Saint Fintan’s Boys School

New Line Road, Mountrath






School Self-Evaluation summary report for school community





Evaluation period: September 2013 to June 2014





Report issue date: June 2014









Summary School Self-Evaluation Report



1. Introduction

There are 6 teachers and 94 pupils in the school.  We have a number of programmes operating in the school including (eg Aistear, Reading for liteacy, Numeracy programmes, music / art / sport etc).  Our attendance levels are good  Our pupils’ behaviour is excellent.  For more information on how we intend to improve our pupils’ learning in Literacy and Numeracy, please see our School Improvement Plan which is available on this website


1.1   The focus of the evaluation


We undertook a school self-evaluation of teaching and learning during the year. We evaluated Literacy and Numeracy.  We chose these areas because we felt that our pupils could improve their learning outcomes in these areas. 


This report summarises the strengths that were identified and the areas that have been prioritised for improvement.


2. Summary of school self-evaluation findings


We collected information from parents, pupils and teachers in preparing this report.  We looked at how well our pupils were doing in Literacy and numeracy. We also interviewed teachers parents (during parent teacher meetings)

2.1 We found that our school has strengths in the following areas:




In literacy we felt that the children were strong in their word attack skills and in their word identification.


We found that most boys have a reading age either at or above their chronological age.


In maths we found the shape and space- line and angles, measures- length, Algebra- patterns and Mental maths were quite strong in the classes.





We know these are our strengths because we looked at our observations that we had as teachers, we listened to what the parents and children felt, we analysed the class and homework being given and we critiqued the weekly/termly and yearly assessments that were given to all classes.


2.2 We have decided to prioritise the following areas for development:



Areas for development

In Literacy we felt the areas of Comprehension

                                                  Oral language development

                                                               Writing conventions

In Numeracy we felt the areas of:


Skills- applying and problem solving/ Understanding and recalling

Number-operation (Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication and division) and fractions.

Measure- Time and Money

Shape and Space- 2D and 3D shapes, symmetry

Early mathematical activities-number formation.





We have decided to prioritise these areas because teacher observations highlighted that these were areas of concern and as a result of a staff discussion we decided to come up with strategies to target these areas.






Rules and regulations for schools are set out in a number of Education Acts, and in Circulars issued to schools from time to time by the Department of Education and Skills. The list below deals with important areas of school life and tells you what rules and regulations apply to them. You will find the Acts and Circulars mentioned on the Department’s website,

Which area of school life is involved, and what are the regulations?


Is the school following the regulations fully?

The school calendar and the school timetable

Circular 11/95 sets down the length of the school year - minimum of 183 days


Circular 11/95 sets down the length of the school day

4 hours 40 minutes (infants);

5 hours 40 minutes (1st-6th classes)

√ Yes  No



√ Yes  No

Parent/ teacher meetings and staff meetings

Circular 14/04 sets out the arrangements for these meetings

√ Yes  No

Implementation of agreement regarding additional time in school for teachers

Circular 0008/2011 requires teachers to do an additional 36 hours of out-of-class work each year, so as not to reduce teaching time

√ Yes  No

Standardisation of school year

Circular 034/2011 gives the dates for school holidays

√ Yes  No

Valid enrolment of pupils

Sections of the Education Act 1998 and the Education (Welfare) Act 2000, and the Rules for National Schools set out the conditions for pupils to be validly enrolled in a school

√ Yes  No

Pupils repeating a year

The circumstances in which pupils may repeat a year are set out in Rules for National Schools, and circulars 11/01 and 32/03

√ Yes  No

Development of school plan

Section 21, Education Act 1998 requires all schools to have a school plan

√ Yes  No

Engagement with SSE process

Circular 39/2012 outlines the school self-evaluation process and what it requires of schools

√ Yes  No

Time for literacy and numeracy - assessing and reporting literacy and numeracy achievement

Circular 56/2011 sets out initial actions required in the implementation of the National Literacy and Numeracy Strategy

√ Yes  No

Exemption from Irish

Circular 12/96 sets out the circumstances in which children are exempt from studying Irish

√√ Yes  No

Implementation of child protection procedures

Circular 0065/2011 and the Child Protection Guidelines oblige schools to ensure that: liaison persons have been appointed; the procedures have been communicated to the whole school community; and the procedures are being followed

√ Yes  No

Implementation of complaints procedure as appropriate

Section 28 Education Act 1998 provides for procedures to address complaints about a school.


√ Yes  No


Complaints have been resolved or are being resolved

 Yes  No  N/A √


Appeals in the case of refusal to enrol students, suspension and expulsion (permanent exclusion)

Section 29 Education Act 1998 provides for appeals procedures in these cases, which are dealt with first of all by the school. Where cases are not resolved at school level, an external appeals committee hears the appeal and makes a decision.

√ Yes  No


Appeals have been dealt with or are being dealt with

 Yes  No  N/A √








Schools are required to have certain policies in place as part of their permanent school plan. It is good practice for schools to consult with the school community in forming and reviewing many of these policies. The school board of management has to approve and ratify policies, and should ensure that they are reviewed on a regular basis.

What area of school life does the policy deal with and what is the aim of the policy?

Has policy been approved by the board of management?


Enrolment policy

Section (15)(2)(d) Education Act 1998 obliges schools to have and publish an enrolment policy that respects the principles of equality and parental choice

√ Yes  No

Code of behaviour

Section 23, Education (Welfare) Act 2000, and the 2008 National Educational Welfare Board Guidelines set out regulations and good practice for schools to follow in drawing up and implementing a code of behaviour

√ Yes  No

Anti-bullying policy

Anti-bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-primary Schools, 2013 sets out regulations and good practice for schools to follow in drawing up and implementing an anti-bullying policy

√ Yes  No

Attendance and participation strategy

Section 22 Education Welfare Act 2000 requires schools to develop a strategy to support high levels of pupil attendance and participation in school life

√ Yes  No

Health and safety statement

All schools should have a health and safety statement that is regularly reviewed (see Section 20 Health and Safety Act 2005)

√ Yes  No

Data protection

School procedures relating to gathering, storing and sharing data on pupils should comply with data protection legislation - Data Protection Act 1988

Data Protection (Amendment Act) 2003

√ Yes  No

Internet acceptable use policy

Schools should have and implement a policy to instruct pupils on safe and responsible use of the internet. See for guidelines

√ Yes  No

Special education needs policy

Various pieces of equality and education legislation, especially the Education for Persons with Special Education Needs Act (EPSEN) 2004, require schools to be inclusive of pupils with special educational needs and to provide for them appropriately using the resources available

√ Yes  No

Relationships and sexuality education (RSE) policy

Schools are required to have an RSE policy and to implement it in line with Relationships and Sexuality Education: Policy Guidelines (1997)

√ Yes  No

Substance use policy

The National Drugs Strategy and Department Guidelines require schools to develop and implement a policy on substance use, in partnership with parents and other agencies

√ Yes  No

Child protection policy

Circular 0065/2011 sets out requirements (see above for details of policy and implementation)

√ Yes  No

Parents as partners

Circular 24/91 requests schools to set up a parents’ association, and promotes partnership between home and school

√ Yes  No


Deployment of special needs assistants

Circular 71/11 allows for SNAs to be deployed flexibly to respond to the needs of the school

√ Yes  No