Old Borough

National School, Swords

OLD BOROUGH new school

Enrolment Policy

The purpose of this Enrolment Policy is for guidance towards enrolling children in the school.


The enrolment of any child in the school is at the discretion of the Board of Management, and takes into account the space available in the current year and in the immediate future. Due to the limitations of space and resources, the maximum number of pupils per class will be 14, giving a total of 28 per room.


The catchment area of the school is that area defined by the Church of Ireland grouped parishes of Swords, Clonmethan, Kilsallaghan, Donabate and Lusk, including those areas for which the Old Borough National School is the nearest school under Protestant management.


1. All applications for places in the school should be submitted to the school enrolment officer on the approved application form. Copies of the Ethos statement and the Code of Behaviour will be furnished to each applicant.


2. Only such forms that have been completed in full, accompanied by Birth and Baptismal Certificates, will be considered by the Board of Management. If infant baptism is not practised, a letter indicating the child’s church membership and signed by the pastor/minister/church leader must accompany the Enrolment application.


3. Completion of this form does not guarantee a place in the school.


4. Throughout the school year, the Principal and the Chairperson of the Board of Management shall monitor applications for the following year.


5. Prior to the November meeting of the Board of Management, the Principal and the Chairperson shall discuss the list of applications in order to be in a position to advise the Board at its meeting.


6. The Board of Management will consider all applications at its meeting in November each year.


7. The Board of Management will, in light of articles 6 (e), and 15 (d) of the Education Act 1998, give consideration to the following factors:


• The number of available spaces in the school, which in turn involves:

(a) the number of pupils expected to leave the school

(b) the effect of the intake on the division/pairing of classes

(c) the deployment of teachers

(d) the resources of the school

• The religious denomination of the applicant’ s child

• The parish of the applicant

• Whether an applicant is a sibling of another pupil already attending school.

• All applicants for Junior Infants must have attained their 4th birthday by the 31st May prior to the September of the proposed year of entry.


8. Applicants who have, or have had, siblings enrolled in the school are not automatically entitled to a place.


9. Applications, except in a case of change of residence, are not generally considered in the course of the school year.


10. Students who wish to transfer from another school in the locality are not normally allocated places at the school unless there are special circumstances.


11. In relation to religious denomination and parish, the following priority is followed:


Category 1:

Children who are members of the Church of Ireland resident in the Grouped Parishes or for whom the Old Borough National School is the nearest school under Protestant management; and children who are members of the Porvoo Communion (The Evangelical Luthern Churches of Norway, Sweden, Iceland, Finland, Lithuania, Estonia and Denmark), Old Catholic Churches and Mar Thoma Church, who are full members of the Church of Ireland when resident in Ireland.


Category 2:

Children of interchurch marriages of the same Church of Ireland parishioners listed in Category 1.


Category 3:

Children who are living within the catchment area and are members of Eastern Orthodox or Oriental Orthodox Churches, Moravian Church, Presbyterian Church, Non subscribing Presbyterian Church,  Religious Society of Friends, the Salvation Army and the United Reformed Church, whose application is accompanied by a letter of acknowledgement signed by their relevant church leader.


Category 4:

Children of other Protestant Christian denominations


Category 5:

Children who are members of churches which are involved in the Irish Inter – Church Meeting (i.e. Roman Catholic Church).


Category 6:

Children of other faiths, sects, cults, no religion.


Within any particular category, if the number of applicants exceeds the number of places available, siblings of pupils already enrolled in the school will be given priority. This priority does not automatically entitle such siblings to a place. Thereafter, age will be a determining factor and places will be offered to the oldest child.


12. In relation to residence, the parish boundaries define the catchment area.


13. Applications received on or after the 1st November prior to the proposed year of entry will be deemed late, and will not be considered until all other applications have been processed.


14 . Enrolment of children with a disability and /or special educational needs


Application for all children, including children with a disability and / or other special educational needs, is governed at all times by the school's current Enrolment Policy.  However, the attention of parents of children with a disability and / or other special educational needs is also drawn to the following points:


- The Old Borough School is a mainstream national school, and has higher pupil/teacher ratios than those that apply in special schools.


- In general, the teachers in our school are trained and qualified to teach in mainstream education.  They do not, in general, have any Special Education Needs Teacher Training, experience, or qualifications, such as teachers in special schools have.


- While pupils with special needs can be integrated into a mainstream class, and may be supported by a Special Needs Assistant and a Resource Teacher, as allowed by the Department of Education and Science, this is not the same as the intensive one to one teaching he/she would enjoy in a special school.


- An ordinary mainstream school does not have ancillary services enjoyed by special schools, such as speech therapy, occupational therapy, and physiotherapy.


- The school does not currently have the facilities specially adapted for pupils with physical disability, although the school is fully committed to provision of these, should any pupil need same and subject to funding by the Department of Education and Science.


- A child with special needs integrated into an ordinary mainstream class will experience the normal day to day happenings, determined by the reality of school life and existing customs and practices.  Every child in the school, including those with a disability and / or special needs is bound by school policies, both in existence and those developed from time to time by the Staff and Board of Management.  The school cannot offer any additional tuition, support and supervision, beyond that which is offered to any other pupil in the school at times other than when the school is in operation during the normal school year.  The Class Teacher, Resource Teacher and Special Needs Assistant if any will periodically be required to participate at Staff Development and Curriculum Training Courses. Such professional development events take place within the existing school year and all children including pupils with a disability and / or special educational needs are in the care of their parents during such professional development events.  Such extraordinary closures will be notified to parents of all pupils.


- A child with a disability and / or special educational needs integrated into an ordinary mainstream class will not have any separate or additional provisions put into place in the event of staff illness, absences or whole school events such as school visits, parish liturgy etc.


- From year to year the allocation of teachers to classes is focused on the needs of the whole school and consequently the school cannot guarantee long-term continuity or predictability in personnel.


Notwithstanding the above points, the school is committed to providing the best possible educational service to pupils with disability/special educational needs.  To ensure this, we require:


- A close level of co-operation between parents, the Class Teacher and any other school personnel assigned to support the child.


- This is to enable us to provide the best services for the pupil and to access any additional support/s that may be available, we require parents to supply the school with copies of the most recent psychological and medical reports prior to enrolment. These will be treated in the strictest confidence at all times.


- Copies of all relevant assessments and reports should be supplied to the School as these become available on an on-going basis.


- An assurance from parents that they understand that our responsibility as a school is primarily to all the children in our care. Therefore if it becomes apparent to either /both the teacher and parents that the integration of an individual child with a disability/ special educational needs is having an on-going detrimental effect on the education of the other children in the class or school, the Board of Management reserves the right to review the enrolment of the individual child.



Acceptance Procedure


Parents will be informed in writing of the offer of a place together with a copy of The Code of Behaviour. To accept the offer, parents must sign and return the attached form confirming their acceptance and their agreement to abide by the Code. Acceptances must be received by the given date. All acceptances must be accompanied by the sum of €50 to cover the full cost of Art and Craft and Book Rental fees due for that academic year.


Local Appeals Procedure  


Parents may appeal the Board’s decision not to enrol their child. They may write to the Chairperson seeking a review. The review must be lodged no later than 21 days from the date of the Board’s decision. The Board will consider the review and respond following its next scheduled meeting.  


If the Board's response remains unsatisfactory to them, parents may appeal to the Department of Education and Science under Section 29 of the Education Act. Appeals should be addressed to The Appeals Administration Unit, c/o The Department of Education and Skills, Marlborough Street, Dublin 1.



Approved by the Board of Management.