News from Our Lady’s Castleblayney

Healthy Eating Initiative

The Home Economics Department in Our Lady’s Castleblayney had a very busy week at the end of January as they hosted a Healthy Eating Week to support and introduce the Healthy Ireland Initiative to the school community. It was embraced enthusiastically by all members of the school and was a great success in promoting healthy eating amongst both staff and students.

Each morning many students enjoyed a nutritious breakfast in the kitchen at The Breakfast Club. Breakfast is often regarded as the most important meal of the day, and has been scientifically proven to improve students’ concentration and performance in school. There was an extensive menu to choose from, including scrambled eggs, homemade wheaten bread, porridge, fresh fruit, yoghurt, tea and milk. There was a great atmosphere in the kitchen as students enjoyed a nourishing breakfast while also catching up with their friends.

Fresh fruit and vegetables were also in plentiful supply for the week, thanks to the generosity of Fyffes Dundalk. Fruit was available at break time, with many opting for these healthier choice as a mid morning snack. Homemade vegetable soup and seeded rolls were also on offer at lunchtimes as a nourishing and warming winter lunch. The power of fruit and vegetables cannot be underestimated as they are rich in vitamins, minerals and fibre, and this undoubtedly helped the students meet their 7 a day recommendation.

Many First Year students participated in the Healthy Lunchbox Competition with all students displaying a very high standard of nourishing and balanced lunch boxes. Their presentation was also to be commended as they showed all the other students that eating healthily doesn’t have to be boring. All students received a certificate for their participation and effort, however several lunchboxes were awarded a prize for their excellent efforts and creativity.

Healthy Eating Week would not have been possible without the generosity of all the sponsors. Thank you to Fyffes/Total Produce Dundalk, for their sponsorship of fruit and vegetables, to Glanbia for sponsoring milk and yogurt, and to Kepak for sponsoring bread rolls, to Muckian Eggs for sponsoring eggs and lastly to Celtic Pure for their sponsorship of water.

Pictured are several of the students in Our Lady’s enjoying soup and rolls at lunchtime as part of the healthy eating initiative organised by the Home Economics Department.

International Recognition for Erin & Our Lady’s

Erin Hamill, a Fifth Year student at Our Lady’s Secondary School, Castleblayney, was the toast of the school in recent days having been selected to train with the Ireland U/17 Basketball team. Erin is no stranger to performing on the international stage and was a part of the Ireland U/15 Basketball team when she was a Third Year student. Erin has been a prominent player on basketball teams at Our Lady’s during her time in school and international recognition is a just reward for her hard work and commitment to the sport. Erin is daughter of Brendan and Nuala Hamill from Tullynahinera, Castleblayney and the school and local community extend their congratulations to Erin and her family upon her success.

The head coach of the Women’s U/17 Basketball team Liam Culloty has selected a panel of 25 players and training will begin at St. Mary’s College Galway the weekend of February 17th & 18th. Speaking about the announcement Coach Culloty stated ‘We had over 50 players attend three open sessions over the last month, so trying to pick 25 from that list was quite challenging. The standard was very good and the interest shown by all the players was fantastic. I would like to thank everyone who made the effort to attend and I am looking forward to working with this very talented group of players over the coming months’.

Speaking at the school during the week Principal Mr. Eddie Kelly congratulated Erin on her latest success’ I’m delighted that Erin’s ability, hard work & commitment has been recognised at such an elite level. Erin is an extremely talented player but also displays the necessary dedication and commitment required to perform and succeed at such a high level. She is a most cooperative and unassuming student and is an excellent role model for her peers and the younger students in the school. We wish her every success in her preparations over the coming weeks and months’.

Pictured in Our Lady’s during the week is 5th Year student, Erin Hamill who has been selected to train with the Ireland U-17 Basketball team. Erin is seen here, being congratulated by Principal, Mr Eddie Kelly and teacher and basketball coach, Ms Laura McQuillan. The entire school community wish Erin every success in her preparations over the coming months.

Ulster Ladies GAA All Star Awards for Our Lady’s Castleblayney

Representatives from Our Lady’s Secondary School attended the Ulster Ladies GAA All Star Awards presentation in Kelly’s Inn, Ballygawley last Friday February 23rd as Niamh Kerr, Jennifer Duffy & Jayne Drury collected their All Star Awards.

Niamh is daughter of Ciaran & Ann Kerr from Annyalla and plays her club football with O’ Neill Shamrocks. This is the second year in a row that Niamh has been selected on the Ulster Colleges All Star team matching the achievement of her brother Barry who received Ulster Colleges All Stars in 2014 & 2015. Jennifer is daughter of Mick & Patricia Duffy from Carrickaderry, Clontibret and also plays her club football with O’ Neill Shamrocks, this being Jennifer’s first All Star Award. Jayne is the daughter of Stephen & Marie Drury from Ballybay and plays her club football with the St. Brigid’s Club in Ballybay. Jayne is the youngest ever Ulster Ladies Colleges All Star in Our Lady’s. All three girls were members of the Ulster interprovincial panel that successfully defended their title at the interprovincial tournament in Kinnegan, Westmeath at the end of January.

Speaking at the school during the week the Principal Mr. Kelly congratulated the girls on their outstanding achievement ‘for a school to have one Ulster Colleges All Star in any year is a fantastic achievement but to have three representatives on the team in one year is a huge honour and one of which we are very proud. All three girls are excellent role models for their peers and for the younger students in the school and I’ve no doubt that they have great futures ahead of them in Gaelic Games.’

Pictured at the Ulster Ladies GAA All Star Awards held in Ballygawley last weekend are three students from Our Lady’s Castleblayney, Niamh Kerr, Jennifer Duffy and Jayne Drury, all recipients of prestigious All Star awards. Congratulations!