October Newsletter

October Newsletter

October Newsletter

St. John’s N.S.    Ballisodare.

Newsletter October /September  2021



We extend a warm welcome to our 26 Junior Infants and 2 other pupils who started their primary education with us on September 1st.  I am delighted to report that they have settled in really well and are working hard with their teacher Mrs. O’Neill and their support teacher Mrs. Elliott. Also welcome to Mrs. Niamh Mc Donnell, Mr. Brennan and Ms. Mc Tiernan who joined our teaching staff in September.  We hope all our new pupils and staff members will be happy in St. John’s N.S.



On September 18th 25 pupils from third class received their First Holy Communion and on October 9th Bishop Paul Dempsey confirmed 22 pupils who were in sixth class last year. Both ceremonies were in St. Brigid’s Church, Corhownagh and were happy, meaningful events.  Many thanks to Fr. Towey, Mrs. Bruen, Mrs. Higgins, Mrs. F. Mc Donnell, Mrs. Mc Mahon, Mrs. Mc Donagh, Dolores our S.N.A., and Geraldine our secretary for their input and involvement in ensuring the smooth running of these sacraments.  Special praise and thanks is due to the pupils who were excellent at all times despite a very limited preparation.

In preparation for the next Confirmation ceremony Mrs.Mc Donagh, Mr. Brennan and Mr. Mulderrig are bringing fifth & sixth class pupils to mass in Corhownagh at 10am once a week. We hope to continue with this after mid-term.


Parent Teacher Meetings:

The Parent Teacher Meetings will take place on Tuesday 16th, Wednesday 17th and Thursday 18th of November.  These will be done remotely via a phone call from your child’s class teacher. An appointment time will be sent out to parents after the mid-term break.  Each meeting will be scheduled for 10 minutes and please ensure we have your current mobile number.  All pupils will go home at 2pm on Tuesday 16th and Thursday 18th to facilitate the meetings.


Extra Covid Educational Supports:

The Department of Education have introduced the Covid Learning and support scheme whereby each school gets an allocation of extra teaching hours to support pupils and classes to improve their educational outcomes due to the recent lockdown.  Based on our scho0l enrolment figure we are entitled to an additional 375 teaching hours.  We have selected the pupils of third class and senior infants for extra support and Mrs. Bruen and Mr. Collins will work with the S.E.T. team to provide 3 hours per day support for these classes.  Mrs. Bruen will do this on the days she is not teaching her First class pupils.


Supervalu Primary Schools Athletics Fest:

Twenty-four pupils from 3rd to 6th class represented the school in the Sligo Sport & Recreation Partnership Supervalu Primary Schools Athletics which took place in the school on Wednesday 29th September.  Again this year we could not travel to the track in the I.T. but the S.S.R.P. coaches visited the school and timed our teams during their relays. All our teams performed very well in their events.

Teams: Junior Girls– Clara Cawley, Amy Edwards, Sophie Henry, Julia Szymura.

Junior Boys: – Kyron Gethins, Max Verdon, Phevos Gallagher, Euan Galman.

Junior Mixed: – Ayda Munnelly, Lena Paluszkiewicz, Naoise Lang, Evan Lougheed.

Senior Girls:- Rebecca Sherlock, Sophie Edwards, Ester Samuel, Ella White.


Senior Boys:- Eoin O’Reilly, Jack Galvin, Travis Mc Donagh, Bobby Sweeney.

Senior Mixed:- Katie Pearce, Zaina Waseem, Andrew Mc Goldrick, Daniels Sloka.

Also well done to Lucie Cawley 6th class who finished 3rd in U-13 girls Sligo Cross Country race in Ballymote last week end.



We are hoping that we may be able to resume our swimming lessons after Christmas but a lot depends on the Covid 19 situation in the next few months, and as always the safety and protection of our pupils is the priority.


Extra-Curricular Activities:

After mid-term break we hope to start extra-curricular activities.  On Tuesday 2nd a Multi-Sport Outdoor Class for 5th & 6th class pupils will start with a Youth Sport West coach.  The following week Robothink after school club will start in the G.P room. This is an exciting new fun focused robotic programme and so far our school and only one other school in Sligo have been invited to participate.  Due to Covid 19 restrictions we have to limit it to 12 participants from third class only.  We hope to run another robotics course after Christmas.



Congratulations to Ms. O’Flaherty on the birth of her son Fionn in early October. We wish herself and Brendan all the best with their new arrival.  Also well done to Mr. Brennan who won a Junior Football Championship title with Curry last week.


Shoebox Appeal:

Your child has received a Shoebox Appeal leaflet. The school donates over 100 shoeboxes every year to this worthy initiative. Pupils are asked to bring in their boxes from November 1st to November 8th.  Many thanks in advance for supporting this project.



Everyone is aware through the media that there is an increase in positive Covid cases in schools throughout the country.  We have received great co-operation from parents so far but the period from Halloween to Christmas will be crucial for all schools. Therefore, I appeal to all parents to be extra vigilant and closely monitor your children and if they display ANY Covid symptoms, please do not send them to school.  The best thing to do if you are unsure of their symptoms is to book a free Covid test online and the results come back quickly.  By doing this you are safeguarding your child, your family, classmates and school staff from Covid.



The school will reopen on Monday November 1st at 9.10 am.  I hope all pupils and staff have an enjoyable mid-term break.



Yours sincerely,

David Dillon.