Enrolment Policy



Enrolment Policy


2015 / 2016


















    1. Applications for Enrolment

    2. Selection Considerations

    3. First Round Offers of Places – Junior Infants

    4. Second Round Offers of Places – Junior Infants

    5. Senior Infants / First Class

    6. Transfers

    7. Multiple Applications


    1. Special Education Needs

    2. Code of Behaviour

    3. Information Evening & Visits

    4. Queries & Appeals







    This policy was devised and formulated by the whole school community, involving Board of Management, Parents and Staff of St. Sylvester’s Infant School, in accordance with the Rules and Regulations of the Department of Education and Skills and the CPSMA. (Catholic Primary Schools Management Association).


    Equality of access is the key value that determines the enrolment of children in our school.  No child is refused admission for reasons of ethnicity, special educational needs, disability, language/accent, gender, traveller status, asylum seeker/refugee status, religious/political beliefs and values, family or social circumstances.


  2. ETHOS:


    St. Sylvester’s Infant School is a co-educational primary school which aims to promote the full and harmonious development of all aspects of the person of the pupil, including his/her relationship with God, with other people and the environment. Religious Education is provided for all pupils in accordance with the doctrine and tradition of the Catholic Church, with prayer a feature of the school day.  Close contact is maintained between the school and home. Parents and teachers support one another and collaborate with one another as partners in leading the children to the fullness of their potential in a safe and happy environment.




    Our Mission in St. Sylvester’s Infant School is to provide an environment and experience that nurtures our pupils’ spiritually, physically, mentally, morally and socially which would encourage their interest in life-long learning. Tús Maith – leath na h-oibre – A good start is half the work




    This policy aims to provide equal opportunity to education to all applicants in accordance with the –

  • Rules and Regulations of the Department of Education and Skills and

  • School’s Enrolment Policy.


It also seeks to –

  • Promote the full and harmonious development of all aspects of the pupil, within the physical, social, emotional and educational needs of the child, and

  • Provide a framework of principles to guide in the selection of applications of new entrants to St. Sylvester’s Infant School.




    1. Applications for Enrolment


      Enrolment date will be announced in some or all of the following:-

  • in a locally delivered free newspaper

  • in the parish church

  • on a large banner outside school

  • in notes to children already in school/school newsletter

  • text a parent from both St. Sylvester’s I.S. & Pope John Paul II

  • on our school website www.stsylvestersinfantschool.com


    Application forms for 2015/2016 will be available from the office from December, 2014.


    In order to give parents sufficient time to gather all necessary documentation, however, the enrolment process for 2015/16 will not officially commence until Wednesday 7th January 2015.  


    Parents seeking to enrol their child(ren) in St.Sylvester’s Infant School are requested to collect an Application Form from the school office.  The school accepts no responsibility for applications not received.  If posting completed application forms to the school, parents are advised to use certificates of post, e.g. registered post etc. Applications delivered to the school by hand will be given a receipt.  The closing date for receipt of the completed application forms is the 4th February 2015.  Parents will be notified within 21 days of the closing date, or a reasonable time thereafter, whether their child has or has not been offered a place.


    Late applications will be placed in category (7), thereby reducing their priority.


    The school will endeavour to place children with at least one child from their pre-school/crèche.  However, there is no provision for requests to place children with a specific friend/neighbour etc. Each year, the Principal visits a number of local crèches/Montessori’s to discuss Aistear and the readiness of pre-school children for school.


    Applications will not be deemed complete until such time as all relevant documentation below has been submitted with completed application forms.

  • Birth Certificate

  • Adoption Certificate (where appropriate)

  • Baptismal Certificate

  • Two recent passport photos (please put child’s name on back of photos)

  • Two recent Utility Bills (Gas/Electric/Phone)

  • Three stamped addressed envelopes

  • 80.00 School Management Voluntary Contribution (non-refundable on acceptance)

  • 70.00 School Supplies (non-refundable on acceptance)

    All cheques should be post-dated to 6th March 2015


    1. Selection Considerations


      While recognising the right of parents to enrol their child in the school of their choice, the Board of Management of St. Sylvester’s Infant School is also responsible for respecting the rights of the existing school community and in particular, the children already enrolled.  


      Balanced judgements are therefore required in deciding the priority in which applications for enrolment are to be ranked. The Board is guided by the principles of natural justice and it strives to reach its judgements in the best interest of all children.


      The existing school community in the catchment area/parish extends beyond the junior cycle which is catered for at St. Sylvester’s. This policy is therefore mindful of the children’s transition to the senior cycle which is predominantly catered for at the neighbouring Pope John Paul II School.  This Board of Management reserves the right to limit the number and cycle of classes made available in order to accommodate a smooth transition to, and to avoid excessive enrolment at, Pope John Paul II School.


      In terms of transition to other schools in the Malahide area, it is important to note that every school has its own enrolment policy.


      The Board of Management reserves the right to determine the maximum number of children in each class in any given school year bearing in mind, in particular:

  • Department of Education and Skills guidelines on class size

  • Staffing provisions

  • The size of available space in classrooms

  • The educational needs of children of a particular age

  • The existence of multi-grade classes

  • The presence of children with special education/behavioural needs

  • The demands of the school’s Health and Safety Policy

    1. First Round Offers of Places – Junior Infants


      The Board is bound by the Department of Education and Skills’ Rules for National Schools which provides that pupils may only be enrolled from the age of 4 years and upwards, though compulsory attendance does not apply until the age of 6 years. All age appropriate applicants will be considered but not guaranteed a place.


In the event of applications for enrolment exceeding the number of places available, the Board of Management will initiate the following decision-making process and places will be allocated as follows:

  1. The Board of Management will process all applications and will decide on a cut-off date-of-birth for all applicants on an annual basis.  Please note that the cut-off date-of-birth may vary from year to year and the Board reserves the right to determine the cut-off date-of-birth for criteria 1-7 below, once all applications have been received.


  2. Priority will be given in the following order. Once the cut-off date-of-birth is reached in each criterion, the Board will move onto the next criterion:


  1. Catholic children living in Yellow Walls Parish and brothers and sisters of          pupils in St. Sylvester’s and Pope John Paul’s

  2. Catholic children of all staff members

  3. Other children living in the parish

  4. Siblings of brothers and sisters of pupils of St. Sylvester’s and Pope John Paul’s who are not resident in the Yellow Walls parish

  5. Catholic children living outside the parish who do not have a Catholic school      in their own parish

  6. Other children living outside the parish

  7. Late applications


    NOTE:  In the event that the number of applications in any criterion exceeds the number of available places the eldest children will be given priority.


    Acceptance forms must be signed and returned on or before 6th March, 2015.  Failure to comply with this will result in your child’s placement being withdrawn.



    1. Second Round Offers of Places – Junior Infants


      If there are still places available, a second round of places will be offered to those children in (descending) age order from criterion 1-7 above.


    2. Senior Infants/First Class 2015


      Other pupils may be enrolled during the school year where places become available and will be subject to the same criteria set out for Junior Infants enrolling in the school.


    3. Transfers


      Pupils wishing to transfer from other schools are enrolled subject to the Rules governing National Schools and in all cases the Board of Management will ensure that:

  • The school Enrolment Policy is followed

  • The school is satisfied with the reasons for the transfer

  • Parents making transfer request must furnish full report on their child’s record from the previous school including the pupil’s former school’s concerns regarding attendance, behaviour, educational progress, disabilities, special needs and other matters that may influence a decision on acceptance of the transfer is sought

  • At all times it is conscious of its duty of care under the Health and Safety Act and that the pupil poses no risk to himself / herself or others

  • The move is in the best interests of the pupil

  • There is available space

  • The transfer is in the best interest of the current school


    Pupils transferring from St. Sylvester’s to other schools


  • A copy of their school report will accompany them as per Circular 56/11

  • Under Section 20.5 of the Education Act 2000, the principal will notify the new principal of any problems relating to attendance and any matters relating to the child’s educational progress that is considered appropriate


    1. Multiple Applications


      Multiple Applications exist when attempts are made to enrol children in a number of schools at the same time.  Agreements exist between local schools and prior to the allocation of places; discussions take place between the relevant schools to eliminate applications made to more than one school. 

Where more than one application is made, it is the policy of the Boards to assign such applications to the school nearest (i.e. shortest walking distance) to the primary residence of the child. Unsuccessful application forms are shredded and parents are requested to collect and sign for important documentation/monies from the office.





    1. Special Education Needs


      It is open to the Board of Management to request a copy of the child’s medical and/or psychological report or where such a report is not available to request that the child be assessed immediately. The purpose of the assessment report is to assist the school in

      establishing the educational needs of the child relevant to his/her special needs and to profile the support services required.


      The Board of Management may delay the enrolment of a Junior Infant pupil with special needs.  This will allow the Principal and Board of Management to place the child in the class that is considered to be most suitable to the child’s needs.  This has proved to have worked well in the past and has been widely acknowledged.  Further information can be viewed in our Whole School Policy for Learning Support and Special Education Needs.  The parents of children with Special Educational Needs, who feel relevant resources available to the school are inadequate to the special needs of their child/children, are advised to consider a special school which is designed and resourced to specifically cater for the needs of children with Special Educational Needs. However, the Board of Management reserves the right to refuse enrolment if the pupil has special needs such that, even with additional resources available from Department of Education and Skills, the school cannot meet such needs and/or provide the pupil with an appropriate education.


    2. Code of Behaviour


      Children enrolled in our school are required to co-operate with and support the school’s Code of Behaviour as well as all other policies on curriculum, organisation and management.  The Board of Management places Parents/Guardians as responsible for ensuring that their child (ren) co-operate with said policies in an age-appropriate way. Parents must complete a section on the application form confirming this. The Code of Behaviour Policy along with a number of other policies can be viewed on our website at www.stsylvestersinfantschool.com The remainder of policies are available for viewing from the school office on request.

    1. Information Evening / Visits by Junior Infants


      An information evening will be held for parents of incoming pupils to St. Sylvester’s I.S. in April 2015.


      Incoming Junior Infants spend one informal period in the school in late June intended to familiarise themselves with their new classroom whilst parents are invited to the School Hall to meet other parents.


    2. Queries & Appeals


      All enquiries/queries should be directed to the Principal by:


  • Securing an appointment with the Principal through the school Secretary

  • Writing to (i) the Principal (ii) the Chairperson of the Board of Management


    The Board of Management reserves the right to refuse an application for enrolment in exceptional circumstances.  Parents whose child (ren) have been refused enrolment may appeal the decision of the Board of Management by writing to the Board through the Principal who is the secretary of the Board of Management and or appeal the Boards decision to the Department of Education under Section 29 of the Education Act 1998 Appeals process.  Further information is available at www.education.ie





    This policy has been ratified by the Board of Management of St. Sylvester’s Infant School in accordance with the Enrolment Policy of the Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin.


    This policy shall be reviewed on an annual basis.






    Mrs Denise Boyne                                                     Date: 17th June, 2014


    Board of Management