Franciscan College Gormanston

Letter to Parents/Guardians re: Key Dates/Events


Dear Parents and Guardians,

Happy New Year to all and best wishes for 2024!

As I’m sure you’ll agree thankfully we are nearing the end of January and hopefully, the emergence of Spring, brightness, warmer days and fewer storms!

Important to give you an update on key dates and events this term:

Trial examinations 2024:

Mock exams begin from Monday 29th January 2024 for 3rd, 6th year and LCA exam candidates. Mock exams provide students with the opportunity to practice sitting formal exams under standard examinations conditions. The exams will replicate the exact conditions students will encounter in June 2024. On behalf of the school, we wish all students the best of luck and remember this is a trial run for the “real thing” in June. Do your best!

Key Dates:

Transition Year work experience begins from Monday 19th February 2024. Please note the school is closed on Monday 19th February 2024 to students in order to facilitate a staff training day delivered by the NCSE (National Council for Special Education). This date did not form part of the original calendar but agreed subsequently by the Board of Management as training in this important area is a key initiative for all schools.

• Monday 5th February 2024 is a bank holiday.
• Friday 9th February 2024 is the mid term break with classes recommencing from Tuesday 20th February 2024.
• Wednesday 28th February is the 5th year Parent Teacher Meeting. 3.30pm – 6.00pm.

Well Being Programme:

As part of the school’s well being programme we have a visiting speaker Mr Dave Breheny attending the school. He is going to speak to students about substance use / misuse and the potential resultant challenges of addiction. He is in recovery himself and comes highly recommended. His presentation to students on Friday 26th January for 1st year and 2nd year will be at an age-appropriate level. After the mock exams Mr Breheny will deliver a presentation aimed at more senior students.

Substance Use – Vaping:

Vaping is becoming increasingly popular. Hardly surprising with glamorous advertisements, brightly coloured and accompanied with social media hashtags to encourage young people to join the “trend”. There may be peer pressure to “fit in”.

Our key objective as a school is around education and advice. I invited members of An Garda Siochana to tour the school today and to speak to a variety of students. The school is in the process of updating its Substance Use Policy. I am including a draft here for your attention and will be asking the Parents Association for their feedback and reflection on it. There will also be an opportunity this term to gather the views of students too. Please remember this is in draft format and will need to be examined by all sections of the school community before it is finally endorsed by the Board of Management. Please see a copy of our Substance Abuse Policy here

Irish Cancer Society:

Our 6th year students led by our 6th year Charity Committee are hoping / planning a “sleep In” in the sports complex on the night of Thursday 2nd May 2024 between 7pm and 7am. There is no school scheduled for Friday 3rd May 2024 as it is a school discretionary day. In addition, Monday 6th May 2024 is a bank holiday.

This charity event is being organised to raise funds for our charity partner this school year, The Irish Cancer Society. The organisation of the event is provisional as it is dependant on sufficient numbers of staff for supervision purposes. While there will be more planning between now and then I wish to applaud the endeavour of our 6th year students as their motivation for sleeping “rough” is to assist this worthwhile charity. In due course, they will be contacting you seeking sponsorship! I am sure you will give generously!

Kind regards,

Dermot Lavin

Gormanston, Co. Meath, Ireland, K32NH30
0353 184 12203
© 2024 Franciscan College Gormanston