December Newsletter
Published on December 22, 2023

December Newsletter



Dear Parents/Guardians,


Shoebox Appeal: Thank you to all families who contributed to the shoebox Appeal in November. 97 boxes were collected from the school and are now well on their way to children who are in need of some comfort in their lives. Well done to 1st, 2nd and 3rd Class who were treated to a pizza party as a result of the amount of shoeboxes that were brought in by their class alone.


Indoor hurling: On Wednesday 6th December, our 5th and 6th class camogie players took part in the Cumann na mBunscol indoor camogie blitz held in Kildavin. While this was a new form of the sport for our players, they quickly adapted to the rules and speed of the game and after initially coming up short against Kildavin NS, they then defeated Ballon NS and Tynock NS to qualify for the finals of the competition which will take place in January. Well done girls. Both the boys and girls have now qualified for the finals which bodes well for our outdoor hurling competitions which will take place later in the school year. A fantastic display of skill was on show from both sides, and we are so proud of them. Both teams got the ultimate prize of a night off homework for their efforts (submitted by Mr. Browne and Ms. Kealy).


Rugby blitz: On day Wednesday, 13th December, the pupils from 5th and 6th Class took part in a tag rugby blitz at Tullow Rugby Club. Rathoe NS played against many other schools from around the county and showed great skill and teamwork on the day. Everyone enjoyed their time on the field and had great fun. (submitted by Mr. Browne).


Thank you to both Ms. Kealy and Mr. Browne for giving of their time to sport in our school.


Green schools: Did you know that you can recycle batteries at Lidl supermarkets?  Save some wrapping paper from your Christmas presents to reuse again,  Sophie Cunningham 5th Class. Thank you to Ms. O’Brien for her work with the Green Schools Committee.

Student Council: Participated in the MS Readathon over the past month. The children were busy reading and raising vital funds for MS Ireland. To celebrate our successful campaign, the student council organised a Christmas jumper day on Friday 15th December to raise more funds. We are delighted to announce that, in total, we raised €1,354. We would like to thank everyone for their support. The student council presented the cheque to Ms. Theresa Clery. Well done to Ms. Redmond’s first and second class who won a pizza party for raising the most funds and reading the most books.


This was a busy month for our student council as they also organised a Christmas door competition. Every class took part and the doors brought great character and colour to our corridors for Christmas. It was really hard to pick a winner but in the end our winners were Ms. Clery’s Junior Infants, Mr. Browne’s 6th Class, Ms. McDonald’s Sona class and Aileen’s door, the school Office. Well done everyone. (submitted by Ms. Kealy).


Assembly: This months Assembly was presented by Senior Infants. Thank you to Ms. Townsend and Ms. Doran for all their work behind the scenes.


Parents Association Christmas Draw and Christmas Raffle: Our annual “12 Days of Christmas” Draw this week created great excitement among the children, and we’d like to thank all the families who took part and contributed to the €1,683 raised. All funds will be used to support the different classes in any way needed.


Congratulations to our winners: Hughie Kieran, Sophia Slattery, Ann Fitzgerald, Isobel Rooney, Nathan O’Byrne, Therese O’Brien, Teresa Timmins, Liam & Jack Rooney, Annalise Murphy, Margaret c/o Michael Cranley, Jim Hogan and Conor Haskins.

Our extra special children’s hamper went to Liam and Jack Rooney.

We would like to thank enormously the local sponsors who have supported all the PA’s Christmas activities this year:

– Fighting Cocks GAA Club
– ⁠Ballyvass Baked Goodies
– ⁠⁠Clonmore Meats
– Joe O’Toole & Sons

– ⁠Morgan’s Pharmacy
– ⁠Morrissey’s’ Pharmacy

– Raths Carlow
– ⁠Studio33 Crafts

Also, a big thank you to everyone who generously donated vouchers and items for the Christmas Draw hampers.


We were delighted to see so many families joining us in Sona after the evening Christmas
Carol service on Tuesday. Thank you again to everyone who brought in the delicious home-baked goodies. Our Tree of Remembrance was also a welcomed addition. The children enjoyed adding their loved ones to the branches.
We were equally thrilled to hear that Junior and Senior Infants enjoyed a fun pizza party on Wednesday to celebrate their brilliant performance at the Tuesday morning Carol service.


Split the Pot: Congratulations to the two winners from our Pot today. Finnán Whelan won €102. Well done to Mary Shannon who won the hamper.

Finally, the PA would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to everyone for their continued support with our various fundraising events throughout the year, including the many sponsors and participants in the 24hr Walkathon this summer.


From all of us in the Parents’ Association, best wishes for a peaceful and happy Christmas, and a healthy and happy New Year (submitted by María Keogh de Arriba).


We are very fortunate to have such an amazing Parents Association, thank you all for your time that you give so freely.


Christmas Carol Service: Took place in Sona for Junior and Senior Infants this week. We also had a Carol Service in the Church on Tuesday evening for 1st to 6th Class. Both performances were outstanding. Well done to the children who did themselves proud and thank you to all of our staff and their involvement.


School Choir: The Rathoe School Choir started back this year and we are already excited for some of our upcoming performances. We will be taking part in the Peace Proms concert in March where we will sing in SETU Waterford alongside lots of other schools and a full orchestra. We have already been to the National Sports Arena in Dublin for a Peace Proms practice and we had lots of fun singing and dancing along to some of our favourite songs. Our first big performance was at this year’s school Christmas Carol Service on Tuesday night and we look forward to singing at events like the Communion and Confirmation in the new year (submitted by Ms. Redmond). A special word of thanks to both Ms. Redmond and Ms. Townsend for the giving of their time. We are very lucky to have such talent on our staff.


Cards to the Community: We continued the tradition of writing to those in our community. 3rd to 6th Class decorated and wrote lovely cards to the Rathoe Community. The Junior classes also contributed with lovely pictures which they drew and coloured to be included with the cards. There were some lovely thoughtful messages written to those most vulnerable in the community and I would like to say well done to all the boys and girls for being so considerate to others.


Used Christmas cards: Can we ask you to please hold on to your used Christmas cards and bring them in to Ms. Fawcett in the new year.


Santa’s visit: Santa arrived Thursday morning to all the very good children of Rathoe NS. A huge thank you to the Parents Association, the Fighting Cocks and to Santa’s very special elves that made sure all the boys and girls received a present. Your generosity knows no bounds. Thank you to all who helped out, for making the event such a memorable occasion for the children.

Admissions Notice: Our new Admissions Notice is now on view on our school website. Admissions for September 2024 will begin from January 8th. Please spread the word and let your neighbours with children due to start Junior Infants know about our local school.   Please call the school office on 059-9148786 for an application form.  Alternatively, you can download a copy of the application form, on our website.

Thank You: To our Board of Management who give up their time freely to ensure that everything is in working order, your time is much appreciated. I thank each of our outgoing members for their time and support over the past four years. I would like to wish our new Board of Management all the very best for the next four years.

Chairperson: Clare Ryan

Patron nominee: Fr. Jim O’Connell

Principal: Erika Murphy

Teacher nominee: Eva Kealy

Parent nominee: Deirdre Keppel

Parent nominee: William Rooney

Community nominee: Mary Sheedy

Community nominee: John Behan


I would like to take this opportunity to thank our amazing staff for all the work that they have done over the past few months. I hope you all enjoy a well earned break over the Christmas holidays.

To all of the above who give their support to our school community. Ní neart go cur le chéile.

Dates for Diary:


Monday January  8th  2023 – School re-opens at 9.10am.

Wednesday, 24th January – Grandparents Day

Monday, February 5th  2023 – School closed.


I hope you all have a safe and peaceful Christmas. Best Wishes to you all for the New Year.


Nollaig Shona daoibh go léir!

Le meas,

Erika Murphy