ADMISSIONS CRITERIA


The Irish Christian Brothers established the Christian Brothers' School in West Belfast in 1962. We aim to provide every pupil with an academic, spiritual and cultural education so that they may become wellintegrated, responsible Catholic citizens in our modern society.

Accommodation

The school has excellent teaching facilities for all subjects. Much of our specialist accommodation have been modernised within the past ten years. We have a state-of-the-art technology building and the Art department has provision for ceramics and photography. We have extensive provision for sports ,comprising of two gymnasia, an all-weather pitch and the use of other facilities in local leisure centres. Our recently updated I.T. suites allow us to offer the most modern I.T. programmes. With our new careers and library suite we have the facility to provide research and study facilities for each student to enhance their job and Further Education opportunities. A new Media Suite with industry standard Apple Mac Computers affords all our pupils opportunities for GCSE and A Level Media Awards.

Curriculum KS3 and KS4 and Post 16

C.B.S. welcomes pupils of all abilities from ages 11 years to 18 years catering for academic technicial/vocational skills. Each pupil who gains a place at C.B.S. will follow a broad and balanced curriculum at KS3. Subjects studied are English, Mathematics, Science, R.E., History, Geography, Design and Technology, Art, French, Irish, P.E. and in addition each Year 8 pupil undertakes an intensive programme to support Literacy and Numeracy skills. At KS4 all students undertake a two-year course of study for G.C.S.E. In addition to the compulsory subjects we offer a range of options in academic areas but we also include a substantial vocational element which also improves the students’ life skills. All of our students obtain G.C.S.E. skilled based programme grades in relevant subjects. All pupils are expected to leave CBS with relevant qualifications to meet the challenges of a modern society. For that reason CBS has introduced a range of Diploma Courses (4 GCSEs) in Sports, Media, GCSEs in Engineering and Financial Studies which are unique in Post Primary Education. CBS School has achieved excellent results at both GCSE and A-Level when compared with other schools in Belfast. CBS continues to excel due to the curriculum offered and the innovative delivery.

At Post 16 we offer a new and balanced curriculum of A-Levels and Skills Based Awards in partnership with Further Education, which will meet the needs of our pupils in preparing them to take an active work and leadership role in their community.

Pastoral Care

In partnership with parents, we strive to create a learning environment where pupils are happy and relate well to each other and to members of staff. On entry to the school, pupils are banded into teaching groups, using a number of criteria which include tests administered during the last term of P.7 and their performance in primary school. As this transition from primary to post primary can be stressful for some children, care is taken to ensure the minimum upset. All Year 8 pupils are involved in a Base Class System and take part in a residential trip in their first term. This helps establish a bond between pupils, form teachers and their Head of Year. Each class has a form teacher who is responsible for the academic, spiritual and general welfare of the children in their classes. We also have an active Learning for Life and Work programme and small class numbers ensure all pupils get individual attention. In addition our own Careers teachers and representatives of the Training Employment Agency provide pupils with appropriate advice on careers. Each pupil in Years 11 and 12 has the opportunity to avail of a wide variety of work experience throughout the year as part of our Policy to develop employability skills. The school also provides peer support through the RAINBOWS programme. This provides a bereavement and loss service where pupils are given personal support in small groups during difficult times. We also provide the services of a professional counsellor one day per week. The House/Merit system allows all our pupils an opportunity to have their achievements in/out of school recognised.

Spiritual Activities

Throughout their time at C.B.S. boys are encouraged, by the example of Blessed Edmund Rice, to play an active role in their local and global community. From their first year boys are involved in fundraising activities, most notably for Marie Curie, St. Vincent de Paul Christmas Hampers, Children’s Hospice, Trocaire and Christian Brothers’ projects in Africa and our sister school in India. Spiritual development begins with the First Year celebration of Mass and continues throughout the liturgical year with access to the sacraments and whole-school celebrations of the Eucharist and assemblies.

Cultural and Recreational Activities

Each pupil is encouraged to become involved in other activities that will improve their lifestyle. We have a wide range of sporting activities including hurling, Gaelic football, soccer, badminton, basketball and swimming. In hurling and Gaelic football we are involved in the Ulster Colleges Competitions at various age groups and our soccer teams are involved in the Ulster schools, Belfast schools’ League and Cup Competitions at Years 8, 9, 10 and 11. Music is timetabled for all KS3 classes and we have frequent school shows. Residential courses are on offer and pupils are encouraged to participate in trips to Delamont Outdoor Pursuits Centre and our ski trip to various international destinations. We have also forged links with a twin school in India that allows our pupils to maintain regular contacts and offers the opportunity for future trips.

Clubs and Societies

Pupils are encouraged to avail of the opportunities offered by the West Belfast Traditional Music Society, which uses the school on Tuesday and Thursday nights. The Computer Club operates on a number of days after school. Guitar and Brass Band Instrument Clubs take place each week. Our pupils are involved in Making Our Community a Better Place and engage in community ‘clean up’ operations on a monthly voluntary basis. Pupils are also involved in various campaigns with our community such as Bus Safety and Families Bereaved Through Car Crime. C.B.S., as a community learning centre, also offers a range of night classes in a number of academic and Skills Based subjects. This innovative programme offers support and training to parents and our local community on the basis of identified needs.

Uniform

The school uniform is compulsory. It consists of a black blazer with school badge, dark grey/charcoal flannel trousers, grey/white shirt, grey pullover and school tie, school overcoat is also compulsory. All pupils are encouraged to wear school PE uniform/kit.

School Philosophy as determined by the Trustees:

Parents who choose the Christian Brothers’ School, Glen Road, for their son’s education are expected to share with the teaching staff a commitment to the values and ideals which underpin the ethos of our Catholic faith. Our school works at forming a community composed of students, teachers, parents, management and ancillary staff. This community: - seeks to live by Gospel values
- recognises the dignity of the individual
- contributes to the building of the local community
- works for peace and justice in society.
Parents of pupils at Christian Brothers’ School, are expected to give wholehearted support to the entire staff community with regard to implementing a Code of Conduct which will create an environment in which the education of all pupils becomes possible.

Criteria as determined by the Board of Governors;

(The Board of Governors has delegated to the Principal, or to his nominee, the responsibility for administering the Transfer arrangements).
A) Arrangements in relation to applications for admission to the school BEFORE the 2009/2010 school year begins:
If the number of applicants exceeds the number of places available then the following criteria will be applied, in the order listed, until the admissions number has been reached. (Within each criterion preference will be given to an applicant as specified in note 3 below)

Boys will be admitted:

(i) who have brothers presently enrolled in the school;
(ii) who attend St Aidan’s Christian Brothers’ Primary School, Belfast;
(iii) who reside or attend school in Holy Trinity Parish, Belfast;
(iv) who reside or attend school in St. Teresa’s Parish, Belfast;
(v) who reside or attend school in the Parish of Hannahstown;
(vi) who reside or attend school in the Parish of Our Lady Queen of Peace;
(vii) whose parent/guardian is a permanent employee of the school;
(viii) who attend any of the following contributory Primary Schools in the order listed:
1) St Clare’s PS; 2) St. Peter’s PS; 3) St Kevin’s PS; 4) St Oliver Plunkett PS
5) St Paul’s PS; 6) St Joseph’s PS (Slate Street); 7) Vere Foster PS;
(ix) who have had brothers enrolled in the school (see note 2 below);
(x) whose father was enrolled in the school (see note 2 below);
(xi) who reside or attend school in the Parish of Glenavy and Killead;
(xii) who reside in any other parish.
NB
1) It is the responsibility of Parents/Guardians to ensure that the information required by the Criteria (especially Parish of residence) is noted on the Transfer Form, (an applicants residence will be taken as that which is registered with the applicants Primary School and entered on the Transfer Form by the Primary School).
2) It is the responsibility of Parents/Guardians to ensure that the year of the applicant’s brother or father is noted on the Transfer Form.
3) The eldest boy within a family will be accepted first. If it is necessary to decide further within an oversubscribed criterion, then oldest children will be accepted. If it is necessary to decide between children of the same age the school will use the drawing of Lot.
4) It will be assumed that any application for admission to the school will imply full acceptance of the philosophy of the school as detailed above.

Applicants should note that they may be required to produce documents verifying their address or the age of the child concerned.

B) Arrangements in relation to applications for admission to Year 8 AFTER the 2009/2010 school year begins:

The above criteria will also be applied, in the first instance, to those applicants who have previously been refused a place in our school during the Transfer Procedure and who are on our waiting list on the day a place becomes available, providing:
1) Their parents have informed the school, in writing, on or after 1st September 2009 that they wish their son to be placed on a waiting list.
2) Their parents have informed the school, in writing, which school their son has been allocated to in the Transfer Procedure.


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