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Ennis primary school making ‘Progress’ in online education

AN Ennis primary school has been taking homeschooling to another level, keeping connected to students by launching its own online channel. Like all schools across the country, Holy Family Ennis has been deeply impacted by the arrival of Covid-19. A group of teachers at the school came together to formulate an online learning plan to support their students and from this, Progress TV was born. Co-ordinator and fifth class teacher, Darryl Eade explains, “Social media was inundated with homemade videos when the lockdown began. There were cooks, fitness instructors, health experts and musicians posting recordings from their living rooms. We wondered could a few of us record some simple educational lessons and present them in a fun and light-hearted way. Our hope was that the students would be naturally motivated to engage with each activity. We assembled a team and got started on episode one.” Progress TV has grown into a weekly video classroom with staff from Holy Family Senior …

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“Social distancing” by Mia Murnane. of fourth class St Finnachta’s National School, Sixmilebridge, one of the entrants in the County Clare Kids Art Competition

Finding inspiration in isolation

THE children of Clare are being urged to find inspiration in staying at home and get involved in a countywide art competition being run on social media. The brainchild of Ennis based visual artist Rachel McManus the competition is free to enter and is open to all primary school children. The Clare Kids Art Competition is already proving popular with the county’s youngsters, with Rachel already wowed by the standard of entries. The theme of the competition is ‘My Life at Home’ with primary school children asked to create a work of art based on this idea. Rachel explained the inspiration behind the competition, “We are all navigating these unusual times as best as we can. It can be hard for kids not being able to go playgrounds, play with their friends and not being able to play sport or go to their normal activities. Being told they cannot see friends and family feels strange and unfair. It’s easy to …

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Sporting boost for Clarecastle school

IT’S all to play for at Clarecastle National School which is set for a boost to its sporting facilities. The school have been granted planning permission for a development which will see the construction of a new hurling wall. The school has also been given the go-ahead for a 2.4 metre high wire mesh fence for its existing soft play area and planned future Astro Turf pitch. The hurling wall will have an overall height of 4 metres and will be 10 metres long, located along the north western boundary of the site which is shared with the adjacent GAA grounds. This will be a dual sided wall, and will also be available for use by patrons of the GAA grounds. In assessing the application, planners with Clare County Council found there would be no adverse impacts on traffic safety and / or free flow of vehicles and pedestrians within the site. No lighting has been proposed for the Astro …

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Ennis School’s Covid-19 Support Motoring Ahead

SCHOOLS may be closed, but the wheels on the bus of one Ennis secondary school are continuing to go round in support of the local community. Students at Rice College are carrying out their studies at home as efforts to control Covid-19 continue across the country. And while the youngsters are hitting the books from the safety of home, the school’s mini-bus is being put to good use. The school has begun a Community Reach Out, using the bus to provide support for the elderly and vulnerable. Principal Louis Mulqueen and Deputy Principal John Burns explain, “Thankfully all of our students are engaged in Remote Learning and we continue to support parents and teachers in ensuring ongoing teaching and learning as we navigate our way during this difficult time. Teachers are doing phenomenal work in this new educational landscape.However Management at Rice College are anxious to do what we can to assist our community in this very difficult time in …

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Planning granted for Ennis school

Clare County Council has granted permission for a major expansion project at Ennis Community College and Gaelcholáiste an Chláir. The planners made their decision on Wednesday, having received applications on behalf of the school from Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board. “We are thrilled with the decision to grant permission for this development”, said the school principal Brian O’Donoghue. “The project will see a build of over 4,100 square metres. It includes multiple classrooms and specialist rooms such as science labs. Also included is a full size state of the art sports hall. We have been in Ennis since 1938 and this is a very significant development which will greatly benefit our students and the community of Ennis.” Construction is expected to begin in the coming months.

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Plans for new Knockanean school

PLANS for a new primary school in Knockanean, developed by the architects behind the state laboratory and other high-profile buildings, have been lodged with Clare County Council. The proposals put forward by the Office of Public Works for the new two-storey school are awaiting validation by the local authority to enable to planning process to commence. The development plans consist of a new two-storey primary school building with a gross floor area of approximately 2,535m², accommodation consisting of 16 classrooms, a general purpose room, a library/resource room and ancillary accommodation. The existing four-classroom block is to be incorporated into the new school plans. The proposal also includes the re-location of the existing gated vehicular entrance and a new gated vehicular and pedestrian entrance is proposed off the Knockanean Road boundary, serving 24 on-site car-parking spaces and associated set-down areas, pedestrian pathways together with two ball courts, play areas, a bin store, a bicycle shelter, three flagpoles, connection to existing foul drainage …

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St Flannan’s bank on success

TRANSITION year students of St Flannan’s College are ‘banking’ on continuing last year’s success in the AIB Build a Bank Challenge. Last year the school made it to the regional finals of the competition, and by all ‘accounts’ this year’s efforts are also on the money. The six students have been running their own school bank, with the support of the AIB, while also learning about managing their own business. This year’s banking team at the school involves Gerard Kennedy, manager; Cian Murphy, assistant manager; Jane Fitzgerald, financial controller; Nina Koistinen, sales and marketing executive and Michael Ryan and Colin Reidy, both customer care representatives. According to 15 year-old Nina, more than 60 students at the school have already opened up an account with the school bank, with that figure expected to grow even more. The challenge sees a team of six students selected to set up and manage a bank in their school, getting involved in everything from sourcing …

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