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Northside Partnership youth Leadership Training

Mentoring Team

Rotary Youth Leadership Competition

Counting Sand










Home School Community Liaison News





Student Council

"BECKHAM" comes to Mercy College





As this term draws to a close we can reflect on the many and varied activities that take place in Mercy College. In August, we celebrated the wonderful Leaving Certificate results, and looked on with pride as our class of 2005 achieved the points they needed to pursue degrees and careers in primary and secondary teaching, business, computers, engineering, science and many other fields of endeavour. The excitement continued in September as our Junior Certificate student celebrated more academic success.


Mercy's great achievement in the arts and music continues and we look forward to the next term when students of 4th Year record and launch their CD, and finish a mosaic they are currently designing. They will also be involved in a week-long computer course in DCU and in the annual musical with the students from Chanel College.


Our Girls continue to give generously to charity. This term we have raised money for Temple Street and for children with special needs. 5th Years organised Christmas shoeboxes, filled with toy s, clothes and goodies for the children of Chernobyl.


We are always delighted to hear hope to about the continued success of former students. In the new term we launch a past pupils association.


None of the events and activities that are outlined in these pages would be possible were it not for the huge efforts of our teaching staff, the members of our office and maintenance teams, our Parent's Association and Board of Management, all of whom work tirelessly to ensure that each girl attending Mercy gets the best possible education. I wish to take this opportunity to acknowledge that work, to thank them and to wish them well for the coming year.


Finally, may I wish you and your family an enjoyable Christmas and a happy peaceful 2006.

Patricia Dwyer



Congratulations to the Leaving Certificate class of 2005 who are settling into

their new courses very well. Teaching and the caring professions including

social studies and nursing were the top course choice for the class of 2005.

Mercy College is so proud that 5 students from the class of '05 are in first year

in St. Patricks College, Drumcondra. Other students have taken places in UCD

and DCU.

Good luck to all of you as you start on your new journey.

Ms. Coneely



This was set up by a local lady Patricia O'Brien. It is an organisation that allows

people to send gifts to the less fortunate children of Bellarouse in Russia, who

have been affected by the Chernobyl disaster.

This year the 5th years put together a box each, containing gifts

such as colouring books, toys, hats, scarves, sweets and colouring pencils for

children between the ages of 4 to 12 years. Together we collected over 35 boxes.

Many thanks to the students and staff for their contributions.

Amy Widdis and Amy McLeod 5th year


Northside Partnership youth Leadership Training

Five of our senior students have completed a year-long training

programme organised by Northside Partnership and held in various venues around the city and beyond, including R.T.E., Dublin Fire

Brigade Training Centre and Carlingford Adventure Centre.


The girls - Suzanne Blake, Holly Duff, Orla Healy, Linda Hennessy and

Lynn Malone, completed modules in public speaking, mentoring, report writing, project management and outdoor activities. Such was the impact of our nominees on the programme that we have had four 5th year students accepted on the coming year's programme:

Sinead Collins, Lisa Birch, Claire Carthy and Lorna Caffrey.


Mentoring Team

The transition from primary to secondary school can often be a worrying time for 1st years and their parents. Here in Mercy College we are very keen to make the transfer as smooth as possible for the girls. The Year Head and form teachers look after the girls and each Junior class has two 6th year prefects who visit the class at break time, to help the girls with any minor difficulties and offer support where necessary. This yeas we have added an extra level of support - the 5th year mentoring team. These senior students have responsibility for a number of 1st years. The mentors visit the younger students each day, helping them to be organised for class. This helps the 1st years both from a practical and social point of view.


Rotary Youth Leadership Competition


In November Aisling Keenan of 6th year represented Mercy at the regional finals of the Rotary Youth Leadership competition in Clontarf Golf Course. Having come through the school heat that involved interview and testing on issues of general knowledge and world events Aisling was an able representative of the school. Though she did not win the coveted trip to Strasbourg she enjoyed the experience and it will no doubt be of benefit in her chosen future career in journalism.


Counting Sand

As part of the sixth year Geography programme, we went on a field trip to Balscadden Bay. As this trip accounts for 20% of our Leaving Certificate exams Ms. Keogh and Ms. O'Leary had our undivided attention. We had a lot of fun doing our Cliff survey and beach fabric analysis i.e. measuring sand !!! We got into groups and each group had to do a task on the day. Our group used equipment that we made, known as the viewfinder to draw sketches of the cliff. We also use a bbleometre to measure the rocks. It was a very enjoyable field trip, despite the cold and the flies that seemed to attack us at every instant.

Laura Walsh 6th year


The students from room 35 and

Heaney visited the Dail on

Wednesday 19th October. The trip

was arranged by Mary Wallace T.D.

While there, we listened to various

T.D.'s discussing important issues,

including our Taoiseach Bertie

Aherne (FF), Enda Kenny (FG) and

Pat Rabbitte (Lab). Our local T.D.

Sean Haughey (FF) kindly gave us a brief history of all the former

Taoiseach. We ended our day in McDonalds, for a well earned meal.




A team comprising Fiona Healy, Aisling Keenan, Gemma Smyth, Blathnaid Martin and subs Amy Delaney and Caroline McCormack took part in the Thomas Crosbie Holdings school quiz in the Montrose Hotel recently,

Though up against strong opposition in the guise of CBS Monkstown and Castleknock College the girls fought well, and were only beaten in the last round. All is not lost however, as they will participate in the next round in January against yet-to-be-announced opposition.




Four senior students, Nicola Gorman, Lisa McLoughlin, Anne Madden and Claire O'Connell were narrowly beaten in the Credit Union school quiz, losing in a tie breaker. However, they did not go away empty handed, taking home 100 euros for their trouble.





Linda Talbot

Linda left Mercy College in 2000, she took

a gap year before taking a place in Brunel

University, London to study a Business

degree. She graduated with honours in

Summer 2005. Linda is currently taking

another gap year and will go

on to do a Higher Diploma

in Education.



The school is currently raising

finance to purchase chairs for the

1st and 2nd year classrooms. Each

chair cost 25 and the total cost will

be in the region of 4000euros.So as

you can see a lot of effort by the

staff, parents and students is

required. To date we have raised


We would like to thank the following


Seamus Ward (Accountant), Bank of


Suzanne Kavanagh-UCI Cinema,

Students and Staff.

If any parent would like to sponsor a

chair or a leg or back or any part of

the chair all donations, no matter

how small, would be gratefully

accepted. Many thanks and I will

keep you posted.




Congratulations to the following 6th year students Claire O'Connell, Ciara Cumiskey, Rachel Ivie and

Aimee Carroll who received a cheque for 100euros and a Certificate from the DIT Aungier Street.

The award was presented to them by TV pundit George Hooke who enthralled the audience about his life as a student, an accountant and finally as a TV presenter. After the presentation, a buffet was provided. So what did the girls have to do to receive this award? They got the highest scores in their Summer test in each of the Business and Accountancy class, so it just goes to show that hard work does pay off!! We

hope that the present 5th years are taking note.

Ms. P.Downes Ms.S.Moloney Ms. M. Browne


Merry Christmas



Amanda Doyle

& Laura Deighan 4th year

We have been rehearsing for our forthcoming CD since September.

Ms.Daltun and Ms.Doherty's 4th year music classes are involved in making a CD. We have written to companies to assist with our sponsorship for the recording and promotion of our CD. R.T.E's Emma from the Den (who visited us early in November) along with her producer Pauline, have kindly offered help in promoting the CD by mentioning it on their programme and attending some of the recording sessions in January 2006. As a group, we have chosen a variety of songs to sing and record.

Soloists from our year will be performing in the recording studios.

We are currently holding a song-writing contest and the winning song will feature on our CD. The CD will be launched by 4th years at the 4th year open evening in May 2006. The CD will be available for general purchase in the school during lunchtime in May. A group of 4th years were involved with the cover design and we have chosen two charities that are important to us, The Marie Keating Foundation in aid of breast cancer research and Temple Street Hospital. They will benefit from all profits made from the sale of the CD. We will keep you updated

in future news letters.



We're looking forward to a visit from Ma Samba, a Dublin based Samba band in the Spring. Members of the band will come to Mercy College to conduct a 4 week Samba project with 2nd year JCSP music students. The participating students will attend a 2 hour workshop once a week for three weeks and will then perform Brazilian Samba music during the 4th year open week.

The students will have the opportunity to play a wide range of instruments from Brazil - drums, bells, tambourines and many more! They will learn how to play complicated rhythms and how all the different sounds connect together. We will have an update in the Summer newsletter.



On the 9th of November 2005, a group of fifth and sixth year music

students attended a workshop on their set pieces for the Leaving

Certificate in the National Concert Hall. The students heard

Tchaikovsky's "Romeo and Juliet Fantasy Overture" played by

a full orchestra, conducted by James Cavanagh from the Royal

Irish Academy of Music. Four musicians from the National Symphony

Orchestra played a modern "Piano Quartet" by the Irish composer,

Gerald Barry. J.S.Bach's cantana "Jesu der du Meine Seele" was

played by a small orchestra and accompanied by a choir and solo

singers. Overall, it was a very interesting experience. We listened to and

analysis of each work, accompanied by instrumental demonstrations,

and then heard a full performance of each piece. We were invited

to join in with the choir for the final movement of the Bach cantana.

We left with detailed notes on each piece and a better idea of how

they sound live. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and hope to visit

the National Concert Hall again in the near future.

Deirdre McCall and Elizabeth Gannon 5th year



After a very successful production of Willy Russell's Our Day Out

in May, the junior Drama Club of 2005/06 have started preparing

for the end of year show. Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet will be

performed next May and the girls are busy preparing costumes and

props. Auditions were held in November and the cast comprises of

1st, 2nd and 3rd year students.


The annual theatre trip took place on 9th December. The girls

enjoyed a production of the Secret Garden in the Helix Theatre. After

Christmas, they will continue working towards May and will avail of

workshops provided by Martin French from St. Patrick's College,

Drumcondra and the Gaiety Youth Group.

Ms. T. Niland


Home School Community Liaison News



The local committee which consists of principals, parents and students from Mercy College, Chanel College, Scoil Chaitriona Cailini, Scoil

Chaitriona Nai and St Brendan's Boys National School are continuing to meet in order to (a) share ideas and work together as a team across the schools because we are all serving the same families and (b) to share resources and facilities between the schools. The theme we've chosen to work on this year is how to promote a healthy lifestyle. Three speakers were invited to a meeting in the parents' room and Monday 14th November to address the issue of Healthy Eating, Exercise and Mental Health. After the presentations, the Committee worked in small groups on ideas to promote a healthy lifestyle across the schools.




The following classes have been running in the school during the term:

Art classes Every Thursday morning from 10am to 12am

facilitated by Yvonne O'Brien

Ageing with Confidence Every Thursday afternoon from 2pm to 4.30pm

facilitated by two experienced Counsellors from

Northside Counselling Service Ltd.,

We are planning to run a Computer class for beginners in January. This will take

place on Thursday afternoons from 4 to 5.30 and will be facilitated by a

teacher from Mercy College.

If you are interested in any of the above, please contact Maria Somers at

8480888 during school hours.



An after school homework club has been set up for some

1st year students and this runs in conjunction with Northside Area

Partnership, it runs on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons and is

facilitated by teachers from Chanel College and Mercy College.

Maria Somers



A meeting for the paired reading tutors was held in the parents

room on Monday November 28th at 10.30. This was facilitated by

Ms.Moran the JCSP co-ordinator and myself. Ms.Moran outlined the

aims and outcomes of paired reading. The paired reading groups will

start in January 2006. Sincere thanks to our groups of adults and tutors

who are parents, members of the local parish and retired teachers from

Mercy College. They do this on a voluntary basis and provide a positive

reading environment for our 1st year students and are great role

models. If a parent has any concerns about a student's education or

behaviour please feel free to contact me.



Two Rainbow groups for children bereaved by death or separation

continue to run this term. They are facilitated by two adults on a

voluntary basis and provide a great support.

Adlerian Counsellor, Vincent Byrne continues to provide support for

parents and children. He is available for parents in the parents' room

on Wednesday nights between 7.30 pm and 9.30 pm and on

Wednesday afternoons between 2.00 pm and 4.00 pm. All are

welcome and this service is free of charge.



On the 25th October, the 4th year students went on a trip to Carlingford

Adventure Centre. That night when we arrived, everyone put on their colourful wellies and went for a walk into the forest. During the day we went canoeing, raft building, rock climbing, abseiling and did the high ropes course. The high ropes course was a 30 foot climbing frame and

wasn't for the faint hearted.


A lot of people got over their fear of heights and of water and some just got over their fear of getting dirty! We all feel that we have got a lot

closer and it was a good bonding session.

We all loved the trip so much that when we were on our way home we were begging our teachers to bring us back again. Many thanks to

Ms.Rooney, Ms.Lalor and Ms. Harrison for taking the time out to bring us.

Laura Deighan



During September 4th, 5th and 6th year students attended the "Sculpture in Context" exhibition in the Botanics. This is the third year that the exhibition has been held in the gardens, and the third year we have attended. Artists create works to suit specific sites throughout the gardens - in the greenhouse, on the grounds, in the lakes or hiding on trees. Some are also displayed in the visitors centre which overlooks the gardens.


The idea of the visit is to give students an appreciation and awareness of Irish sculpture. And also to see how it works - or not in some cases, in different settings. The students pick their favourite pieces describe and draw them. They also pick two pieces they dislike and explain why. On return to school, they write an essay based on their day and we use the work they have seen as an influence on their own.


This year we were blessed with the weather, although 5th and 6th years did have some rain in the afternoon. We all had a great day walking around the gardens, getting some exercise, appreciating the stunning scenery and many sculptures. Hopefully we will continue to do so in the years to come.

Ms. Cassidy and Ms. Kearns



Many thanks to all those who brought in shopping tokens for

computers. This year we received a portable DVD burner which

we use to back up all the work done by students in the Computer

room network. We also used a USB drive to move data between

machines not on the network. Software was received for

Geography, Religion and Media Studies.

Mr Young



A warm welcome to all new students to the school library.

Congratulations to the Junior Cycle students who participated

in our first Book Club Review and to the winner, Stephanie Trimble.

A special thanks to the students who helped to organise the event

and to Blathnaid Martin for her art work. A selection of new titles

is available and I urge all our Junior and Senior cycle students

to maximise their use of the facility. On behalf of M.S.Readathon

I would like to thank those students who participated in the

competition. This year's total is in excess of 755 euros and monies

are still being received.

Ms. McAlister



Fifth year biology students enjoyed a good day in Trinity College

earlier this term. The group got to interview research students in

T.C.D. hear about research being done in Ireland and meet "real

live mathematicians". The mathematicians talked about their

careers in maths and explained the relevance of maths in life.


Student Council

A very important part of school life here in Mercy is the work of the student council. Each class elects its representative. They, along with the Head Girl and Deputy Head Girl meet to discuss issues and suggestions for improving life for everyone in the school community. The student council also plays a part in our charity work, undertaking various projects throughout the year.


"BECKHAM" comes to Mercy College


On the 29th November our class 2.4 had a visit from a member of

the ISPCA. She brought a dog called Beckham and talked to us about

him and other animals that were treated very badly in the Dublin area.

If we learned anything, it's that we should treat animals properly.

Susan Fox 2nd year




Sarah Smyth represented the school

in the Schools Games held in Santry

Stadium in September 2005 and

won the following medals in the All

Ireland Secondary Schools Final held

in Tullamore:

Gold 100 metres

Silver Shot Putt

Silver Discus

Sarah was also awarded a bronze

medal for the overall medal winner

in the 100metres / Shot Put / Discus

and Javelin.

Congratulations Sarah.

Ms. Maloney