Maree National School

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December 2016 Newsletter - Part 1

December Newsletter Principal's Message Dear Parents, on behalf of everyone in Maree National School, I would like to wish you all a very happy and peaceful Christmas and every good wish for 2017. As we near the end of 2016, we keep in mind that we have much to be thankful for and look forward to the promise and potential that a new year brings. On a personal note, I would like to thank all parents for your welcome and your support for the school and schoolchildren, I thank all of the children for the respect they show every day towards their school, their teachers, themselves and their work; I especially thank all our school staff whose professionalism, hard work and dedication to the school is exemplary. Nollaig Shona agus Athbhliain Faoi Mhaise Daoibh Go Léir. Christmas Disco Dear Parents, As a huge thank you to the children for their wonderful work for the craft fair, we are organising a Christmas disco forThursday22nd (during school hours). All children are required to bring their best dance moves and be ready for a great party! We need parents to help supervise so if you are available please come and join the fun from9.30am Thank you Parents' Association Christmas Fair - Maree NS Parents' Association held the annual Christmas Fair in the school hall on December 4th and what a success it was! A huge crowd turned up on the day to share in the community experience, have a chat and a cup of tea and purchase some festive goodies and Christmas crafts. The craft pieces were hand made by our pupils with the expert guidance of parents who volunteered to come in to school and work with the children. There was a lovely atmosphere in the school and the hall was beautifully decorated with art work prepared by the class teachers, even Santa was impressed when he arrived by chariot to hand out some treats to the children who were so well behaved. The pupils played some festive tunes under the guidance of Ms Smyth and Jacqui, our music teacher, which added beautifully to the occasion. We are very grateful to our Parents' association who invested a lot of hard work and time to make the event so successful. We say a huge thank you to all who helped prepare for the day, man the stalls and clean up afterwards! A huge thank you to the sponsors of our raffle and congrats to all the prize winners.


December 2016 Newsletter - Part 2

Well done to our 4th class and 6th class boys who took part in a soccer and Gaelic Football challenge last week versus Barnaderg NS. The boys represented our school excellently. Thanks to Mr. Reilly for working with the boys. Christmas Plays / The month of December has been filled with creative drama in Maree N.S. as the Junior infants, Senior infants and 6th class treated us to wonderful performances of their Christmas Plays. A huge thank you to Ms. McGrath, Ms. Kelly, Ms. Fahy, Breda, Majella & Pauline for preparing the classes so well! Nativity Play / second class will perform the annual nativity play in Maree church at 7 os' clock on Wednesday, 21st December. The children from 3rd to 6th will sing in the choir in what promises to be a wonderfully festive occasion. We are very fortunate to have such a talented and hard-working staff who prepare the children so diligently. Thanks to Ms. Pettit, Ms. Smyth and Ms. McGrath for preparing the children. All Welcome. The first preparation Mass for 1st Holy Communion took place on December 3rd in Maree Church. The masses are part of the ‰ÛÏDo This In Memory of Me‰Û? programme which is designed to prepare pupils and their families to receive the sacrament of Holy Communion. There will be 4 masses in total, details of the next mass will issue in the New Year. Thanks to Ms Pettit for her hard work with the children. Our infant classes had a number of special visitors over the past few weeks teaching us all about ‰ÛÏPeople Who Help Us‰Û?. Paramedics Brendan Os' Grady and Robert Burke, Garda Joe Hirst, Nurse Julie Os' Leary, dentists Dr Cormac Collins and Dr Emily Clarke, adult education assistant Lorraine Nolan and consultant radiologist Dr Derek Lohan all visited our infant classes to talk about their various areas of expertise. The children loved the visits and we thank everyone who gave of their time so generously. Connacht Visit: Tuesday 13th December was a very exciting day in Maree NS as Pat Lam and the entire Connacht Squad visited the school to meet the children and speak about the importance of working as a team! The children and staff were thrilled to meet the players and coaching staff and it is a day that will live long in our memories. It was also lovely to get a mention in the match day programme! A huge thank you to Pat and his team for taking the time to visit. Medical conditions / as mentioned in the November Newsletter, please inform us if your child suffers from any medical condition that we should be made aware of. There is a great variety of activities ongoing in our school; work continues with Gaelic games coaching, tin whistle, Spanish, yoga, choir, knitting and sewing every week. Thanks to Jacqui, Monique, Theresa Donoghue, Mary Dooley, Mary Finn, Noreen Dooley , Gearóid McInerney, Malachy Black, Mr. Reilly, Gerry Spellman, Ms. Hannon, Breda Hanniffy & Ann Nolan for all your hard work. School Orchard. We have now a school Orchard! A huge thank you to the Green School's committee, led by Ms Sinnott and to Ms Pettit for organising the planting of ten fruit trees at the school a couple of weeks ago. Thanks to all the past and current pupils, parents and staff who turned up on a bitterly cold Saturday to help with the planting. This will be a lovely feature of our school when the trees mature. Emails / we aim to communicate more by way of email in the future, it is a cost effective means of communication and fits into our green schools programme of reducing the use of paper. Please ensure we have your current email address. Contribution from Past Pupil / we were delighted to receive in November a very generous donation of 3 Ipads from a past pupil. It is a great sign of the high esteem that past pupils hold the school in, that they wish to give something back. The devices will be invaluable for us, especially in complementing our special needs programme. Our 6th class pupils were very excited to have Galway Hurler Niall Burke, visit the class two weeks ago and teach some lessons on healthy eating and on working as part of a team. Thanks to Niall for giving his time and sharing his skills with us. Bell Blessing / On the 8th of December our 5th and 6th class took part in the ceremony to bless the new bell in Oranmore Church. It was a fantastic occasion and we were delighted to be part of it. The ceremony was led by Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, Eamon Martin, the children took a full part in the ceremony including a welcome note, readings, prayers of the faithful and also performed beautifully as part of the choir. We even got a chance to ring the bell after the ceremony. The children all voted to choose a name for the bell with ‰ÛÏNicholas‰Û? being the clear winner. The time of year may have been an influence!! A Note from Dermot & Joan As we approach the season of Christmas, I wish to say a huge thank you to everybody for everything during an eventful 2016. I refer in particular to the huge effort that went into the preparation for our retirement party back in October. It was an amazing occasion and we will never forget it. The attention to detail was incredible from the setting of the tables, the fabulous decorations, the marquee, the well thought out gifts, the food (the savouries were awesome, the cakes sinfully gorgeous), the beautiful photo albums, power-point, the invitation cards, the posters and media advertising, the children's artwork etc. We thank everybody for the extremely generous gifts and also the speakers on the night for their kind words and acknowledgements. We leave Maree, but the many great memories particular of the children over the years will remain with us forever. Once again thanks to one and all for your good wishes and generosity. Maree school is blessed to have such supportive parents, wonderful staff, progressive community and a very proactive Board of Management. We wish you and your children, as well as Mr Gorman and staff, the very best for the future. Regards, Dermot & Joan


Christmas Fair 2016

Maree NS Parents' Association held the annual Christmas Fair in the school hall on December 4th and what a success it was! A huge crowd turned up on the day to share in the community experience, have a chat and a cup of tea and purchase some festive goodies and Christmas crafts. The craft pieces were hand made by our pupils with the expert guidance of parents who volunteered to come in to school and work with the children. There was a lovely atmosphere in the school and the hall was beautifully decorated with art work prepared by the class teachers, even Santa was impressed when he arrived by chariot to hand out some treats to the children who were so well behaved. The pupils played some festive tunes under the guidance of Ms Smyth and Jacqui, our music teacher, which added beautifully to the occasion. We are very grateful to our Parents' association who invested a lot of hard work and time to make the event so successful. We say a huge thank you to all who helped prepare for the day, man the stalls and clean up afterwards! Here are some photos of the day. {gallery}christmas_fair_2016{/gallery}


Brigit's Garden

Our 5th and 6th classes visited Brigit's Garden on Tuesday as part of our Green Schools Programme, and as a follow up to our recent workshops on energy use. Thanks to our green school programme co-ordinator, Ms Sinnott, for organising. Here are some photos from the day. {gallery}brigits_garden2016{/gallery}


November 2016 Newsletter


Maths Week 2016

Our classes were very busy for maths week this year, here are some photos of the different activities which help to make maths fun! {gallery}maths_week2016{/gallery}


EU Code Week

A huge thank you to Paul Finn and his team from SAP who came in to school during EU code week to teach our children in 3rd, 4th and 5th classes how to be computer programmers! {gallery}coding{/gallery}


Dermot's retirement speech

Retirement party for Dermot Cleary, Principal, and Joan Reidy, Deputy Principal, hosted by Maree Parents' Association on Saturday, October 15th. The following is Dermot's address to the 400+ attendees. Board of Management, Parents Association, colleagues, parents, past-pupils, past colleagues, friends - Anybody who knows me well (which is just about everybody here) knows that I am seldom stuck for words. But for once I am rendered speechless by the effort that has obviously gone in to preparing for tonight. It should not be any surprise to me, given that I know the track record of parents and Parents' Associations over the years. I was not privy to the preparations for this event so I really didns't know what to expect. Miss Reidy asked me yesterday if I knew anything. I said that I didns't but that I would resort to Google for hints. Sure enough I came upon a site advertising the event and it had four 'likes' and it also said that eleven people were going. So I took an educated guess and told Ms Reidy that if the Board and the teachers came there would be around 30 present in total. I came to Maree in October 1986, thirty years and two weeks ago. Maree has changed a lot since but even back then I could see that it had a community spirit and an identity unrivalled anywhere in County Galway. The first function I attended was exactly 30 years ago, the official opening of the Maree Community Centre ie the hall we are standing in right now. It was probably one of the first in the county and was an indication to me of the good will and determination of the people. In 1986 the shop in Maree was run by the Murphy family who live next door to Grealy's shop. The old church was still in existence. The new one had not yet been built. None of the pitches as we now know them existed back then. The pitch we used was a lovely, long, green field in Middle Third a couple of hundred metres past Noel Madden's (now H West Motors). The dressing rooms were a row of white-thorn bushes and ash trees that grew in the ditch. The toilets were in the same area, a few bushes a little further away. Since those times Maree has a new church, a covered astro turf pitch, two tennis courts, a basketball hall, several pitches, dressing rooms and, to ice the cake, a lovely new school. I have publicly thanked Maree Community Development Association many times in the past. Although personnel have changed a few times the good will towards the school has remained constant. We had use of their hall for PE and other events before we had our own facilities. When the new school was being built we had access to the building site, we had storage space, play area and car parking at all times. We can never thank them enough for all their kindness. The team at Grealy Stores have always been a huge support to us over the years. We thank them and wish them continued success in the great business they have built up in the heart of the Maree area. I am delighted that my mother was able to attend tonight. I owe a great debt of gratitude to her and to my late father for giving us the opportunity to go on to further education. We grew up (all nine of us) in the 60s and 70s (that's the 1960s and 70s, not the 1860s). Things were changing slowly but not everybody at the time got the opportunity to go to college. My parents made great sacrifices to enable us to grasp that opportunity. My youngest sister Winnie is also in attendance and she and I have a special understanding as I actually taught her in 3rd class in my very first teaching job back home in Kilconnell in 1981. My mother has to rush off to babysitting duties but we are lucky she managed to get time to come even for a little while. If her dance class had been on we would have had a 'no shows'. So thanks, Mam, for everything and for the guest appearance. I want to acknowledge my predecessor, Bridie Pettit, who is here tonight and looks so well she could easily pass for being a current principal. In 1986 she took over the principalship from Seamus MacDonagh (Seamus has since gone to his reward). I was her first appointment. She took a chance on me and the rest is history. The fact that she picked me showed of course just how astute she was. {clap here} She deployed me as 5th and 6th class teacher where I remained until my appointment as principal in January 2004. Bridie went on to make the school the wonderful, happy, child-centred place that it is today. Moira and I are privileged that our own three children, David, Katelyn and Danielle, attended and were very happy in Maree school. They made many friends and were very well prepared for second level. They benefited from all the advantages of a rural, co-ed, non-uniform, progressive school where the children are number one at all times. The girls got very involved in sport with both Maree school and Oranmore Maree Club, all of which has left them with very fond memories. David would love to have been here tonight but he is thinking of us from San Francisco where he is employed by Google. In 2007, while still only 18, he set up the school website from scratch. We bought a .IE domain and he built it from there. He administered it voluntarily for over nine years up to handover to Mr Gorman a couple of weeks ago. The website is a mine of information and will be an important historical source in years to come. David's interest in I.T. began in Maree school when Mrs Pettit, in her wisdom, began purchasing PCs when only a handful of schools had moved in that direction. I wish to acknowledge David's contribution of his time over the years. I mentioned sport a little earlier. I inherited a school with a very rich tradition. There had been six titles secured before I came in 1986 and I was fortunate that, with great help from teachers and parents, we added twenty-two more in the ensuing years. But while the wins were nice, we always enjoyed the journeys and for me the sight of the green and black or the blue and navy taking to the field always did, and always will, cause a flutter to the heart. One of my greatest boasts to other principal colleagues was in relation to our Parents' Association. Their preparation for tonight, with co-operation from the teachers, is reflective of how they always carried out their business. The various Parents' Associations over the years delivered in the style you see here tonight. A few examples: - The gravel path from the Community Centre to the old school. - The Christmas Fairs and Book Fairs. - Traffic Duty while the new school was being built. - The school playground and play equipment. - The handling of the official opening of the new school. - The movement of equipment from the old to the new school. Joe and company, I salute you on behalf of myself and Ms Reidy for yourpositive support for the school always. We will never forget tonight's party. As for Joan Reidy, what can I say? A true friend, colleague, Deputy Principal, nominee to the Board and, above all, a peerless teacher, no words can adequately pay tribute to her. My own children were taught by Joan and still speak about her with great respect. She was always early to school and I have observed her many times hauling up some of the (innocent) early arrivals twenty minutes before class officially began to give extra help or consolidation of the previous day's work. Her teaching never stopped from the beginning of the day to the end, all year round. Among her many 'extrass' were the Christmas Nativity Play, the Confirmation and Communion choirs and much much more. She was the voice in my ear, always telling me what was coming up and how I should be preparing for it. Some of Joan's family are here tonight. Her sister, Mary, her nieces, Fiona and Barbara, nephews, Brian and Jerry, Brian's wife, Yvonne, Mary's husband, Naoto as well as Barbara's fiancé, Stephen. You are all very welcome. As I said in my Summer speech, the factory that made Joan Reidy closed down because the quality of parts was too expensive. Indeed all of Joan's siblings became teachers. Michael is a Science teacher in Dublin and Mary is a primary teacher in New Quay. Her late sister, Breda (another Joan), was one of the finest to ever grace a Connemara school. I wish Joan the best in her retirement. In our recent inspection all my teachers got ten out of ten. Joan didn't make the ten, she scored eleven! To my former colleagues of the recent past and indeed all colleagues with whom I worked I want to say a sincere thanks. I include in this all ancillary staff, visiting teachers, speakers, coaches and so on. I always got a lot of credit for the school but they were the ones at the coalface who shared their various talents every day to give the children the broadest possible education. Back in June the school staff brought us on a fantastic night out. They pulled out all the stops and gave us a night to remember forever as well as some very generous gifts. I have to say that I had not been made feel so special since the day of my own wedding. Afterwards Ms Reidy and I concluded that they must have loved us to bits! Not for one second did we entertain the thought that they were delighted to see the back of us. It is most unusual and unique for so many members of a B.O.M. to serve a 2nd term not to mind serving for three, four or five terms in what is a totally voluntary body. I want to thank the Board for their help, their trust in me and their loyalty and support over 30 years. Obviously our finest hour was when we managed to get the new school built, but a lot of disappointment and setbacks over the years would have broken the spirit of others. But not our Board. In times when I was in despair of ever progressing there was always some member to offer a positive word. We also had great fun together and got along very well, each bringing his/her own talent to the table. I thank each and every member,current and past, and all chairpersons back over the 30 years for their voluntary service. It is said that behind every successful man is a great woman. I had my fantastic staff of mainly women. I had Joan Reidy. I had Ann in the office and there probably isn't a better secretary in Ireland. But I have a home also and when you take on the role of principal you take on a 24/7 job. This was especially true during the four years leading to the completion of the new school. At night I would be on the laptop for hours responding to the builder, the architect, the Department of Education and Skills and so on. Fortunately my wife, Moira, was very understanding. Fortunately also she liked her TV. Appropriately and aptly enough during those years while I was at my busiest her favourite show was 'The Good Wife'. I thank her for her patience but it must be said that she too is grateful to the school for how it moulded our children. I want to finish tonight by remembering those who cannot be with us. Our many past pupils and parents at home and abroad who would love to celebrate with us tonight but for one reason or another cannot be here. They are in our thoughts. I also want to acknowledge staff members and community members who have been recently bereaved. Our thoughts and prayers are with them and indeed with all loved ones connected with the school who have been called to their reward over the years (too many before their time). And finally finally, a funny story. Many people raised an eyebrow when they heard I was retiring a little early. Here is one incident which might have made me think. In 1988, at age 28, I went into a supermarket in Galway on a Friday evening and purchased a few items including a bottle of wine. The lovely, young girl at the checkout asked me for I.D. I thought for a minute and said to her "I'm not at the airport am I?". The licensing laws had been updated and the girl was only doing her job but I assured her I was 28 and not under 18. Roll on to last year I was at a checkout on the same premises and the lovely, young girl (not the same girl) asked me if I could manage or if I needed a hand packing the few bits and pieces. What a difference 28 years had made. I thought there was a message there for me. And so to Mr Gorman. You have inherited, and deservedly so, the crown. Thankfully it is not the crown of thorns. You have a most fabulous group of children. You have an outstanding staff. You have supportive and enthusiastic parents, P.A. and B.O.M. You are in the best community in Galway. I wish you every success and happiness going forward. Thanks again to everybody. Enjoy the night. Dermot.


October 2016 Newsletter

Dear Parent, Welcome to our October Newsletter. I hope you will find some useful information below. At this stage of the school year I trust that your child is well settled back and that they are progressing well. Personally, I am delighted to have had the opportunity to meet with many of you over the past few weeks. If at any time you would like to call in to meet with me to discuss any matter, please feel free to do so. Kind regards, Rod Gorman, Principal. Reminder: the Retirement party for Dermot Cleary and Joan Reidy takes place this Saturday evening in the community centre at 8:30pm. If you wish to make a contribution to the retirement gift, please do so by Thursday. Hope to see you all there. The school calendar for this year noted that there would be an extra day's closure during the school year for staff in-service on the New Primary Language Curriculum. This date has now been confirmed by the Professional Development Service for Teachers asWednesday,March 15th 2017. Please not that this means the school will be closed on the 15th, 16th and 17th March as this date runs into St Patrick's weekend. We are sorry to announce that Anne Sheridan, our school cleaner is leaving us to take up work elsewhere. Anne has worked in the school for approximately 20 years and has given great service to the school over the years. We wish her every success in the future. "The Maree NS Parents' Associatiom AGM will occur on Thursday 20th October at 8pm in the school. The Parents' Association have always worked hard to ensure that parents in our school work together for the best possible education for their children. Its vitally important to continue this culture, our aim is to elect a new committee on the night so I would encourage anyone that is interested and wants to be part of the committee to let me know. Kind regards Joe Keaney, Chairperson Maree NS Parents' Association" Please see the attached leaflet in relation to the Team Hope Christmas Shoebox Appeal. This is a very worthwhile initiative and teaches children the value of sharing with others. I would encourage you to take part if possible. Please remember to label items of clothing with your child's name. As we approach the winter months, remember to label scarves, gloves, coats, etc. as these items often prove difficult to return to their owners. Well done to our sports teams who participated in the camogie, hurling and football competitions recently. All the teams performed admirably and represented the school excellently. Thanks to their coaches for investing their time with the children. Sport: Gerry Spellman, schools hurling/camogie coach will visit the school everysecond Tuesdayto work with 4th and 5th class. Gearóid Mc Inerney will coach 1st, 2nd and 3rd class every Friday. Mr Gorman, Mr Reilly, Ms Hannon, Breda Hanniffy and Ann Nolan will continue to coach GAA at lunch times. The Baboró Childrens' Drama Festival takes place over the coming weeks in various venues in Galway. All classes will be attending and the children are eagerly looking forward to what promises to be a fantastic event. Details of the shows have already been sent home. EU Code week takes place next week. We are arranging some coding classes for 3rd, 4th and 5th class, details will follow later. Jacqueline McCarthy will visit the school every Wednesdayto teach tin whistle to 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th classes. Our Spanish teacher, Monique, will be in school every Wednesday to teach 1st to 6th class. Mary Finn, Mary Dooley and Noreen Dooley teach sewing and knitting to 6th class everyThursday. They will be working with 4th and 5th class later in the year. Swim Safety: 4th class children will visit Kilcornan Poolthis Thursday,October 13thto participate in a swim safety lesson. Please see note sent home to 4th class parents in this regard. Mid Term Break: A reminder that the school will be closed for mid term break which runs from Monday, October 31st to FridayNovember 4th. The Whole School Evaluation Report has now been published and can be viewed under inspection reports The Garda 7 a-side Gaelic Football competition will take place in Gort this Fridaystarting at 10am. This competition is limited to 10 players, permission slips will be sent home if your child will be participating. Ms Sinnott continues to be out on sick leave due to injury, we wish her well in her recovery, she hopes to return to school after the mid term break. Art and Craft and Book Rental Money: Thank you to all families who have paid the art & craft and book rental monies. If you haven't yet paid we would ask you to do so at your earliest convenience. Car Park Safety: We ask all parents to please be mindful of safety when dropping off or picking up children from school. The following points are particulary important and I would ask you to bring this notice to the attention of child minders who may be picking up your child(ren): We ask you to reverse into the car parking spaces when you arrive, this is much safer than trying to reverse out of the space when children are passing by. Please do not use the disabled persons car parking spaces unless you have a permit to do so. Parents should not drive up to the main school door or use the spaces designated for staff parking. We thank you for your co-operation in these matters of safety and helping to ensure the safety of all school children.


School Notice - 26 September 2016

Please note the following change to the School Calendar: The school will be closed on March 16th 2017. This was an omission from the calendar originally posted on our website. The updated version can now be viewed at In Class Support: Due to the large number of children in 1st and 3rd class, this year we will be providing in class support for both Numeracy and Literacy. Ms. Hannon and Ms. Corry will support 3rd and 1st class respectively each day for two hours through a Team Teaching approach. This system will assist the teachers in catering for the needs of the pupils despite the class size. Save the Date: The Parents' Association are organizing a retirement party for Dermot Cleary and Joan Reidy in the Community Centre on October 15th. Please put the date in your diary! More details to follow. Mini 7's: Well done to the boy's football team coached by Mr.Reilly who took part in the Cumann na mBunscoil football mini7's on Friday last in Oranmore. The camogie mini 7's will take place this Wednesday in Clarinbridge and the hurling mini 7's will take place this Friday in Oranmore. Thanks to Mr. Reilly, Mr. Keane, Ms. Hannon, Breda Hanniffy and Ann Nolan for coaching the children during the lunch breaks. Many Thanks, Rod Gorman.


Parent Reminder - Mid-term break October 2016

Mid-term break runs from October 31st to November 4th. School closes at 2.30pm on October 28th. See calendar for more.


Good luck message from Dermot

As the school year begins I would like to take this opportunity to wish all staff, parents, Board of Management and especially the children the very best for the year ahead. In particular I wish Mr. Gorman good luck in his new role as principal of Maree school. I have been busy filling him in on what wonderful children he will have under his care and I know that everybody is going to make him very welcome. A word also to the children who are in Maree school for the first time and also to new teachers, Katie McGrath, Padraic Keane and David Reilly. Best of luck to all. I look forward to popping in for a visit some time in the next couple of weeks. Regards, Dermot.


2016/2017 Booklists now available

Booklists for the coming 2016/2017 school year are now available.


Booklists 2016-2017

Our 2016/2017 booklists are available for download in PDF. Junior Infants Booklist Senior Infants Booklist First Class Booklist Second Class Booklist Third Class Booklist Fourth Class Booklist Fifth Class Booklist Sixth Class Booklist You will require Adobe Reader to view and download PDF documents. Clickhere to get Adobe Reader.


Welcome Message from Rod Gorman

Dear Parents, As we approach the beginning of a new school year I would like to extend awarm welcome back to all our pupils and staff. I extend a special word ofwelcome to our new infants and to the teachers who are new to our staffthis year, namely Katie McGrath, David Reilly and Padraic Keane.On a personal note, I am delighted to have been afforded the opportunity tobegin my new post as principal of Maree School and I am very much lookingforward to meeting and getting to know you all over the coming weeks andmonths. I am particularly looking forward to meeting and working with the children and to a successful year ahead. Below is the staff list for each class group for the coming year. Junior Infants: Sinéad Kelly Senior Infants: Laura Fahy 1st class: Miriam Crowley 2nd class: Miriam Pettit 3rd class: Bróna Smyth 4th class: David Reilly will sub for Catherine Costelloe 5th class: Padraic Keane will sub for September as Ms. Sinnott is on sick leave due to injury and will return in October 6th class: Katie McGrath Learning Support: Martina Corry Resource Teacher: Cepta Hannon SNA: Majella Geoghegan SNA: Breda Hannify Should you have any queries or would like to discuss any matter, please donot hesitate to contact me. Yours sincerely, Rod Gorman.


Welcome message from the new principal

Dear Parent, As we approach the beginning of a new school year I would like to extend awarm welcome back to all our pupils and staff. I extend a special word of welcome to our new infants and to the teachers who are new to our staffthis year, namely Katie McGrath, David Reilly and Padraic Keane. On a personal note, I am delighted to have been afforded the opportunity to begin my new post as principal of Maree School and I am very much looking forward to meeting and getting to know you all over the coming weeks and months. I am particularly looking forward to meeting and working with the children and to a successful year ahead. Below is the staff list for each class group for the coming year. Staff list: Junior Infants, Sinéad Kelly; Senior Infants, Laura Fahy; 1st class, Miriam Crowley; 2nd class, Miriam Pettit; 3rd class, Bróna Smyth; 4th class, David Reilly will sub for Catherine Costelloe; 5th class, Padraic Keane will sub for September as Ms. Sinnott is on sick leave due to injury and will return in October. 6th class, Katie McGrath; Learning Support, Martina Corry; Resource Teacher, Cepta Hannon; SNA, Majella Geoghegan; SNA, Breda Hannify. Should you have any queries or would like to discuss any matter, please donot hesitate to contact me. Yours sincerely, Rod Gorman.


School Notice - 29 June 2016

Thank You: Many thanks to all who were involved in any way in the Mass last Friday to mark Ms. Reidy's and my retirement from Maree school. It was a very enjoyable event and we are most grateful to everybody. The Board of Management: The Board of Management has announced the appointment of Mr. Rod Gorman as Principal of Maree school. Mr. Gorman joins us from Leitrim N.S., near Loughrea, Co. Galway where he has been Principal for the past few years. I wish Rod every success and I will be liaising with him during the summer holidays and beyond to ensure an easy transition. Reminder: School closing tomorrow for summer holidays at 12 noon. On behalf of Ms. Reidy and myself I wish to thank you for all your support down through the years. D. Cleary.


2016/2017 School Calendar now available

The 2016/2017 school calendar is now available to view here.


Parent Reminder - School re-opens September 2016

School re-opens after summer holidays on Thursday, September 1st. See the full 2016/2017 calendar here.


School Notice - 22 June 2016

We will be operating the scheme for Senior Infants to Sixth Classes again for the school year 2016/2017. This year the rental scheme is exceptional value as we are investing a substantial amount of money in the Oxford Reading Scheme for use throughout the school. The rental fee is as follows: €10 per child for Senior Infants, First and Second Classes €15 per child for Third, Fourth, Fifth and Sixth Classes Please send in the money in an envelope with your child's name on it to the class teacher by Monday, June 27th. I would like to thank Ms. Reidy for all her hard work in organising this scheme. D. Cleary.


Cakes for Cadan

Many thanks to all who supported the school staff in their fund-raising cake sale in Maree school for Baby Cadan Geraghty today. The total raised was in excess of €1,800 which shows another example of the generosity of the Maree people. Well done to the staff for sponsoring and preparing the prizes, and for all the hard work preparing the event. Many thanks to the sponsors, Loughwell Pet Farm and Shannon Heritage (Bunratty Castle and Ailwee Caves). If anybody feels like a drive some summer Sunday with your family, these places get the 'thumbs up' from all the children in our school. Thanks also to all who baked and/or donated cakes, lucky dips, etc for the sale and to those who helped in any way. The following is Cadan's story as told by our past pupil, Sorcha Hanniffy, who works with Cadan, and who did the Dublin City Marathon recently in aid of him. Cadan's story Cadan Geraghty is 21 months old. Cadan suffers from two extremely complex and rare life-limiting chromosomal abnormalities, Jacobsen's Syndrome (a deletion of q11), and the other abnormality is an unknown duplication of q12. Cadan is the only ever known worldwide case to be recorded to have both diagnosis. Cadan's brain never fully formed, leading to added neurological, physical and visual complications. This is extremely hard for Cadan's parents, Brian and Joanne, and not to forget his older brother, Cian, as they do not have any medical research to help guide them with Cadan's battle. What they do know is that his physical, visual and mental life style will be very limited as he will also suffer from many more medical problems along the way. Because Cadan's muscle tone is very weak, he cannot as of yet support his own head, and he requires many pieces of specialised equipment that are extremely expensive and are not all funded by the HSE. Cadan is currently cared for by the nurses of the Jack and Jill foundation up to 10 hours respite per week. When Cadan turns four, he will no longer be entitled, so Joanne and Brian will have to fund any extra care needed for Cadan. As Cadan grows, he will need new equipment and housing needs will also change, which are not all grant aided. You can see why we are so appreciative of your efforts in turning out today to support the fund-raiser. Well done to all. Anyone who didn't get the opportunity to attend the event on Sunday may still make a donation. Please feel free to send it in to the school. We have a huge admiration for Cadan's family, for how long they are coping under the circumstances.


School Notice - 15 June 2016

Parents' Association Social Night: My thanks to the Parents' Association (P.A.) for a very enjoyable Social Night in Maree Community Centre last Saturday. A very generous cheque for €8,000 was presented to the school from funds raised by the Parents' Association activities during the year. As always we are extremely grateful to the P.A. for all their hard work and efforts. Every cent of the funds raised goes back to the children. This year it subsidized the Baboro trip (down from €11.30 to €5 per child), the school tours (down from €20.10 to €15 per child), yoga classes, Spanish classes and music class. We will have exceeded the €8,000 but it is all to the benefit of the children. We are very thankful to the Parents' Associations over the years and to all who support their fundraising events. School Tours: School tours on Friday all depart at 9am so children should be at school at the normal time. Return times are expected to be as follows: Junior & Senior Infants 1:30pm-1:45pm; and 1st to 6th classes: 2:30pm-2:45pm.


School Notice - 7 June 2016

School Tours: Tours take place on Friday, June 17th. Cost for Junior Infants to Sixth Class: €15 per child. Please put the money for each child in an envelope and return to the class teacher. It is easier to keep account if each child is paid for separately. Sports: We hope to have the Sports Day on Thursday, June 9th, weather permitting. Children should wear suitable clothing and sun cream and also have plenty of water. School Closure: Please note that the school will be closed on Thursday, June 16th to facilitate in-service training for the teachers on the new Primary Language Curriculum. D. Cleary.


Parent Reminder - Summer holidays 2016

School closes for summer holidays on Thursday, June 30th at 12 noon. See calendar.


School Notice - 31 May 2016

First Holy Communion: Well done to all involved in the First Holy Communion Mass. My thanks to Ms. Pettit, Ms. Corry, Ms. Reidy and their colleagues. Also to Fr. Diarmaid, the choir, organist (Vivienne Forde), altar servers, parents and of course to the First Holy Communion children themselves. Do This In Memory: A special thanks to the parents on the Do This In Memory Committee and to the parents of the third class who hosted a great party in the centre after the mass. Connacht Rugby: Congrats to Pat Lam and the Connacht Rugby team on their success in the Guinness PRO12 final on Saturday. Pat is bringing in the cup tomorrow, Wednesday June 1st at 1.20pm so we will get some photos of the occasion. The children might like to wear something green for the day. Our congrats also to Pat's family who are a constant support to him in his endeavors. Boys' Football Final: Best of luck to Kevin Joyce and the lads on Thursday, June 2nd at 1pm in Loughgeorge. D. Cleary.


Guinness PRO 12 Cup

Pat Lam took time out today to visit Maree School with the Guinness PRO 12 trophy. Pat thanks the kids for the big send-off he had received from them last week ahead of their big game. School principal, Dermot Cleary, congratulated Pat and all the team on their outstanding success while also acknowledging the wonderful and very positive support given to the school by Pat's wife, Stephanie, ever since their two lovely children, Josiah and Beth, enrolled in the school three years ago. {gallery}guinness_pro12_cup_2016{/gallery} He went on to say that apart from altogether from rugby, the Lam family have been a 'great addition to Maree community'. Pat stayed for well over an hour talking to the children and signing autographs. He also gave the Gaelic football team a little pep talk ahead of their County Final tomorrow, Thursday June 2nd in Loughgeorge. What better man to do it?


U11 & U12 Club Football Players

Well done to Seaghan Corry, Jamie Cullinane, Tom Griffin and Max Hawksley (fourth class), U11 & U12 'Club Football Players of the Year'. {gallery}u11_u12_club_football_players_2016{/gallery}


Confirmation Class 2016

Sixth class made their Confirmation on Wednesday last, May 18th in Maree church. {gallery}maree_ns_confirmation_class_2016{/gallery}


School Notice - 19 May 2016

Boys Football: Congrats to Mr Joyce and the boys who have qualified for the County Football Final on Thursday, June 2nd. Times to be announced. Confirmation: Well done to all who were involved in the Confirmation Mass. It was an amazing occasion. Thanks to Mr Joyce, Ms Reidy, Fr Diarmuid, Canon Peter, the wonderful choir, Vivian Forde (Organist), altar servers, altar society, teachers, parents and the Confirmation class themselves. Reminder: School photographs will take place tomorrow, Friday, May 20th.


Letter from the Principal

Dear Parents, Many of you will have read the summary of the Whole School Evaluation (WSE) on the school website. You will have noted that the inspectors were very positive in their feedback with regard to all aspects of our school. I was pleased for the staff, the Board, the Parents' Association, the parents and particularly the children that we got such a favourable acknowledgement. It was a great honour for me to have had the opportunity to lead the school through this inspection and for all parties to have their contribution recognised. Indeed it added to the many privileges that have been bestowed upon me during my years in the school. So after thirty happy years in Maree NS, twelve and a half of which were as Principal, I believe it the time is right for me to retire. Ms. Joan Reidy has also decided to step aside after her thirty four years of dedicated service. We will both be officially finishing on August 31st this year. The reason for this early notice is so that the Board will have the time to make appointments. You can rest assured that after the appointment is made I will be working closely with my successor to ensure a seamless transition. It is a magnificent honour for me to be Principal of Maree school. There have been many high points over the thirty years. Among the topmost of these was undoubtedly the grant of approval for the building of the new school after seventeen years lobbying. Now we have a find school building, but it is only as good as the people in it. We are very fortunate to have such a dedicated, talented and hard-working staff that is always prepared to go the extra mile. The support of loyal colleagues has been unwavering at all times. The goodwill, hard work and exemplary behaviour of all our students has made working with them rewarding and joyful. In addition our parents could not have been more supportive. Equally the Parents' Association over the years have been extremely helpful and have done wonderful work for the school. I could not have asked for better support than that given to me by my deputy, Joan Reidy. Ms. Reidy and I have been fortunate to have been on the Board of Management during a very busy and rewarding period while we campaigned and eventually succeeded in getting the new school built. We cannot thank the members of the Board enough for their dedication to the cause, bearing in mind that the Board members are all serving in a voluntary capacity. We have always had the support of the wider community of Maree. Indeed Maree is known for its legendary community spirit. I am indebted to many people from the community who were always willing to help us out no matter what was required. In this regard we benefited over the years from the generosity of Maree Community Development Association in sharing their facilities with us. The recent WSE came in perfect time for me and for the school community. It was wonderful for me to see, before I exit stage left, that the staff, children, parents and board got such an overwhelming acknowledgement of all the effort that everybody puts in every day to make the school the place of learning the inspectors found it to be. For now it is business as usual. We have lots to look forward to in the next two months with matches, First Holy Communion, Confirmation, tours, Sports Day and maybe even a little bit of school work thrown in for good measure. May God continue to bless all our work in the coming weeks. Regards, Dermot.


Parent Reminder - Confirmation Day 2016

Confirmation takes place on Wednesday, May 18th at 3pm in Maree Church.


Whole School Evaluation

Dear Parents, As you are aware a Whole School Evaluation (WSE) was carried out in our school recently by two inspectors from the Department of Education and Skills (DES). The inspectors met the Board, the staff and representatives of the Parents' Association (at separate meetings) before and after the inspection. The inspection itself went on for three and a half days during which time the inspectors looked through everything in great detail. Teaching and learning were examined in each class and they also perused our mandatory policies in both administrative and curricular areas. At our post-evaluation meetings on April 28th the inspectors gave a massive endorsement of the quality of teaching and learning in the school. They were loud in their praise of the exemplary behaviour of the children and of the high academic standards they were achieving in every class setting. They were also highly complimentary of the Board especially for their dedication to the building of the new school. Due and deserved reference was made to the unstinting support role played by the Parents' Association and the parents in general in every aspect of school life. The surveys which were done during the evaluation were examined in detail by the D.E.S. in Marlborough Street. The results show that an overwhelming majority of parents and children are very positive about the quality of education and about the welcoming atmosphere in the school. In actual fact 100% of parents 'agreeds' or 'strongly agreeds' that there was a good atmosphere in the school. As the happiness of the children is our number one concern at all times, this is a fantastic affirmation. As is the case with all worthwhile evaluations, the inspectors had recommendations on how we could build on our success and make improvements going forward. We openly welcome these suggestions just as much as we appreciate the resounding plaudits the school received during and after the inspection. I would like to compliment the staff (teaching and ancillary), the Board, the parents and most of all the children for their contribution to making our school what it is today. The full report on the inspection will appear on the D.E.S. website and also on our own website in due course. D. Cleary.


Change of date for Maree Parents' Assoc. Social Night

The Maree NS Parents' Association are hosting a community social night in the Maree Community Centre on Saturday 11th June at 8:30pm. Entry is free and the night is a way of giving thanks to the community for all the support they have given to the school and the Parents' Association both this year and over the years. There will be food and music till late and it should be a great night. RSVP to 086 1733738


Parent Reminder - School closed for May Bank Holiday 2016

School closed May 2nd - May 6th inclusive for the May bank holiday weekend. See calendar for more.


School Notice - 11 April 2016

Inspection: Maree school will be having a Department Inspection next week and as a part of this process all parents will be asked to fill out a questionnaire. We look forward to showing the great work being done in our school. Soccer: Well done to the boys from sixth class who put up a great show at the County Finals in Drom, Bushypark last week. They drew all their matches, which unfortunately wasn't enough to put them through to the final. Great credit is due to Mr Joyce for all the time he has given to training the lads all year. Do This In Memory Masses: Many thanks to Ms Pettit and the parents who were involved in the Do This in Memory Program. The final Mass was held at the weekend. We are also grateful to Fr Diarmuid, Fr Kelly and Deacon Daniel for their input. Head Lice: It has been brought to my attention that head lice are a problem in First Class. I am urging all parents to check their child's hair and treat where necessary. D. Cleary


Parent Reminder - School reopens after Easter 2016

School re-opens after Easter Holidays on Monday, April 4th at 8.50am. See calendar for more dates.


Proclamation Day

Maree school held a celebration of Proclamation Day on Tuesday, March 15th. The event began with an assembly in the school hall. Mr Cleary, school principal, addressed the children and parents who had gathered for the event. He welcomed everybody and extended a special welcome to Michael John Burke, a local historian and also to Mrs Bridie Pettit, a former principal of the school. Mr Cleary gave the background history of the Irish flag and some of the children read a part of the 1916 Proclamation and also their own proclamations which they composed especially for the day. {gallery}proclamation_day_2016{/gallery} The old proclamation from Tawin Island school was also on display courtesy of local Tawin resident, Padraig Holland. Following this everybody moved outside where Mrs Pettit and Mr Cleary planted a tree to commemorate the day and the people who had fought in 1916. Next came the flag raising. Michael John did the honours and a huge cheer went up when the flag reached full mast. The children then sang 'The Foggy Dews' and played 'The Dawning of the Days' in the brilliant March sunshine. The day finished with a rendition of the National Anthem played by Jacqui Keane accompanied by Ms Bróna Smyth, Oisín Holland, Diarmuid O'Donoghue and Rebecca Monaghan. The poem 'The Mothers' by Padraig Pearse was read beautifully by 5th class pupil, Molly Whelehan. The day was a wonderful success and was enjoyed by all.


Parent Reminder - School close for Easter

School closes on Wednesday, March 16th at 12 noon. See calendar for more dates.


School Notice - 10 March 2016

Soccer: Congrats to the 6th class boys on qualifying for the Spar Galway Soccer Finals. A special word of thanks to Mr Kevin Joyce who gave up his lunch break two or three times a week all year to coach them. Best of luck in the Galway Final on April 6th. Flag raising: National flag raising on Tuesday March 15th at 1pm. Local Historian, Michael John Burke, will do the honors and the children will play a tune accompanied by Jacqui Keane. Children are asked to dress up if possible in green/gold. All parents welcome . Concert: Well done to 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th classes on the lovely performance of tunes, songs, dance, etc. last Tuesday. Thanks also to the teachers and to Jacqui and Padraic Keane for the musical back-up. Golf classic: "The Maree NS Parents' Association are holding their annual golf classic on April 8th & 9th in Galway Bay Golf Club. A team of four is €100. Also tee box company sponsorship available for €50, your company logo will be advertised in the golf resort for both days in the form of an A4 laminated sheet. For bookings, please contact Joe on 086 173 3738." Do this in Memory: Thanks to the 2nd class parents for their ongoing support with the Do this in Memory programme. Confirmation preparation: Preparation talk for 6th class on Saturday, March 12th at 6.30pm in Maree church followed by mass at 7pm. Reminder: School closes for Easter Holidays on Wednesday, March 16th at 12 noon. On behalf of the staff, I wish you all a very Happy Easter. D. Cleary.


Parent Reminder - National Flag Day

National flag raising takes place on Tuesday, March 15th at 1pm.


Spar Soccer Qualifier

Congratulations to the Maree NS boys soccer team on qualifying for the Galway County Finals of the Spar Soccer Competition. The lads have worked hard all year under the guidance of Mr Kevin Joyce with this competition in mind. Best of luck in the finals on April 6th. {gallery}galway_county_soccer_final_16{/gallery}


Golf Classic taking place in April

Maree NS Parents' Association are holding their annual Golf Classic on Friday, April 8th and Saturday, April 9th at the Galway Bay Golf Club. A team of four people is €100. Contact Joe on 086 173 3738 to secure a spot. All welcome! {gallery}maree_ns_golf_classic_poster_16{/gallery}


School Notice - 4 February 2016

Head lice: It has been brought to my attention that head lice are a problem in the school. This year seems to be particularly bad. It is essential that all parents check their child's hair and treat. Maree Fun Run: Sunday, February 7 commencing at 12 noon. See posters for details. Late arrivals: I am asking parents to ensure that children are on time for school. The school opens at 8.35am to receive pupils. They assemble under supervision in the GP hall until 8.50am at which time they are picked up by their class teacher. This system works well but we have an ongoing problem with late arrivers. Children who arrive after 8.50am are disrupting classes that are settled in and already beginning their day's work. It can also have an effect on a child's confidence when they join a class late in the morning and are out of sync with what is going on in the classroom, plus it is a bad habit for late in college, the workplace, etc. I also note from CCTV that some parents (particularly late arrivers) are using the staff parking area as set-down. For the safety of your child and the other children please use the Community Centre car park or the designated set-down to the right hand side as you enter the main gates. Many thanks for your cooperation in this. Oranmore Maree Féis: Sunday, March 13 in Calasanctius College. The Oranmore Maree Féis Committee would welcome assistance with bag packing in Supervalu Oranmore on Saturday, February 6. Phone or text Cathy, 087 643 6188. Credit Union Quiz: Congratulations to the quiz teams who represented the school and did really well in the St. Columba's Credit Union Quiz. School closures: Reminder mid-term break: February 18th & 19th; Election: Friday, February 26th.


Parent Reminder - Mid-term break February 2016

School closed February 18th and 19th for mid-term break. See calendar for more dates.


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