All posts by Anthony Dowling


Statement from Norma Foley for parents/guardians

24 February 2021

Dear Parent/Guardian

Yesterday the Government published the plan for the next phases of return to in-school provision for students at both primary and post-primary level. These further phases have been developed following continuous engagement with unions and other education partners and ongoing engagement with the Department of Health and HSE Public Health.

The Department of Health and the HSE have reaffirmed that schools in themselves are low risk environments and that a gradual phased reopening can occur at this time. Public health has reviewed the measures put in place to ensure safe operation of schools and is satisfied that these infection prevention and control measures, when rigorously adhered to, will keep the school community safe during this period.

There will be a period of time between each phase to assess the impact of reopening on aspects of community transmission.

 On Monday 1 March the first four classes at primary level – junior and senior infants, first and second class – and final year Leaving Certificate students will return to in-school provision. This phase will also see a return to full attendance for children in special schools.

 Monday 15 March is the target date for the return to in-school provision of the rest of primary school children – third to sixth class students – and fifth year Leaving Certificate students. This date will be reviewed during the period following 1 March.

 Monday 12 April, following the Easter break is the target date for the return to in-school education for the rest of post-primary students – first to fourth year students

 Remote teaching and learning provision for students in each category will cease once in-person teaching and learning provision commences for each group of students.

Safety is paramount in our schools, and all provision within schools will continue according to public health advice developed for educational settings. The Department will continue to fund and support as necessary infection prevention and control measures in schools to ensure the safety of the school community.

Public Health in the HSE is fully committed to supporting schools. Schools teams that have been put in place to support schools since October will support schools during the phased return and beyond.

We all know of the hugely adverse consequences at individual, family and societal level of not having in-person learning available to students. The safe return and sustained safe re-opening of our schools is a key priority for Government.

I acknowledge that a phased re-opening is challenging for many people, with children of different age groups in the same families returning at different times. The purpose of managing this cautious phased return is to continue to limit the mobility of the population and curb the spread of the virus.

I ask all parents to please review the symptoms of Covid-19, to ensure that children with symptoms do not attend school and that all children know and understand the procedures in place in school.

Please continue to abide by all social distancing guidance and stay home apart from essential journeys. Parents can help schools by being individually responsible and not lingering outside school at drop off and collection times. It is welcome that children will see their friends in school, but please do not organise playdates or home visits.

We all understand how essential school reopening is and we need to give it the best possible chance to get all students back as quickly as possible.

I would like to thank you, your families and school communities for continued adherence to the guidelines and for helping us all to curb the spread of the virus. I wish all students and staff a safe return to in-person learning over the coming weeks.

You may find the below useful: Links to posters and videos here:

Yours Sincerely,

Norma Foley, TD

Minister for Education


Podcast Review: ‘Dark Snow & Emma’

Below is a review by TY student Chloe Behan of the RTE Documentary on One ‘Dark Snow and Emma’. Chloe completed the review as part of Ms Kirwan’s library class.

The link to listen to the documentary is

What I learnt from the podcast is that humans are the cause of climate change. We are the reason our planet is falling apart. Thousands of people have suffered from all the floods that have been happening due to the ice sheets melting, coastal towns in Europe are seeing more and more flooding due to the Greenland ice sheet melting. In Bangladesh houses have been raised seven and a half feet and toilets in schools have been raised up to stop flood water getting in, so that it can’t overflow and spread diseases. A group of Bangladeshi women made a chart/diagram with information about how these floods have made things a lot harder. That are practically social scientists and are using this information in response to climate change.

What I also learnt is that Antarctica is the biggest ice sheet and Greenland is the 2nd biggest, it is 700miles across and 1,500 miles long. Greenland’s ice sheet is shaped like a dome. In order to see how fast the ice is melting they drill a hole in the ice about 95feet, aluminium pipes are then attached together and pushed down the hole, they leave about 5 feet of pole sticking out, they mark the pole and put a flag on it. They come back a year later and see how far it melted and where the pipe is.

The melting of the ice sheet effects us all, just because we cannot see it, does not mean it is not happening.

Chloe Behan


1st Years Art Work On Kindness

1st Year CSPE students were tasked with creating a poster that illustrated what kindness meant to them. The results were fantastic as you can see from the small selection shown here- unfortunately, we couldn’t show them all.

Well done to our Fantastic 1st years. We really do have amazing, kind, and generous students here in Collinstown Park Community School.

Thanks to Ms Strumble for the fantastic pictures and information.


A Student’s Perspective of Online Learning

Since schools have closed again due to lockdown, teachers have continued their teaching online. It’s a stressful time for teachers and students but schools will remain closed until further notice, we do most of our classes on teams and the classes we don’t do on teams we send work through Edmodo.

Mr Higgins teaching his third year PE students

Even though it is very different from actually going to school our timetable is the same. Classes start at 8:55 and will last between 30 to 40 minutes. You must have your camera on and appropriate clothing and message your tutor, teacher or year head if you have any difficulties.

Mr Flood teaching fifth year Engineering

I find online learning a little more difficult than actually being in the classroom. Then on other occasions I find it easier, for example you have time to do assignments and other work without it piling up.

Ms McHugh teaching her sixth years

Online learning can be different for everyone, sometimes it’s hard to find a quiet place to learn and you would just rather be in school. Some people might like online learning because you are at home and find it less stressful. Remember you can message your tutor or year head if you are having a hard time with online work.

Chloe Behan – TY Press


TY Workshop With Architects

Transition year students from class 4E started a 6-week workshop with ‘Architects in schools’ with Architect Richard Arnold. We were awarded this workshop through the Irish Architecture Foundation ahead of many other schools in the country.

We originally had planned to have the workshop in the Art room but unfortunately, we had to move to online. We are 2 weeks in and the students are enjoying thinking about the buildings around them and sketching their ideas. We would like to thank Richard and the ‘Architects in schools’ programme for choosing Collinstown Park Community College and hopefully we will see them back next year.

Thanks to Ms Strumble for the report and the pictures.