Role of the Patron, Board of Management, and Parents Association
WHO DOES WHAT AT CANAL WAY ETNS…MEET THE PATRON, BOARD OF MANAGEMENT, AND PARENTS ASSOCIATION!
As with all primary schools in Ireland, there are several groups involved in the management and running of Canal Way. The areas of responsibility are distinct in some instances, and overlap in others. Here’s what each group does, where to find out more information about our role in the life of the school and community, and how to contact each of us!
THE PATRON BODY
Every school in Ireland has a ‘patron’; the body that establishes the school. A patron’s legal responsibilities are set out in the Education Act 1998. Our patron is Educate Together. The patron body is responsible for appointing the Board of Management of the school.
For more information: www.educatetogether.ie
MEET THE BOARD OF MANAGEMENT
The Board of Management manages the school on behalf of Educate Together. We are accountable to Educate Together and to the Minister of Education. Our role is to ensure that Canal Way provides all pupils with the best possible education in accordance with our equality-based ethos.
Our role covers all aspects of the running of the school, including matters relating to: finances, policies & procedures, child protection, anti-bullying, and data protection. The Board is also the employer of all the staff (salaries of teachers and SNAs are paid directly by the Department of Education & Skills).
The school exists for the pupils, whose educational progress and the welfare is the main consideration behind Board decisions. We issue an Agreed Report of Board decisions and updates after each meeting, which is published in the newsletter.
Boards tend to have a standard composition of nominees. Canal Way’s Board is made up of: two people nominated by Educate Together – Treasa Ní Mhurchú (chairperson) and Margaret Burke; two parents (one male, one female), elected by the parents – Deirdre Finegan and Frank O’Reilly; the principal, Dermot Stanley; a teaching staff representative, Ciara Bregazzi-Nevin; and two representatives from the local community, nominated by the other members – Senator Ivana Bacik, Henrietta McKervey (the founders of the start-up group in 2009 that became Canal Way).
We meet regularly. All school boards have a four year term. The current term is 1st December 2019 – 1st December 2023. Being involved is a rewarding and fulfilling voluntary activity, so if you think you might be interested in joining the Board at some stage, please let Treasa know! Direct experience isn’t necessary – Educate Together offer training sessions for new Board members, which are very useful.
If you want to contact the Board, please email Treasa ([email protected]).
HOW DAY-TO-DAY SCHOOL MANAGEMENT WORKS
As principal, Dermot is responsible for the day-to-day management of the school, including providing guidance and direction to the teachers and other staff of the school. Dermot reports to the Board, and the Board supports him in his role as principal. Much of the daily life of the school is organised and co-ordinated by school secretary, Eavan O’Connor.
MEET THE PARENTS ASSOCIATION
The PA gives a voice to parents within the school community to actively participate in the development and running of the school. This collaboration between home and school is really beneficial for children. Our role includes after school activities, and we can also advise Dermot and the Board on policy issues and incidents that may require a review of school policy. We also have a vital fund-raising role. As with all primary schools, Canal Way receives funding from the Department of Education. However, this funding is not enough to cover all the expenses of a busy, thriving school such as ours, and we have to rely on the generosity of parents to help bridge the gap between the grants we get from the DES and what it actually costs to run our school.
The PA is made up of every parent/guardian in Canalway Educate Together School. We meet regularly (approximately once a month during the school term). The PA is always looking for fresh ideas – getting involved is a great way to meet other people in the Canal Way community, and to support the school we are proud of.