As I write it is hard to believe that May is upon us again. What a busy
and successful year it has been. In the period of exam pressure
for students and teachers alike, it is important to take the time to
reflect on what we have achieved in the past few months here in
Two subject inspections took place this year in Science/Biology and
Irish. As with Geography and Music the previous year, the reports
gave great recognition for the wonderful work being done in both
Our sparkling new windows are now fully installed. We have
increased the number of computers by adding 15 machines to a
second IT lab.
The links with DCU continue apace and students throughout
the school have benefited from a wide range of programmes,
including Discover DCU, Take Five, DCU Debating and Easter
revision courses for 3rd and 6th year students.
The healthy eating policy has been extended with lunches including
sandwiches or roll, bottled water and a piece of fruit, for 1 euro/1
euro 50 cents.
We have celebrated with success on the basketball court and
in Art, English essay, Drama and choir competitions. Visitors from
Roof was a great success, The Plough and the Stars performed by
our Drama Club and Mercy Melodies - made special by the fact
that our Finnish visitors joined us in music and song.
students will benefit from scholarships to
Our Junior Certificate students are facing their biggest challenge
to date and we hope their efforts are rewarded in June. It’s a
bittersweet time for departing Leaving Certificate students who
are naturally anxious to perform well in their final examinations, yet
excited about the next phase in their lives. We wish them well.
We also bid a fond farewell to Ms. Irene Whelehan. Irene has
committed almost all of her teaching career - 38 years in fact - to
the welfare of the students of
listening ear to the girls when necessary, encouraging them always
to give their best, not just in the sporting arena but in all aspects of
school life. I know that all of us in the
wish her good health and happiness as she begins a new phase of
her life in
Of course we are already planning for next year and look forward
to the refurbishment of our Science labs. Students will then be
able to avail of the most modern science labs in
our outstanding teachers. Over the summer months we will also
enhance the teaching and learning tools in
the provision of at least one interactive white board and a number
of digital projectors.
Finally, I would like to thank all the teachers and support staff,
parent’s association, Student Council, Board of Management, and
you the parents and students for all that you contribute to life in
Beannacht Dé ar an obair agus go d’té sibh slan sabhaile ar ais ag
deireadh an tsamhraidh.
When I was young the “old folks” used to say to us then,
“young ones” that as you get older the years fly by “just like
the blink of an eye”. Never a truer word was said!!! It is hard to
believe that I have taught in this school for the past 38 years,
…… since 1969. When I first started the school was called Virgo
and as you now know it is called
During the time I have spent here, I have seen off a lot of Principals and I have had
the privilege of teaching every single student that
set foot in
amazing to think that very many of my past students are mothers, grandmothers
and some are also near retirement age. It’s a funny old world!!
So what shall I miss most?
I will miss all the staff, students and my teaching colleagues. I will also miss the
kindness that people have shown me over the years. The end of year student
-teacher matches (despite my best efforts to help the students win by sending
off teacher after teacher -the teachers still remain victorious in all sports -hockey,
soccer, basketball and rounders).
So what shall I not miss?
The Sunday evening blues, getting up early, refereeing matches in the rain and
Saturday morning matches.
I would like to wish my 6th years the best of luck in June and I hope that they all
have a wonderful life. I will be thinking about all of you as I sit in my sun room in West
send her to than
Best wishes, Irene Whelehan
It is a very exciting time for the schools in the local
area as a new programme has been launched
which aims to improve the number of students
staying in school and the quality of their participation
in school. This new programme is called the Coolock
School Completion Programme and Coordinator,
Linda Devitt, was recently appointed. Linda is based
and Scoil Chaitriona Girls. Linda will be organising
lunchtime activities (hip hop dancing, sports, music
etc.), after school activities (homework clubs and
study groups) and summer programmes, she will also
be helping out with the already successful breakfast
Linda if you have any queries or suggestions about
the school completion programme and what you
think will work well.
The students council had a very successful year. Attendance at meetings was excellent and
discussions were lively and enjoyable. The council requested that students be allowed outside
at lunchtimes during the fine weather. This has worked well and students have been very cooperative.
The highlight of the year was the sponsored walk. Council members worked very hard
distributing sponsorship cards collecting money and in general creating a positive atmosphere.
Over 3000 euros were raised. It has been agreed that some of the money will be spent on
“cheering up” the toilet area. More details on this in the next newsletter. Wishing you all a great
summer and thanks again for all your contribution during the year.
The Drama Club went to the Globe Theatre in
the theatre we worked with a Shakespearian
actor learning new ways of approaching
acting. We then went on a fantastic open-top
bus tour of all the sights in
Ms. Niland and Ms. Griffin
THE PLOUGHAND THE STARS
Congratulations to all the girls in
the Junior Drama Club for their
wonderful performance of Sean O
Casey’s renowned play The Plough
and the Stars. They worked very
hard to put this timeless classic on
for students, family and friends on
the 9th May. To celebrate their
success, the club enjoyed a day
a Shakespearian workshop in the
Globe. Working with actors from
the Royal Shakespeare Society was
exciting and inspiring. Many thanks
to all who helped with this years
production especially Michael
O‘Donohoe, Stephanie Byrne,
Danielle Barry and Ciara Coyle.
Enjoy the Summer girls!
and Amy Dunne
Our 4th year play was Fiddler on the Roof. This
was done in conjunction with the Transition Year
was Sarah and our backstage manager was
Susan and our costume designer was Pauline
and our director Jimmy. The musical started on
the 13th of March and finished on the 15th to
a packed house. Overall, it took eight weeks
to prepare but the end result was worth all the
effort. On the first night we were all extremely
anxious and nervous and needless to say
tempers were a little bit frayed, but once the
show started everybody relaxed and found
the experience memorable. A lot of friendships
were made and we would encourage all
future 4th year students to participate.
Ms. Daltún and Ms. Doherty
exchange programme in 2007. This will involve
members of the school choir spending 5 days in
During the month of April, the initial stage of the
Exchange Programme took place with Nurmo Upper
Secondary School Choir and Band visiting
They were hosted by students and staff of Mercy
College. The exchange began on Wednesday the
25th of April and lasted for five days, with a very
busy schedule for both choirs. Nurmo and Mercy
choir performed two concerts together on Thursday
afternoon and evening, with songs performed by
both choirs in Irish, Finnish and English. The Finnish
visitors also took part in classes based on Irish Culture,
Music and History.
They were also treated to an Irish food fair on Friday
morning. They tasted and had a chance to prepare
a lot of different Irish dishes including Irish Stew,
Coddle, Colcannon, scones with smoked salmon
and Bailey’s Cheese Cake. In the afternoon Nurmo
visited many of the main tourist spots in
College. The day finished with a concert of Irish Music
in Temple Bar.
Nurmo Choir also performed at the vigil mass on
Saturday in St Brendan’s Church. This was a very
enjoyable experience for the choir. The exchange
finished with a party for both choirs and the host
families in the school. We were entertained by a
traditional Irish Music group called Cibé, and were
even treated to a sean nós dance. The exchange
was a great success and the choir are looking
forward to making the return part of the exchange
We’d like to take this opportunity to thank all those
involved for their support. In particular we’d like to
thank Mr. Young and Mrs. Dunwoody for their expert
classes given to the Finnish group on Irish History and
Irish Cookery. We would also like to thank all the
families that hosted the choir from
them the exchange would not have been possible.
Members of Nurmo Upper
Secondary School Choir and band performing in
Feis Ceoil 2007
Hitting the Right Note!
year’s entry in the Feis Ceoil
was a 33-strong choir in the Turner Huggard Memorial Cup
competition. This was the first time the school choir has entered
the 3-part competition in the Feis Ceoil.
The choir sang two songs, Evening Song by Zoltan Kodaly and The
Rhythm of Life by Cy Coleman. The competition, which involved
schools from all over
hall, Ballsbridge on March 12th 2007. The girls sang wonderfully
and received special commendation from the adjudicator for
their enthusiastic and tuneful performance. We look forward to
entering the 3-part competition again next year.
Well done girls!
Junior and Leaving Certificate Practical exams
The Junior and Leaving Certificate practical
examinations took place in April directly after the
Easter break. The Junior Certificate students were
examined by Ms. Yvonne Muldoon and performed
on a variety of instruments including Guitar, Piano,
Recorder and Voice. The girls performed very well
and were complimented by Ms. Muldoon on their
excellent performances and the welcome they
gave her in school.
The Leaving Certificate students were examined by
Ms. Gabrielle Harte over a two-day period. The girls
sang a selection of songs from musicals, popular
songs and classical melodies in both groups and
as soloists. Some of the students also performed
on piano and guitar. Sixth year students performed
very well and their extensive preparation was
evident on exam day. Well done to all.
Our annual Mercy Melodies concert took place during the
Finnish Exchange Programme on April 26th. As well as the School
Choir and the Nurmo School Choir we also had soloists from 3rd
and 6th year performing at the concert. One of our past pupils
Lisa Kenny also came along to accompany Sara Kenny on
Guitar. The concert was a great success.
Our annual Choir exams took place in March of this year. Three
choirs took part in the exams this year. Our first year choir did
exceptionally well in their first choir exam. Congratulations to
all the choirs. The comments from the examiner were very
complimentary and very encouraging.
Guest speaker Fiona Cunningham Guest speaker Fiona Cunningham Anne Madden and Sr. Moira Lynam. Sr Moira Lynam, Chairman of the
presents the award for Best Leaving presents the award for Best Junior Anne is studying to be a Primary Board of Management Claire
Certificate 2006 to Aisling Keenan. Certificate 2006 to Danielle Barry school teacher in St. Patrick’s O’Connell with the Sr. Mary
Aisling is now studying in DCU College Gonzalez Perpetual Trophy for the
highest Leaving Certificate result in Mathematics. Claire is studying
Science and Physiology in Carlow
and Aoife Brennan
Supreme Work 1st Year, Rebecca O'Hara,
Sarah Byrne, Beth Valentine, Natasha Rickaby
Overall Student of The Year, Sinéad Collins
Supreme Work 2nd Year, Grace CArr, Kelly Bruen,
Jessica Whitley, Ciara Murphy
and Christiana Fabelurin
and Carley Tyrell
Supreme Work 4th Year, Amy Dunne,
Supreme Work 3rd Year, Sarah Smyht,
Kairi Nguyen, Samantha Kehoe, Shauna
Prenergast, Amy Delaney, Rebecca Gilligan,
Ayan Ali Gudade
1st Year Best Academic Students, Áine O'Connor,
Orlaith Keenan, Nicole Colton, Sinéad Mc Evoy
2nd Year Best Academic Students, Ciara Redmond, Laura
Kelly, Kattie Coffey, Amy Brannigan
3rd Year Best Academic Students, Bláthanaid Martin,
Aoife Brennan, Shauna Prizeman, Diana Volovei
5th Year Best Academic Students, Caroline Carney,
Bernadette Hogan, Louise Donoghue
6th Year Best Academic Students, Christiana Fabelurin, Jennifer
4th Year Best Academic Students, Danielle Hurley,
Louise Clancy Andrews, Danielle Barry
Supreme Work 5th Year, Laura Deighnan, Kim Than Ho,
Lisa O'Reilly, Grace Kavanagh
Supreme Work 6th Year, Lindsay Kavanagh, Julie Kelly, Orla Healy,
Karen Mc Loughlin, Deirdre McCall
This was a very successful season for the Basketball programme. Mercy Basketball Club won the Women’s Superleague National Title
for the first time in a fantastic final in the
all finished well up the leagues.
We competed at 1st year, 2nd year and Cadette levels in the Basketball All Ireland school leagues and what a year it was for the
2nd years. They won the Leinster Title at B level, beating a very good Loreto Beaufort team in the finals in Inchicore 46-37. The team
then went on to win the Bronze medal at the All Ireland finals in Thurles beating teams from Naas, Cork and Kilkenny but losing to a
good team from Dingle in the round robin format. However, the future looks very bright for these young basketball players who are
The First and Second years travelled to Barcelona at Easter as part of the Mercy Club and reached their first European final losing by only
two points to a very tall German team!! This was a brilliant achievement for the girls and their behaviour on the trip was excellent.
All of these successes could not be achieved without the co-operation of the parents and the continued support for the Basketball
programme within the school by the Principal Ms Dwyer and Deputy Principal Mr O’Mahony.
Yours in Sport, Mark Ingles (Basketball Coach)
glory Man United !! 28 girls from
the 28th April to witness a thrilling match that all but secured the Premiership title
for Manchester United (much to the annoyance of the
few Liverpool and
fans in our group!). The match, however, was just one of the many highlights of our
action packed weekend. These included a tour of Anfield, bowling, rock-climbing,
bumper cars ( my neck still hurts!!) and SHOPPING!!!! There was also a surprise visit
to Old Trafford and a chance meeting with some of
the stars of
at the Trafford Centre,
Well done to all the girls who travelled. Your excellent behaviour and good humour
made the weekend one to remember. A special thanks to Ms Dwyer, Ms Boyle
and Ms O’Regan for their hard work and support throughout the trip.
Kerrie has reached the
top level at soccer,
playing both U17 and
is currently playing for
Raheny United. During
the Easter break Kerrie
the U17s Irish team and
win the tournament.
Hopefully, there will be
more to come when the
Recent Educational research has shown that “Reading for pleasure” is an
essential component in improving children’s
attainment of literacy skills. (
Umbold, 2006). With this in mind
literacy campaigns this year:
DEAR (Drop Everything & Read)
January saw silence descend on Mercy for 20 minutes each day for a week.
During that time every member of the school community stuck his/her nose in a
book and enjoyed a quiet read.
This challenge was to read one book a week for five weeks. This was a huge
success with most students enjoying the project and reaching their target. The
girls will hopefully continue to read in the future.
Once again we are indebted to the members of the local community who
gave so willingly of their time and enabled us to run this programme. Over the
past number of years this programme has been a great success with both adults
and students. It allows for true co-operation between students, school and the
community. As always new volunteers are always welcome.
In October Ms. Boyle started the Breakfast Club
and since then, there have been plenty of students
“popping in“ for a cup of tea. When it first started,
there were about eight or nine students but now there
are approximately 27 students. It is great fun and an
even greater start to the day. So, if you are ever in
school before eight thirty am come and join us.
Shauna Byrne, 1st year (Bronte)
from Room 35 went on a school trip to
They spent four days visiting places of historical and
cultural interest such as the
Museum, Notre Dame and the Arc de Triomphe. They
relaxed while cruising the River Seine and enjoyed the
thrills and spills of Disneyland Paris. A great time was
had by all.
The students of Lee visited the Helix on the 7th
December to see a production of Sleeping Beauty.
Everyone enjoyed this exciting and entertaining version
of the well-known story.
Ron Tullie and Maria Markey are currently doing
a Fire Brigade course with us. Ron is a fire
officer for the past 25 years and is stationed in
Rathfarnham. Maria is stationed in Phibsboro
for the past 5 years. During the past eighteen
months they have visited over 40 schools and
talked to over 4,000 students. The course covers
areas such as: chemistry of fire, fire extinguishers,
emergency call outs and an introduction to first
aid ( burns, fractures, wounds, falls, CPR). After
the ten weeks, there was an evaluation drill
and a final exam. It was a very worthwhile and
valuable experience. I was also delighted to see
that many women are now taking up a career
as a Fire Officer.
A DAY IN
THE LIFE OF A CORNFLAKE
There is no movement ….. just lying here sprawled out, not a worry in the
world …. except for the fact I am being squashed by the others. The
journey was long …. a few injuries occurred …. some lost their limbs and
some didn’t make it to the sealing of the package. But I made it along with
hundreds of survivors.
What’s that? Clicking of heels gets louder as they approach …. It stops …..
I’m getting scared now … the thought of what is on the other side scares
me. A slight tilt of the box sends us rolling, rolling around. I take it she is an
ingredient reader, she must be on a diet!!! Her heels go clicking again, a
big sigh of relief for us flakes, usually the ingredient readers use low fat milk
or worse soya milk. Its still again not a word until a high pitched scream
from a crying child disturbs it …. Its getting a little bit louder, I think they are
approaching the cereal isle… we are all praying that the weetabix gets it
this time. We wait…. The screaming of the child wanting coco-pops sends
shivers down my spine. But the mother thinks cheerios are better…. “buy
the things will ya I can’t take any more of this screaming” and then it hits
me…. Why doesn’t the kid want to buy us cornflakes? I mean I understand
that the chicken on the front isn’t all that exciting but we taste good. It
doesn’t seem right to me…. We’ve just been flung into a trolley …. We
were off guard due to the racket of the kid ….flip flop the cardboard box
is open …. We wait for it… the foil has been opened …. There’s light ….. A
dirty large hairy hand is touching us… it swallows me whole and I just lay
here waiting for nature to take its course.
Leanne Kavanagh 5th year
On the 7th March, 3rd year students went
on a Geography field trip to Powerscourt Co.
Wicklow. We filled out worksheets based on
the rivers and waterfall. The aim of these sheets
is to give us a better understanding about the
formation of rivers and waterfalls.
a brilliant time. Many thanks to Ms. Whelehan,
Ms. Keogh, Ms. Conneely and Mr Lyons who
organised our trip.
The fifth year students have been very busy with many career related activities since
Christmas. They all attended Opportunities 2007 in
Service gave ten 5th year students the opportunity to spend a day with current DCU
students. This involved going to lectures, Labs., tutorials, the computing facilities and
the library. The first ever DCU Access Debating Competition was held on the 21st
were “that this House would criminalize parents that smack their children" and "that
this house believes that the Irish language is a dead language” Congratulations to all
students who participated. Thirty Achievement Awards were presented to 4th and 5th
year students in the Mahony Hall in the Helix. The students were nominated by their
teachers for their hard work and success in one of the five different areas:
Art and Culture
The summer holidays will see great noise and building works going
on in the Labs. By
updated, refurbished laboratories. The labs will boast all of the
latest in equipment and technologies for schools.
Sixth Year students enjoyed a very
pleasant day in Newbridge Demense
as they studied the flora and fauna
of the area. Ecology is an important
part of the Leaving Certificate Biology
course and this is always educational
Two fifth year students (Amy Dunne
and Shaunna Dwyer) attended a
Jessica Brady, 5th year,
Sutton Art Awards
Shabnam Azad and Claire O’Reilly
Ms. D. Teeling
(Careers and Guidance Counsellor)
Well done to the girls in Heaney for their Medieval project. They
worked hard to create a stone castle and a motte and bailey castle.
Parents were invited to a presentation on Thursday 10th May.
Shauna Hutton, Laura Moran and Jenny Prior (5th Year)
This year as part of the LCVP. some of the 5th year students
organised a Talent show for 1st and 2nd years. A lot of
students took part and showed their hidden talents. There
were many different acts including singing, dancing and
acting. The day was a great success and the money
that was raised from the show was donated to the Jack
and Jill Foundation. Many thanks to Ms. Cassidy and Ms.
Annmarie Byrne, 5th year
As part of the LCVP fifth year class the students that
study Biology and/or Chemistry attended a seminar in St.
we attended talks on the following:
Laboratories and Research Deptartment
When the talks had finished we were given a tour of the
hospital by the medical students. At the end of the tour we
arrived back to the lecture hall for a summary of the day’s
course. I thought that the day was very worthwhile and it
gave myself and all who attended a very good insight into
potential career options.
Bernadette Hogan, 5th year
The fifth year LCVP class organised a Quiz for first years
in the Hall on Thursday the 8th March. Throughout the
event, there were a number of spot prizes. The main aim
of this project was to help us with our organisational and
communication skills and it was also used to encourage
all the 1st year classes to mix with each other. The winners
Ms. E. Byrne
1st years Eliot went on a field trip just before Easter. We
walked up to the visible speedometer on the
armed with measuring tapes, flags and stopwatches.
We measured the time it took vehicles to travel a certain
distance at certain speed, attracting a lot of interest from
passers by!! We used the results to see the relationship and
eventually derive formulas for speed, distance and time.
Students agreed it was a lot more fun than learning off the
formulae from the book.
Amy Armstrong (5th Year)
the 27th June, I joined the 6th class of
to make my Confirmation in St Brendans Church. My teacher Ms. Quinn
and the rest of my form class helped me prepare. When it came to the big
day I was 10% prepared and a 100% SCARLET!! The reason why I made my
was because I was 14 when I moved to
and the age for Confirmation in
Quinn suggested it to me I thought ……. Why not?
In the end I had a brilliant day with my family and friends and although
it looked like I was on hormone tablets amongst the 6th class students, I
couldn’t have asked for a better time. To top it all off, my classmates threw
me a surprise party. Deadly!!
Have you ever considered the life of a locker? What lies inside? The lost
sandwich or apple!! Or perhaps the lost copy, the one that had your
homework in !! Just imagine everything being jammed into a small space
and you cannot find anything …. sounds very familiar, just like a teenagers
room but on a smaller scale!!
In March, the 1st year classes had a competition to see who had the tidiest
locker. Everybody did their best to keep their lockers neat and tidy. Ms.
Keogh and Mr O’Mahony came to each class and inspected all the lockers.
The prizes were awarded as follows:
Sarah Byrne (Bronte)
Nayla Abdulla (Elliot)
Lizzie Warren (Lee)
Louise O. Toole (Austen)
We were presented with our prizes during assembly, cosmetic bags with
makeup inside. They were really lovely.
As another year draws to a close we would like to thank the parents and
the students for all their hard work during the year and the association
themselves -without them it would not be possible. Thanks to the LCVP
5th year students for all their help for the 6th year graduation…….brilliant
sandwich makers!! Many thanks to the prefects and student council for
their help in the Easter raffle. To remind you that the 1st prize went to Rachel
Conlon in first year and 2nd prize to Emma Lally’s father and 3rd prize went
to Ms. Dunwoody. All the money raised will go into school funds……total
raised was nearly 1000euros, To the 4th year students a job well done and
to say a big thanks to Mrs Mc Call for giving her time so generously over the
past ten years. Good luck to her daughter Deirdre and the rest of the 6th
and 3rd year exam students. Finally, on behalf of the parents association we
would like to say a fond farewell to Ms Whelehan, a great person, great fun
and a great teacher. Happy retirement Irene.
Another busy term and the following represents some of the HSCL. news.
Alderian Counselling, the local committee support group for parents, a
Rainbow group for children and an Art course for adults. A very successful
Computer course for adults facilitated by Mary Boyle a member of staff, was
also established this term. A large
meeting of HCSL. teachers from the
area was hosted in the Parents’ room. Special thanks to Monica Heade, 5th
year students and Linda Devitt for their huge contribution.
Editor Paula Downes
& Printed by Premiere Print, Unit B1, Centrepoint,