In early 2014, two members of the parent body approached a number of other parents asking if they would be interested in setting up a Parents’ Council and everyone thought it would be a fantastic addition to the school. They then approached the school for authorisation, which in turn passed it by the Board of Management and in April of that year the very first Parents’ Council met.
At the time our budget was very limited and we were lucky that the school gave us some money so that we could pay for our first affiliation with the National Parents’ Council, insurance and still have a little left over for our initial events. In those early days, most of our supplies were from our own houses, but as time went on and we had the opportunity to fundraise, we built up a store of items that could be used across all future events. Since the very beginning we are lucky to build a fantastic working relationship with the wider Community, as well as the Development Association in Boher, and can draw on their expertise and kindness if needed and vice versa.
2014 was a year of firsts for both the school and ourselves, and in that year we hosted the first ever 6th Class Graduation, which involved a sub group of Council members working with the class for a few hours a week and ended with a Mass in Boher Church and subsequent celebration in the Boher Community Centre. This has become an annual tradition that each 6th Class group looks forward to. The ceremony itself has a dual purpose; it not only marks the beginning of new adventures to come in the children’s lives, but more importantly, it celebrates each of them and their transition though the School. It also had the unintentional benefit of adding focus to the children at the end of their time in National school, which in turn makes the life of their teacher easier!
From our first meeting we had one agenda in mind – to make the school lives of the children as fun and as memorable as we possibly could, while at the same time helping the school and the parent body where possible. In order to do this, we host fundraising events during the year, such as a Halloween disco, a Bag Pack on New Year’s Eve, a Table Quiz around Easter each year and we also have a Church Gate collection on the Bank Holiday weekend in June outside both Murroe and Boher Churches. These events help the school reduce the cost of swimming lessons (1st to 6th Class), provide a book rental scheme (1st to 6th Class) and also help to fund our own events throughout the year. It’s not all about money though! Each year we are lucky to have Santa and the Easter Bunny visit the school and we also host bi-annual events, which are, a Family Fun Walk/Run and a Cinema trip to the Odeon. We also host tea/coffee events for the parents and children who make their First Holy Communion, for the 6th Class Graduation and also when you bring your children for their introduction to our school and their new teacher, we host tea/coffee here in the school hall so you get a chance to relax and meet each other properly. If you have younger children don’t worry, bring them along, because there is an area of the hall set aside for them to play safely away from the hot liquids.
Written by Sinead Moore
Chairperson of Parents Council 2017-2018