Moving to Dublin after quiet a few years away. The main reason is we have 2 kids and we’d like them to grow up surrounded by their extended family. Our relatives live all over Dublin. Our parents live in Glasnevin, Dublin 11. Is it a good area to raise kids? Any good primary school for girls?
That covers a pretty broad area, there are always arguments about whether a certain place is glasnevin, D11, or Finglas, or Ballymun, or whether there is any such place as Glasnevin Dublin 11.
That said, I think the general area is fine, in a boring suburban type of way. Depending on where you are there may be more tracksuits or fewer. Some areas are marginal though, googling addresses will tell you that.
As for schools, assuming you are not actively pursuing a girls-only school, both Educate Together schools in Glasnevin D9 and off the ballymun road are fine. Can’t speak for the religious schools.
We had a brief flirtation with D11 a couple of years ago (and most places in Dublin and its surrounds at different times!) and I contacted the local Educate Together schools. One of them had an insane waiting list - 200 kids for 28 places for 2015, and that was back in 2012. The other never replied. Quite probable that lots of kids are down for both ET schools but still, demand is high so make a few calls before you bank on getting into a particular school.
The Glasnevin Educate together has one stream until 2015 and a waiting list of about 300. The year after that they should have their new school beside Tolka Rovers and an increased intake. The NDNSP on Ballymun Road operates a lottery system which is subscribed at a rate of 5:1 for 2015.
I went to Brigid’s myself, it was a fine school back then and I haven’t heard anything to contradict that since then.
Our Lady of Victories is a DEIS school with a low pupil/teacher ratio and I have heard of some people choosing that over other schools in the D9/D11 area, just purely because they got a good vibe. Don’t know much about other schools in D11 or what the options for boys are.
As for the area, it’s very mixed. Tolka Estate areas are not too bad in my view. I would be wary enough of anywhere north of Johnstown Park or west of Griffith Road, but you do need to see the places themselves. For example, some areas are geographically very close to Ballymun but are actually pretty quiet and settled estates, like Pinewood or Willow Park, even Cedarwood (despite what Bono would have you believe ) I would not be keen on anywhere too near Beneavin or Grove Road - anywhere west of the Autobahn or north of Johnstown basically.
We looked/browsed all over Dublin and commuter-belt areas in recent years and those were some of the longest school waiting lists I’ve come across. Major downside of living in established areas where capacity to build new schools (or new anything) is limited.
To be totally honest, I was a bit put off by things I read here and on boards about secondary schools in D11. Although I’ve family who went to Vincent’s, there were some unfavourable reports (I think on boards) and people saying they had their kids down for schools in Clontarf - where they would have to cycle. Not really worth the hassle or uncertainty so we broadened the search.
We’re in Kildare now (renting). The Educate Together schools are still popular and you need to get the name down early. But it’s not as crazy as D9/11. We have friends around that area though and they are generally happy. If you need access to town, it’s pretty good apart from the schooling issue.
The secondary school options are not amazing. I went to Mary’s and in all fairness, it was largely ok but a little rough around the edges. It was streamed from day 1 - not an approach everyone would agree with - but it served its purpose iykwim. I did an interview for Scoil Chaitriona and was accepted, but refused to go because none of my friends were. I suppose that’s where you would aim for now, but the waiting lists for Scoil Mobhi are a joke so I presume it’s hard enough to get into. Dominicans on Griffith Avenue always seemed decent too.
I think it’s even worse for boys’s schools, my own brother didn’t go to school locally.
My own hope is that an ET secondary school will have been established by the time my kids reach secondary school age. There is an ongoing campaign and with 3 heavily oversubscribed ET schools in the wider area (including the D7 ET) I have to believe it will happen.
Yep, I’ve signed an expression of interest and keep up to date with the campaign. Seeing as my eldest is only 3, and probably won’t even get into an ET school, that’s as much as I can really do at the moment.