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Enrolment, Promotion and Transfer of Pupils

Enrolment, Promotion and Transfer of Pupils

Definition of Valid Enrolment

The procedures and practices governing the enrolment of pupils in national schools and the determination that an enrolment is valid are contained in the Rules for National Schools and in a number of Department of Education and Skills Circulars. In the circular which is issued to schools each year entitled Staffing Arrangements for National Schools the Department of Education and Skills refers to a number of rules as summarised below:

  • Rule 64(1) states that a child must be at least four years of age before s/he may be enrolled in a national school.
  • Rule 64(2) states that a pupil must be taken off the roll book if s/he transfers to another school, if s/he ceases to attend the school, and if s/he has been absent for 15 consecutive school days.
  • Rule 65(4) states that enrolments which are made for the purpose of creating or retaining a teaching post or determining grants shall be disallowed if these enrolments are obtained by (a) transfer, removal or attendance of a child from another school or (b) attendance of pupils under 6 years of age for periods of little or no educational value.
  • Rule 65(5) states that if the Minister is satisfied that Rule 65(4) (which relates to the canvassing of pupils) has been infringed by a teacher or any member of a board of management, the board and/or teacher will be deemed to be in direct contravention of the Rules for National Schools and will be dealt with as the Minister may determine.
  • Rule 88(7) states that where certain pupils are regularly but temporarily enrolled in any school, the enrolment of such pupils shall not be reckoned for the purpose of the recognition of a teacher.

Promotion and Retention of Pupils within the Primary School

The Ages for Learning
Department of Education Circular 27/'85 sets down guidelines for the promotion of children from infants to first class based on ages of children.

This Circular states:

The Minister for Education wishes to announce that, following consideration of submissions received in response to the document The Ages for Learning, certain revisions have been made to Rule 64 of the Rules for National Schools.

Section (7) of that Rule now reads:

7. (i) As a rule a pupil should not be retained in an infants' class beyond 30 June next following the date on which s/he has reached the age of six and a half years.

(ii) Normally, a pupil should not be admitted to first standard unless s/he has reached the age of six years by 1 September of the school year in which s/he is enrolled in that class.

The use of the word 'normally' in the new section 7(ii) of the Rule is intended to allow for a very small number of exceptional cases where the school, in consultation with the parents, considers it to be in the child's interests to be promoted through the system at a rate other than the norm.

Retention and Promotion Practice in Schools