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Starting a Parent Association

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CSPA would recommend that parents form a Parent Association in consultation with the Principal of a school.  This can lead to a good working relationship.  The first step is for a number of parents to get together to plan an AGM.  It is always good to have a speaker on a topic that is of interest to parents.  You must send every parent notification of this meeting; it’s content and your intention to form a Parent Association.

Every Parent Association needs a Constitution and CSPA have a suggested constitution for Parents Associations.  Whatever constitution you choose should be distributed to the parents present at the meeting for acceptance as the Constitution of your school. 

Every parent in the school is a member of the Parents Association.  You need to elect a committee from these members.  You can choose to elect members to the committee and decide who holds what position at the first committee meeting or you can elect individuals to positions at the AGM.  It is always best to try to elect a representative from each year or class to the committee though this is not always possible.  Some schools elect parents according to the local areas.  Each school must decide what is best for them. 

CSPA has produced a leaflet with some basic Guidelines for Parent Associations.

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School Year 2010/11


February 2011 mid-term break
Post-Primary schools will close from 21st to 25th February 2011 inclusive. Primary schools will close from 21st to 22nd February 2011 inclusive or 24th to 25th inclusive. (Primary schools may use 3 discretionary days to extend this break to an alternative option of a 5 day break).


Easter 2011
All schools will close on 15th April 2011 which will be the final day of the school term.  All schools will re-open on 3rd May 2011
Religious Observance and standardisation 
The above arrangements are agreed without prejudice to closure on specific days, within the overall requirement of 167 days at post primary level and 183 days at primary level, dictated by religious observance that is required in schools under the patronage of different denominations or faiths. In the absence of an adequate number of discretionary days a school authority may choose to utilize a religious observance day for non-tuition purposes when planning the school year. 

Extent of flexibility

 It was not a requirement of this agreement that the commencement or end of the school year either at primary or post primary level should be standardised.  However while schools may use their discretionary days, where available, to determine the precise start and end of the school year, it is recognised the commencement of Certificate examinations will mean that post primary schools will not be open for tuition beyond the Friday preceding the June bank holiday in any year. The expectation is that in order to meet the overall requirement of a minimum of 167 at post primary level or 183 days at primary level the school year will normally commence in the week that 1st September falls.  The arrangements may provide some limited flexibility to schools on certain other days outside of the defined periods.  The scheduling of such days must not be used to extend or modify the periods set out above in respect of mid-term and Christmas and Easter breaks save where religious observance requirements of a school under a particular patronage make this necessary.