Reopening Post Primary Schools | 2021

Until the  vaccine is rolled out for COVID-19, each community is going to need support in charting a path to safely and responsibly reopen schools crucial to the well-being and economic vitality of our communities. 

Your government will be with you every step of the way.


Announced 25th August, 2023


R 1


30th August at from 2pm

Reply date: 5th September by 3.00pm


Available place facility opens.  Round 1 offers available online  on  also issued by email and sms text. 

Applicants who have not received an offer will receive a 'Statement of Application' email.

R 2

Round 2 Opens 11th September at 2pm

Round 2

Offers closes 13th September

at 3pm

R 3

Round 3 Opens

19th September

Round 3

Closes 21 September

at 3 pm

R 4

Round 4 Opens

26th September

at 10 am

Round 4

closes at 28th September

at 3pm

R 5

Round 5

Opens 3rd October

at 10 am


Round 5

Offers closes

5th October at 3pm.

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COVID-19 Full Resources | Time Stamped

A COVID-19 Response Plan is designed to support the staff and Board of Management (BOM)/Education Training Board (ETB) in putting measures in place that aim to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the school environment.

The COVID-19 Response Plan details the policies and practices necessary for a school to meet the government’s Return to Work Safely Protocol.

The Department of Education plan for school reopening that will aim to prevent the introduction and spread of COVID-19 in the school environment.


Supporting Services and Agencies

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Hygiene and cleaning in schools

The Department of Education has provide additional funding to schools to support the enhanced cleaning required to minimise the risks of COVID-19.

Details of the funding supports will be provided to schools by way of circular and will be updated as required. 


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Staff Duties

Staff have a statutory obligation to take reasonable care for their own health and safety and that of their colleagues and other parties.

The cooperation and assistance of all staff is essential to reduce the risk of spread of COVID-19 and to protect health and safety as far as possible within the school. All staff have a key role to play.


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Minister for Education

Child Protection:

National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS)

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    Control Measures

    One of the key messages to manage the risks of COVID-19 is to do everything practical to avoid the introduction of COVID-19 into the school.  

    If an infection is not introduced it cannot be spread.

    The risk of spreading the infection once introduced exists in all interpersonal interactions;

    • student to student
    • teacher to teacher 
    • teacher to student

    and must be managed in all settings. 

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    School Covid-19 Policy

    A COVID-19 policy outlines the commitment of the school to implement the plan and help prevent the spread of the virus.

    The policy will be signed and dated by the chairperson and principal of the Board of Management (BOM) or Education and Training Board (ETB) and brought to the attention of the staff, students, parents and others.


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    Wellbeing Advice and Resources during Covid-19

    The Department of Education NEPS psychologists have developed the following advice and resources for parents, students and school staff to support them during COVID-19.




    Employee Assistance & Wellbeing Programme

    The department recognises the need for school staff wellbeing and collective self-care. Support for school staff wellbeing will be provided by Department Support Services including the PDST and CSL, as well as by the HSE’s Health Promotion Team.


    An Occupational Health Strategy is in place as a supportive resource for staff in schools. The aim of the Occupational Health Strategy is to promote the health and wellbeing of employees in the workplace, with a strong focus on prevention.


    The Occupational Health Strategy comprises the Employee Assistance Service and the Occupational Health Service. The Employee Assistance Service (EAS) is provided by Spectrum.Life under the logo of ‘Wellbeing Together: Folláinne Le Chéile’.

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    Safety First

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    Planning & Preparing for Safe Return to Post Primary

    The Board of Management/Education Training Board aims to facilitate the resumption of school-based teaching and learning and the return to the workplace of staff.

    Dealing with a Suspected Case of COVID-19

    Staff or pupils should not attend school if displaying any symptoms of COVID-19. The following outlines how a school should deal with a suspected case that may arise in a school setting.

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