Limerick 2020 - Answers to Your Top 10 Summer School Concerns
Updated: Jan 25
Summer school in Ireland is the highlight of the year for many international students. With so many eager and excited students arriving in Ireland each year to learn English and enjoy their summer holidays, it's extremely important to choose the right school.
How do you choose the right school to ensure your children will be safe, cared for and still have a great time? It's not always easy. We all know it's not easy but is it worth while returning to the same school each year when it's not exactly what you're looking for?
In this blog, we have compiled a list of 10 concerns parents, partners and friends mention every year. We look at some of the common concerns and answer each one in relation to our summer school here in Limerick at Villiers High School.
1. Homestay distance to the school
Concern: Homestays are too far away from the school and our students needs to take a bus. It never arrives on time.
Our homestays collect students from school each afternoon and drop them to school each morning after a warm and healthy breakfast. As we also offer Residential stay in Limerick, there's no issue with student safety taking the bus to school. Students arrive for lessons on time and they're warm, dry, safe and ready to start learning.
Concern 1: The homestays were overcrowded! We had 5 of our students staying together in one room.
Solution 1: Student comfort and happiness is essential. We monitor the homestay bookings so we don't have an issue with overcrowded homestays. The homestays are limited so we operate on a first come first serve for homestays. Our policy is to mix nationalities in families to increase the time spent speaking English. With reliable vetted homestays we know our students are treated like part of the family and will have lots of time to practice speaking English.
Concern 2: The school decided to house the boys and girls together in residential accommodation. It was really uncomfortable for everyone.
Solution 2: We have separate accommodation arrangements in place for boys and girls in our residence facility. With a capacity to house 150 students (75 boys and 75 girls) in our residence we can easily accommodate large group bookings.
Concern 3: Are students supervised in the accommodation?
Solution 3: Night staff supervise the residential accommodation facility while homestay parents supervise students staying in their homes. Parents can rest assured the children are looked after 24/7.
3. City Size
Concern: Dublin is too big so we need buses everywhere.
Concern: The village is too small and the children are sometimes bored when they have free time.
Solution: Limerick is Ireland's third biggest city. It’s neither too big nor too small with a lovely variety of shops, malls, restaurants, bars and other amenities like bowling and cinema complexes. As Limerick offers a happy medium between a big city like Dublin and a small Irish village there’s no concern with taking buses around the city while there’s still plenty of local entertainment for students and leader to enjoy. Free time can be used to enjoy the cultural aspects of the city or simply do a little gift shopping in the summer sales.
4. School Location
Concern: The summer school is located at a university. The grounds are too big. I'm not sure it's safe and the accommodation isn't suitable for young students.
Concern 2 The school is located in a small secluded area. The residential accommodation is too far away form the school.
Solution: : Our summer school located in Villiers School is equipped with onsite boarding facilities for students. Villiers is considered one of Ireland's top 10 boarding schools due to it's excellent facilities and location. It is located in a beautiful part of Limerick city and has a gated enclosure for 24/7 safety. The residential facility is spacious but not too big like some of the university campus grounds
5. Distance from excursions
Concern: Some of the popular excursions are far away and sometimes we are travelling 3 hours on the bus to reach the destination and then 3 hours return.
Answer: This is especially true for most schools that wish to visit the Cliffs of Moher. The approximate time to get to the Cliffs of Moher from Dublin is 3 hours each away. This means students are exhausted after their trip and get very little time to enjoy the area.
Our location in Limerick is one of the closest schools to Ireland's top tourist destinations which include
1. Bunratty Castle - voted best tourist destination in Ireland – 15 mins from Limerick
2. Cliffs of Moher - Top 10 Natural Wonders of the world – 40 mins from Limerick.
We're only 1 hour from Galway. 2 hours from Dublin. 2 hours from Cork. It's a very central location so it's much easier to travel to the excursions during the weekend.
Concern: We want them to be more exciting and active. There should be a good mix.
Solution: The activities we offer in Limerick are the highlight of our summer school. We have an excellent activities programme where students get the opportunity to learn new skills like Irish dancing, Irish language lessons, cooking classes, print making, kayaking, wall climbing, pottery, walking tours, arts and crafts and much more from our professionals. We also have activities like walking tours, football competitions with local teams, adventure sports etc. arranged for our students to make their summer school experience even more exciting
Concern: The price this year has increased and we are being asked to attend for 3 weeks minimum
Solution: We offer one of the most competitive prices across Ireland. Considering the activity programme and curriculum, our rates are very attractive and provide value for money. We also offer flexibility to book for 2 weeks (instead of mandatory 3 weeks that most schools offer). With excellent group rates available, it's excellent prices with excellent quality. Contact us for our price list for more information on group rates for our partners. Contact us for our price list for more information on group rates for our partners.
8. Student Nationalities
Concern: There are always too many students from ...
Solution: Many parents and partners are concerned about the number of students coming from any one country. This is a normal concern. While we believe that our students should have the opportunity to speak with other nationalities and practice their English skills as much as possible, its not ideal to have too many students of the same nationality. Our goal is to offer our students a multicultural experience without dominance from any single nationality. We do this by closely monitoring group bookings maintaining the overall balance of nationalities to the best of our ability. With students coming from Spain, Italy, Russia, Kazakstan, Turkey and China there will always be opportunities to make new friends, speak English and improve confidence and fluency with the language.
9. Travel time from airport
Concern: How far is the school from the airport? Is it too far away? We spend a long time on the plane and don't want to travel any further.
Solution: Students can be tired after a long flight. Our natural instinct is to ask how far is the school from the airport. Limerick being the most central location city in the west of Ireland can be accessed from all over the globe with direct links via air, rail and motor way. The closest airport located in Shannon is only 20mins while Dublin airport is a little over 2 hours away. Dublin being the capital city often has traffic congestion so even for schools located in the Dublin area, it's normal to spend over 2 hours arriving at your final destination anyway. Why not spend the time enjoying the Irish countryside on your way to Limerick instead of being stuck in traffic. When taking point 5 into consideration, the overall time on the bus is overall less
Considering Limerick is the most central city location in the west of Ireland, the overall time spent travelling to Limerick is often considerably less than the time spent travelling to many other destinations.
10 . Payment
Concern: How do we make payment?
We do our best to make this as easy as possible.
The payment is broken down into two parts. A downpayment of 25% to keep a booking followed by the remainder by May 1st at the latest. For more information about payment and booking, contact us now.