Here we showcase some of the exciting current projects, activities, developments and events currently relevant to the life of our school
- Our New Building
- Our Digital Learning Strategy
- Our Major Capital Works Project
- Nurture App within Teams
- “One Good School” Initiative
Our New Building Project
Following a five year consultation and approximately €3 million in upgrading works at St. Brendan’s, Minister for Education, Norma Foley announced the €20 million Major Capital Works refurbishment and rebuild of our school on the existing grounds at Inch, New Road, Killarney.
This is an extremely exciting development and work is already underway – This Summer, extensive surveys have been undertaken to determine the level of remedial works required. By November this year a series of drawings of a potential new school will be published. Our current target remains a Stage 1 Meeting with the Department of Education by February 2023.
Our Digital Journey …
To enhance, support and complement teaching, learning, assessment and reporting by deepening our use of technology in the classroom
Our school is committed in every way to ensuring that every student reaches his full potential. There are many initiatives we put in place on an ongoing basis to make sure that this happens. Our Digital Learning Plan is one of these initiatives. Over the last few years, we have been working towards ensuring that every teacher and every student can benefit fully from opportunities which enhance teaching, learning, assessment and reporting by deepening our use of technology in the classroom. We have invested heavily in our digital infrastructure. We have provided mobile devices to all our teachers and prioritised training to ensure that they are competent and confident in the use of technology as a tool for teaching. We have three computer rooms and 3 mobile trolleys (30 units in each). As the implementation of the Junior Cycle deepens and the new ways of teaching, learning, assessment and reporting progress, teacher digital training, peer training and training using Wriggle Connect Online Platform, the use of a new digital formative feedback – ‘Nurture’ and many other innovative digital tools continue to enhance, complement and support teaching, learning, assessment and reporting.
- Working with digital technology forms a part of each of the 8 Junior Cycle Key skills, therefore planning and using technology to build students’ digital skills forms a fundamental part of learning and assessment in all Irish schools.
- Our Junior Cycle is technology based, all students are encouraged to become independent learners, find/access information digitally, discern this information and learn how to use this information.
- With digital tools and devices that are available 24/7, students can continue to learn, collaborate, grow and dig deeper into their learning on their own terms. This doesn’t mean homework. This is a mindset for students that means that learning can take place anytime, anywhere and students can own it.
- Digital devices give them opportunities to learn about the things that interest them beyond the subject areas we teach and even beyond what it says they should learn in each year level.
- Using digital devices enables them to go further, deeper and extend the learning.
- Using technology effectively in school has shown to increase student engagement and learning outcomes by providing more opportunities for both teachers and students to personalise student learning.
We offer coding as a Short course to Junior Cycle, Microsoft Education in Transition Year and Leaving Certificate Computer Science.
Junior Cycle 8 Key skills
- Using digital technology to manage myself and my learning
- Using digital technology to access, manage and share content
- Working with others using digital technology
- Using digital technology to communicate
- Exploring and creating a variety of texts, including multi-modal texts
- Using digital technology to develop numeracy skill and understanding
- Being responsible, safe and ethical in using digital technology
- Stimulating creativity using digital technology
Digital Strategy for Schools to 2027 – 3 pillars of work gov.ie – Digital Strategy for Schools to 2027 (www.gov.ie)
Nurture App within Teams
To Navigate Digital Transformation & Establish Formative Practices for Long Term Success
98% of students who receive individual instruction perform better than those in traditional classroom settings (Bloom, 1984).
Before now, teachers had very little opportunity to engage with technology at the level we have seen over the last 24 months leading to positive changes towards more individualised instruction and reducing the inequity created through traditional teaching methods.
In addition to the pandemic, education systems have seen a shift towards more continuous and holistic assessment of students and their learning progress leading to an increase in teacher workload especially as they navigate towards formative teaching and learning strategies.
We are at present implementing Nurture in our school. A team of teachers are working on “one formative assessment with feedback” – per month.
There has been extensive research showing the importance of feedback on student achievement – and the link between assessment, feedback, and learning. Nurture formative feedback which also demands student engagement with the feedback received ensures that the student performs better overall.
Nurture also increases collaboration among teachers in subject departments where they can co-create assignments, lessons, assessment tasks or innovative teaching strategies all which lead to a higher probability of more innovative and effective use of technology, thereby enhancing the quality of the teaching and learning.
“One Good School” Initiative
A comprehensive and integrated approach to mental health promotion in schools requires initiatives and supports for young people, teachers, parents and school leadership teams.
“One Good School” is a key initiative led by Jigsaw Kerry – Young People’s Health in Mind. Schools play a vital role in promoting and supporting the mental health and wellbeing of young people and the many others within the school community. Our school provide a safe and supportive environment for building life-skills, resilience and a strong sense of connectedness.
Fostering healthy relationships among peers, school staff and parents is critical to a young person’s overall experience of school and their social, emotional and cognitive development. The wellbeing of teachers, school leadership and school staff is also considered and supported.
A key component of the success of “One Good School”, is a commitment to adopting a whole-school approach to promoting and supporting youth mental health and wellbeing. This starts with raising awareness about the initiative, connecting with the whole-school community- students, parents, teachers and leaders about what is taking place and keeping the community updated.
Self-care for parents & teachers, managing anxiety and exam stress for students, Peer Education Programme and supporting wellbeing in general are key examples with the “One Good School” initiative.