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Coláiste Chaitríona, Ard Mhacha
Telephone: (028 37) 522023                                        
Fax : (028 37) 510034

12th October, 2009

Dear Parent/Guardian,

I wish to bring to your attention some very important issues and to ask for your co-operation and

Swine Flu

I have received notification that a number of pupils have confirmed swine flu. I have been in touch
with the SELB who have said that it is not necessary to close the school. In relation to the question:
- “Should children who have had contact with a known case of swine flu be kept away from
school?” – the advice from both the Department of Education and the Southern Education and
Library Board is:

       As long as they are well and not suffering from flu-like symptoms, there is no reason
       for these children to be kept away from school and they can carry on with their
       normal routine. They should, however, be vigilant for flu symptoms and, at the first
       signs of these, should stay at home and, if necessary, telephone their GP or GP out-
       of-hours service for advice.

While there is no immediate need to consider the closure of the school the position will be kept
under review and I will keep you informed.

There are a number of teaching staff who are pregnant and I am very conscious that these teachers
fall into the high risk group should they contact swine flu. The teachers concerned are most anxious
not to miss school so I am asking your co-operation in ensuring the following:

        If your child exhibits ANY of the symptoms of SWINE FLU please do not send him/her to
         school – seek medical advice and treat to aid a full and speedy recovery.

        Please emphasise with your sons/daughters the vital importance of good habits of personal
         hygiene – thorough hand washing after using the toilet; using a tissue after
         sneezing/coughing and disposing of the same immediately.

I appreciate greatly your help in this matter. To date we have had a manageable pupil school
attendance rate and an excellent staff attendance. It is important that we all work together to
maintain this over the coming months.

12th October, 2009

Election of Parent Governor

A newly constituted Board of Governors met on 1st October 2009 and delegated to me the task of
arranging for the election of the Parent member for the School Board of Governors. The term of
office is four years viz. from 1st October 2010 to December 2013.

   1. Parents will be entitled to nominate candidates, to vote, and to stand for election.

   2. Voting is by a parent of pupils attending the school at the time.

   3. ‘Parent’ includes a guardian and every person who has actual custody of the pupil attending
      the school.

   4. An elected parent continues in office even if ceasing to be a parent of pupil(s) attending the

   5. A teacher in the school, who also happens to be a parent in the school may not be elected as
      a Parent Representative to the Board of Governors of that school.

Nomination Forms for the election of a Parent/Governor can be obtained by contacting the School
Office. I ask that these be returned by 20th October. Any completed nomination form should be
submitted to Mrs Una Corr, Clerk of the Election.

It has come to my attention through a number of sources that fireworks are being used in an
extremely irresponsible way by some people as our students make their way to and from school.
This would appear to affect, to quite some extent, those pupils who disembark from their bus at the
depot in Lonsdale Street and then proceed to school, on foot, via Cathedral Road. We are working
very closely with Ulsterbus/PSNI in trying to avoid any incident or injury occurring and have been
advised by personnel from both agencies to remind parents/pupils of the following:

      Pupils must alight from the bus at the nearest stop to the school in the morning and not
       continue on to the depot unnecessarily
      Any pupil whose bus route does not go past the school, but ends at the depot, is asked to
       avail of the link bus already provided by Ulsterbus to make their onward journey to school.
       This leaves the depot at 8.30 – 8.35am.
      Should the demand for such a service increase, Ulsterbus have agreed to provide a greater
       number of link buses over the coming two weeks to minimise the need for pupils travelling
       on to school by foot.
      The misuse of fireworks in a public place is a criminal offence.

12th October, 2009

School Mass

A whole school Mass to mark the Feast of Mater Admirabilis, one of the most important Feasts in
the tradition of the Society of the Sacred Heart, will be celebrated on Tuesday 20 th October in the
Cathedral at 1.45pm. All pupils will attend and parents are warmly invited to join with us as a
whole school community in this special yearly event in the life of our school. Seating for parents
will be reserved at the back of the Cathedral. Parents are asked to note the following:

      All pupils will be dismissed from the Cathedral after Mass.

      Pupils who travel to and from school by taxi will return to school after Mass. No changes to
       taxi arrangements need to be made.

      Pupils who travel with Quinn’s coaches will board their bus at the Cathedral.

      All other bus arrangements remain unchanged.

Thank you for your co-operation in the first busy weeks of the school year and I look forward to
meeting you over the coming months at Parent/Teacher meetings, Prize Givings, Information
Evenings etc.

With every best wish,

Mrs Deirdre McDonald

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