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Moving On to Post Primary School:

Moving On to Post Primary School:

A Transition Programme for 6th Class Pupils

This is the last term in Mary, Mother of Hope Senior National School for the children in 6th class. Their transfer to post-primary marks a new and exciting phase in their young lives. In preparation for their transfer to post-primary, we have devised a Transition Programme for our 6th class pupils. There are many strands to this programme, which has been developed over the years. In the following sections I have set out a summary of the main elements of the programme.

Transition Programme

Since they started primary school, our children have received a broad range of supports under the umbrella of Social Personal and Health Education (SPHE). As part of this, the 6th class teachers and our SEN team have devised a comprehensive Transition Programme for 6th class pupils. This explores with the pupils their hopes, fears and expectations as well as the challenges involved in moving from primary to post-primary school. The children will complete this programme as we progress through the final term.

In addition to our transition programme, our Senior Management Team has worked with the 6th class teachers in the development of a series of workshops to help 6th class pupils explore the complexity of the social world into which they are growing. In this process we will be exploring issues such as:

  • Self-Esteem

  • Self-awareness

  • Managing one-to-one relationships

  • Managing friendships

  • Dealing with peer groups

We hope to actively engage the children in an exploration of and reflection on their social world. In so doing, we hope to better equip them with the skills they need for the next stage of their lives.

Preparing children at a practical level

Life in post-primary school can present many organizational challenges to pupils. This includes:

  • managing timetables

  • planning homework assignments that have different completion dates

  • organising their books

  • organising their lockers.

To help in this, we have been sharing sample timetables with our pupils, staggering homework and getting them to bring different books in on different days. This will help them become more prepared for the organisational challenges which they may meet in September.

Transfer of information:

This involves a sharing of information in relation to our pupil’s academic performance, ability, learning style and any special needs they may have. We share this information with your child’s post-primary school in order to ensure that our pupils have their best possible start in Second-Level.

A new feature of this since last year, is the completion of the parent and pupil profiles. This gives parents and pupils an opportunity to introduce themselves to their new post primary school ahead of transferring in September. We will send these home separately in the coming weeks.

Developing links with post-primary

Coláíste Pobail Setanta and Hansfield Educate Together Secondary School are the two post-primary feeder schools for Mary, Mother of Hope Senior National School. As such, we have worked very closely with both school principals in strengthening links between the schools. This will serve to better prepare the children for transfer to post-primary.

Peer mentoring:

Tomorrow, students from post-primary school will visit the school to speak with and share their experiences of post-primary with all of our 6th class children. In these sessions they have addressed any questions, and any fears they may have had. They also offered re-assurance to pupils who may have had anxieties. This has been a very valuable experience for all.

Parent Support

We are also anxious to support parents in this important time in their children’s lives. I know myself as a parent, with two children in post-primary school, that we all share the same hopes and expectations and anxieties for our children.

To this end, we have asked Clare Ryan to come and talk to the parents of our 6th class children on Wednesday evening, the 24th May at 7:30 pm in the library. Clare is the principal of St. Leo’s College, Carlow and has many years of experience working with parents and helping to support them in the job of bringing up and educating their children. We would encourage all of our 6th class parents to attend.

The details again are: Wednesday evening, the 24th May at 7:00 pm in the library


When all of this work is done, we will finish the year with our most special day of all, Graduation Day. It will take place on Tuesday the 27th June at 11 am. It might seem like a long way off- but time flies for children in 6th Class!

I hope that you will see from all of this that our staff are deeply committed to making sure that our pupils in 6th class are supported, prepared and equipped for the transfer to post-primary. As principal, I am very happy to meet with parents and to discuss any issues they may have. Together, I believe, we can work to ensure that all of our pupils successfully make the transition to the next exciting phase in their lives.

Enda McGorman

18th May, 2017

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