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Killylea Primary School, Co. Armagh

We are Finalists!

13th Oct 2022

Please support our nomination for the Families First Keyworker Awards.

This was postponed from last year but reflects the huge effort our small school put into being a Learning Hub. Back in March 2020 when most schools closed, our staff made a unanimous decision to keep open for keyworker children as we felt it was the right thing to do for our pupils and parents.  However, for various reasons, other local schools couldn't remain open and we were inundated with requests from keyworkers to take their children too. Eventually we supported 12 different settings including primary schools from across the sector, playschools and nurseries. We stayed open over Easter holidays and continued on into July. We had staff from schools we were supporting and other volunteer staff from as far away as Newry and Belfast.  While it was a very challenging time to ensure our hub pupils and staff kept safe, it was also a very enjoyable time too and a proud moment in time for our school.   We also remember the excitement at having BBC film us with Robbie Meredith!

At the same time our staff were supporting our own pupils through workpacks, phonecalls, Easter messages, a personalised card to each pupil and our infamous leavers song. We also invited our pupils back in June for a socially distanced good bye for the end of the school year.

We were proud to also be able to support some of our struggling community through food parcels, long supportive phonecalls to ensure parents were ok too and we used Love Here, Live Here funding to make up salad bowls which members of the local community nominated recipients for.  Our Learning Hub made and decorated planters with messages of hope and raised £100 for the NHS. We also invited some pupils to join our hub, who were struggling at home with mental health.

If you are supporting us, then please mention some of the above in your comments as they are what the judges use. Thank you for you support and regardless of the outcome, we are all very proud of the role our wee school played within our local and wider community!