Busy Transition Years
Transition year students kicked off 2020 with a focus on the future, with subject choices for Senior Cycle high on their agenda. These girls had much to ponder as they set about selecting the subjects which will suit them best and will help them to realise their dreams for the future. This important decision was aided by an intense subject choice forum, where teachers presented their subjects at senior cycle, and the careers linked to them.
They also attended one of the Tyndall Physics Lecture Series in WIT, to explore careers in Physics, and were lucky to have a visit from Law Lecturer, Dr. Jennifer Kavanagh from WIT, who gave invaluable advice on the pathways into careers in the legal system.
When they were not thinking of their Senior Cycle subjects, they were focused on ‘The TY Musical’, which has been a long-standing feature on the school calendar, and is the highlight of transition year in the Presentation. The musicals are always produced and performed to an excellent standard, and the present group have big boots to fill with last year’s Orla Rothwell being listed as the ‘Best Youth’ (F) in the 2019 Liam Murphy Awards for her portrayal of Mary Poppins.
The next few weeks will be very busy as the girls perfect dance routines, rehearse lines, and paint the set and props in advance of this year’s highly anticipated musical ‘Hairspray’. The show will be performed at 7.30pm on 3rd, 4th and 5th March in the school gym. Tickets cost €10 and are available from the school office (051) 376584.
Giant Paired Science Class
Our students from Mr. Clancy’s First Year and Transition Year Science classes participated in the Giant Paired Science Class in the Tower Hotel on Wednesday 15th January. The event was hosted by Calmast STEM reach program from WIT and was held in conjunction with many other schools with over 300 students attending.
The Paired Science joined Transition Year students with First Year students in developing their understanding of MS (Multiple Sclerosis) and Cancer. This event also had participation from Sanofi and Eirgen, pharmaceutical companies who produce medicines involved in treating MS and Cancer. Speakers from both companies outlined their paths to careers in STEM related industry.
Students also learned about the study and career paths available in STEM at WIT.
A highlight of the day was the personal experience from a cancer survivor who explained his journey through lung cancer from diagnosis to surgery and chemotherapy/radiotherapy. He was part of the SOLAS centre choir and the crowd joined with the in singing “You are my Sunshine” at the end of the event.
It was a truly educational and informative event and we look forward to further participation with Calmast/WIT in future events.
Visitors from France
Our Fifth Year students were excited to extend a ‘Céad Míle Fáilte’ as they extended a hearty welcome to a group of 17 students and their two teachers from Lyceé Jules Rieffel, in our twin town, St. Herblain in Nantes.
As well as discovering what life in a secondary school in Ireland was like, the visitors had a chance to sample the cultural and scenic delights of the sunny South East, with excursions to Kilkenny, Wexford, the Medieval museum and the Viking museum. Our girls were very proud to show off their school and their city, along with some fancy footwork as they guided the group through the steps of ‘Ionsaí na hÍnse’! It was also very interesting for our Pres girls to gain an insight into life in school in France through the presentations our visitors made, and we are already looking forward to a return visit in October.
Global Schools Programme
Four of our Transition Year students were inspired last week, as they joined with more than 37 students from 7 schools to participate in the Global Schools Programme annual conference in the Manor Youth Centre, to learn about Ireland’s International role, as the next generation of ambassadors, aid workers, peace- keepers and diplomats.
The topic of the week was ‘Fast Fashion’, and the students were shocked to learn about the huge impacts of buying from fast fashion brands, who mass produce clothes by using cheap labour supplied by developing countries. It was truly disconcerting to consider that most of the clothes made for fashion brands are made by people the same age as them, who miss out on the opportunity to receive an education or a fair wage. They also learned about how they could make a difference, and hope that they will inspire younger people to make a difference when they deliver workshops in local primary schools in the coming weeks.
The gorgeous smell of cakes wafted around the corridors of the school on 23nd January as student a mix of junior and senior students delighted our senses with an amazing display of culinary talents in our school bake-off. Some very lucky teachers had the difficult, albeit enviable, task of selecting a winner, but finally, after much tasting, deemed Maimouna Traore’s cake to be the Piece de résistance, and awarded her with the first prize. Well done also to Damiana Gabrielli, in second place, Becky Furlong, in third place, and to Hannah Cummins, whose cake was highly commended by the judges.
Green Schools Committee
The Green Schools Committee has been actively working towards potentially acquiring another green flag for our school, the Travel Flag, these past couple of weeks. The aim of the committee is to promote more sustainable travel to students.
The first phase of this project began last week, with six Fifth Year students taking to the street to conduct a survey of the vehicles and their occupants passing by our school. The girls were amazed to discover that in just fifteen minutes, over 1000 vehicles passed by, with mostly a single occupant! The committee realise that there is a lot of hard work to be done to continue to improve our school’s environment.
Catholic Schools Week
During this last week in January, we were all encouraged to live in harmony with God’s creation, in keeping with the theme of this year’s theme. Every day, a thought was shared, to encourage students and staff to see that we have a responsibility to care for the earth and the future of every one of God’s creatures.