What is a Parent Association?
The National Parents Council explains the role of the Parent Association within the school community.
The Scoil Naomh Barra Parent Association Constitution lays down the ground rules which guide the work of the PA.
Parent Association Committee 2022/23
Chairperson: Lorna Clarke
Secretary: Carmel Brecknell
Treasurer: Jade McGarry
Committee Members : Lisa Boland, Fiona Breslin, Bernie Callaghan, Alison Coughlan, Catherine Finney, John Finney, Maria Heaney, Nuala Hoey, Anne Keelan, Jade McGarry, Ciara McQuaid, Karen Markey, Emma Matthews.
How the Parent Association works in Scoil Naomh Bharra
Every parent with a child in the school is a member of the Parent Association (PA). Each year an Annual General Meeting is held and a committee is formed. At the first meeting of the committee the Chairperson, Secretary and the Treasurer are elected.
The PA committee meets monthly to plan and organise any fundraising and other activities that may be taking place at different times during the year. We also discuss any other matters that may be of importance to the school community, or issues raised to us by parents. The chairperson of the committee meets with the Principal regularly to communicate issues arising from the meetings.
The PA acts as a support for parents – we take parents concerns on board about safety, transport, expenses etc and can raise these issues with the school management.
It is important to note that a Parent Association is not a forum for complaint against an individual teacher, parent or child, nor does it have a role in pursuing individual complaints. The school has formal procedures in this regard and these should be followed by any parent who has a complaint.
In the situation of a parental complaint regarding a specific issue the Parent Association can:
Help a parent to find good ways of approaching a teacher about a problem with a view to having the problem sorted out and can
let a parent know that if they need to make a formal complaint there is a complaints procedure available through the school and encourage the parent to use the procedure.
The school frequently asks the PA committee for input in relation to the review of existing and new policies and procedures in the school.
Like every committee, we have to fundraise in order to support activities for students in the school and to purchase equipment that the school would otherwise have to do without. We run lots of small fundraisers throughout the school year and try to have activities that involve the children e.g. – Witches Walk at Halloween, Christmas Disco, Christmas Fair, Cake Sales, Non-Uniform Days , Cash for Clobber etc.
First Holy Communion
Each year the First Communion class and their families are invited to a reception in the school hall after the mass has taken place. Traditionally the parents of students in 1st class cater for the event as the favour will be returned to them the following year. The PA coordinates the decoration of the church and the setting up of the hall for the reception. A lot of work is involved in this but the results are always great and parents have always been very appreciative of the event.
The Parents Association are called upon to help with events that are organised within the school for example: Grandparents day and Open Day for new parents.
Training / Education
We can invite speakers to address parents on issues which are topical or relevant e.g. Parenting – your child’s relationships, Transition from Primary to Secondary School, Internet Safety.
The RSE (Relationship and Sexuality) talks to 6th class are organised and funded by the Parents Association. If you have any suggestions for topics you would like to see addressed please contact the PA.
For new parents coming to the school, we are a point of contact for any query there may be about settling in and how the school runs. New parents might find it useful to read the Tips for Parents
Board of Management (B.O.M.)
The PA has 2 parents from the Parent Association to represent the school parent body and put forward our views and opinions to the Board of Management. The current parent representatives on the BOM are John Finney and Ciara McQuaid who will serve on the board until the end of the 2022/23 school year. New parent representatives will be elected at the AGM of the Parent Association in October 2023.
The PA runs the Book Rental Scheme. In recent years we have expanded the Rental Scheme to include all books and stationery for each child in the school. We also help fund the purchase of additional sets of graded readers and literacy material and to replace some older rental books.
If you need to contact the PA you can email us to firstname.lastname@example.org We would welcome any feedback you have on the work the PA does as well as any fundraising suggestions that you might have.