Enrolment Policy

St Patrick’s College Cavan
Enrolment/Admissions Policy

St Patrick’s College, Cavan is a Catholic voluntary secondary school for boys only. It is under the Trusteeship of the Bishop and the Diocese of Kilmore. It was the stated intention of Bishop Nicholas Conaty, the founder of St Patrick’s College in 1874, that it would be a school ‘where learning and religion may go hand in hand and health and strength of body make equal progress with the culture of the mind.’ Over the years the College has developed a strong educational ethos and tradition, which emphasises the importance of the spiritual, the intellectual, the physical and the personal and social development of each individual student. 

 This educational tradition has been continued and enriched over the years by the College Trustees and Staff who have responded to the changing needs of the Church and of society. This rich tradition forms the basis of the educational philosophy of St Patrick’s College.  

 School Details  

Name: St. Patrick’s College  

Address Cullies: Cavan Town  

Telephone: 049 4361888 Fax 049 4361858  

Web Site: www.stpatscavan.ie 

 The school is managed by a Board of Management and is funded by the Department of Education and Science. It operates within the regulations and guidelines laid down by the Department. The school has a Parents’ Council and a Students’ Council.  

 The financial and teaching resources of the school are provided for, by a combination of Department of Education and Skills grants, teacher allocations, voluntary subscriptions, contributions and fund-raising.  

 Mission Statement 
St. Patrick’s College has a strong tradition of promoting an understanding and appreciation of our Catholic heritage. It is a school where Gospel values are central to all aspects of school life, a school which cares for the faith and personal development of each student and reaches out to the wider Christian community. All school activities and developments are assessed by this objective. The school is committed to the promotion of the educational development and fulfilment of the educational needs of all our pupils in a secure environment. There is a pursuit of excellence in individual achievement while nurturing a growth in responsibility that will prepare pupils for their role in family and society. The school spirit is in accordance with our Catholic ethos, in which there is mutual support and respect among all groups involved in the school. St. Patrick’s College promotes high standards of teaching and learning through the professional development of dedicated teachers. The College strives to provide a rich and diverse curriculum catering for the needs of each individual student. It strives for excellence in areas of creative arts and sport, social concern and spiritual values, and students are encouraged and challenged to realise their full potential as human beings.  

 Enrolment Policy 
All applications for admission/enrolment will be dealt with in accordance with this policy. Decisions in relation to enrolment are made by the Principal, acting on behalf of Board of Management in accordance with school policy. In all cases the regulations of the Department of Education and Science will be followed: 


  1. The applicant must have reached 12 years of age on 1st January in the calendar year following his entry into First Year. 
  2. The applicant must have completed 6th class in a primary school or the equivalent in another jurisdiction.  
  3. The applicant must be willing, with his parents/guardians, to accept the College ethos as set out in the Religious and Educational Philosophy of the school, i.e. subscribe to the Catholic ethos.  
  4. The applicant must be willing, with his parents/guardians, to accept the College’s Code of Behaviour and Code of Discipline.  
  5. The applicant is willing to take an Assessment Test.  

 The application period for the 2018/19 school year for first year will open on 25th October 2018 @7:00pm and close on Friday 16th November @4pm. Having regard to the overall management of the school, the safe capacity of school buildings, Department of Education and Skills guidelines in relation to class sizes and industrial relation agreements with teacher unions on the maximum size of classes, the Board of Management has decided that the enrolment into first year for September 2018 shall not exceed 130 boys. 

  • Application must be made on the official St Patrick’s College application form.  
  • The form will be distributed on Enrolment/Open Evening or may be requested from the school office by hand or post.  
  • An application to enrol is considered fully complete when the application form is completed in full and accompanied by a passport size photo, a copy of the enrolling child’s birth cert and their baptismal cert. 
  • Applications will only be accepted when the application form is fully complete and submitted together with all required documentation.  
  • Incomplete applications will be returned. 
  • Applications submitted after 4pm on 16th November 2018 will be considered late, stamped and numbered in order of receipt. They will be put on a late applications waiting list. 
  • Following the closing date for applications, written offers of places will be sent from 26th November, 2018. 
  • The closing date for receipt of written confirmation of acceptance of a place is Friday 7th December @4pm. €50 deposit towards the Administration Fee is submitted with this. Failure to reply by that date will result in forfeiture of the place and been placed at the bottom of the Waiting List. The vacancy will then be offered to the next applicant from the Waiting List (See Below).  

 NB: It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that notification arrives in good time to the school and no exceptions to timely receipt will be entertained. 

 The full subscription towards administration costs is €110 and €10 for Assessment tests in 2019. The €50 non-refundable deposit is offset against this sum, with the balance to be paid on the day of the assessment test. 

 Selection Criteria
Where the number of applicants who apply within the enrolment period exceeds the number of available places the criteria set out below will be used to award 130 places. The class number for practical and science classes is limited to twenty-four students and for other mainstream classes to thirty students, e.g.130 cohort of students fills to five option classes (French, German plus three options at twenty four (Music, TG, WW, MW & Art) and six mainstream science class groups. Home Economics is limited to twenty students. 

 The criteria for selecting students are 

  1. Brothers of present students and Sons of present staff 
  2. Boys of the religious faith (Roman Catholic) promoted in the founding intention of the school from feeder schools 
  3. Other eligible students from feeder schools 
  4. Other boys of the religious faith (Roman Catholic) promoted in the founding intention of the school 
  5. Brothers of past students 
  6. Other eligible students 

 Waiting List
hose on time applicants to whom the College is not able to offer a place will be placed on the Waiting List. The order of the Waiting List will be determined by the drawing of lots in the presence of the Chairperson/acting Chairperson of the Board of Management, a parent on the Board and the Principal.   

 The selection criteria will be applied in order. If the number of applicants exceeds the number of places remaining at any stage of the criteria, places will be decided by lottery. The remaining applicants from that criteria will form the waiting list in the order that they are drawn. Each subsequent outstanding selection criteria will be drawn by lottery in order, and applicants placed on the Waiting List in order of the draw. All waiting lists cease to exist on September 1st each year. 

 Late Applications
Late applicants will be placed on a Late Application Waiting List on a first come, first served basis. An application must be complete to be added to this list. There must be compliance with the selection criteria. The Waiting List takes precedence over the Late Applications Waiting List. Only after the Waiting List of on time applications has been exhausted will places then be offered to those on the Late Applications Waiting List. Late applicants will then be offered places in order of receipt of their completed application. 

 Applications to enrol in first year after the commencement of the Autumn term will be considered as transfer applications for this policy. 

 Students with Special Needs
St. Patrick’s College welcomes students with special needs and will use the resources, both financial and personnel, provided by the Department of Education and Science to make reasonable accommodation for students with special needs so that these students are free to participate in the life in the school in so far as is reasonably practicable.   

 While recognising and fully supporting parents’ rights to have a school of their choice for their children, the College’s ability to accept students with particular needs is dependent on the supply of resources, suitable to the needs of the individual student, being supplied by the Department of Education and Science. Having regard to the specific circumstances of any individual applicant the college reserves the right to enrol a student with special needs and may delay the date on which he takes up his place in order to allow for the provision of resources and/or special equipment to meet his specific needs. 

 It is important that the degree of those needs would be such that the student’s enrolment would be consistent with the best interest of the student concerned and the effective provision of education for other students. 

 The Principal should be made aware of special needs as early as possible, so that these needs can be assessed and addressed where possible. 

 Parents are requested to outline the details of a child’s special educational needs on the Application Form. 

 The Principal, having gathered all relevant information and professional documentation, assesses how the needs of these students can be met. 

 Contact will be made with the National Council for Special Educational Needs regarding resources to which the student may be entitled. 

 The Principal may request a meeting with the parents of the student to discuss the application and the student’s needs.   

 The parents of the student may request a meeting with the Principal to discuss the student’s educational or other needs. 

 N.B. It may take some time for the Department of Education and Science to process such applications.  Parents are strongly advised to inform the College as early as possible and discuss their particular situation well in advance of making the application. 

As soon as is practicable, but not later than 21 days, after a parent/guardian has provided all the relevant information, the Board of Management shall make a decision in respect of the application concerned and inform the parents/guardians in writing thereof (Education Welfare Act (Section 19 (3)).  

  Transfers from other Post-Primary Schools 
An application to transfer is defined as one from a student who has previously enrolled in another school in or outside the catchment area or from a student who makes application to first year after the commencement of the autumn school term.  Applications from parents/guardians of students enrolled in other second level schools will be considered if there are vacancies in the appropriate subject-group/class/year.  

Application must be made on a St Patrick’s College Transfer Application Form, which can be obtained from the College on request. The Transfer Application Form should be returned with a written reference from the previous school and two most recent school reports. Parents/Guardians who request a place for their son may be asked to attend for interview with him before the Principal makes a decision on the application. Places are not guaranteed.  

 NB:  Applications will not be accepted from students who are the subject of ongoing disciplinary proceedings in another school which includes any ongoing statutory appeals procedures in accordance with the Education Act 1998 or The Education for Persons with Special Needs Act 2004. 

 Students may transfer from another post-primary school subject to the following:  

  1. That the school authorities are satisfied, in the first instance, that acceptance of the applicant would not adversely impact on existing students of St Patrick’s College and, secondly, was in the best interests of the applicant.  
  2. The possible problems and disruption of studies when moving into an established class and Year Group will be considered. The situation may arise where a student may have to take up or discontinue a subject.  
  3. That space is available in the school, in particular with specialist classes where the capacity is limited.  
  4. The school authorities are provided with all relevant information from the applicants former school/s.  
  5. That it is in the best interest of St Patrick’s College.  
  6. It is in agreement with the school’s enrolment and admissions policy. 
  7. The student fulfills all conditions laid down by the Department of Education and Science.  
  8. A suitable vacancy exists in the school.  
  9. Parents/guardians and their son must accept the Code of Behaviour and Rules of the School, thereby agreeing to accept and uphold them.  

 Following consideration by the school authorities of individual applications to transfer into the school, where the school authorities have good grounds for forming the fair and reasonable opinion that it would not be in the best interests of the existing students to accept such a transfer, it is the policy of the school to refuse to enrol such applicants. 

A student will not be admitted where he has an established track record of poor behaviour. 

  Admission to Transition Year – Transfer Students 

  • Students seeking to enrol into the college for Transition Year will be treated under the above provisions relating to Transfers. 
  • The student must apply and fulfill the criteria for general entry to the College 
  • The student must follow the normal application and selection process for Transition Year applicants.   
  • Preference will be given to students who have completed the Junior Certificate in St. Patrick’s College. 
  • The College must be satisfied that joining the Transition Year is in the best interests of the student himself and the Transition Year group he is hoping to join.  
  • The maximum number of places available in the Transition Year group is decided annually based on the resources available to the school. 
  • In the event of the maximum number  not being filled by the college students consideration will then be given to boys applying from other schools. 
  • Only boys will be admitted to Transition Year 

 Repeat of Leaving Certificate: 

Students of the school may repeat Leaving Certificate Year 2 subject to the following conditions being fulfilled:  

  1. The Department of Education and Science’s regulations must be fulfilled and a suitable vacancy must exist in the school.  
  2. The student must apply and fulfill the criteria for general entry to the College 
  3. Applicants must accept that not all current subject combinations may suit repeat students; that they may not be able to take all subjects of their choice if the timetable or class numbers do not permit.  
  4. They must attend all classes and activities scheduled for them.  
  5. The student’s record in the school (conduct, work-ethic and attendance) must be satisfactory.  
  6. Repeat students who may not be timetabled for some subjects will be required to be in a supervised situation during all class periods.  
  7. Repeat students will have settled all outstanding accounts with the school. 
  8. External students seeking to enrol into the college for Repeat of Leaving Certificate will be treated under the above provisions relating to Transfers. 

The school currently offers the Junior Certificate, the New Junior Cert and Leaving Certificate programmes. 

 Junior Cycle Subjects;
Irish, English, Mathematics, Science, French, German, History, Geography, Business Studies, Art Visual, Music, Religion, Materials Technology (Wood), Materials Technology )Metal), Technical Graphics, Home Economics, CSPE,  

SPHE (non-exam), PE (non-exam).  


Senior Cycle Subjects;
Irish, English, Mathematics, French, German, History, Geography, Art, Music, Accounting, Business, Economics, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Agricultural Science, Applied Mathematics, Home Economics, Religion (exam), Religion (non-exam), Design and Construction Graphics, Engineering, Construction Studies, PE (non-exam), Computer Studies (non-exam) and Careers Guidance. 

The school reserves the right to change the list of subjects from time to time. 

It is expected that all students follow the full curriculum of subjects as outlined above, excepting of course where there are options as between certain subjects. If a parent/guardian or student eighteen years or over has concerns on grounds of faith or conscience regarding a subject or some aspect of a subject, it is important that they discuss this with the Principal prior to enrolling in St Patrick’s College. 

 All applications for admission are subject to the approval of the Principal in the first instance. The Principal acting on behalf of the Board of Management reserves the right to refuse an application for admission in accordance with this policy. 

 Appeal to the Board of Management; 
Should the Principal refuse a student’s application for admission to the school, the parents/guardians of the student will be informed in writing of the fact and the reasons for the decision. The parents/guardians will also be informed of their right to appeal the decision to the Board of Management within ten calendar days of notification of refusal to enrol. As soon as is practicable, the Board will meet in an emergency session to discuss the appeal. The parents/guardians and possibly the student will be invited to attend.  

 Appeal to the Secretary General;
Should a student’s application for admission to the school be refused by the Board of Management, the parents/guardians have the right to appeal to the Secretary General of the Department of Education and Science, (Education Act 1998, Section 29 (d)). The parents/guardians will be informed in writing of the Board’s decision. The reasons why the student was not accepted will be stated. The right to appeal will be stated and the application form provided. (Circular M48/01). The appeal must be made within 42 calendar days from the date the decision of the Board of Management was notified to the parents/ guardians concerned. (Circular M48/01).  

 An appeal may be made to the Secretary General of the Department of Education and Science, Marlborough Street, Dublin 1.  

The Board of Management reserves the right to review and amend the Enrolment and Admissions Policy from time to time.  

The Board of Management will review this policy by September 2019.  



For and on behalf of board of management 

Date: 4th October 2018  

Appendix 1: Feeder Schools 

  1. Arva  
  1. Aughadreena 
  1. Ballinagh 
  1. Ballinarry 
  1. Ballyconnell 
  1. Ballyhaise 
  1. Bawnboy 
  1. Belturbet 
  1. Bruskey 
  1. Butlersbridge 
  1. Castletara 
  1. Cavan No.1 
  1. Clifferna 
  1. Corlis 
  1. Corlurgan 
  1. Coronea 
  1. Crosserlough 
  1. Crosskeys 
  1. Crubany 
  1. Currin 
  1. Drumcrave 
  1. Drumkilly 
  1. Drung 
  1. Farnham 
  1. Gaelscoil Breifne 
  1. Gowna 
  1. Greagrahan 
  1. Kildallan 
  1. Killeshandra 
  1. Killyconnon 
  1. Killygarry 
  1. Kilnaleck 
  1. Lacken 
  1. Laragh 
  1. Lisboduff 
  1. Miltown 
  1. Mullahoran 
  1. Redhills 
  1. St Felim


St Patrick's College, Cavan is a boys secondary school.

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