Golden Jubilee Celebrations

What a weekend of celebrations was had on the last weekend in June!

The weekend began with all pupils going to the parish church at 12 noon on Friday, June 24th where Bishop Fintan Gavin con-celebrated mass with our parish priest Fr. Bernard Cotter. The mass was a beautiful ceremony marking 150 years since the building of the church and the Golden Jubilee of the school. The mass began with a procession of symbols that represent our parish and community including a Newcestown flag, a flag from Ukraine, a photo of Bishop Galvin, Holy water from a holy well in Killowen and symbols of all the sacraments that have happened in our church since it’s construction.

Michael Scanlon, Chairperson of the Board of Management, addressed the Bishop and the congregation and thanked all involved in preparing the ceremony, especially the school choir ably led by Miss Aoife O’Driscoll.

After the mass, refreshments were served in the school, thanks to Maria Curran and the wonderful Parent’s Council and there followed a school concert where all the classes entertained the Bishop, members of the Board of management and friends of the school. The Bishop planted a tree on the school grounds to mark this wonderful occasion.

Book Launch

The weekend committee swung into action on Friday evening as the clouds came : they reverted to plan B and put as many chairs under the marquee and in the classrooms as possible to enable the crowd to hear Paudie Palmer ,M.C. for the night. It was lovely to see so many retired teachers, former staff members, former pupils, parents past and present listening to the speeches by Michael Scanlon, Dorothy O’Donovan, Con O’Donovan and Michael Crowley.  Candles were lit for all our deceased pupils  over the 50 years which was very poignant.

The history book: ‘Caoga Bliain ag Fas’ is a fascinating account of 50 years of Community Education in the parish which was put together by a fantastic team of volunteers: Michael Crowley, Jerry O’Mahony, Donie Keane, Jeremiah Lordan, Con O’Donovan, Sean Crowley, Ann Canty, Maureen Power , Dorothy O’Donovan and Michael Scanlon.

The night proved a great success with lots of interesting artefacts and photos on display around the school and plenty of time to chat and reminisce over a cup of tea again provided by our ever generous parents.

History Talk

The school opened on Saturday at noon and a very large crowd passed through looking at how the school building has developed over the 50 years. Of particular interest were the old roll books, some dating back to the last century and covering all pupils who attended the four parish schools of Gurranes, Mount Pleasant, Newcestown and Mawbeg.

Michael Crowley gave a very interesting talk on the history of education in the parish with contributions from local historian Sean Crowley.

Family Fun Day

All staff threw themselves into organising a great family day on Sunday afternoon with fun races, target throws, dancing, an obstacle course, a toddlers bike area with face painting and the penalty shootout proving to be very busy as everyone wanted a chance to beat Mr Meade and have their face painted by Mary Mc Aree!

Every child (and some adults!) got a golden jubilee medal for participating in the fun races and a special thanks needs to go to the pupils of the school who contributed their ideas to make this day so successful!

The Playground committee were delighted with the support they got for their draw which raised over 2000 euro to help build our community playground.

Let us hope that the next 50 years will bring about change that will benefit every child and staff member that comes through our door every morning.