St. Joseph's School for Deaf Boys and St. Mary's School for Deaf Girls are both under the trusteeship of CIDP. Up until 1977, the Christian Brothers acted as managers and trustees of St. Joseph's on behalf of CIDP. The Christian Brothers relinquished all responsibility for management of the School with effect from 1 January 1997 and the trusteeship of St. Joseph's was transferred to CIDP as and from that date. The Dominican Sisters had charge of St. Mary's prior to 1977. They also transferred the trusteeship of the school to CIDP as and from 1 January 1997.
Each school has its own Principal and is managed by a separate Board of Management. The Schools receive capitation and other grants from the Department and also receive some additional funding from CIDP. One of the School Principals is on the Board of CIDP.
Each school has both day and residential pupils. The residences are operated and managed separately from the Schools and are funded by the HSE. The residences in each school are under the management of a Director of Care, who is accountable to the Chief Executive of CIDP.
While the schools operate independently of each other, there is formal and informal co-operation and communication with the three Directors of Care and both School Principals and are currently involved in an amalgamation process. Together with the CEO of CIDP and the Head of Finance they form a Management Team.
Enrolment figures at the two schools have been falling over the past 25 years. Figures quoted in the Swan report indicate that the combined enrolment in the two schools peaked in 1977/78 when the total enrolment was 667 and had fallen to 427 in 1993/94. Figures supplied by the Dept of Education and Science indicate that the total enrolment had fallen to 196 by 2004. This trend, has now stabilised at 120 pupils and the numbers attending both schools and residences are increasing albeit modestly.
Feedback received from all sources during the course the recent strategic review and following the publication of the recent NCSE advice paper on the education of Deaf and hard of hearing children indicates that there is strong and broadly based support for retention and development of the Schools for Deaf children and a recognition that the educational services provided by the Schools are of a high standard and essential for many Deaf children.
These schools offer a key resource which is at the disposal of the State in formulating and implementing public policy and in discharging its responsibility to provide a specialised education service for all Deaf children. It is relevant to note in this context that the Swan Report on the Schools for the Deaf which was published in 1994 concluded that
One cannot but be impressed by the professionalism, dedication and enlightened approach of the staff in the Schools for the Deaf, both teaching and care staff.
It seems clear that, in formulating future policy, the expertise, professionalism and dedication of staff is a major distinctive strength of Schools for Deaf children. CIDP in co operation with Deaf Hear.ie, Irish Deaf Society and the Centre for Deaf Studies Trinity College have developed a policy position on the future of Deaf education in Ireland. The Paper has been submitted to the NCSE and was also formally launched at a conference in March 2010 which advocates the setting up of a Centre for Educational Excellence for deaf and hard of hearing children side by side with the schools for Deaf children in Cabra. This paper envisages a more developed role for the Deaf schools especially in offering outreach educational facilities to support Deaf and hard of hearing children in mainstream education. See DVD below on the work of the schools.
St. Joseph's House is a residential home for Adult Deaf and Deaf Blind. It was established as a residential home by CIDP in 1964. It provides supported accommodation care and advice to residents, including permanent, temporary and respite. Residents vary in terms of their level of dependency and they range in age from 29 to 94. While some can live relatively independently in supported accommodation, the recent trend has been towards residents with a higher level of dependency. Some residents were previously in psychiatric hospitals.
St. Joseph's House is under the direct management of CIDP, is managed by the Director of Care and is funded by the HSE. It is providing an essential and unique service to a diverse group of residents. The House has accommodation for 36 residents, those interested in viewing the accommodation should contact Geraldine Gallagher by emailing her at GeraldineGallagher@cidp.ie or by phoning her on 01-2893160.
The National Chaplaincy for Deaf People has been providing pastoral care for Deaf people for over 150 years. The Vincentians have been associated with the chaplaincy throughout all of that period up until 2005 when the last Vincentian chaplain retired. The Chaplaincy was originally concentrated on the Archdiocese of Dublin but became established as a National Chaplaincy in 1977.
The Chaplaincy now comprises a priest of the Dublin Diocese, who manages the service, three lay chaplains and an administrative support worker. With these very limited resources the chaplaincy is trying to coordinate a pastoral programme throughout Ireland with one chaplain based in Northern Ireland and one chaplain in the Southern region. There is a strong focus on the work with the Deaf community in Dublin especially the schools, residences and centre for Deaf people. The offices of the National Chaplaincy are located in St. Vincent's Centre for Deaf people and the two Chaplains based there cater for the Dublin Deaf Community and the Deaf community in the West of Ireland and the midlands.
The Chaplaincy is funded by CIDP, the Archdiocese of Dublin and the Episcopal Conference of Bishops while each Diocese makes a contribution to the work of the Chaplaincy.
Core values imbue the culture and ethos of an organisation and influence how it pursues its mission and how it determines its strategic priorities. Core values also provide guidance for management and staff in discharging their responsibilities and conducting their day-to-day operations. The following are the core values of CIDP:
The CIDP Strategic plan is guided by a vision of the future, as to where CIDP will be and what it will have achieved by the year 2020.
The following are suggested as the core elements of that vision
There will be a high level of public awareness of deafness and Deaf issues, and public policies will reflect that awareness by giving the necessary priority and funding to support the rights and needs of Deaf people.
There will be an early detection and intervention system which will ensure that, from the earliest age, parents of Deaf infants are provided with comprehensive information, expert advice and support in relation to the decision options open to them and in relation to the development of their child's language acquisition, communication and socialising skills.
Education of Deaf children will be recognised as specialised and unique. All Deaf children, whether in a mainstream school or in a School for the Deaf, will have access to the best available expertise in Deaf education and will be able to aspire to achieving their full potential as fully integrated members of society.
Deaf people, of all ages, whether they live in Dublin or around the country, will be able to feel part of and to interact fully with the Deaf community, and with the wider society.
Dependent Deaf people of all ages will have access to community, support and professional services in an environment which recognises their distinctive needs and circumstances.
Deaf people will have key roles in all aspects of Deaf education, development and community services.
The National Chaplaincy will be nationwide in scope and will be supported by adequate resources and a network of lay chaplains in offering a comprehensive pastoral care service for Deaf people.
Organisations working on behalf of Deaf people will have a constructive relationship and will be working together in a spirit of partnership.
CIDP will be an open, transparent and caring organisation, working in partnership with Deaf people, with other Deaf organisations and with public sector bodies in representing and serving the interests of Deaf people.
The following are the strategic priorities for CIDP in pursuing its role.
Develop a good working relationship with the other organisations working with and on behalf of Deaf people and work in partnership with them in formulating a set of agreed goals, focused on areas of common ground and common interest.
Establish a cohesive and effective lobby group with the other organisations working on behalf of Deaf people and work in partnership with them to influence changes in public policy to facilitate achievement of agreed goals.
Work in partnership with other organisations to ensure public recognition of the education of Deaf children as specialised and unique and to secure the commitment of public policies and public resources to ensure that all Deaf children have access to the best available expertise in Deaf education. This would include the retention and development of Schools for the Deaf, as an integral part of a Centre for Education and Development, which would be a recognised centre of expertise in Deaf education.
Work in partnership with other organisations to develop social facilities and a vibrant community environment with which Deaf people can identify, and which enables them to interact fully within the Deaf community, while at the same time being able to feel part of and to interact with confidence with wider society.
Work in partnership and in support of other organisations to ensure that dependent Deaf people of all ages have access to professional care, and to community and support services in an environment which recognises their distinctive needs and circumstances.
Support the National Chaplaincy for Deaf People to establish a fully-functioning and adequately resourced nationwide chaplaincy for Deaf people.
Introduce changes in the structures, organisation and management of CIDP to enable it to function efficiently and effectively in achieving its strategic objectives.
CIDP is a company limited by guarantee. The company is governed by a Board of Directors operating under the Memorandum and Articles of Association (attached). The Board comprises of 16 nominated individuals, each of whom bring specific expertise to the Board table. The Board operates under the Presidency of the Archbishop of Dublin and the Chairmanship of Fr Michael Cullen. Most Board members are nominated by the Archbishop. The Board have appointed a Chief Executive Officer currently Liam O' Dwyer. The Board meets 6 times a year and has one full day strategic planning meeting each year.
The Board also operates four sub committees who report into the Board itself namely; the Audit committee, the Human Resources committee, the Policy Development committee, the Residential Review committee as well as the company Sportsco. CIDP itself runs a Management team, a child protection team and a marketing committee. The CEO attends and reports in writing to each Board meeting and facilitates the work of the various committees. Both CIDP schools have their own Boards of management under the patronage of the Archbishop of Dublin and the trusteeship of CIDP Board. All senior staff employed by CIDP report into the CEO and meet individually with the CEO and as a Management Team every six weeks. While both School Principals and the coordinating Chaplain are part of the Management Team, their direct report is to their School Board of Management and the Archbishop of Dublin respectively.
CIDP produce quarterly management accounts and all operations are audited annually by an external audit firm, the results of which are published. The core staff at the administrative centre of CIDP is small, namely; CEO, Head of Finance, Financial accountant, Personal assistant, and a Facilities manager. CIDP carry all required insurance policies and operate in line with the requirements of the soon to be published Charities legislation.