Science, Marlborough Street, Dublin 1, on the relevant form.
The school must be informed in writing of the decision to appeal.
Once a parent/guardian has made an application to the school for a place in the Special class on behalf of their child, the Principal will undertake to communicate to the parent/guardian the decision of the Board of Management. The decision will be communicated in writing.
- The parent of a child being offered a place in the Special class will be invited to visit the school to meet with a member of the Special Ed Team and the Principal of the school. Any information requested by the parent will be addressed at this meeting.
- The parents may be requested by the school to consent to a visit by the staff to a child’s pre-school/ school/ home setting to observe the child.
- The parent/guardian will be invited on another occasion to come with the child to the class to meet the staff and see the classroom.
- After placement in the class a relevant Individual Educational Plan or School Support Plan will be provided for the child. This plan will have an input from all parties involved with the education of the child.
- The S.E.N.O (Special Education Needs Officer) will also be aware of the plan.
- The IEP will be updated regularly.
- A child may be phased in gradually the Special Class through a mutually agreed process between the school and the parents of the child. It is important that every child gets the best possible start in the class. In order to achieve this, the duration of the child’s day may vary depending on their needs.
- Each child in the Special Class will be assigned to an age appropriate mainstream class for integration purposes.
Monitoring & reviewing
The school reserves the right to review the child’s progress from time to time, during or after each year to determine whether this is indeed an appropriate school placement for the child.
It is accepted that children with Special educational needs may display difficult, defiant or oppositional behaviours. All efforts will be made by the school to manage such behaviours using various strategies and through the implementation of an IEP. All pupils including special needs pupils and non-special needs pupils are subject to the code of behaviour and Health & Safety statement.
Where a child’s behaviour impacts in a negative way on other children in the special class or another mainstream class to the extent that their constitutional right to an education is being interfered with as judged by the B.O.M of the school, the school reserves the right to advise parents that a more suitable setting should be found for their child.
Refusal to enrol and/or decision to exclude
The school reserved the right to refuse to enrolment/admission to any student where either:
1. The student has special needs such that even with additional resources available from the Department of Education & Skills and the Department of Health, the school cannot meet such needs and/or provide the student with an appropriate education.
2. The school endeavours to support each child on an individual basis and ensure that it is an appropriate school placement for the child. However, if it is the opinion of the Board of Management that the student poses an unacceptable risk to the health and safety of other students, to the school staff or to the school property, a decision may be made not to enrol the child and/or exclude the child from school.
The policy is subject to annual review by the Board of Management.
When applying for admission of their child to the school, parents or guardians are given access to the following documentation:
(1). The Enrolment Policy & Application form of the Special Early Intervention Class
(2). The standard Application Form of the school
Parents and guardians should note that the school has adopted policy statements in other areas of interest and concern, towards the best running of the school and the maximum development of the pupils.
These policy statements can be accessed in the School Office on request or can be accessed through our school website.
(1) The Child Protection Policy
(2). Health and Safety Statement
(3). The Anti-bullying Statement
(4) The Religious Education and Pastoral Care Policy
This document states the Admissions Policy of our school at the present time. It may, however, be subject to adjustments and changes in the future. Such changes and adjustments will be contained in an updated version of the school’s Admissions Policy.
Policy Reviewed and Ratified by St. Kevin’s Junior School Board of Management in May 2017.
Signed: _________ Signed: ________________
(Chairperson of Board of Management) (Principal Teacher)
Date of next review: _______________
Appendix 1: Holy Trinity Parish Boundary
Belmayne – Ave, Park North, Park South, Park East, Park West
Carndonagh –Drive, Lawn Park, Road
Congriffin – Beaupark (all roads) Station Way, Grange Lodge (all roads) Railway Rd, Railway Court, Hoey Close (all roads)
Donaghmede Estate –Ave, Drive, Park, Road
Elmfield – Ave, Close, Court, Crescent, Drive, Green, Grove, Lawn, Park, Vale, Walk, Way.
Grange Abbey – Crescent, Drive, Grove, Road
Grangemore – Ave, Court, Crescent, Drive, Lawn, Road, Park, Rise
Grattan Lodge & Grattan Wood
Holywell – Ave, Crescent, Road
Hole in the Wall Road
Howth View Park
Millbrook – Ave, Drive
Newbrook - Ave, Road
St. Donagh’s – Crescent, Park, Road
St. Samson’s – All roads
The Beeches &The Donaghies - Ardara, Beechbrook Grove, Caraoe Ave,Cedar Pk, Clonmellon Grove, Curracloe Dr, Invermore Gr, Kilfenora Dr, Killary Gr,Kilmorony Close, Laracor Gdns, Laragh Close, Laragh Grove, Lentisk Lawn, Manor Dr, Nurney Lawn, Whyteleaf Gr, Woodview Close, Woodview Park, Tara Lawn.
Temple View Estate, Clare Hall