Admissions Policy

This policy has been formulated by Portlaoise ETNS to assist parents in making an informed decision in relation to child enrolment and to comply with legislation and Department of Education and Skills circulars.

School details:

Name:    Portlaoise  Educate Together National School

Address:                     Summerhill,  Portlaoise,  Co. Laois

Telephone:                  057 8664823


The school day runs from 8:30am until 1.10pm for Infants and from 8.30am until 2.10pm for all other classes.

General Information:

This policy has been set out in accordance with the provisions of the Education Act 1998 and provides for equality of access and participation in the school for all children in our society whatever their social, religious, cultural and racial background and whether or not they have a disability or special educational need.


Portlaoise ETNS is under the patronage of Educate Together. Parents/Guardians are advised to familiarise themselves with the Educate Together ethos prior to enrolling their child in the school.


Ultimately, the school will cater for children from Junior infants to Sixth class. The school will have an initial intake of junior infants to second class only, with a phased intake in successive years, (subject to resources, accommodation, and other relevant management considerations) on the following basis –






It is a developing school and is co-educational and multi-denominational. Portlaoise ETNS is a national school and as such operates in accordance with the rules for national schools and is dependant on such grants and teachers’ resources as are provided by the DES. All school policies must have regard to the resources and funding provided.

Eligibility Criteria:

Under the Education Act 1998, a child may not be allowed to attend or be enrolled in a primary school before the 4th anniversary of his/her birth.   In Portlaoise  ETNS children must be 4 years old on or before June 1st of the year of admission into Junior Infant classes.

All places in mainstream classes are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.

In determining admissions the Manager shall take account of DES Regulations in relation to staffing, class size and class average. The Manager shall also have regard to issues such as physical space, multi-grade classes, and the presence of children with special educational and/or behavioural needs.





Admissions Procedures:


  1. Parents/Guardians wishing to apply for a place for their child must complete and return an application form. This form can be obtained by contacting the school office or may be downloaded from the school website. This application form requires the parent to give the school certain information regarding their child.


  1. On receipt of a completed application form a pre-enrolment number will be allocated to each applicant. If more than one application form is received on a particular day then these numbers are awarded in the order of post-date on the envelope. If the post date on the envelopes is the same then children will be put on the admissions list one after the other in alphabetical order of surnames.


  1. Each child will be placed on the list according to the pre-enrolment number. If parents have twins, triplets, etc. then the children will be put on the list one after the other in alphabetical order of the child’s first name.


  1. Two separate lists will be kept for each year, a Junior Infant and a non Junior Infant list. Children will be listed in order of pre-enrolment number.


  1. If a place is not offered during the school year for which a place is sought and parents wish their child’s name to be put on the waiting list for the following year (either for Junior Infants or for another class) they must inform the school by the 30th September of the year for which the place is sought. It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to make such a request in writing; otherwise the application will be removed from the school’s admissions list.


  1. No guarantees of places will be given or implied by pre-enrolment.


  1. Children will, as a rule, only be admitted into Junior Infant classes during the month of September. Children may be admitted to a Junior Infant class during the school year provided they are transferring from another school.


  1. Children will be offered places strictly by order of pre-enrolment number on the admissions list. Siblings are not given priority.


  1. Letters of offer will be sent out starting in November of the year prior to that for which the child is enrolled. Parents/Guardians must reply in writing to confirm an offered place within 14 days. Failure to respond within 14 days will result in the place being forfeited.


  1. Parents/Guardians of Junior Infants may defer the child’s place for one year, providing the child is under 6 by the first of September of the year in which she/he starts school. This means that the child will be placed on the list for the following year according to the original pre-enrolment number. Deferral does not guarantee a place the following year. Parents/Guardians of children for classes other than Junior Infants cannot defer a place.


  1. It is the sole responsibility of the parent to inform the school promptly of any change of address, telephone number or other relevant circumstances.


  1. On acceptance of a place the child’s birth certificate should be provided to the school, a copy will be taken, and the original sent back. The child’s PPSN number should also be provided.


Enrolment of children with Special Needs into Mainstream Classes:


Portlaoise ETNS endeavours at all times to practice the school policy of inclusion and welcomes applications from children with special needs. Such applications are subject to the first come first served principle and applicants with special needs will not be advantaged or disadvantaged over other children in terms of the priority afforded their application. In order to assist the school in establishing the educational and physical needs of the child relevant to his/her disability or special needs, and to profile the support services required, the school requests that the parent/guardian of the child:


  • Informs the school of any special needs as early as possible in the pre-enrolment/enrolment process
  • Ensures that copies of the child’s medical and/or psychological report(s) are provided to Portlaoise ETNS.


Where such a report is not available, a request should be made that the child would be assessed immediately. Following receipt of the report the Board will assess how the school can meet the needs specified therein. Where the Board deems that further resources are requires it will, prior to enrolment, request the DES and/or the HSE to provide the resources required to meet the needs of the child as outlined in the psychological and/or medical report.


The Principal may, in conjunction with the SENO or DES inspector, meet with the parents/guardians of the child to discuss the child’s needs and the school’s suitability or capability in meeting those needs.

Code of behaviour:

Children enrolled in Portlaoise ETNS are required to co-operate with the school’s Code of Behaviour and other policies on curriculum, organisation and management. Parents/ Guardians are responsible for ensuring that their children co-operate with these policies in an age appropriate way.

Appeals Procedure:

Parents/Guardians who are dissatisfied with an enrolment decision may appeal in writing to the Board. The letter of appeal must be addressed to the Manager stating the grounds of appeal and it should be lodged within 10 days of receiving the refusal.


Parents/Guardians who are unhappy with the outcome of the appeal may appeal to the DES on foot of Section 29 of the Education Act 1998 on the official form provided by the DES.



Additional Information:

Portlaoise ETNS endeavours to provide the highest standards of care for its pupils. In order to achieve this objective successfully it is vital that the school be informed of any relevant situation regarding health, bereavement, domestic circumstances etc. Any such information should be passed by the school principal and shall be treated in strictest confidence.