Ursuline Secondary School

Additional Educational Needs

The Ursuline is an inclusive school and our aim is to ensure that the needs of all students are catered for in a caring way and that every student is enabled to fulfil their potential socially by taking an active part in the life of the school community.

We have students with all levels, abilities and needs and we are equipped with a growing Additional Eduational Needs (AEN) Department that provides students who are experiencing learning difficulties with the vital support needed to achieve their potential. In all cases we aim to integrate and include all students in their education. We have a very supportive staff and work closely with all departments within the school to ensure it is a whole school approach.

Siobhan Hackett and Lucy Spillane coordinate the AEN Department and liaise closely with parents to establish the needs of individual incoming students. Students with Additional Needs may receive extra help in a number of different ways depending on the needs of the individual student such as SNA support, one to one tuition, small group tuition and team teaching to support the student within the classroom. Then together students, parents and teachers work hand in hand to formulate support plans suitable to their daughter’s needs.

In the Ursuline we do not arrange classes or students according to ability, instead all our classes are of mixed ability. In the March of 6th class all students are screened using standardised assessments and the purpose of this is solely to ensure that anyone who is in need of learning support does not slip through the net and gets the support they need.

Students with an Irish exemption will get support when Irish is scheduled on their timetable. We do not operate using a withdrawal system, as we do not want the girls to miss other classes in the week. Instead, we are privileged here in the Ursuline to offer two modern foreign languages. So, in first year, students who do not have an Irish exemption but need to avail of support choose French and avail of support during German time. So, this means they would not need to buy German books but would avail of support at that time as this is when the principal timetables support. The students are assigned to the teacher that best suits their needs with teachers specialising in numeracy, literacy, study, life skills and organisational skills such as supporting students with locker organisation, colour coding timetables and labelling folders so that the whole transition is as seamless as possible.

Interventions draw on evidence-informed practice and the professional knowledge and experience of teachers. The interventions reflect the priority learning needs of our students, as well as building on their strengths, needs and interests. This is supported by typing intervention programmes, vocabulary enhancement programmes, individual and group reading programmes, comprehension strategy development and a public speaking programme to build on their confidence and abilities for presenting for CBA’s. The period of intervention recommended to students is dependent on the nature and extent of their need and the duration of provision is reviewed regularly. At all times we try to use a multi-sensory approach like demonstrations, station teaching, visuals, games, You Tube, Think, Pair, Share, placemat activities and graphic organisers in order to ensure we are best addressing their various learning styles, strengths and needs.

Each year the AEN department applies for reasonable accommodations for 3rd and 6th year for their State Examinations. This is where your daughter may receive assistance accessing their exams. The AEN team carry out in-school testing for this.


Aug 21
School Opens - Staff Meetings
Aug 22
Sixth Year Students Return
Aug 26
Third Year Students Return
Aug 28
First Year Students Return
Templemore Road,
Eircode: E41ET35.
0504 22147
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