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Newsletter March 26th

Third Year Online Meeting   
On the evening of March 24th, there was an online meeting for all the third-year students and their parents. The purpose of the meeting was twofold. Firstly, they were given a final update on the assessment procedures and reporting on student's learning for the Junior Cycle 2021. Details of the school's formative and summative assessment plans were shared, and there was the opportunity for questions from the parents. They were informed that student certification would involve two elements: A State Certification of Completion of the Junior Cycle from the Department of Education and a school report detailing the student's learning achievements during their Junior Cycle programme. We wish all third-year students the best of luck with their studies and future assessments. On a lighter note, the second item on the agenda was Transition-Year. A presentation was given detailing the year's structure, the wide variety of modules available and how students could select their preferred modules. The meeting was very positive, and the students are looking forward to a very different kind of year.

Le Chéile day
In recent years Le Chéile has promoted the Pay it forward concept in schools to create a caring and serving community. The idea of generating random acts of kindness is undoubtedly central to the Dominican ethos. This year, the Le Chéile Day took place on March 26th with Unlocking and Love Thy Neighbour's as additional themes. At 10 am all classes watched a video produced by Le Chéile. The video was a celebration of togetherness during difficult times. Students were reminded to reach out for guidance on unlocking themselves from fear, loneliness and boredom. Each individual has a unique potential to unlock in the search for a brighter future filled with hope. Students were also encouraged to reach out safely to neighbours and friends who may be alone or struggling due to the difficulties caused by Covid 19. The celebration involved readings, poems on lockdown, songs and prayer for the sick in our school community and families.

Ember Leaders
As the Easter break nears, the Ember team are looking ahead to their final term as school leaders. Due to lockdown, the annual Intercultural Day did not take place, so the Ember Leaders will be busy preparing for this in the final weeks of school. Intercultural Day embraces diversity and will feature displays from the many different cultures represented in our school.
The Ember Leaders are also preparing for their graduation ceremony, which will take place in May. The team has been tasked with creating a video that will introduce their team and the great work they have completed throughout the year, shown to 12 other schools involved in the Ember programme. We hope their final acts as Ember Leaders will be a great success as the year comes to a close.

Leaving Cert Exams
The sixth-year students have now enjoyed a month of in-school teaching and learning. Much work during this time has been spent preparing for their Leaving Cert Oral Exams and Music Practicals, which will take place over the Easter holidays. Huge thanks to the sixth-year teachers for all this preparatory work and all the assistance they will give over the holidays. We wish all our sixth-year students the very best of luck.

Return to School
All Junior and Transition Year students are now due to return to school on Monday, April 12th. The Year Heads and Tutors eagerly await their return and are currently getting all the students' hubs ready to welcome them back. Students can look forward to some brightly decorated corridors featuring their favourite movie quotes and song lyrics. These were specially chosen to inspire and motivate the students as they begin the school year's final term. Parents are reminded that the HSE Return to School form must be completed for all students before their return after the Easter break.

Incoming First Years
There are two significant dates for the diaries of our incoming first-years. The first date is April 28th. On this date, there will be an online forum for the students to sample the different subjects that are available in DCW. Hopefully, this will be a fun but informative event that will help the students decide what curriculum subjects they would like to choose for their Junior Cycle. The second important date is May 4th. There will be an online meeting once again for all the incoming first-years and their parents. A detailed overview of life in DCW will be presented, and time allocated for a question and answer session. We look forward to welcoming the class of 2021 to DCW in September.

First-Year Science
This week astronomy was the focus of the first-year science students. They were set the task of designing and making a solar system model using items they had available to them. Some of the students were very creative with their raw materials. For the planets, one student even baked buns and painted the icing. Other students put together PowerPoint presentations, and others designed their system outside chalking the planetary ring systems. Well done to all involved in creating such imaginative projects!

Construction Works
Both the school lift and the outdoor classroom are nearing completion and will be ready for use when all return to school on March 12th. Both structures will be of enormous benefit to the school community, making provision for those with additional physical needs and allowing for an extra safe classroom environment. Thank you to the school caretaker, Mr Stapleton, who has worked tirelessly on the outdoor facility.