External Persons to Supplement Delivery of the Curriculum

1. Introduction

While teachers provide weekly opportunities to engage in physical education, music and arts, sometimes
the inclusion of external persons can enhance school programmes. Dalkey School Project NS has developed a tradition of identifying gaps in provision of holistic learning experiences for children in which cases external teachers may be hired e.g. yoga, art, movement, sports, forest school teachers etc. may be invited to deliver programmes.

2. Induction of external persons

External teachers and coaches will, prior to commencing their programmes, be provided with an orientation to the key personnel, ethos and work of the school. This orientation shall involve external persons being provided with an information pack that will include details of key school policies, in particular the school’s Code of Behaviour, Child Protection, Health and Safety, Garda Vetting, Anti Bullying and other relevant policies.

3. Rationale

Dalkey School Project NS is committed to providing its students with the highest level of curricular and
extra-curricular education. Whilst recognising that qualified classroom teachers are the best placed
professional to work sensitively and consistently with students in most curricular and extra- curricular
school activities, the school acknowledges that in certain circumstances external expertise can enhance the education and activities provided.

When external persons are employed or invited to provide services to students the school is responsible
for ensuring, as far as is possible, the quality of the services provided and the safeguarding of students.

4. Objectives

To ensure that services provided to students by external facilitators are of the highest quality. To mitigate the risk of harm to students.

5. Scope of Policy

This policy covers all external persons charged with providing services relating to school curricular or
extracurricular activities.

6. Procedures

  • External facilitators supplement, complement or support an identified component of the school’s
    curricular or extra-curricular provision
  • External facilitators are approved by the principal in consultation with the relevant teaching staff.
  • All external facilitators are compliant with the school’s child protection policy and other relevant school policies and procedures.
  • The school authority satisfies itself, having regard to its own legal advice if required, that it has met
    any vetting obligations that arise under the Vetting Act and in line with Circular 0031/2016, for such
    external facilitators.
  • External facilitators in classroom provision always work under the guidance and supervision of the
    relevant classroom teacher.
  • Further requirements and guidelines in relation to Wellbeing provision by external facilitators are
    outlined in DES Circular 0043/2018.

7. Responsibilities of the External Persons

  • Liaise with principals and class teachers regarding the suitability of their expertise vis-a-vis the
    school plan and individual class plans.
  • Work directly alongside a designated class teacher.
  • Support the class teacher where competence, confidence, knowledge or skills in teaching a
    particular activity may be a challenge to them
  • Ensure the emphasis is on participation and enjoyment during lessons
  • Provide for differing levels of ability
  • Take all necessary safety precautions
  • Ensure full participation by female and male pupils
  • Help to establish community/club links where relevant
  • Have current Garda Vetting (GV) through their club or seek GV directly through the school and Educate Together (ET)

8. Responsibilities of the class teacher:

  • Retain overall responsibility for the care and well being of pupils in the class
  • Be present throughout the teaching/coaching session until such time as relationships and good practices are established between external person and children. Consult with class team and/or principal to ensure class is ready to move to SNA supervision with the external person
  • Provide external persons with information and assistance regarding the needs of the children.
  • Adopt an active role in lessons where an external coach is delivering or facilitating when necessary
    e.g. building relationships, dealing with behavioural issues
  • Provides and receives feedback from EPs before/during/after PE lessons.
  • Develop their teaching skills/content knowledge through active observation and interaction with
    the external coach.
  • Evaluate the contribution of the external coach within the context of the class / school plan

9. Responsibilities of the school principal

  • Assesses the suitability of the external person to work with primary school children by ensuring that the external persons works within the relevant guidelines e.g. Code of Ethics (Irish Sports Council, 2000), Children First (DYCA 2017 )
  • Ensures the external person has current Garda vetting through their club where relevant or facilitates GV directly through the school and Educate Together (ET)
  • Ensures that the external person is suitably qualified in their particular activity.
  • Ensures that the external person is covered by the school’s insurance policy or has their own professional insurance
  • Evaluates the contribution of the external person within the context of the school plan on a regular basis.
  • Provides induction for the EP regarding school policies, especially Code of Behaviour, Anti-Bullying and Child Protection and Safeguarding

10. The policy operates within a legislative framework and takes account of the following:

  • Children First Act, 2015
  • Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools, 2017
  • DES Circular 0043/2018: Best practice guidance for post primary schools in the use of programmesand/or external facilitators in promoting wellbeing consistent with the Department of Educationand Skills’ Wellbeing Policy Statement and Framework for Practice
  • DES Circular 0031/2016: Commencement of Statutory Requirements for Garda Vetting

11. Communication of the External Coach Policy to the school community

A copy of the Policy is published on the school website. A copy of the External Coach Policy is made available to school personnel and to the Parent Teacher Association (PTA). The policy is readily accessible to parents on request.

12. Policy review

This External Persons Policy will be reviewed periodically by the Board of Management or as soon as practicable after there has been a material change in any matter to which this policy refers.

13. Adoption of Policy

This policy was ratified by the Board of Management on 19th April 2021.

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