IN late August it is normally uniforms that are deep cleaned but in 2020 it is school buildings.
Parents and teachers across County Limerick have put in Trojan work to prepare their schools for reopening. But on top of Covid-19, Julie O’Connor, head teacher of Glenroe Community National School, is welcoming pupils after five years. It will be a proud day as a long campaign has been fought to have children in the classrooms again after it closed in 2015.
Thursday is D-Day and Ms O’Connor can’t wait.
“Our doors will open to the pupils of Glenroe/ Ballyorgan and surrounding areas, after a busy summer of setting-up. After a very exciting Zoom meeting with parents and pupils to host a virtual tour of the classroom I’m looking forward to fostering an inclusive education environment, conducive to future focused learning. Our pupils will have a social distancing advantage, with each child allocated their own double desk,” said Ms O’Connor.
Eight pupils have been enrolled and all new furniture and resources ordered – old furniture has been removed to allow for social distancing space for pupils and staff
Other measures include a pod system; hand hygiene breaks; individual pupil packs with all required stationary, books, copies, folders, tissues, sanitizer; modern suite of IT equipment; sanitizing stations at different entry/exit points and lots more.
Minister Patrick O'Donovan said the reopening of the school this Thursday is one of the projects he is most proud of. He described it as “a massive step for a small group in a small community”.
“I have worked on this from the start. We met with the then minister and the local community in his office in Dublin and we presented the data that showed if the school reopened, then it could be sustained. It is wonderful to see the school reopening and I wish staff and children the very best of luck," said Minister O'Donovan.
Minister O’Donovan and Ms O’Connor acknowledged the outstanding efforts by all members of the working group, and how their dedication, enthusiasm and collaboration with Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board has brought about the successful opening of Glenroe CNS.
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