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St Patrick's Primary School and Nursery Unit, Loughguile, Ballymena

General Information


At present dinners cost £2.60 and the nursery is £2.50.  If parents feel that their child is entitled to

free meals they should request an application form from the school.

Nursery, P1, P2 and P3 children who pay for dinners should pay for the week on the first school day of the week.

A menu showing what is available for dinners each month will be posted on our school Facebook page and also displayed in the Dining Hall.

Milk money is paid for at the beginning of each term.  Cost is 21p per day.

Our Healthy Eating Policy dictates that children should eat only healthy snacks at break time for e.g. bread, fruit.  Sweets, crisps and fizzy drinks are not allowed at this time.






In selecting children for admission to the school we will apply the criteria as set out by our school on the Education Authority's website,

Parents and prospective Primary 1 children will be invited to visit the school in the summer term to meet the Principal and Class teacher.


ATTENDANCE 👩‍👩‍👦👨‍👨‍👧‍👧👨‍👨‍👦‍👦

Parents have a legal responsibility to ensure that their children attend school regularly.

A note from a parent is required:

a) if a child is absent from school

b) if a child is to leave school early

c) if a child is to be excused from PE or playing outside during morning or lunch break.

d) if a family intend to go on holiday during term time, a letter in advance should be forwarded to the Principal giving dates when the child will be absent from school.


Please Note:   In addition to the child’s home telephone number and parents mobile number, at

least one other contact person and telephone number must be available in the event of illness or emergency.


Parents are asked to arrange medical/dental appointments outside school hours to avoid absences and disruption to your child’s school day.

If you child is late in coming to school, the Secretary must be advised as attendance records are

kept on the computer.

On your child’s return to school following absence you should send a note giving the reason for the absence.   This information is required by the Education Welfare Officer who regularly monitors attendance.


Pupils do not change for PE however; an appropriate pair of slippers or training shoes must always be worn.  It is important that uniforms are clearly labelled with your child’s name, as all sweatshirts look the same!


A specific Homework Programme has been developed in St. Patrick's from primary 1 to primary 7 with inbuilt learning and teaching and progression.

What is expected of pupils, parents and class teachers is clearly set out in the Homework Policy.  All aspects of Homework in St. Patrick's are clearly identified in the Homework Policy.  


Parents - A guide to supporting your child

  • Provide a quiet area where your child can work.  The TV should be switched off to aid concentration.

  • Offer your help and support for younger children to complete tasks.

  • Expect older children to work independently, but make it clear that you are there if needed.

  • Homework should be completed on the day it is set as it has just been explained and the little and often approach is vital for learning.  The setting of homework several days in advance also enables children to develop skills in organising their time.  Younger children will need your support in moving towards this.

  • Check your child's Seesaw app regularly.

  • Take an interest in the homework and encourage your child to take pride in the presentation of written tasks.  Work should be handwritten by your child in pencil or a suitable handwriting pen, unless directed otherwise by your child's class teacher.


What do I do if I have a query? 😀😀

If your child has a problem completing the homework or you have any questions, please make an appointment to see the class teacher or contact the teacher through Seesaw.  We will do all that we can to resolve the problem.  Your support in the process is vital for children's success in developing self study-skills as they move on up through the school.


Our policy on charging as agreed by the Board of Governors is as follows:

Visits and Outings 🚌🚌

As part of the children’s education, outings may take place during the year.   It will be necessary to inform you of the cost when these occur.   Your contribution will be voluntary, but if we do not receive sufficient contributions to cover the cost, the event will be cancelled.


At the end of Key Stage 2 (P7) when the children are transferring to second level education, our school will follow the arrangements as laid down by the Education Authority.  If parents want advice about any aspect of the transfer process do not hesitate to speak to the class teacher or the principal.


Pastoral Care/Child Protection and Safe Guarding permeates all aspects of school life.

It is given the highest priority and encompasses a "suite" of policies all of which can be read in full from the school website.  These include:


  • Child Protection/Pastoral Care             

  • Code of Conduct

  • Anti-Bullying

  • Positive Behaviour

  • Road Safety

  • Intimate Care

  • RSE

  • Photographs

  • Drugs

  • Whistleblowing

  • Mobile Phones

  • Safe Handling/Use of Reasonable Force

  • E Safety

  • Attendance

  • Educational Visits

  • Administration of Medicines

  • Health and Safety

  • Managing Critical Incidents

  • Risk Assessment

Mrs Hanna (Principal) and Mrs Mc Erlean ( Vice Principal) are available to children, staff and parents to discuss any concerns that may arise.

Pupils can talk to their class teacher, Mrs M Mc Erlean the Designated Child Protection Officer or Mrs Catherine McFadden (nursery) or Mrs Hanna, Deputy Designated Officers.

Pastoral Care, Child Protection and Safe Guard issues are integrated into the teaching and learning in order to improve pupil self esteem, understanding, social skills and awareness.

The Board of Governors ensures that the school has a code of practice for the conduct of all staff members, teaching and non teaching.


Regular assessment is carried out to assist in the setting of whole school and individual targets and to evaluate pupil progress and the success of teaching strategies.

Assessment for learning takes place on a daily basis with the children being made more aware of

what the learning intentions are and what outcomes are expected.   Pupils are encouraged to be

involved actively in their learning and the assessment for learning. 


Each child has a Pupil Portfolio where samples of work, across the Curricular Skills of Communication and Using Mathematics are compiled for assessment purposes.


Records of each child’s attainment and samples of each child’s work are passed on to each successive teacher.

Written Annual Reports will be sent home to parents at the end of each school year and the results

of Year 7 pupils are forwarded to the Secondary Schools they will attend.


In line with legal requirements of the N. Ireland Education Reform Order our pupils will take part in 

the formal assessment at the end of Key Stage 1 (P4)and Key Stage 2 (P7).

P4, P5, P6 and P7 will take part in NRIT standardised assessments.


Pupils in Primary 1 – Primary 2 will be working on Foundation Stage of the N.I. Curriculum.

Pupils in Primary 3 – Primary 4 will be working on Key Stage 1 stage of the N.I. Curriculum.

Pupils in Primary 5 – Primary 7 on Key Stage 2.

The pupils will be taught all subjects and a reasonable balance of time will be apportioned to each area

of study.

The aim will be to ensure the appropriate programme of study and attainment targets are covered.


We, as teachers, will ensure that the needs of all pupils who may have special educational needs are addressed and that these pupils are given access to a broad and balanced education within the limit, expertise and resources of the school.   At each stage of the child’s Special Needs Programme parents will be fully informed.   The teachers will be supported by our Special Needs Co-ordinator, Mrs. J Mc Allister.   It may involve your child being withdrawn from the class and given tuition on a one to one basis or in a small group situation.   As parents your co-operation and home support will be invaluable.


Discipline is about relationships within a classroom and within a school.   The Board of Governors and staff of St. Patrick’s consider that good discipline is essential for the effective running of the school.

The school rules and standards of behaviour are explained to the children and are available

to parents.   The rules are based on the principles of common sense and courtesy and designed to

maintain a safe and pleasant environment for pupils and staff.

In our Discipline Policy we highlight and reward positive behaviour but where a child has acted inappropriately parents will be informed and the sanctions laid out in the School Discipline Policy will be set in place.   The co-operation and support of parents is very important in maintaining effective discipline in the school. 

Acceptance of admission to the school implies your acceptance of the school’s discipline policy and the rules of the school


The school’s Child Protection Policy is an integral part of our Pastoral Care provision.   The welfare of pupils is our paramount consideration; our Policy therefore is designed to protect from harm all the pupils in our care.

The school offers protection on two levels:

Immediate protection – creating a listening environment where children can share their concerns, with their class teacher, Mrs M Mc Erlean the designated Child Protection Officer or Mrs Hanna the deputy designated Child Protection Officer.

Long-term protection – where the children’s self-esteem and social skills are enhanced to help break the cycle of abusive behaviour.

The Board of Governors ensure that the school has, and follows, the Code of Practice for the conduct of all members of staff – teaching and non-teaching.



The school is completely opposed to bullying and will not tolerate it.   It is entirely contrary to the values and principles we work and live by.

All members of the school community have a right to work in a secure and caring environment.


If you feel your child is being bullied please contact the school immediately so that the matter can be dealt with.

If your child is involved in bullying your support will be sought in addressing the problem.

In this school we aim to:

• provide a supportive environment where the child can learn effectively

• help the pupil develop a sense of self-esteem and self control

• encourage the development of caring and responsible pupils

It is expected that parents will fully support the school to ensure fairness and good standards

for everyone.                                


In keeping with the ethos of the school for the development of the whole child there are

many additional experiences and activities provided by the staff or visiting coaching specialists.

These activities may take place on or off the school premises.

These activities may include (although activities vary from year to year):

 Hurling, Camogie, Soccer, Choir, Dance

Cycling Proficiency, ICT, Eco Schools, WAU Clubs and Literacy and Numeracy clubs.

Parents are responsible for transport arrangements of children after the club activity ends.


Commitment to the Catholic system of education does not imply a disregard for the religious and cultural traditions of other people in our community.

The Board of Governors and staff actively encourage meaningful contacts between our pupils and other schools, groups and cultures within both the local and the wider community.

St.Patrick’s has an established Shared Education Programme in place, which fosters good relationships both within and outside our own school.  

We have a co-ordinator for this programme and we have formed solid links with cross community organisations and other faith schools.

These experiences are invaluable for our pupils and assist the aims of the curriculum in developing qualities in our young people such as; tolerance, concern for others and respect.


Parents will be invited to take an active part in their child’s education and will be kept informed of school events/happenings by letter/email or Seesaw.   Each year parents will attend interviews with the class teacher.   They will be given an outline of the programme of study their child will be covering and a detailed account of their child’s progress.   They will be expected to attend parents’ meeting, preparation meetings and ceremonies for the Sacrament of First Communion, First Confession and Confirmation.

Parents are welcome to request a meeting with the Principal or Class Teacher if they have any problems.


Any parent/guardian who has a child enrolled, or is intending to enrol a child in the school, may obtain documents/policies from the Principal’s office on written request