Enrolment Policy


The policy was prepared by representatives of the Board of Management, Parents and Staff and subsequently approved by the Board of Management.

The enrolment policy  of  St. Marnock’s N.S. is set out in accordance with the provisions of the Education Act 1998 and the Board of Management trusts that by doing so, parents will be assisted in relation to enrolment matters and that furthermore, the Chairperson of the Board of Management and the Principal Teacher will be happy to clarify any further matters arising from this policy.

 St. Marnock’s N.S. is a Catholic Primary Co-educational School under the patronage of the Roman Catholic Bishop of Dublin catering for all classes from Junior Infants to sixth class inclusive.

 As a Roman Catholic school, the school aims at promoting the full and harmonious development of all aspects of the pupil: intellectual, physical, cultural, moral and spiritual, including a living relationship with God and other people. The school models and promotes a philosophy of life inspired by a belief in God and in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Catholic school provides religious education for the pupils in accordance with the doctrines, practices and tradition of the Roman Catholic Church and promotes the formation of the pupils in the Catholic faith.

 The academic staff comprises the Principal, Mainstream Teachers, Learning Support Teachers, Resource Teachers, English Language Support Teacher and Speech and Language Teacher.

 The school is funded by and depends on grants and teacher resources provided by the Department of Education and Skills ( DES ) and parent subscriptions  and  operates within the regulations laid down from time to time by the DES.

 The school follows the curriculum programme prescribed by the DES and supports the principles of:

  • equality of access and participation in the school
  • respect for the diversity of values, beliefs, traditions, language and ways of life of families
  • inclusiveness, particularly with reference to the enrolment of children with a disability or other special educational need
  • parental choice in relation to enrolment subject to parish enrolment policy

 The Board of Management may limit the number of classes formed in Junior Infants in any given year in order to maintain a pupil population consistent with the prevailing number of classes and staff in the school.

 The Board of Management may place restrictions on the maximum number of children in each separate classroom depending on :

  • Number of available classrooms
  • Size of available space in classrooms.
  • Educational needs of children of a particular age.
  • Multi-grade classes
  • Presence of children with special educational/behavioural needs.
  • DES directives regarding class size.

Children enrolled in St. Marnock’s School are required to co-operate and support the school’s Code of Behaviour and Discipline and parents are required to sign such an undertaking.


Parish Enrolment

For the purpose of enrolling pupils in St. Helen’s J.N.S., St. Helen’s S.N.S. and St. Marnock’s N.S., the three Boards of Management and the parish authorities have agreed that the proper organisation of primary education in Portmarnock is best served by the division of the parish into two catchment areas.

Portmarnock parish primary schools operate a common enrolment policy. The Boards of Management of St. Marnock’s and St. Helen’s Schools exchange information in relation to applications in order to verify pupil enrolment which determines the organisation of classes and the appointment of teachers. 

While respecting the principle of parental choice of school, (Section 15 (2) (d) of the Education Act (1998) the Boards of Management believe that it is in the best interests of pupils to attend their designated school. 

 Catchment Boundaries: 

The St. Marnock’s catchment area to include Beach Park, Burrow Court, Carrickhill Heights, Woodlands, Pine Court, Ardilaun, Lower Carrickhill, Carrick Court, Strand Road South of Burrow Court, The Dunes, Saint Anne’s Square, Strandmill, Station Road, Drumnigh and Old Portmarnock south of the railway bridge located beside Hazelwood garage on Drumnigh Road.

 The St. Helen’s catchment area to include Strand Road north of Burrow Court, Upper Carrickhill, Martello      Estate, Hill Court, Dal Riada, Torcaill, Carrickhill Road north of Carrickhill Heights, Blackwood Lane and the back road leading to Old Portmarnock north of the railway bridge located beside Hazelwood garage.

All enrolments in Parish schools will be made in accordance with the agreed policy except as follows:-

(a) In the case of parents who currently have a child attending a school outside their local catchment area, it will be open to those parents to continue to send their child to his/her present school or to enrol the child in their local school, subject to availability of space.

(b) If there is no space for their child in their local school, the child may be enrolled in a parish school outside their local catchment area.

(c) In the case of (b) the parents may subsequently transfer a child back to their local school subject to the availability of space.

(d) In the case of (b) the parents may subsequently choose to enrol younger children in the school of the first child or in their local school. 

(e) The brothers and sisters of children enrolled in a special class ( non mainstream ) may enrol in the school in which the special class is located. 

 In matters of enrolment it is emphasised that all parents have the right to appeal to the Board of Management.


Enrolment Procedure/Requirements

Parents wishing to enrol children in St. Marnock’s School are requested to attend the school for the purpose of completing an Enrolment Application Form.

In respect of Junior Infants specific dates are set aside for registration. These dates are communicated to the wider community through the school website, by special church announcement and by circular letters and text messages issued to the parents of pupils attending the school.

In the case of Catholic children, an original Baptismal Certificate is required – for all others an original Birth/Adoption Certificate is required. A utility bill ( to establish address ) must also be supplied.

A child must have reached the age of four years on or before the 31st August of the year he/she starts school.

Pupils wishing to transfer from other schools are enrolled subject to the school’s enrolment policy, local agreements with other schools and available accommodation. Pupils should transfer at the beginning of an academic term unless they become domiciled in St. Marnock’s catchment area after an academic term has begun.

Enrolment in Mainstream classes

If there are more applicants than places available, priority will be given to applicants as follows:-

  1. Catholic children who reside in St. Marnock’s School catchment area and who have a brother or sister currently attending St. Marnock’s School.
  2. Catholic children who reside in St. Marnock’s School catchment area who do not have a brother or sister currently attending St. Marnock’s School.
  3. Children who are not Catholic who reside in St. Marnock’s School catchment area and who have a brother or sister currently attending St. Marnock’s School.
  4. Children, where one of the parents is currently a member of the staff of St. Marnock’s School.
  5. Catholic children from St. Helen’s catchment area who cannot be accommodated in their local school.
  6. Catholic children residing outside of the parish of Portmarnock who do not have a Catholic school in their parish.
  7. Children who are not Catholic who reside in St. Marnock’s catchment area.
  8. Children who are not Catholic who reside in St. Helen’s catchment area who cannot be accommodated in their local school.
  9. Children who reside outside St. Marnock’s catchment area excluding those who reside in St. Helen’s catchment area.


In the event that the number of applicants in any criterion exceeds the number of available school places the following shall apply:

(i) When a criterion has been reached for which there are insufficient places available, the applicants in that  particular criterion will be listed in the order of age.

(ii) A place will initially be offered to the eldest and then the next eldest etc until all places have been filled. Any remaining applicants will be allocated a place on the waiting list in the order in which they are listed.


(iii) Applicants in the next criterion will, at that stage, be listed in the order of age in order to determine their place on the waiting list below those already on the waiting list. Subsequently the same procedure will apply to the next criterion. This process will continue until all applicants have been processed.



Enrolment of Children with Special Needs in Mainstream classes


 When enrolling a child with special needs parents will be required to provide up-to-date medical and/or psychological and/or other relevant reports to establish the educational and training needs of the child in relation to his/her special needs and to profile the support services required to meet those needs.

Children with special needs will be resourced in accordance with the level of resources provided by the DES.  These resources may include, for example, access to the provision of any, or a combination of the following: Visiting Teacher service, Resource Teacher, Special Needs Assistant, specialised equipment or furniture or other. Notwithstanding the availability of such resources, parents of children who are dissatisfied  with the level of educational provision in St. Marnock’s School are advised to consider a special school which is designed and resourced to specifically cater for the needs of children with special educational needs.

 The school reserves the right to refuse enrolment to any pupil in exceptional cases. Such an exceptional case could arise where either:

  • The pupil has special needs such that, even with additional resources available from the Department of Education and Skills, the school cannot meet such needs and/or provide the pupil with an appropriate education or
  • In the opinion of the Board of Management, the pupil poses an unacceptable risk to other pupils, to school staff or to school property. 

Enrolment of Children in the Speech & Language Class

See Enrolment & Admissions Policy for Speech & Language Class 





Approved by Board of Management : _____________________ 


 Chairperson : __________________________________


Review each November