11 April, 2020

Dear parents, students and colleagues.

Though not unexpected, yesterday’s announcement regarding the postponement of the Leaving Certificate exams and new arrangements for the Junior Cycle, is nonetheless momentous for our students, particularly our sixth years. We are thinking of them and willing them our encouragement and support. It is essential now that you take a break, take a breath. Allow yourselves time to comprehend the significance of this decision, and its impact on you. I encourage parents to support and listen to your child during this time as each person will take the news differently.

The decision to defer the Leaving Certificate to ‘late July or early August’ will no doubt provoke a lot of debate on the airwaves, in all media, and it may be difficult to filter out this ‘chatter’, but I encourage our students to ignore the speculation if you can and instead take comfort in the fact that this imposition on you, this inconvenience, is in the interest of the greater good; you are contributing to the national effort to save lives. I am attaching the statement from Minister Mc Hugh.

As this season of Lent draws to a conclusion, a season which began in Crescent with the celebration of Mass on Ash Wednesday, before being interrupted in the most dramatic of ways by the national school closures at 6pm on 12 March, our community, like so many others in Ireland and across the world has been rocked by the Covid-19 pandemic and the efforts to combat it. I acknowledge here again the ongoing work of students and teachers by cooperating in positive and productive ways in the continuity of teaching and learning.

Schools will not reopen ‘until further notice’ and certainly not before 5 May; the board, senior management and teachers, year heads, etc. are making arrangements for our final term. A lot of normal final term events will now be under review, including our graduation ceremony, and the TY Achill trip. No decision has been made yet with regard to these, and at all times we will be advised by the relevant authorities and be bound by any national arrangements. The health and wellbeing of our students, teachers and their families will be at the heart of our decisions.

Early in term 3 we will move to refund payments for supervised study and the Finance subcommittee will meet soon to review ways in which Crescent can be cognisant of the financial implications of this crisis for so many families.

I wish you and your families a very Happy Easter and look forward to welcoming all our students back just as soon as the government allows schools to reopen. In n the meantime, I encourage all to remain connected to Crescent during this period of isolation.

God Bless,
Karin Fleming