AVS Notes 11th September 2017

     AVS Notes 11th September 2017

A warm welcome back to all our students and staff! We would like to wish everyone a successful new academic year and we hope you enjoyed your summer holidays. We are delighted to especially welcome our new staff members. With our growing number of students we also welcome on board our new Deputy Principal Mr Johnny Sweeney.

First Year Parents Information Night

There will be a First Year Parent Information Night held in the school on Monday 25th September at 7pm. This evening informs parents on the various matters arising for first years.

Leaving Cert Results

Congratulations to the class of 2017 on their outstanding Leaving Cert results. We are proud of your hard work and the application that you have shown to your studies here in the school. We are delighted that you have reached way beyond your potential and wish you all the very best in the future. Thank you to all of our staff for their continued care, hard work and support to these students over their years here. We can all be very proud of these fine young people. High results were achieved throughout the school with over 40 per cent of our students achieving over 400 points. We congratulate Emily Mc Gill on her achievement of the maximum number of points 624 and the 18 students who received over 500 points. AVS students were accepted into colleges all around the country, both far and wide and many CAO offers have been accepted.

Junior Cert Results

Junior Cert results will be given out on Wednesday 13th Sept at 2pm in the Gym. All students should attend school as usual on that day. Parent/Guardian must accompany each student to get results and can meet in the gym at 2pm. TY students will also receive their Junior Cert results on Wednesday at 2pm in the Gym. All TY students will return from Gartan at 2pm where Parents/Guardian can meet them at the gym and must accompany each student to get the results. Best of luck to all our students!

TV Documentary

The Abbey Vocational School features in an RTE TV Documentary on ‘The Classroom Divide” on Monday 18th September after the 9 o’clock news. The piece features the school, various interviews around education and access to third level.

Evening Study

Evening Study commences this week for all those Junior and Leaving Certs who wish to attend. Please collect and complete the form at the school office in order to take part.

Welcome First Years

We especially welcome our new first years and the many new girls and boys that have joined other year groups. Thank you to the staff for the welcoming coffee morning for the new students held last week. Our first years have been assisted in their transition from Primary School with our team of Mentors and their Tutors, SNAs and Guidance Department as well as their Year Head, Ms Bennett. We are looking forward to meeting all of the first year parents for the First Year Parent Information Night which takes place in the school.

School Closed to Pupils – Staff Training Day

The school will be closed to students on Monday 25th September for a staff training day on the new Junior Cert. The DES has again instructed schools to hold training days this academic year in this regard.

Leaving Cert Prefects

Thank you to our Leaving Cert Prefects who have completed application forms in order to be selected for this prestigious position in our school. These students will now be interviewed over the coming days. This position gives our students a much-valued voice in our school where they contribute to the overall wellbeing and support for students as senior role models.

Student Council

The Student Council is a representative structure through which students in a post-primary school can become involved in the affairs of the school, working in partnership with school management and staff and parents for the benefit of the school and its students. Thank you to all of our hard working members from last year’s Council and we look forward to getting the selection process underway for this year’s committee under Mr Plunkett’s guidance.

Parents Association

The AGM of the Parents Association will be held in early October – date to be advised soon.

Board of Management

Our Parent rep Mrs Mary Coughlin has no longer a student attending the school and is therefore no longer eligible for the Board of Management. We thank her most sincerely for her invaluable contribution to both the schools Parents’ Association and also the Board of Management. A new female parent nominee must now be elected onto the Board and parents have received a letter in this regard. A special debt of gratitude is owed to all those who serve on Boards of Management. This work is done on a voluntary basis; nevertheless, it requires a commitment in terms of time and goodwill. On behalf of all of our school community we would like to sincerely thank our current parent nominee, Chris Darby and past nominee Mary Coughlin for their hard work and dedication. Their willingness and commitment to our school have been invaluable.


Spanish Club will be re-commencing for first year students with Ms Mc Nulty. All first years are welcome to attend at lunchtimes and they will participate in fun learning activities to enrich their understanding of Spanish. A classroom and date is yet to be confirmed.


Good luck to the students in the Donegal Youth Orchestra who will be playing on Arranmore Island this Sunday at 2pm. Donegal Youth Orchestra with conductor Vincent Kennedy will surely be an excellent day out!
Well done to all AVS students that took part in ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ during the summer in Letterkenny; it was a wonderful achievement.


This year’s Mental Health Ireland Art and Photography competition is up and running. The theme is ‘Mind Your Mental Health’. Details are on the school website.

Credit Union Art Competition

Students are currently working on the Credit Union Art Competition. This year’s theme is ‘Set Your Imagination Free’. “The Credit Union Art Competition is one of the most successful annual promotions undertaken by the Credit Union Movement and the 2017 competition aims to continue this winning formula. The competition is about encouraging and rewarding self- expression, creativity and imagination among young artists throughout Ireland. Competition entrants are free to express their creativity using a wide variety of media. The competition requires entrants to draw or paint posters on the theme using pencil, charcoal, pen or ink, felt- tip markers, crayon, pastel, watercolours, gouache, acrylics, oils, poster colour or collage”. (www.creditunionart.ie).

School Tour Abroad

This year’s Senior Educational Tour will be to Lake Garda, Italy and takes place during the Easter holidays. We will be visiting Venice, Verona and Milan during the 4 day trip. Application forms are due back this week.

Career Guidance

The AVS would like to welcome the new Career Guidance teacher to the team Ms Faherty. The Guidance Department are very busy planning talks and presentations for the year especially to prepare our exam students. N.U.I Maynooth are planning a trip to the AVS to speak to our Leaving Cert students. A date is yet to be confirmed.

Transition Year:

Drama Workshop

The TY’s took part in a Drama Workshop with Ailis Mc Intyre on Tuesday 5th September. The workshop was held in the library throughout the day and each TY class participated in drama games and warm – up exercises. This was an enjoyable workshop as it helped the students prepare for the upcoming musical ‘Mamma Mia’. Students improvised scenes and performed lines on the day which they thoroughly enjoyed.

School Musical

The school musical this year will be ‘Mamma Mia’. The musical will be held on the 14th, 15th and 16th of November in the Bosco Centre, Donegal Town. Auditions were organised for all TY students this Friday 8th September by Ailis Mc Intyre, Mc Carr, Ms Murray and Ms O’ Donnell. Ms Carr will hold music auditions on Monday. All students will have to sing but students who have been selected specifically for lead roles will have to sing solo’s. Good luck to all the TY’s participating in this year’s musical.

TY PE Activities

PE activities begin next week. Each class will take part in the following activities for three weeks, 4B surfing, 4D self-defence, 4C Yoga and 4A aqua aerobics.

Ploughing Championships

 The Ploughing Championships this year will be held in Tullamore on the 19th September. TY

students will attend the event. The bus will be leaving the school at 6:45 am and will return in the evening. The Ploughing Championships is an Annual Agricultural event held every September and is Europe’s largest outdoor event, “The National Ploughing Championships” given the triumph of this year’s event. The total attendance figures for the 2016 Championship came to a record breaking 283,000. This marks the most successful National Ploughing Championships in history. It’s sure to be an enjoyable day for TY’s!

Gartan Outdoor Adventure Trip

All TY students will have an overnight bonding trip to Gartan Outdoor Adventure centre on Tuesday 12th and 13th September. A bus will leave from the school on Tuesday 12th at 11:00 am and be back in school on Wednesday 13th September at 2:00 pm. An example of some of the activities may be: archery, canoeing, kayaking, coasteering, orienteering, raft building, rock climbing and surfing.

Dance Workshop

TY’s will be completing a hip/hop, modern and contemporary dance workshop on Monday 11th September. It promises to be an energetic and lively class.

Alan Devine Public – Speaking Workshop

Alan Devine will return this year; Alan will deliver four highly exciting workshops to our TY students. He has over twenty years’ experience as an actor therefore, he is not fearful of speaking in front of a crowd. The TY’s said last year they really enjoyed the interactive class. It will be of great benefit to this year’s TY’s in preparation for the musical. The dates are as follows: 12th and 25th October and 27th and 28th November.

Ger Carey – Stand-up Comedian

“Ger Carey is an hilarious stand-up comedian and is presenting a show for TY students on Wednesday 11th October in the Balor Theatre, Ballybofey. By secretly observing his subjects in their natural habitat, such as leaning on lampposts, in chippers, outside chippers, in shopping centres and sitting on any kind of step, Ger has uncovered the weird and frightening world of the teenager! The aim of the show is to get teenagers to laugh at themselves and appreciate the differences of others” (www.hawkswell.com). This trip will assist students in their English course and teach them how confidence is important in life and not just when you’re on the stage!

LCA Bonding Trip

LCA’s will travel to Bundoran Adventure Centre on Monday 11th September to participate in team building events. We look forward to a very positive LCA programme this year.


European Youth Olympics

Well done to Mia Mc Calmont who finished 12th in the 3000m at the European Youth Olympics in a personal best time of 10mins 12secs this summer. Mia participated in the Youth Olympics in Győr, Hungary this summer in June and we are very proud of her achievements.


Ulster School’s Multi-Events: Four students (Niamh Moohan, Rachel Gallagher, Gwenaelle Ní Dhonnabhain and Leo Carey McDermott) will travel to Antrim on Thursday to compete against the top athletes from across the province. They will participate in a multi-discipline competition consisting of running, jumping, hurdling and throwing events. The top three athletes in each category will qualify for the All Ireland’s in October.


The first Cross Country event of the season will take place at the Holmes this Friday. They will race against athletes from South Donegal. This event is run in conjunction with the Primary School Competition and will start at 12pm. Training times: Tuesday 4.00-5.30pm and Friday lunchtime.


A large number of transition years have volunteered to coach athletics on Thursday evenings. They will gain valuable experience coaching primary school age children for the year. They will also be responsible for organising various athletic events throughout the year.

Girls Basketball

Senior and U16 girls’ basketball training commences this week. They are competing in the B competition this year. The first league fixture for both teams is next week against St Catherine’s Killybegs. Both teams are also entered into the Cup Competition. Next month our seniors are away to Loreto Mullingar and our U16s are away to St, Ronan’s Lurgan. We wish them well in their preparation and games.


Mr Plunkett hopes to establish his very successful golf club this year. The first round is expected to take place in two weeks’ time.

Other Sport:

Next week we will publish the lunchtime activities timetable as well as the after school events along with the list of various teams and coaches.