TCS has developed innovative approaches to transfer and transition, such as:
- Holding joint primary and post-primary staff meetings to discuss issues and develop ideas in relation to transfer and transition.
- Continuing with subject theme in first year of post primary which were started in the last term of 6th class.
- Having a 1st year introduction programme.
- Developing transition programmes that span first year and extent into second year.
- Explicitly teaching social and emotional literacy skills, behaviour for learning skills and learning and thinking skills to 1st year students.
- Building on and linking with literacy programmes taught at primary.
- Developing peer mentoring and learning mentoring support systems.
Tullow Community School works with schools to develop comprehensive transition and transfer programmes as the move from primary to post-primary has been noted as a crucial stage in a young person’s educational career. Hargreaves (1996) highlighted how transfer is a time of triple transition as students negotiate the move from childhood to adolescence, from one institutional context to another and from established social groups into new social relations.
A large body of research exists that highlights how transfer and transition makes a difference to students’ progress. For example, Rudduck et al. (1999) point out that the social upheavals of the move to post-primary are “…so preoccupy that it is difficult for students, unless the school intervenes in a positive way,to focus on the ‘seriousness of learning’. If students are no helped during the early period of their new schools to sustain their excitement about learning and develop individual routines for managing learning, then they may have difficulties with progress later.” The decline in progress, and in commitment to and engagement with learning and school, can occur not just at the point of transfer from one school to another but also at point of transition within a school, from one year to another.