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April Newsletter

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St Patrick’s Primary School, Ballynahinch


April 2015





Sacramental Celebrations

Congratulations to the boys and girls from our school who recently received the Sacrament of Reconciliation for the first time. The children worked extremely hard to prepare for their special occasion and it was lovely to see the respect and reverence they showed during the ceremony. Our thanks are extended to Mrs Magee, Mrs Smith, Miss Marner and Mrs Kilmartin for all they did to make this occasion so meaningful to the children. We hope that this will be the first of many times that the children will experience this very important sacrament.

We look forward to our P7 class celebration of the Service of Light which takes place on Thursday, 16th April at 7.00pm in St Patrick’s Church

Preparations are now well underway for Confirmation which takes place on Friday, 8th May in St Patrick’s Church at 6.00pm. School will close at 1.00pm to facilitate preparations for the ceremony.



Cross Country Success

Well done to our boys and girls cross country teams who completed in the Down District Council Cross Country Competition on Friday, 27th March. Congratulations must go to our boys team which qualified for the SEELB finals. A special mention must go to Ryan Walsh who finished 5th in the boys’ race. Well done Ryan!


Down Hero

Congratulations to Reuben Lavery, P7 who recently represented our school in the Down Primary Schools game at half-time in Parc Esler, Newry. We hope that this will be the first of many for Reuben!

Playground Buddies

We have just introduced a very structured Buddies programme to the school and are delighted to see so many boys and girls willing to give up some of their lunch time to be buddies for the younger children of our school. Well done boys and girls!



Regular and punctual attendance is a crucial factor in every child’s learning and in St Patrick’s most parents recognise this, making sure that their child’s attendance is as high as possible. However, for some children, attendance is an issue and so pupil attendance is being more carefully monitored this year.

Whilst we appreciate a telephone call to inform us if a child is going to be absent this should be supported by a written note sent into school on the pupils return. Any absence without a written note is now being followed up by the admin staff of the school.

Trocaire 2015 – Climate Change, Climate Justice!

As we approach the end of Lent it is great to see the children working so hard to raise much needed funds for Trocaire. There are lots of ideas and activities already happening with lots more planned over the next three weeks. We thank our parents for supporting the children in their fundraising efforts and ask that you always encourage them to think of others who are less fortunate than us. Sincere thanks to everyone who made our Cake Sale such a huge success. On the day, we raised £311.17 for Trocaire.


Annual Jumble Sale

Every year the children are encouraged to bring in unwanted items to the jumble sale which takes place on Wednesday, 1st April 2015. Parents are asked to thoroughly check any item that is being brought in by their child, ensuring that it is safe for use. Please check all of the pockets of purses, handbags etc. to make sure that they are empty.

Parent Support Group

St Patrick’s Parent Support Group will be holding a Coffee Morning and Cake Sale in the Parish Centre after 11.00am Mass on Sunday 19th April. (Please note change in date) Everyone welcome!


Healthy Break

Recent research has highlighted the importance of eating a healthy break as it contributes to concentration, attention and learning. Please continue to support your child by sending fruit, vegetables or a bread based snack (no sweet fillings) with your child for break time.


Milk in School

It is great to see the Schools Council so active and working hard to change things in our school. Its most recent initiative is Milk in School. If you would like your child to have milk each day in school please complete the reply slip from the recent letter and return it to the school along with payment of £8 for the months of May and June.

Early Morning Arrivals and Breakfast Club

If you need to drop your child off to school early we have provided supervision each morning from 8.10am at a cost of £1 with breakfast and 50p without breakfast.


End of School Day Supervision of children

Parents are reminded that it is their responsibility to ensure that any young children who come along with them to school at the end of the day are closely supervised at all times.

Stay and Play

We are delighted to have introduced our new Stay and Play initiative which is aimed at supporting parents of P1 children and developing quality opportunities for learning through play. Those parents who stayed in school to share the learning through play activities with their child felt this was a very helpful experience.

Emotional Intelligence

This month the children will focus on Obedience. Why not take a little time to talk to your child about what they are learning about in school.

P5 class will perform their class assembly on 1st May 2015 at 9.30am. Parents are very welcome to attend.

Dates for the Diary

  • Easter Holidays – 3rd to 10th April 2015 (School closes at 11.00am on 2nd April);
  • Transfer information Meeting for P6 parents – 16th April at 3.15pm;
  • P7 Confirmation Retreat – 20th April 2015 in Tober Mhuire, Crossgar;
  • Whole School Photo – 27th April 2015;
  • Confirmation – 8th May 2015 (School Closes at 1.00pm);
  • First Communion – 6th June 2015.