Belvedere College - Subject Department

Parents’ Association

Parents’ Association

Parents and guardians play a key role in the life of the community in the College and we welcome volunteers from the parent body to partake in the many activities which take place during the academic year. Parents from all years are represented on the Belvedere College Parents' Association however all volunteers are welcome in all areas via the Parents' Association.

Should you wish to contact the Parents' Association please send an email to our secretary Esther Hoban on pasecretary@belvederecollege.ie.

Resources:

1.) PA Committee Members 2019-20

2.) PA Constitution

2019-20 Events
PA Present New Student Council Ties to Council Members

The Parents’ Association were delighted to present the Student Council with the new Student Council ties.

The PA look forward to increased collaboration with the Student Council and supporting them in any way we can to improve the student experience in Belvedere College S.J.

We have previously given funding to student groups and will continue to do so. In future, these requests will come through the Student Council. The PA will also ask the Student Council for their input on PA initiatives and on occasion ask that they survey pupils to ensure the idea is something the student body actually want and will support. The PA want to actively encourage this close collaboration with the Student Council to ensure that PA funding is spent on initiatives that have the support of the entire student body.

In Belvedere House representing some of the new Student Council - Barra McCluskey, Marzuq Lawal, Charlie McHugh, Fiach Fullam, Stephan Farrell, Vincent Lin, Garret Molloy, Ben Connelly, Joseph MacLochlainn, Seán Brady and Oisin Keating Mac Dermott with Gerry Foley, Tom Doyle, Karin Ennis and Claire Burke Vice Chair and PA rep for the Student Council.

PA Host a Talk on Positive Mental Health for Teenagers

Breda Broderick -Elements Rep, Professor John Sharry & Karin Ennis- PA Chair

The Parents’ Assoication hosted their second talk of the year on Tuesday, the 4rd of March. Professor John Sharry presented the topic ‘Positive Mental Health for Teenagers’.

Professor Sharry is a social worker and child & family psychotherapist with over 27 years of experience working with individuals, families and organisations.

There was large attendance at this event with many parents keen to hear from Professor Sharry. He spoke candidly about teenage years being very difficult times for our young men. Teenagers are under a huge amount of stress and it is important to remember as parents not to take it personally!

What can we as parents do to help foster positive mental health for our sons?

The primary function as a parent is to stay connected with our teenager, chat to them, try and build a connection, teach responsibility and empower them.

He spoke about building an ‘emotional piggy bank’ with deposits and withdrawals. We need to manage conflict well and remember to press the pause button and think before we react. As parents the largest element that we can control is to build a warm relationship with our children, but we also need to be a person of authority in their lives.

The talk was informal with plenty of participation from the audience. There were lots of examples and anecdotes which made for a most enjoyable evening. We hope to have another talk by John again in the future as the level of positive feedback from the evening was overwhelming. Many thanks to everyone for attending and to Breda Broderick and Annmarie Carmody for organising the event.

Should you like further information this can be found John Sharry’s web site: www.solutiontalk.ie

Click below to watch a short video from Dr Cliodhna O Connor on findings from the My World survey- Improving youth mental health in Ireland.

We have also compiled a list of web sites and contact numbers where you can access information on other mental health services in Ireland.

www.healthpromotion.ie

www.aware.ie

www.mentalhealthireland.ie

www.yourmentalhealth.ie

National Office for Suicide prevention www.spunout.ie

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services CAMHS phone 1800 111 888

www2.hse.ie/wellbeing/mental-health/child-and-adolescent-mental-health-services/accessing.html

Samaritans phone (free call) 116 123

Childline 1800 66 66 66, free text Talk to 50101

New Crisis Text line Ireland 086 1800 280. Open 24:7

Click HERE to access the Amber Flag poster promoting positive mental health was displayed around the College directing students to the many supports that are available both within and outside school.

PA Host a Talk on Drug Awareness

Speaker: Garda Greg McGovern, Juvenile Liaison Officer, Store Street, Garda Station

The Parents’ Association (PA) hosted their first talk of 2020 on Wednesday, 5th February. Garda Greg McGovern very kindly gave of his time to present the talk.

There was great attendance from Elements all the way up to Rhetoric parents. Greg started off by giving a presentation detailing the various types of drugs, along with their makeup, origins, side effects and the physical signs of using them.

There was a huge amount of information on the night with the overriding theme being the importance of communication between parents and their sons, which includes checking in with them regularly to make sure that they are okay. Greg also spoke about the need for positive role models in our children’s lives, be it a sports coach, parent, relation, teacher, etc. There were many questions on the night with frank and open discussion.

Should you require further information, help can be accessed at:

 An Garda Síochána Drugs Awareness fact sheet. https://www.garda.ie/en/Crime-Prevention/Drug-Awareness-Advice-to-Parents-Guardians.pdf
www.spunout.ie (see health)
 HSE - “Alcohol and Drugs: A Parent’s Guide”
 HRB National Drugs Library on Health Research Board website. www.hrb.ie
 Page 27 of the Student Journal (parents are asked at the beginning of the school year to read and sign the code of behaviour)
Belvedere Parents Handbook specifically page 35 to 36
SPHE modules on the Belvedere website. Topics covered include alcohol and substance abuse
Belvedere Parent Resources – Alcohol and Drugs: A Parent’s Guide
www.askaboutalcohol.ie
 Crosscare Drug & Alcohol Programme (DAP) 01 8360 911 www.crosscare.ie/drug-alcohol-counselling
 Teenline 1800 833 634 www.teenline.ie
 Childline 1800 666 666 www.childline.ie
 Yourmentalhealth www.yourmentalhealth.ie
 Parent Line 1890 927 277 www.parentline.ie
 No Name Club www.nonameclub.ie

Thank you to everyone involved in organising this event and to all for attending. A special word of thanks to Garda McGovern.

PA Unveil New Piano 5th December 2019

There was quite a bit of excitement in the lead up to Christmas when the Parents’ Association donated a piano to the College. On numerous occasions we have all walked through the foyer to the sounds of music reverberating throughout the school. With its history so entwined with the arts we thought it a fitting presentation and a lovely opportunity for anyone passing the piano to give an impromptu performance. For this very reason the piano has been placed in the foyer where it is accessible to every single student and member of staff who might be inclined to belt out a tune as they are passing. In fact there has even been a few random singalongs as well as some hidden talents discovered! It is a wonderful way for the students to come together and unwind while playing the piano.

Here is a video of our students playing Bohemian Rhapsody on the day the piano was set up in the foyer.

The accompanying photograph shows Chairperson of the Parents’ Association, Karin Ennis making the presentation along with Fr Paddy Greene, Deputy Headmaster Tom Doyle, Daniel Dunne and Aisling Bridgeman from the Music Department, Esther Hoban, PA Secretary and Claire Burke, Vice Chair with music students from the College.

We would like to thank Fiona O’ Byrne for all her work and research into procuring the piano.

Elements Parents Social Evening
Elements Parents Social Evening with parents, teachers and members of this year’s PA including Karin Ennis, PA Chair 2019/2020
                

Weatherwise, Monday 14th of October was a horrible day, it seemed to rain incessantly. However, at 6pm the rain had stopped and by 7pm the parents of Elements students made their way to the Ref for the Social Evening.

Upon checking in, parents were greeted with a cup of tea, coffee or a glass of wine!

It was lovely to watch as parents mingled and spoke to one another; making new friendships, rekindling old ones and swapping stories and anecdotes about their sons first weeks in Belvedere College - relieved to hear that their sons were getting on well and settling into school. Laughter abounded as parents learned that their sons weren’t the only ones to have misplaced a jumper, a book or a pair of shoes! Parents passed on all sorts of information to each other on this wonderful informal night.

A special word of thanks to Paul Bryce, Deputy Principal and Karin Ennis, Chairperson of the Parents’ Association who both spoke on the evening and to Headmaster Gerry Foley for welcoming all on the night.

Every class should by now have set up a WhatsApp group for each of the six year groups: Aylmer, Finlay, Kenney, Loyola, Scully and Xavier. This is a helpful way for parents to share information with each other.

We were delighted by the large attendance on the night. Thank you to everyone who volunteered their help. It was a great evening had by all.

-PA Committee 2019-2020

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