Detail 1



This document comprises the following policies:

-        Admissions Policy

-        Transfer Policy

-        Admission to Specific School Programmes or Subjects

Ardscoil Rath Iomgháin is a multi-denominational and co-educational, Post-Primary School founded by The Department of Education and Skills (DES) in 1973. A Board of Management under the Trusteeship of Kildare and Wicklow Education and Training Board (KWETB), manages the school. Parents/Guardians and Teaching Staff also have representation on the Board of Management.


Mission Statement

This school, being a source of pride in the community aspires to the holistic development of its students, embracing the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual dimensions of their lives.

Students will be challenged and encouraged to achieve their full potential through the recognition and reward of their effort and responsibilities, allowing them to feel confident in their ability to take their place as valued members of our society. Cultural differences will be respected.

The good name and reputation of the school as an institution must be nurtured and protected for the benefit of all pupils. Each of the partners, teachers, parents and students have roles and responsibilities which must be fulfilled if successful educational outcomes are to be achieved.



The founding intention of the Trustee challenges the school to be inclusive and cater for the educational needs of all of the students whose enrolment has been accepted by the school. It challenges the school to be truly an educational resource for the local community, to be mindful of local educational needs and to focus on the importance of a value based education. The characteristic spirit of KWETB obliges the school to build on these values and principles.  We endeavour to fulfil our mission in partnership with Management, Parents/Guardians, Staff, Students, Trustees and the local community.



The school supports the principles of:

  • Inclusiveness,

  • Equality of access and participation in the school,

  • Parental choice in relation to enrolments, subject to the school’s enrolment policy.

  • Respect for diversity of traditions, values, beliefs, languages and ways of life in society.

The school operates within the context and parameters of DES (Department of Education and Skills) regulations, programmes, funding and staffing resources. The school acknowledges the rights of its Trustees as set out in legislation.



The DES funds, through KWETB, the annual financial and teaching resources of the school.


Ard Scoil Rath Iomgháin accepts all students that apply for enrolment to the school who qualify for admission under the terms of its admissions policy as agreed by the Board of Management and KWETB. However, admission is subject to the resources available to the school including physical classroom accommodation, class size, teaching and financial resources and is also subject to the capacity of the school to provide for the educational needs of those who apply for admission. The numbers for each first year cohort will be set in advance by the Board of Management.


The implementation of the curriculum, the pastoral care programme, the school development plan and various school policies have due regard to the resources and funding available to the school. The school follows the curricular programmes prescribed by the DES, which may be amended from time to time, in accordance with Sections 9 and 30 of the Education Act 1998.



The school offers the following educational programmes:

  • Three year Junior Certificate Programme

  • One year Transition Year Programme

  • Two Year Traditional Leaving Certificate Programme

  • Two Year Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme


Extra Curricular Activities

Students attending the school are given the opportunity and encouraged to participate in a wide range of extra-curricular activities made available to them from time to time and which to date include: Athletics, Basketball, Debating, Public Speaking, Gaelic Football, Soccer, An GAISCE (The President's Award), Young Scientist of the Year, Creative Writing, Variety Show, Choir, Comicon, Educational and Social school tours.


Scope of School Policy

This document sets out the policy of the school in respect of admissions to the school in the following circumstances:

  • Students applying for a place in a new First Year cohort,

  • Students applying to transfer from another second-level school


This policy should be read in conjunction with all other school policies and procedures, which are available on request from the school office or may be viewed and downloaded from the school website:



This Admissions policy aims to ensure that appropriate procedures are in place to enable the school:

  • To make decisions on all applications in an open and transparent manner consistent with the mission statement of the school, the Admissions Policy as defined by the Board of Management and approved by KWETB and also legislative requirements.

  • To make an accurate and appropriate assessment of the capacity of the school to cater for the needs of applicants in the light of all resources available to it and

  • To put in place a framework which will ensure effective and productive relations between Students, Parents/Guardians, Teachers and School Management when and where a student is admitted to the school.


Legal Framework

Section 9 (j) of the Education Act 1998 specifies, that "A recognised school shall…. subject to this Act and in particular section 15 (2) (d), establish and maintain an admissions policy which provides for maximum accessibility to the school."


Section 15 (2) (d) states that Boards of Management shall "publish........the policy of the school concerning admission to and participation in the school and ensure that as regards that policy principles of equality and the right of parents to send their children to a school of the parents' choice are respected"


Section 27 (1) states that "A board shall establish and maintain procedures for the purposes of informing students in a school of the activities of the school” and (2) that "the procedures established and maintained under subsection (1) shall facilitate the involvement of the students in the operation of the school, having regard to the age and experience of the students, in association with their parents and teachers”.


The Education Welfare Act, 2000 [Section 19 (1)] requires that a Board of Management shall not refuse to admit a child except where such refusal is in accordance with the terms of school's Admission Policy. Section 19 (2) requires that parents must provide relevant information to the school while Section 19 (3) requires that the Board of Management shall, as soon as practicable (but not later than 21 days) after receiving such information" make a decision in respect of the application concerned and inform the parent in writing thereof"


The Equal Status Act, 2000 [Sections 5 & 7 (2)] prohibits discrimination on the grounds of "gender, marital status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race or membership of the Travelling Community" regarding admission, access to programmes, participation in the school or regarding expulsion or any other sanction. There are limited exceptions regarding single-sex schools and schools promoting particular religious values [Section 7 (3)]. However, section 3.3 states that "Treating a person who has not attained the age of 18 years less favourably or more favourably than another, whatever that other person's age, shall not be regarded as discrimination on the age ground." Section 3.4 states that "For the purposes of this Act discrimination includes a refusal or failure by the provider of a service to do all that is reasonable to accommodate the needs of a person with a disability by providing special treatment or facilities, if without such special treatment or facilities it would be impossible or unduly difficult for the person to avail himself or herself of the service."


The Education for Persons with Special Educational Needs Act 2002

(Section 1 (2))

A child with Special Educational Needs shall be educated in an inclusive environment with children who do not have such needs unless the nature or degree of those needs of the child is such that to do so would be inconsistent with:

(a)   the best interests of the child as determined in accordance with any assessment carried out under this Act or

(b)   the effective provision of education for children with whom the child is to be educated.



 The school shall have in place appropriate channels of communication and procedures

  • To inform parents about the school, its programmes, activities and admission procedures

  • To enable applications for admission to the school to be handled in an open, transparent and accountable matter subject to the terms of the defined Board of Management admissions policy

  • To put in place criteria under which applications shall be considered

  • To ensure that these criteria are informed by our Mission Statement, ethos and current legislation

  • To specify what information is required by the school concerning the student applicant at the time of their application for enrolment at the school.


Admission Applications, Enrolment Criteria, Decision and   Appeal


Application for First Year:

140 places are available for First Year 2019/2020

This was approved by the Board of Management on the 29th of May 2018.


Applications for 1st year must meet all the requirements of The DES governing transfer from Primary to Post-Primary school.

Post-primary school students must be minimum age 12 years on 1st January on the calendar year following the child’s entry into First year. Evidence of age, normally a Birth Certificate, may be required; a copy of which will be retained on the school records.


Admission to the school, centre or a particular course/ activity is subject, in the first instance, to a place/space being available.


In the event of numbers applying being greater than the places available the following criteria will apply in order.

(1) Students whose home address is in the catchment area (map available on request).

(2) Children of Staff members.

(3) Siblings of present Students.

(4) Children attending the following schools:

- Rathangan Boys N.S.

- Rathangan Girls N.S.

- Clonbullogue N.S.

- Bracknagh N.S.

Not catered for in the previous points.

(5) Students whose home address is in Ellistown, Lackagh and Mountrice who are attending Lackagh school (not catered for in previous points).

(6) Students who have had siblings complete a minimum of one academic year in the school.

(7) A student whose home address is outside the catchment area but Ardscoil Rath Iomgháin is the nearest post primary school.

(8) Children of past pupils. A past student is any person who has completed a minimum of one academic year in the school.

(9) All others applications received

All applications must be completed on the school’s application form and this will be kept on school files (records). All applications will be accepted in Ardscoil Rath Iomgháin subject to application procedures being adhered to. If an offer is made, the offer must be accepted in writing by Parents/Guardians by the specified date.

If an offer of a place is refused, and there is a subsequent change of mind, this student will be placed at the bottom of the waiting list. All applicants who were unsuccessful will be placed on an official school waiting list. Parents/Guardians will be informed in writing of their position on the waiting list. However, this may be subject to change due to late applicants in line with our admissions policy. The waiting list for the relevant school year will cease to be in effect from the 30th of November of that year.


In the event of any category being over-subscribed a lottery will apply. This will involve the names of students being drawn and places will be determined in the order they are drawn. The lottery will be supervised by members of the Board of Management. If an appropriate space becomes available after the 140 places are allocated, the allocation of this place will be based on the criteria for admission.


The closing date for all applications will be Wednesday 7th of November 2018 at 3pm. All applications received after the closing date will be dealt with in accordance with the admissions policy, which is available on request at the school office or may be downloaded from the school website


A copy of the school catchment area map (for school enrolment and school transport purposes) is available on request at the school office.


Parents/Guardians should note that the school may require a copy of a utility bill(s) as proof of home address.

Previous school records will be requested by the school. Parents/Guardians are requested to make school management aware of any problems relating to the student e.g. learning, behaviour, etc which their child may have. The Board of Management reserves the right to refuse admission to a pupil where he/she may pose a serious health, safety and welfare risk to existing members of the school community. The Board will review this policy annually and it reserves the right to change its terms where appropriate. All disputes in relation to admission will be referred to the KWETB (Kildare Wicklow Education Training Board).


A Parent/Guardian whose child has been refused enrolment at the school has a right to appeal the decision and will be so communicated in any refusal letter.


Parents/Guardians should complete and sign the student application form, giving all of the details required. Incomplete forms will be returned to Parents/Guardians. Parents/Guardians should sign the application form and date it


Parents/Guardians should note that they may be also required to complete a further information form regarding their child's educational progress at a later date and/or to co-operate with the school's attempts to identify the educational or other relevant needs of the child. The school may wish to meet with the applicant and her/his Parents/guardians to discuss the needs of the individual applicant or the parent(s)/guardian(s) may request such a meeting.


Failure to fully complete the application form and/or failure to supply honest and truthful information may result in a child being refused admission to the school. In the event of the school being furnished with incorrect information, the placed offered may be withdrawn.


The school will normally organise an ’Information Night and prepare a School Prospectus so that Parents/Guardians may inform themselves about the school. The 'Information Night’ is open to all eligible students for enrolment and their Parents/Guardians. The Parents/Guardians are required to accompany the students to such a school organised event.


Decisions regarding student admissions are a matter for the Board of Management. However, this task is normally delegated to the Principal who is informed and decides on such matters in accordance with and in line with the school's official Admissions Policy. The Principal may refer any application to the Board of Management for decision.


The Board of Management will annually determine the number of students to be accepted into First Year.


Assessment Test

Assessment of incoming students will take place on Saturday January 26th 2019 this date will be notified to Parents/Guardians of children accepted for admission to Ardscoil Rath Iomgháin. All applicants shall be obliged to sit for the school's Assessment test. The purpose of the assessment test is to ascertain the educational needs of the students and will in no way influence the ability ranking of classes.


Students with Special Needs

Ardscoil Rath Iomgháin strives to create an inclusive environment for all students, including those with special educational needs, unless such an environment would be inconsistent with the best needs of the student or those of the wider student body. The school’s ability to provide for students with special education needs is restricted to the resources made available to do so from the DES.


Applicants with Special Education Needs must meet the entry criteria set out for all students in this policy. The regular admissions procedures must also be adhered to. The existence of special education needs does not give any individual applicant a prioritised entry entitlement.



The school's Special Needs Policy sets out how the school will

·      Take steps at an early stage to identify those children that enrolled at the school with special needs within the terms of the School Admissions Policy, and to become familiar with their particular educational needs.

·      Request a copy of the child's medical/psychological report/individual educational plan, if available.

·      Request assessment in order to assist the school in establishing educational and training needs of the child relevant to his/her disability or special needs and to profile the support services required.

·      Request, in a timely manner, from the DES any additional resources deemed necessary e.g. Special Needs Assistant, specialised equipment or furniture, transport etc.

·      Meet the Parents/Guardians to discuss the child's needs, the special staffing or equipment resources received by the school from the DES, to assist that child achieve their potential and the school's actual capacity to meet the child's needs.

·      Through the Board of Management, do all it possibly can to identify, plan, and provide for the needs of a special needs or disabled child who is accepted as a student at the school under the terms of the admissions policy.

·      Liase and dialogue with the Special Educational Needs Organiser (SENO) and the National Council for Special Education (NCSE) to clarify on the resources for an individual student with special educational needs.


All applicants and their Parents/Guardians should be aware of and note that the applications process is managed effectively each year. There is clarity and transparency about the process. Applicants are informed in good time about the status of their application and, where an application is refused in accordance with this policy, they have reasonable opportunity to make alternative educational arrangements for their child.



This Admissions Policy replaces all previous Admissions Policies.



The closing date for applications for First Year 2019/2020 must be received by the school on or before Wednesday November 7th  2018 at 3 pm.




This policy is reviewed regularly by the Board of Management in consultation with the relevant School Education Partners.




This Admissions Policy was formally agreed and adopted by the Board of Management on                                       




              Chairperson, Board of Management




              Secretary, Board of Management.






Admissions Procedures- Other Year Groups (Including applications to transfer from other schools)


The Principal and Senior Management team will carry out Admissions & Transfer Policies on behalf of the Board of Management. Admissions to Ardscoil Rath Iomgháin or a particular course/ activity is subject, in the first instance, to a place being available.



This transfer policy aims to promote:

-        Effective teaching and learning in Ardscoil Rath Iomgháin.

-        Pastoral care and uphold the ethos of the school

-        The educational needs of the student, and ensure that the educational needs of other students are not adversely affected.



1.     Transfers will only be considered from (a) Students whose home address is in the catchment area, (b) Children of Staff members, (c) Siblings of present Students.

  1. The transfer enrolment forms must be fully completed.  A full written detailed reference and a full discipline record as well as all school reports and the students examination results must be supplied by the previous school.

3.     The school will consider the consequences of a transfer on the student’s academic and all round progress and also the effect on the students already on the school. The school must be confident that the curriculum can be delivered on.

4.     Applicants with Special Education Needs must meet the entry criteria set out for all students in this policy. The regular transfer policy must also be adhered to.

5.    That, in the professional judgement of the School Authority the student, because of previous education, training is likely to benefit from attendance.  The Board of Management reserves the right to refuse a place to a student if it feels the student poses a health and safety risk to students or staff.

  1. Students transferring from another second level school may be asked to present for an interview, with parent/guardian and if successful, will be asked to sign a contract of learning.

7.     There is a right of appeal to the Board of Management.

Please note: An application will not be processed until all requested material is supplied to the school.



The Principal may contact the applicants former school in an effort to verify the information provided with the application.  Failure to complete any of the necessary documentation listed above or to supply any other relevant documentation requested by the school may result in an applicant being refused admission to the school.


Decisions regarding admissions are a matter for the Board of Management. However, this task is normally delegated to the Principal who decides on such matters in accordance with the school's transfer policy.


Admissions for any school year will be considered as soon as possible after the application is received. The school will respond to each application within 21 days but may not be in a position to make a decision on some applications until later in the school year when its current students have given an indication to the school authority of their intention to return to the school in the forthcoming school academic year. This will certainly be so in the case of applications for senior cycle courses, as the school may not yet have begun to survey its own students about Transition Year or their subject preferences for senior cycle programmes.


A decision will be made in respect of each application following the timing above and the selection criteria set out below and is subject to the class size limitations for different subject areas and the capacity of the school to provide the academic subjects sought by the student at an appropriate level i.e. Higher/Ordinary/Foundation.


The availability of suitable places and subject options in any given year group shall be of paramount importance and shall be one of the determining factors of admission. ­


The Board of Management has a duty of care for the health, safety and welfare of the existing members of the school community and thus the behaviour/disciplinary record of a student in their previous school(s) shall be an important factor in the decision making process.  The school reserves the right to refuse to admit a student whose behaviour in their previous school has been deemed unsatisfactory or where there has not been a satisfactory level of cooperation between the previous school and the Student's Parents/Guardians. The attendance record of a student in their previous school shall also be an important factor. Where a student has been formally excluded from another post-primary school then before considering any application to enrol from such a student, it is expected that the Parents/Guardians will on behalf of their child have fully exhausted the DES formal Section 29 Appeals process against their previous school.


All applicants and their Parents/Guardians should be aware of and note that the applications process is managed effectively each year. There is clarity and transparency about the process. Applicants are informed in good time about the status of their application and, where an application is refused in accordance with this policy, they have reasonable opportunity to make alternative educational arrangements for their child.


Where a student is refused admission/enrolment to the school their Parents/Guardians will be advised of their right to appeal that decision to the Chief Executive of KWETB per the terms of DES Circular letter No. M48/01.



Note the following regarding Senior Cycle: At an appropriate time each year the school will take steps to determine what are the intentions of its own students for the following school year. Students in Third Year and Transition Year will be required to complete a survey/application form indicating their intentions. When this process is complete the school will determine whether and how many places may be available to students from outside the school. Priority will be given to students from within the school that are permitted by the Board of Management, in accordance with DES regulations, to repeat a school year:


This policy is reviewed regularly by the Board of Management in consultation with the relevant School Education Partners.



This Transfer Policy was formally agreed and adopted by the Board of Management on                                       




              Chairperson, Board of Management




              Secretary, Board of Management.














Admission to specific school programmes or subjects (or levels)

All such applications will be considered on an individual basis, subject to the availability of a place in a specific class or subject area at the time of application. From time to time it may arise that the demand for a particular subject or at a specific level for any subject or for a particular programme may exceed the number of places normally available on that programme. The school will make every effort - within the constraints of its accommodation, teaching resources and equipment - to accommodate all such students. Where all students cannot be accommodated priority will be given to students from the school.


Where it is not possible to accommodate all such applicants:


Entry to specific subjects will be determined by reference to the preferences indicated by students on their Subject Choice form and in consultation with Subject Departments.


Entry to specific programmes

Transition Year:          Will be determined following a review of the application forms and an interview process designed to ascertain the relative suitability of the applicants for the specific programme. Along with this process, the students’ discipline and attendance records for their previous three years of Education, which will be examined before selection process is complete.


All applications to repeat a school year are subject to the relevant DES guidelines. The DES normally restricts students to a maximum of six years at second level and does not allow students to repeat a year unless there are exceptional circumstances.

  • Applications to repeat a year will be considered in the light of DES circular letters and official guidelines.

  • Furnish to the school a full and honest reason for seeking a repeat year placement.

  • Applications will also be considered in the light of places available on the relevant programme, subject to the class size and overall enrolment restrictions set out elsewhere in this policy.

  • Applications must be accompanied by supporting documentation as deemed appropriate and/or requested by School Management.

  • Students taking a programme for the first time may be given priority in terms of subject choices within the programme.


Repeating the Leaving Certificate at Ardscoil Rath Iomgháin:

Students who apply to repeat the Leaving Certificate at the school will be considered if they have:

-        Already completed the Leaving Cert in Ardscoil Rath Iomghain.

-        Provide the reason for seeking a placement on the repeat programme.

-        In the light of actual places available in the relevant subjects, at the appropriate level, class size limitations, the overall programme and overall enrolment within the school.

-        In the light of the student’s previous academic record, application to studies, discipline, attendance etc.


It should be noted that, Ardscoil Rath Iomgháin does not operate a specific Repeat Leaving Certificate Programme. It does not normally provide any additional teaching of material covered in 5th Year (1st year of Leaving Certificate Programme).


Appeals Procedures

All applicants will be informed as to their request as set out above. Where possible, this will be done as soon as possible by the Principal.


A decision to refuse admission may be appealed to the Board of Management. The name and address of the persons to whom an appeal should be addressed will be included in the written notification to refuse admission, as will the time constraints involved.


All applicants and their Parents/Guardians should be aware of and note that the applications process is managed effectively each year. There is clarity and transparency about the process. Applicants are informed in good time about the status of their application and, where an application is refused in accordance with this policy, they have reasonable opportunity to make alternative educational arrangements for their child.


This policy is reviewed regularly by the Board of Management in consultation with the relevant School Education Partners.



This Admission to Specific School Programmes/Subjects Policy was formally agreed and adopted by the Board of Management on                                                




              Chairperson, Board of Management




              Secretary, Board of Management.