June Newsletter
Published on June 23, 2023

Scoil Phádraig, Rathoe

End of Year Newsletter

Friday, June 23rd, 2023


Dear Parents/Guardians,

We have come to the end of another school year with many activities and events happening in our school community.

Green schools: My name is Maisy and I’m in 6th Class. I would like to tell you about my school tour. We went surfing to Tramore and it was great fun! There was some litter on the beach, there shouldn’t have been any because there were lots of bins around. Later, we went on a walking trail with an ecologist. The walk was very relaxing and educational. I learned about the sand dunes and how they protect buildings from erosion. We also learned about the native animals and bug hotels. It was really fascinating to learn about the different animals in the area. My last school tour was amazing, I would definitely recommend going to Tramore (submitted by Maisy Farrell).


Reminders on how we can help the environment

1. Turn off the tap when brushing your teeth.

2. Think before you flush.

3. Take shorter showers.

4. Take a shower instead of a bath.

5. Use rainwater when watering plants.

6. Reuse bottles and other plastic containers.

7. Decrease your use of plastic.

8. Only buy what you need.

9. Cut down on food waste by writing a shopping list.

10. Reuse school books.

11. Recycle as much as you can.

12. When going to the beach, if having a picnic bring your rubbish home.

13. Get involved in beach clean-up activities.

14. Lower the temperature on your washing machine.

(submitted by Katie Hogan and Katie Wilson)

Blue Flag: Rathoe NS recently received a specially- commissioned 5- Year Achievement Award for our participation in the Blue Star Programme. The Programme teaches primary school pupils about European cultures and the EU through creative activities and projects which complement the National Primary Curriculum. During our involvement in the programme, we enjoyed visits from Deirdre Clune MEP and the Dutch Ambassador Adriaan Palm. Catherine Lucas also came to the school and gave us a very insightful account of her life growing up in Germany. Other highlights include exploring the many different European cuisines and making authentic Italian Pizza, the European Landmark Postcard Challenge, a very successful

Jumble Sale where the proceeds supported our fellow European citizens in the Ukraine, learning the Anthem of the EU ‘Ode to Joy’, receiving correspondence from the many different EU Embassies and mapping our journey around Europe in our passports.

The past and present pupils who participated in this programme should be immensely proud of this wonderful achievement (submitted by Ms. Furlong).

Student Council: June was a quiet month for our Student Council after their successful friendship week in May. They have picked the paint colours for the stairwell and have no doubt that Liam is really looking forward to brightening it up with their help. The whole school is looking forward to seeing the results.

In other news, ‘Crazy Hair Day’ and the raffle raised €450. €225 of this is going to Pieta House and the other €225 is going towards new sporting equipment for the school. We couldn’t have done it without the whole school community, we are very grateful for all your support.

Junior Entrepreneur Programme: 6th Class had a successful run with Junior Entrepreneur this year. It is a fantastic initiative, and we were delighted to be involved. On Tuesday 6th June, our 6th Class enjoyed a trip to Emerald Park with their profits. They were treated to a tour of the zoo, chicken, sausages and chips and a whole day of rollercoasters, dizzy spells and treats. After all their hard work the children deserved this day, and I was delighted that they all enjoyed it. The rest of their profits (€200) were kindly donated to Pieta House. This brings the total amount donated to Pieta House to €425 including the Student Council donation. We would also like to say a massive thank you to Peter Zerafe in Centra Ballon for selling 15 bags for us. This brought us in an extra €100 which went to support one of our own, Ms. Lalor. She has been completing the ‘100km in 30 Days’ campaign in aid of the Marie Keating Foundation. Best of luck and well done Ms. Lalor!

Our Junior Entrepreneur efforts don’t stop at our trip and donations to charity as we also received the news that we were one of the top 30 projects out of over 200 entries nationwide. We received merits and recognition in the following areas: Marketing Gurus, Tech Titans, Health Heroes and Finance Wizards. This is a fantastic achievement and so well deserved. The children’s hard work and determination is a credit to them, and I am so proud of them for all they have achieved (submitted by Ms. Kealy).

School Tours: We had our school tours last week and were blessed with the good weather. Junior Infants, Senior Infants and 1st Class set off on a trip to Woodfield House in Oylegate, Co. Wexford. They took part in many different traditional activities during the day such as decorating scarecrows, milking cows, creating and building with turf, a visit to the fairy garden to name a few. Pupils really enjoyed the experience. 2nd and 3rd Class went bowling to Roll n Bowl in Portlaoise, followed by a trip to the Play centre onsite which proved to be a very enjoyable day out for all. 4th, 5th & 6th Class donned wetsuits and went surfing at Tramore beach with Freedom Surf School. The weather was on our side and as well as developing their surfing skills, they all had great fun playing in the sand and headed off on an ecological tour around Tramore.

The school tours were a great success, and we would like to express our gratitude to the Parents Association for subsidising the cost of buses on the day which helped to keep school tour very reasonably priced for all families (submitted by Ms. Moore) Thank you to Ms. Moore for co-ordinating all tours.

Active Schools’ Week: This year’s Active Schools’ Week at Rathoe NS took place from Wednesday 14th June to Wednesday 21st June. The children took part in many different activities throughout the week. Wednesday 14th saw the pupils from 2nd to 6th Class taking part in darts lessons. Gillian Dee and Mary Claire French from Carlow Youth Darts visited the school to give the pupils tips about throwing technique and scoring. Each class then took part in a mini darts tournament, with the class winner taking on their teacher in the Grand Final!

On Thursday 15th, the annual class races took place with some powerful running on display from many pupils. Joe Dunny from Fit2Go called to the school to put all the pupils through their paces with a bootcamp for each class. Snr Infants / 1st Class claimed first place in the “Backs to the Wall” challenge.

On Friday 16th, Ballon Rounders Club came to the school to show the pupils the rules of rounders and good batting and catching techniques. Great fun was had by all. All classes took part in a mini walkathon around the school as part of the Walkathon fundraiser for the school and the Fighting Cocks GAA club.

On Monday 19th, the annual 6th Class Vs Staff rounders match took place. The 6th Class were marginally ahead when play had to be halted due to deteriorating weather conditions, so the result was deemed null and void!!

The finals of the soccer and basketball leagues took place on Tuesday 20th. These are always very competitive in nature and there is great pride in winning medals in these events.

Active Schools’ week came to a busy conclusion on Wednesday 21st with our annual Sports Day. The pupils had great fun at different stations such as Zumba, Tug of War, Bouncing Castle, Spud ‘n Spoon, 3-Legged Race, Sack Race, Tea-Towel Volleyball, Water Obstacle Course, Welly Throw and Penalty Shootout. Wednesday also saw each class take part in a Pilates lesson with Breege Nolan. The children finished the day with an ice cream cone from Nicky’s ice cream van. A great week was had by all. I’m sure the pupils slept well each night after all their exertions.


Congratulations to our 6th Class pupil Abby Keppel, who was part of the Carlow team who won their first ever Gaynor Cup in soccer. This is a wonderful achievement for Abby, who is a superb goalkeeper. The whole school is very proud of her.

We look forward to hearing about all the pupils sporting endeavours over the summer (submitted by Mr. Browne).

Thank you, Mr. Browne, for your continued commitment in the area of sport in our school. Please do visit our website, www.rathoens.com to see pictures of the children in all of their activities.

Science Award: Rathoe NS has been involved in the Discover Primary Science Award for many years. This is a flagship project of the Irish Government which aims to increase interest in Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths (STEM) among students, teachers and the public.

We participated in various STEM projects, events and activities this year, such as our annual much loved Science Fair, Engineers Week, Green Schools, Maths Trails and activities during Maths Week and the use of ICT in our learning. We were delighted to receive our plaque for the SFI Curious Minds Award in May which is now proudly on display in the entrance hall of the school. Much credit is due to Ms. Kealy for her hard work in presenting our project submission. Our school website has our project submission displayed with pictures and videos of what we’ve been working on this year.

We have noticed that our commitment to promoting STEM has created a growing interest in this area among pupils over the years. We aim to encourage and foster this interest further by awarding our Science Perpetual Award trophy each year to a pupil who shows interest and aptitude in STEM. After careful consideration of the criteria by the teachers, it gives us great pleasure to award the trophy to Joe Haskins in 6th Class for the 2022/2023 academic year. Well done Joe!

Thank you to the staff for their continuous involvement in this programme and especially to Ms. Kealy for coordinating the Award this year.

6th Class Graduation Mass took place on Wednesday, the 21st of June at Rathoe Church. I would like to thank Fr. O’Connell for officiated such a lovely service. Ms. Kealy’s recital of her poem, which had something to say about each of the pupils, was a lovely addition to the service. All pupils were presented with

graduation certificates from the school to mark the successful completion of their primary education along with the Graduation booklet that was put together by Ms. Kealy with the help of the 23 graduates.

Thank you to the Parents Association who organised lovely, customised hoodies with the class names printed on the back for each pupil. The hoodies were presented to 6th Class at Easter time and they have worn them proudly to school for the last term. Of course, it’s not the end of primary school without McDonald’s which arrived and was enjoyed by 6th Class yesterday! Thank you to Ms. Kealy for co-ordinating the Mass, and the Parents Association for the contribution towards the 6th Class Graduation memorabilia. We wish the Class of 2023 every success and happiness in their new schools. Go n-éirí libh go léir.

This year we say goodbye to 7 families whose direct connection with the school now comes to an end. On behalf of the Board of Management and staff, may I take this opportunity to pay tribute to the families of Oisín Fagan, Maisy Farrell, Harry Glynn, Kate Gorman, Rachel Haskins, Lorcan Kinsella and Karl Lucas.

You have contributed in many different ways to the life of our school over the years. Your individual inputs were much appreciated, and we wish you all well in the next stage of your children’s education. Sincere thanks to Ms. Kealy who brought out the best in all her students this year. We also remember and thank all the staff and teachers who have contributed to their growth and development over their years here in Scoil Phádraig.

Farewell: We say farewell to three pupils in our school who are also moving on this summer. We wish PJ Smithers, Justa Paskauskaite and Daniel North Connors the very best in their new schools.

Parents Association: As another school year comes to an end, we would like to thank you most sincerely for supporting all our fundraising during the year. We would especially like to thank all the parents and children who took the time last weekend to take part in our 24hour walkathon. We would like to thank the Fighting Cocks GFC & LGFC for giving us the opportunity to share in their fundraiser.

If any of you have a spare hour over the summer months, we plan on painting our playground, please get in touch with any member of the PA. We wish you all a safe healthy and happy summer (submitted by Gina Haskins). On behalf of the Board of Management and the school, I would like to say thank you to the committee for all their work.

Class /Teacher Allocations for the school year 2023/2024 are again as follows:

Junior Infants: Ms. Theresa Clery

Senior Infants: Ms. Ciara Townsend / Ms. Nicole Doran (job share)

First / Second Class: Ms. Sarah Furlong

Third Class: Ms. Bríd Lalor

Fourth Class: Ms. Sorcha Lynam

Fifth Class: Ms. Eva Kealy

Sixth Class: Mr. Ronan Browne

Sona Class teachers: Ms. Karen Moore, Mr. Conor Treacy, TBC

SET Team: Ms. Therese O’Brien, Ms. Bobbie Fawcett / Ms. Tríona Finnegan (job share), TBC

SNA team: Ms. Gina Haskins, Ms. Mary Delaney, Ms. Liz Dunne, Ms. Mary Shannon, Ms. Jacqui Stynes, Ms. Carol O’Toole and Ms. Sineád Frayne.

School reports, class and teacher allocations and requisite lists for all classes were sent out earlier in the month.

Book Rental Fees: Thank you to all families who have settled their School fee bill of €40 per child for the coming school year. You will still be able to pay over the summer months. We will send a link to pay online for anyone that wishes to do so in July and August. A link will also be sent out today.

The School office will be open the first week of July and will re-open on Wednesday, 23rd August if you want to pay at the Office. Please do visit our website over the holidays if you are looking for the Requisite list, school calendar etc as all will be posted here, www.rathoens.com.

Míle buíochas: As you can see from the submissions above, we are extremely fortunate to have such a dedicated team of staff. My thanks to each and every one of you for your hard work and dedication to our school. A special word of thanks to those that keep the cogs going behind the scene, to Aileen, Liam, Caroline and Eileen.

Sincere thanks to the Board of Management who give freely of their time for the good of the children and their school. Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireann na ndaoine!

School grounds: We are asking parents to support us in ensuring that they remain vigilant and, in some cases, speak to their older children and their friends about staying out of the school over the summer holidays. Thank you in advance for your co-operation with this.

Re-opening in September

School re-opens for all pupils on Wednesday, 30th at 9.10am.

Junior Infants will finish at 12.20pm every day from Wednesday, August 30th until Friday September 8th and thereafter at 1.50pm each day.

We look forward to working with your children, and you, their parents, again next year. Wishing one and all a warm, happy, healthy and safe summer break!

Le meas,

Erika Murphy