Piper's Hill College

Parent Update June 2024- Parent Survey

14-June-24

Parent Update June 2024



To all Parents /Guardians and students,

For most of you the school term has ended. To those who are starting the State Exams best wishes from us all. To all parents thank you for your continued support and for entrusting us to look after the education of your young people so we can reach our stated aim

“Together we work with students to attain the knowledge, skills and attitudes that will enable them to become lifelong learners and empower them to reach their full potential”

We believe that our school is a partnership between all involved and we do not take the faith you placed in us by sending your young person here lightly. We will continue to strive to create a school that strives for excellence and that has at its core a belief in respect,inclusion, community and caring for all students. Obviously there are challenges in meeting this and we rely on a partnership with you to achieve our common goals. Communication is a key way to ensure shared goals and we hope we will continue to let you know the key areas we are trying to improve in our school.

Next year we will have 1044 students enrolled across all 6 years. We are full in all of our programmes Junior Cycle , Transition Year, Leaving Cert and Leaving Cert Applied. We also have 9 students in our AS Classes. There are currently 91 teachers, 12 SNAs and 6 ancillary staff working in the school. We will outline here some of the key information to help prepare you for next yea

STATE EXAM UPDATE

Good luck to all our exam students

  • Buses will continue but will leave in evening at end of day at LC exam finishing time- can stay in school and study in canteen area (See attached JC and LC Timetables)
  • Last JC Exam June 14th. Last LC exam Tue 25th
  • Canteen facilities until 11th of June after that- water juice, fruit, breakfast bars
  • If any issues arise during exams let us know ASAP info@phcol.ie



Surveys

A huge thank you to those parents/guardians who helped out with our surveys on the Uniform and Attendance Policy and the 6 € 50 euro cinema vouchers were sent out in May. Over 190 parents responded and we thank you for this

Below is a short survey regarding a review of the year and as always your views are welcome. We will also have a draw to give 6 x€50 vouchers to those who complete.

Parent Survey Except 1st and TY

Parent Survey First Year

Parents Survey TY

LEADING SCHOOL DEVELOPMENT

Uniform Policy

As mentioned previously we have done a review of our uniform policy. There are minimal changes. The updated policy is attached. 94% of parents want a school uniform with 70% happy with the current uniform. We hope the slight amendments will make our policy even more inclusive. We will be asking all students and parents to support us with its implementation next year

Please note that the below are not gender specific- your young person has the choice to wear their preferred option as long as it is compliant with the day i.e. a PE day or non PE day

Please see Appendix 1 and also in Parents section on website for pictures of school specific items- Half Zip Top, Box pleat ¾ length kilt/skirt, School Crested polo(optional and O’Neills School crested Sports top optional)

On non PE DAY- 4 Days a week for most students- 3 days for Third Years and TYs

The uniform consists of

  • Black/Red Crested Half Zip Top See Attached Photo (only available in Whelans Menswear, Naas). The older all black version with Pipers Hill college on Back will be phased out by 2028/29 school year.
  • A plain White shirt or White Polo Shirt(Collared)- Can be a crested Polo shirt which is available from Whelan’s Menswear-
  • Grey Trousers ( available anywhere)

or box pleat kilt 3/4 length skirt (only available in Whelan’s Menswear)

  • Suitable black (Or Mainly black) footwear. ( No heels, boots, or shoes that could cause harm to themselves or others)

PE UNIFORM - On P.E. day the P.E uniform can be worn for the full day- It is not to be worn on days when you do not have PE

  • Black plain tracksuit bottoms or black sports leggings .
  • Black/Red Crested Half Zip Top (as above available in Whelan’s menswear)
  • A Plain White Polo Shirt OR (You can get a crested White Polo Shirt from Whelan’s Menswear if you wish OR O'Neills School crested sports top only available in Whelan’s Menswear, Naas).
  • Appropriate sports runners.

Students can wear their own jacket to school but are not permitted to wear this inside the school building. It is to be kept in school Locker or Locker Room

Health and Safety

If a young person is wearing Jewellery/clothing/ nails or hairstyle that could cause a risk of injury or inability to take part in learning activity they will be asked to ensure that this is remedied as soon as possible.

Attendance Update

Also attached is an updated Attendance Policy. The key change here is that we would ask you to let us know about absences via VSWare. In the Journal you can write notes if your child has to leave early. These will no longer be removed so you can see if your young person has left school. You can also see Vsware to see a record of the attendance of your child and you will continue to receive a text alert if they are not present for registration. We will remind you of these in August.

We would ask parents to limit absences as much as possible. Please see the attached calendar which outlines long weekends and other holiday times.

Return Dates- Calendar next year- See attached

August 22nd TY, 6th and 3rd Years- 1105 to 1305

August 23rd 5th and 2nd 11.05-13.05

August 26th First Year Induction- And classes for 3rd and 6th

August 27th - Classes all students.

School Will begin at 0846 next year with school ending at 1540 (1305 on Fridays)

FREE SCHOOL BOOKS- All JC students.

In First to Third Year Your child only needs to bring their Ipad, a Bag and a pencil case- we will provide as standard the following

Pencil x2 Pen x4 Rubber Sharpener 30cm Ruler

Bic 4 colour pen

3 Colour Highlighter Pack

Colouring pencils

1 for each subject 1 A4 Folder and 1 A4 Manuscript copy( A4 maths squared equivalent for Maths)

MATHS SET- LOG TABLES- CALCULATORS

School Journal-

  • If your young person likes a particular pen or pencil feel free to bring.

We will be providing these at the beginning of the year only. Since we use ebooks and this keeps costs down, we are also able to pay for exam materials in Music, DCG,Engineering, Construction,Art and Home Economics also.

In TY students do not have a booklist- They use teacher generated content and school sets of books. They continueContinue to use Ipads.

Fifth and Sixth

Because of parent and student requests and also the fact that many of the curriculum for the LC are old we continue to use textbooks for Fifth and Sixth year

Booklists will be on the school Website shortly- we will share with parents also via email. We realise books are expensive. If you wish to avail of the school book scheme please email info@phcol.ie to enquire.Please continue to bring your Ipad to school to access Google Classroom. It is also needed for Apps in LC PE, Music, ART and DCG. It is also needed to research in the following subjects- History, Geography, Construction, Engineering. It is also used in MEL and Irish Class for Oral work.

Free School Breakfast

A reminder that we continue to offer free school breakfast- two items for free- to any student who wants to avail of it. The most popular items are the scrambled eggs and toast. Other items available are pancakes, beans, fruit also available. Over 400 students a day avail of this.

We also have a selection of items for sale in our canteen. If any student wants to avail of subsidised school meals they can apply in the school.

What is not Covered- Ongoing challenges and priorities. School Contribution

We will continue to ask parents/guardians to support us with the following

€100 per student or max €175 per family( Not include TY make contact with office if you have a student in Ty and also another Year)

The running of a school is hugely expensive and the State does help us with the basic running of our school. We however want to make sure that your young person can avail of the best facilities and experiences possible. The funds collected here help ensure we can do this.

Buses- Last year we paid over €55000 in school buses to allow our young people to go to matches , trips and events. A double decker bus for a day costs c€900 . The vast majority of these were covered by the school. We only ask members of teams to bring €2 to cover referee costs.

Insurance- Your young person is covered by personal liability insurance in school and on school trips

Lockers- We continue to upgrade our lockers that are in need of replacing. Students can bring their own locks next year as many didn't like the combination lock provided.

Ipad Management- For those in the school over 3 years we continue to make sure your iPad is maintained as an educational device to avoid distraction. For Senior students this is limited to school time only to allow iPad be used for research etc

Internet Infrastructure- we continue to invest in making sure our wifi is to the highest standard.

School Improvements/ Cleaning- We employ more cleaning staff than provided by the state to ensure our school is clean and meets standards we all expect

Energy- Increased energy costs have hit schools just like homes

New Facilities- We have recently spent over €20000 on the upgrade of main student toilets. We hope to continue this work next year. We also have continued to improve our sport facilities and can now play many home matches on our pitches. We have plans to make GAA pitch senior size so that all home games can be played here in GAA, LGFA, Camogie and Hurling.

Any payment to the school can be made via Way2Pay app. These can be paid in small amounts over time. As always if there are any issues ( such as Way2Pay not working, you would like to pay in cash, you would like to ask for school support) please let us know at info@phcol.ie and we will deal with it

Learner Experience- Curriculum Development

New LC Subject- Our school has been selected to be a pilot school for a new LC subject in 2025/26 Climate Action and Sustainable Development.

IMBV- As part of our commitment to inclusion and multi denominational ethos of our school we will replace RE(Religious Education) with a new subject Identity, Multi Beliefs and Values (IMBV) from August 2024.

Changes to TY- we will continue to make sure Transition Year is used to help support our students prepare for the Senior Cycle. I will be making contact with TY parents to update shortly.

Graduation/Awards ceremonies

Our TY and 6th Year Graduation ceremonies took place recently. Also we had a full range of year group award ceremonies. These helped recognise the achievements of 1000s of young people in different areas based around our core values of Academic excellence, care , community respect and equality.

Parents Classes The following were held in the last term and we will continue to hold more in the new term.

  • Dance Fitness classes - Monday 13th and 20th May @ 9.30 to 11 with Dance Concepts.
  • “How to help your child experiencing exam stress?” Workshop with Caroline O’Connor (EiSHT)- Thursday 16tth May @ 7.30 to 9.30

JCSP

  • 3rd Year Celebration - On Friday 10th May students received their Certificates from the Department of Education
  • Dance Fitness for 1st and 2nd Year JCSP students (13th and 20th May)
  • Resilience workshop for 1st and 2nd year JCSP students with Caroline O’Connor (EiSHT)- Thursday 16tth May
  • 2 Cedar have visited Queally Group Factory twice and are working with them on Business in the Community Project.

School Completions Programme (SCP)

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  • A successful year in the Homework Club came to a close on the 23rd May.

ASD Outreach Class

  • Our Outreach class took part in the An Cuan Games on the 24th of April in Maynooth Community College. This was an opportunity for students with Autism across Kildare to come together, socialise and try their hand at a range of activities. Some of the events included tag rugby, volleyball and obstacle courses. A great day was had by all and our participants brought back some beautiful medals.

Music

  • Music evening 7pm in the school Foyer was held on Thursday 9th May

Career Guidance

  • Thanks to Kim Langford for volunteering to do the 6LCA interviews and organising another interviewer ( Jennifer O’Dowd) , it was a real success- great experience for the students and really positive feedback from all . Hoping to extend it to TY's next year so if there are any other volunteers ( or any volunteers willing to come in to tell their Career path journey) let me know.

Yellow Flag/ Diversity

  • Working on separate anti racism policy-diversity team

Amber Flag

  • We once again were awarded amber flag

Sport

Overall we had another hugely successful year with 100s of students representing the school in various sports.This helps these young people develop life skills, promote a sense of wellbeing, health and belonging. Thanks to them and the teachers who coached them.

In the last term

  • Our Cricket team reached the Dublin Division 2 final
  • Our Junior Volleyball boys team lost the All Ireland Final
  • Our Junior Girls Volleyball lost out at All Ireland Semi Final stage
  • Our u16 Boys GAA team won the South Leinster Final
  • Our Hurling team competed with NCC in a joint team.
  • Our athletics team competed in the south Leinster Athletics

Naas, Co Kildare, Ireland
045 897885
Kildare and Wicklow Education and Training Board
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