SNOW - Student & staff safety paramount in Laois / Offaly school closure decisions

Conor Ganly


Conor Ganly


Snow forecast

Met Éireann issues weather warning ahead of cold snap

The Laois Offaly Education and Training Board (ETB) says the safety of students and staff will be the first thing it takes into account in making any decisions on school closures due to snow.

Joe Cunningham, Laois Offaly ETB chief executive, told the Leinster Express that the weather conditions resulting from the 'Status Orange' weather alert are being watched.

"We are monitoring the situation, mindful of the weather forecasts for both Laois and Offaly, and will also be guided by instruction from the Department of Education and Skills. The safety of our staff and students will be the primary concern in whatever decision is made locally.

"A decision will be taken on Sunday evening (December 10) and communicated directly by schools to students through their text systems as well as social media platforms," he said.

The Laois Offaly ETB is patron to the following secondary schools: Ard Scoil Chiaráin Naofa, Clara, Banagher College, Clonaslee College,
Coláiste Naomh Cormac, Kilcormac, Dunamase College Coláiste Dhún Másc, Portlaoise, Oaklands Community College, Edenderry, Portlaoise College, St Fergal's College, Rathdowney, Tullamore College. 

It is also responsible for Further Education Centres in: Abbeyleix, Banagher, Birr, Clara, Edenderry, Mountmellick, Portarlington, Portlaoise and Tullamore.

Its staff also provide education and training in Portlaoise's prisons.

Met Éireann has issued a weather warning for snow and ice for 17 counties including Laois and Offaly. Significant accumulations of are in the forecast Sunday with freezing conditions continuing into next week. 

Two of the Laois Offaly ETB schools are located the hinterland of the Slieve Bloom mountains.