Admission Policy

Introduction

The Admissions Policy of Coláiste na Toirbhirte (Presentation College) has been formulated in accordance with the provisions of the Education Act 1998, the Education Welfare Act 2000, the Equal Status Acts 2000-2008 and the EPSEN Act 2004. The school is managed by a Board of Management (BOM). 

Coláiste na Toirbhirte is a single-sex Catholic Voluntary Secondary School under the trusteeship of CEIST for girls only. The school aims to provide an integrated and an inclusive education. The BOM will decide the number of girls for whom the school can provide an appropriate education having regard to facilities, personnel, buildings and resources.

Enrolment Procedure

An Open Information Night for parents/guardians of prospective students may be held in late September/early October at a date and time to be decided by the Board of Management (BOM), and will be advertised.

The closing date for receipt of completed Enrolment Application Forms will be decided each year by the BOM and parents/guardians will be notified.

All applicants for enrolment will be notified of the result of their applications as soon as possible after the closing date for applications but not later than twenty-one days after the closing date. The decision of the BOM on such applications will be based on the available resources, facilities and staff, DES regulations, ability of the school to cater for the educational needs of students and any relevant Health and Safety requirements.

An Assessment Test will be carried out to identify learning needs. Applicants and their primary school teachers will be informed of the date of the assessment and the type of assessment that will be given.

The school will arrange information and induction sessions for new students and their parent/guardians.

It is a condition of enrolment that the parents/guardians of students applying for places in the school give their consent in writing to the school’s Code of Behaviour.

All applicants are required to satisfy all the criteria for enrolment as set out by the BOM.

The school authorities endeavour to provide an ordered learning environment which fosters discipline and respect. Acceptance of a place in the school is deemed to be an acceptance of the ethos, educational aims, code of behaviour and school policies.

Eligible for Admission

Girls who are eligible for admission to the school must be twelve years of age on the 1st of January in the calendar year following their entry into First Year, be willing to accept the school ethos and take an assessment test.

Criteria for Enrolment

In the event of the school having more applications than places available, the following criteria (starting with the first category and following sequentially) will be used to prioritise students for enrolment:

  • Sisters of current students
  • Sisters and daughters of past students
  • Residents in Bandon Parish
  • Daughters of staff members
  • Girls from Presentation Primary School, Bandon
  • Girls from Bandon Parish Primary Schools
  • Girls from “Feeder” primary schools
  • Girls whose names have been placed on a prospective enrolment list, in such order that the longest on the list has highest priority
  • All other girls applying

If when any one of the above categories is reached and the full quota of places would be exceeded if all qualified applicants within the category were accepted, the final places will be filled by means of a lottery involving all the qualified applications within that category. Such lottery will be carried out under the direction of the BOM. The remaining applications in the category will be placed on a “Waiting List”. Applications in the next category will not be considered until all applicants on the “Waiting List” of the preceding category have been accommodated.

Special Educational Needs

Coláiste na Toirbhirte (Presentation College) welcomes girls with special needs and will use the resources, both financial and personnel, provided by the Department of Education and Skills (DES) to make reasonable accommodation for girls with disabilities or special educational needs up to a nominal cost so that these girls are free to participate in the life of the school in so far as it is reasonably practicable.

To ascertain the ability of the school to cater for the needs of such a student and to become familiar with her needs, it will be necessary for the school to access the student’s records and individual educational programme from the primary or other school well in advance of her entry to Coláiste na Toirbhirte.

The school will also require parental/legal guardian permission for access to any relevant medical or psychological reports.

In the absence of such reports, the school will require parental/legal guardian permission to request a National Educational Psychological Services (NEPS) assessment or similar psychological assessment. The purpose of this assessment will be to assist the school in establishing the educational needs of the applicant.

Coláiste na Toirbhirte, in cooperation with the NEPS or other relevant authority, will inform the DES of whatever resources, equipment or personnel that will be required to cater for the special needs of the applicant.

The Principal and /or Special Needs coordinator or relevant teacher will, as soon as possible, arrange to meet with the parents/legal guardians of the student to discuss the student’s needs and the school’s capacity to meet those needs.

The school recognises the need for liaison and cooperation between the school and the teachers in the primary schools as well as with the parents/legal guardians of the students with special needs, and will, subject to availability of adequate resources endeavour to facilitate the process of transition of such students from primary to post-primary education.

It may take some time for the DES to process such applications. Parents/legal guardians are strongly advised to inform the school as early as possible and discuss their particular situation well in advance of making application.

Transfer from Another School

The School will make every reasonable effort to facilitate a student seeking a transfer to our school.  The Board of Management will decide on applications for admission to any year other than First Year by applying the following criteria:

The Board will decide whether or not a transfer: –

  • Is in agreement with the school Admission Policy
  • Is in the best interest of the student
  • Is in the best interest of the school
  • Includes all relevant information from the former school is made available.
  • Necessitates a consultation with the Educational Welfare Officer.

Where a student is considered for a place, the Board of Management will decide, in consultation with the student’s parents/guardians, her former school and the Education Welfare Officer, whether such a place may be offered immediately or whether it would be better to wait until the beginning of the next academic year. Response to an application will be notified to the parent/guardian within 21 days on receipt of full application form and required documentation.

Right to Refuse Admission

The BOM reserves the right to refuse enrolment to any student in exceptional cases.

Such an exceptional case could include the following:

  • The student has special needs such that, even with additional resources available from the DES, the school cannot meet such needs and/or provide the student with an appropriate education.
  • In the opinion of the BOM, the student poses an unacceptable risk to other students, to school staff or to school property.

Repeating a Year

Consideration will only be given to students wishing to repeat a year in exceptional circumstances and for reasons acceptable to the DES as set out in circular letters M57/87, M33/89, M47/93 and M2/95.

Transition Year (TY)

The number of places to be available on the TY programme will be determined each year by the BOM within the context of the overall enrolment to the school and the resources available within the school.

The parents/legal guardians of students in third year (Junior Certificate) will be invited to attend an information session wherein the procedures for applying for places on the programme will be outlined. Students will be required to return a completed application form by the date specified, following the receipt of which they may be interviewed by the Transition Year Coordinator and other relevant teacher, who will make a recommendation to the Principal and Deputy Principal on whether a place should be offered to a student. The final decision on whether a place should be made available to a student will be based on the recommendations of the Principal and Deputy Principal.

 

Appeals

The Admissions are managed by the Principal. Where a student is refused admission, the parent is given the opportunity to appeal to the Board of Management. The Board of Management reserves the right to refuse an application for admission in exceptional circumstances.  Education Welfare Act, 2000, Section 24, (5) and Page 22:  Education Act 1998, Section 29, Page 27; Circular Letter M48/01.

“The Board of Management of a recognised school shall not refuse to admit as a student in such school a child, in respect of whom an application to be so admitted has been made, except where such refusal is in accordance with the policy of the recognised school concerned published under section 15 (2) (d) of the Education Act 1998” Education (Welfare) Act 2000.  (Section 19 (1).)

“Should a student’s application for admission to the school be refused the parents/guardians have the right to appeal to the Secretary General of the Department of Education and Science, (Education Act 1998, Section 29 (d) The Parents/guardians are informed in writing of the Board’s decision and the reasons why the student was not accepted should be clearly stated.  The right to appeal should be restated and the application form provided.”  (Circular M48/01).

“The appeal must be made within 42 calendar days from the date the decision of the Board of Management was notified to the parents/guardians concerned”. (Circular, M48/01)

“An appeal may be made to The Secretary General of the Department of Education and Science, The Appeals Administration Unit, Department of Education and Science, Marlborough Street, Dublin 1.

“An appeal should be made in writing on the Application Form supplied.  The Appeals Application Form should be completed in full and should state:

  1. The decision being appealed.
  2. The grounds on which the decision is being appealed.
  3. The date that the parents/guardians were informed of the decision.
  4. All other relevant information.” (Circular M48/01)

 “The school must be informed in writing of the decision to appeal.

Having regard to the desirability of resolving grievances within the school where possible, the parties to an appeal under Section 29, i.e. the appellant and the school’s Board of Management, will be asked to consider the matter in the first instance at local level to see if an accommodation can be reached.  As a general rule, appeals will only be considered by an appeals committee under section 29 where the parties are unable to resolve the issue at local level.” (Circular M48/01)

Review of Admissions Policy

The BOM will review this policy from time to time as appropriate, but in any case at the start of each new BOM, in consultation with relevant partners.

The BOM may, subject to relevant legislation under the upcoming Admissions Bill, and subject to DES regulations, alter or amend any section of the Policy as appropriate.