Important information for Parent(s)/Guardian(s)/Carer(s) of Primary 6 pupils in relation to Transfer 2022-2023

Dear Parent(s)/Guardian(s)/Carer(s)

The Boards of Governors of St Columb’s College and Thornhill College have reflected carefully upon the continuing impact of the ongoing Covid-19 crisis and the considerable disruption that this has had on our local community and in particular on the education of pupils currently in Primary 6. These young people have faced a year of unprecedented challenge which has undoubtedly had a significant impact on mental and emotional well-being. There is also no guarantee that disruption might not continue into the first term of the 2021-2022 school year when these pupils are in Primary 7.

In response to these exceptional circumstances, and with a desire to provide a degree of certainty to those young people who would wish to attend our schools, the Boards of Governors and Principals of both schools have agreed that they will not use academic criteria for admission to Year 8 in September 2022. This decision has been communicated to the Minister and we are awaiting his response.

This means that:

  • Neither St Columb’s College or Thornhill College will use outcomes from the GL Entrance Assessment as part of their Admissions Criteria for the 2022-2023 academic year. Pupils applying to either school will not be required to provide a GL Entrance Assessment result.
  • Both schools temporarily amended their Admissions Criteria for the 2021-2022 academic year; these will remain in place for the 2022-2023 academic year, subject to the Boards of Governors annual review.
  • The Admissions Criteria for both Colleges for entry in September 2022 will be published by the Education Authority (EA) in Autumn 2021, according to its normal timetable.

Each school remains committed to their own individual Catholic ethos and values and will continue to provide high quality teaching and learning, coupled with the highest standards of pastoral care. All those young people who would normally apply to be admitted to each individual school are strongly encouraged to continue to do so.

We believe that this is the right decision for our schools and local communities and we hope that this decision provides much needed clarity for those Primary 6 pupils and their Parents/Guardians/Carers who would like to apply for admission to our schools.

From the Boards of Governors and Principals of:

St Columb’s College
Thornhill College

26th March 2021

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