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28 Jun 2022

Seoda - a step towards inclusivity in St Joseph’s NS Templemore

As part of World Autism Awareness Month, the school was very proud to officially open their new classroom.

At the official opening of the Seoda were : Back Row: L:R;  Elaine Foley (Principal) Mary d'Estelle-Roe, Aisling Murray, Sinead Stone, Cillian Roche. Front Row:  Kevin MCarthy  James Fogarty, Jeremiah

At the official opening of the Seoda were : Back Row: L:R; Elaine Foley (Principal) Mary d'Estelle-Roe, Aisling Murray, Sinead Stone, Cillian Roche. Front Row: Kevin MCarthy James Fogarty, Jeremiah

In upholding the school’s ethos of holistic development and inclusivity for all children, 2021 saw the addition of a new special class at St. Joseph’s in Templemore.


‘Seoda’, meaning ‘jewel’ as Gaeilge, welcomed its first pupils at the beginning of this academic year. The new ASD class, with full enrolment of six pupils, caters for the educational needs and holistic development of children with autism.


Hard-working and diligent special needs assistants, Aisling and Sinéad, alongside Mr. Cillian Roche, have informed themselves of the best approaches and practices in ensuring accessibility of the curriculum for the pupils in Seoda.


As well as the core subjects of English, Math's etc. the daily schedules include routine movement breaks, gross and fine motor skills, and social skills. Art is a big hit and the walls around St. Joseph’s are adorned with splendid art and craftwork completed by the fantastic pupils.


As part of World Autism Awareness Month, the school was very proud to officially open their new classroom.


Rihanna, James, Kevin, Jeremiah, Aaron and Lauren were the undoubted stars of the ceremony as they were piped to their state-of-the-art new classroom, by their teacher Mr. Roche with SNA's Aisling, Sinéad, Biddy and secretary Anne.


Ms. Foley warmly welcomed everyone to this momentous day for St. Joseph's P.S. and the wider community. Inclusivity is at the heart of the school ethos and is embraced by staff and students alike.


Guest of honour, Mary d'Estelle Roe officially cut the ribbon and declared 'Seoda' open!


Mary recently published a book of poetry A Granny’s Journey Through the Pandemic - the proceeds of which are going directly to Seoda and Cairdeas in St. Colmcille’s. This book is on sale in the school as well as shops around the town.

Above:  Cillian Roche, Sr. Helen Kennedy, Elaine Foley (Principal), Sinead Stone, Aisling Murray, Mary d'Estelle-Roe, Canon Hayes.

Mary penned The Pieces of My Jigsaw, a very fitting poem especially for Seoda’s official opening ceremony.


Canon Hayes then blessed the new building to bring proceedings to a close.


The school extends sincere thanks to McHugh Glynn & Associates, Roadmaster, Mr. Roche and Ms. Corrigan for the construction, design and setting-up of the modular building. And to their kind and compassionate SNA's, Aisling and Sinéad; to their volunteer SNA, Biddy; they extend warm thanks for the work that they do with the children each and every day.

Also, to the Board of Management for their unwavering support and to the principal, Ms. Elaine Foley for planning and coordinating all aspects of the project.

Our classroom has a teaching space, an outer yard space and two fully equipped sensory rooms to enable access to the curriculum for the children.

We are delighted to be able to offer this educational facility to the people of Templemore and surrounding areas.

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