Information for Parents

TCS Schools Admissions Policy

Updated 20/09/16

1.       Admissions Policy

1.1.    This admissions policy has been drawn up in consultation with the Board of Management, staff, Parents and Students of Tallaght Community School and has been approved and adopted by the Board of Management.  This policy has been developed in the spirit of providing a fair, just and transparent process for the admission of students to Tallaght Community School (TCS). TCS is an equal opportunities school which welcomes diversity. The procedures and appeal mechanisms are designed to ensure that each applicant is provided with her/his rights of natural justice at all times. This admissions policy will be published in the community.

2.       Mission statement:

2.1.    This policy statement is in line with the objectives set out in the school’s mission statement and in the Deeds of Trust for Community Schools to “provide a comprehensive system of post-primary education open to all the children of the community, combining instruction in academic and practical subjects”. The school mission statement prescribes that the school is co-educational, multi-denominational and inclusive.  This policy statement therefore provides for the admission of all boys and girls in the community regardless of religion, social class or educational needs within the limits of available accommodation and facilities provided by the Department of Education.

3.       Rationale:

3.1.1. Tallaght Community School is a “recognised school” which depends on the grants and teacher resources provided by the Department of Education and Skills (DES). The school operates within the regulations laid down by the DES. The school follows the curricular programmes prescribed by the DES, which may be amended from time to time in accordance with the Education Act (1998).

3.1.2. Enrolment is limited by school capacity and by the requirements of the school curriculum and organisation, as prescribed from time to time by the Board of Management and as determined by DES regulations and standards. For Health and Safety purposes it would be unsafe and a breach of Health and Safety regulations, as well as bad educational practice, to breach school capacity. In assessing applications for admission the school will take fully into account:

3.1.2.1.              The right of parents to enrol their children in a school.

3.1.2.2.              The capacity of the school to provide adequately for the education of all of its pupils.

3.1.3. Classes range from Junior Certificate to Leaving Certificate, including Leaving Certificate Applied and Transition Year (which is compulsory prior to admission to the Leaving Certificate course). The maximum class size allowed under present school policy is thirty for general classes and twenty/twenty four for particular practical/skill based classes.

 

 

 

4.       Overview

4.1.    In the Admissions Policy, the Board of Management of TCS is setting out its admissions policy in accordance with the Education Act 1998, the Education Welfare Act 2000, the Equal Status Act 2002 and the Deed of Trust. The Board of Management trusts that by so doing, parents will be assisted in relation to enrolment matters. The Principal of the school will be happy to clarify any further matters arising from the policy.

4.2.    For further information see website for copy of the Deed of Trust, Code of Conduct and General School information.

4.3.   Against the background and ethos outlined above, the key principles outlined in the Education Act underpin our Admissions policy.

5.       Enrolment Process Admission of a child to a recognised school

5.1.1. From the date of the commencement of the Education Welfare Act 2000, the Board of Management shall not refuse to admit as a student in this school any child, in respect of whom an application to be so admitted has been made - except where such refusal is in accordance with this policy.

5.1.2. For the purposes of this policy, an application for enrolment is deemed to exist when a completed application form has been submitted to the school. Applications forms are available for collection from the school office.

5.1.3. The BOM designates the school Principal to process enrolment applications on its behalf, in accordance with its Admissions Policy.

5.1.4. The parents of a child, in respect of whom an application has been made, shall provide the recognised school concerned with such information as is outlined in the application form or as may be prescribed by the Minister.

5.1.5. As soon as is practicable, but not later than 21 days, after a parent has provided the information, the Principal shall make a decision in respect of the application concerned and inform the parents in writing thereof. Where a decision is made to refuse to enrol a student, parents will be fully informed, in writing, of all appeal processes open to them.

5.1.6. The Principal of a recognised school shall, before registering a child as a student at that school: provide the parents of such child with a copy of the Code of Behaviour and AUP in respect of the school and may, as a condition of so registering such child, require his or her parents to confirm in writing that the Code of Behaviour and AUP so provided is acceptable to them and that they shall make all reasonable efforts to ensure compliance with such codes by the child.

5.1.7. A process takes place at the end of each school year to confirm continuation to the following year/programme.

 

6.       Incoming First Year students

6.1.1. The enrolment process is by way of written application form provided by the school.

6.1.2. Applicants should apply by the first Saturday in October of their final year in primary school. Specific arrangements will be put in place by the Board of Management to facilitate the application process from both priority schools and others as outlined below in paragraph 7.

6.1.3. Parents coming into the area who wish to enrol a student should notify the school in advance or as soon as they know their arrangements.

6.1.4. Late applications may only be by way of appointment with the Principal or his designated officer.

6.1.5. The number of places for first years in any year is subject to the number of applications and the spaces open in specific first year classes.  Other factors such as Board of Management directives and resources provided by the Department of Education and Skills may affect admissions.   The BOM will specify the number of students to be enrolled for each academic year.

 7.       Specific Procedures for First Year enrolment

7.1.1. The applicant must have reached 12 years of age by 1st January of their first year in TCS.

7.1.2. Parents/guardians will supply:

7.1.2.1.              A completed application form

7.1.2.2.              A copy of the applicant’s birth certificate

7.1.2.3.              The child’s PPSN

7.1.2.4.              €50 (non-refundable) for First Year Starter Pack must accompany all applications.

7.1.3. All applicants should have completed a full course of primary education or have followed an approved course.

7.1.4. Applicants and their parents/guardians must be willing to accept the school’s Code of Behaviour and confirm this in writing.

7.1.5. Failure to fulfil any of the above criteria may result in the application being void and will not be accepted.

7.1.6. The Board has an implied right and duty to limit the intake of pupils: it would be irresponsible of the Board to admit an excessive number of students as to do so would involve a decline in educational standards and could endanger health and safety in the school. Where the number of applicants exceeds the number of places available, a waiting list will be established. A place on the waiting list does not, in any way, guarantee a place in the school.

7.1.7. The following Primary Schools have priority access to places in Tallaght Community School – Scoil Aonghusa, Scoil Iosa, St. Kevins Girls, Scoil Naomh Caoimhin Boys, St. Marys and St. Killians.

7.1.8. Students are admitted to the school, subject to resources, with priority given to students in the following order:

7.1.8.1.              Students of the above named primary schools

7.1.8.2.              On a first-come first-served basis.

7.1.9. Enrolments will take place on a designated Enrolment Day as specified by the Board of Management, and is no later than the second weekend of October.

7.1.10.    Applications from 6th class pupils from priority schools, as outlined above, are processed first. After these places are allotted, any remaining places are allotted to other applicants (not from the designated priority schools) on a first-come, first-served basis. 

7.1.11.    Applications received after Enrolment Day are deemed to be late applications and are processed on a first-come first-served basis regardless of the pupil’s primary school.

7.1.12.    Details of the enrolment process are outlined at an information evening to be held prior to Enrolment Day and on the school website www.tallaghtcs.com.  An announcement will be made in the Tallaght Echo.

7.1.13.    In the event of the number of applications exceeding the number of places available, a waiting list will be established and allocation of places will be done on a first-come first-served basis as per when an application was received at Tallaght Community School. Only fully completed application forms will be processed.

7.1.14.    The Board of Management, in accordance with the school policy, makes final decisions in relation to applications for enrolment.  All admissions are subject to the approval of the Board of Management.

 8.       Enrolment of children with special needs

8.1.    “Special educational needs” has been defined as the educational needs of students who have a disability and the educational needs of exceptionally able students. TCS welcomes students with special educational needs.

8.2.    The school will use the resources provided by the Oireachtas to make reasonable provision and accommodation for students with disabilities and also for students with other special educational needs - up to a “nominal cost”. 

8.3.    The school will not enrol a student unless it can adequately meet those needs. All students are free to participate in the life of the school in so far as is reasonably possible e.g. drama, debates, music.

8.4.    The school may make such different provision as is reasonably necessary on the gender, age or disability ground in respect of the provision or organisation of sporting events or sporting facilities.

8.5.    Every reasonable endeavour is made to accommodate students with special needs. The board may request a copy of the child’s medical and/or psychological report. Parents/guardians are required to furnish the relevant documentation relating to the child’s disabilities.

8.6.    It may be necessary for the Board to decide to defer enrolment of a particular child pending a receipt of an assessment report and/or provision of appropriate resources by the DES to meet the needs specified in the medical and/or psychological report.

8.7.    The school will meet with the parents to discuss the child’s needs and the school’s suitability or capability in meeting those educational needs.

8.8.    The school is obliged to take account of a situation where compliance with its provisions in relation to a student with a disability would, by virtue of the disability, make impossible, or have a detrimental effect on, the provision by the school of its services to other students. The school is also obliged to consider whether the disability could cause harm to the student concerned or to others.

9.       Students Transferring

9.1.    Students may transfer to the school subject to the school’s admissions policy, available space and suitability.

9.2.    Parents/guardians of applicants will supply:

9.2.1. A completed application form (obtained from school)

9.2.2. A copy of the applicant’s birth certificate

9.2.3. The applicant’s PPSN

9.2.4. €50 (non-refundable) for Starter Pack must accompany all applications.

9.3.    Students must apply to the school and parents/guardians must provide the required information to the school Principal.

9.3.1. Information will be sought from the pupil’s previous school/schools in relation to their attendance/punctuality
educational progress
subject choices
term reports
discipline records
records of learning support and special educational needs if applicable
reasons for transfer as per section 20 of the Education Welfare Act

9.3.2. Any existing medical and/or psychological reports relating to the child must be furnished to the school.

9.4.    The acceptance of an application for a student transferring from another school will be subject to the additional criteria:

9.4.1. The school has not exceeded its capacity

9.4.2. The availability of a place in the particular year

9.4.3. The availability of suitable curriculum for the applicant

9.4.4. Satisfactory references from the previous school

9.5.    Where it is established that a student’s behaviour has been a threat to health and safety to their previous school/schools community the Principal may decide not to accept such a student in the interest of the health and safety of the general school community.

9.6.    Any rejection of an application on such grounds may be appealed to the Board of Management.

9.7.    Late Applications/Mid-Year Placements are by way of interview with the Principal or his designated officer, subject to the school receiving full enrolment documentation from Parents/Guardians and the school being satisfied that all required information  from previous school(s) as required by the school have been furnished to the Principal. 

9.8.    The Education Welfare Act (2000) enjoins that:

9.8.1. Parents must provide information as prescribed by the Minister

9.8.2. The Principal of the pupil’s previous school must notify of:

9.8.2.1.              Record of school attendance

9.8.2.2.              Record of educational progress

 

10.   Admission to a particular programme or course:

10.1.Students applying to join the senior cycle will be invited to join the Transition year or the LCA programme.

10.2.Students applying to join 5th year are required to have completed a Transition Year Programme, as it is the policy of TCS that all students wishing to enter fifth year must complete the Transition Year Programme.  

11.   Acceptance of a place in TCS

11.1.Parents whose son/daughter has been offered a place in TCS are expected to:

11.1.1.    Confirm in writing their acceptance of a place by a specific date.

11.1.2.    Confirm in writing their acceptance of the school’s Code of Behaviour and AUP.

12.   Code of Behaviour

12.1.Central to the operation of an effective and caring school, is a fair and efficient Code of Behaviour to which students, parents, staff and management can subscribe. This Code encourages mutual respect and co-operation and has due regard for the rights and responsibilities of all concerned.  Parents/Guardians and students are required to renew their acceptance of the school’s Code of Behaviour at the commencement of each school year.

13.   Implementation and Review Procedures:

13.1.The Board of Management may review the admissions policy from time to time. The Board of Management takes the final decisions in relation to the admissions policy.

 

14.   Right of Appeal:

14.1.The Principal’s decisions madewith regard to the admission of a student are subject to the right of parents/guardians to appeal such decisions to the Board of Management. 

14.2.The BOM’s decisions made with regard to the admission of a student are subject to the right of parents/guardians to appeal such decisions to the Department of Education and Skills under Section 29 of the Education Act 1998.