AVS Notes 23rd February 2018

Launch of Leaving Cert Computer Science
Students from the school involved in the computer science area of coding attended a launch of the Leaving Cert Computer Science event in St Eunans on Friday last. The Minister of Education Mr Richard Bruton launched the subject area for the two Donegal schools selected to offer this subject to the incoming fifth year students. The Principal Ms Diver, Deputy Principal Mr Doherty and Computer Science teacher Mr Gorman attended the event as well as Joe Mc Hugh TD, Pearse Doherty TD Leas-Cheann Comhairle TD Pat the Cope Gallagher, Charles Mc Conalogue TD and Senator Pádraig Mac Lochlainn.

This was a very special occasion for the Abbey Vocational School.

Mock Exams
Congratulations to all our exam students for completing their mocks. Junior Certificate and Leaving Certificate students sat mocks the Thursday and Friday before the mid – term and all of last week. Well done on completing the first step! Thank you to students for their co – operation with regard to noise on the corridors during this stressful time. In addition, thank you to all of those who assisted in the planning and preparation of the Mocks.

School Closure – Half Day
On Tuesday next, 27th February, the school will close at 1.15 p.m. to facilitate staff training in Child Protection.

Leaving Cert Chill out day
On Monday 26th all Leaving Certificate students will visit the Bluestack Centre, Letterbarrow, Drimarone. This day has been specially arranged for our students following their Mock Exams. It gives them a day to unwind, relax and re charge the batteries after the exams. Thank you to Ms Mc Morrow who has co-ordinated the day’s events. . All Leaving Certificate students will attend this trip. The trip is always an enjoyable day full of fun filled activities for our students.

MS Readthon
A number of students participated in the MS Readathon and raised money for the foundation. The MS Readathon encouraged children to open their minds to the wonderful world of adventure and imagination through reading for a great cause! It gave our students the perfect opportunity to read. For kids who were already bookworms, it was a chance to go deeper – perhaps to challenge themselves with longer, more advanced books. The English Department will be presenting students with awards next weeks. More details will follow.

Induction day for 6th class students
An Induction day for 6th class students will take place on Tuesday, 6th March 2018. There will be no school for Transition Year, LCA or 1st year on this day. All other students will have class as normal on this day.

Physical Education new Leaving Cert Subject
Thank you to all who attended the Information Evening for Physical Education as a Leaving Certificate subject for September 2018. Again, we are delighted to announce that two new curriculums for Physical Education at senior cycle will be introduced from September 2018 to our incoming 5th year students.

Debate Club
The club will meet again on Tuesday 27th February. Students of the club have been given a school related topic that they will work on over the next two weeks.

World Book Week
The AVS is delighted to be celebrating World Book Day again this year. World Book Day takes place on Thursday 1st March 2018. Over the last 22 years, World Book Day has become firmly established as Ireland’s biggest annual event promoting the enjoyment of books and reading. The main aim is to encourage children to explore the pleasure of books and reading by providing them with an opportunity to have a book of their own. The English Department will be hosting various competitions to celebrate the day second year students will be allowed time in class to design a book cover (they can choose any book they wish). The designs will be displayed around the assembly area for World Book Day and there may be prizes for the best designs! In addition, first years students will be creating a poster to promote World Book Day and to encourage reading as a leisure activity. Ms Logue’s coding classes are working on posters in their classes to promote the day.

Well Read Initiative Guest Speaker – Josephine O’Donnell
Josephine O’Donnell is conducting a workshop with Ms Canning’s class 3A on Friday 2nd March. Josephine is a local historian and writer, she will be going through the creative process of writing a book, composing and the publishing stages. The initiative aims to create heightened awareness about the importance of creating a culture of reading in school communities for our young people as part of their personal and academic development.

5th Year HL English Trip – Macbeth
108 5th year students will travel to the Millennium Forum Theatre in Derry on Wednesday 28th February. The trip will benefit students studying the text which is examined at Leaving Certificate. The Forum promises an excellent take on the Shakespeare classic and the vicious, barbaric undercurrent in Shakespeare’s most fear-filled tragedy erupts in this kinetic, blood-thirsty production.

Set in the 11th century and culminating in an epic battle filled with revenge, justice, and beheadings, the production gives life to some of literature’s most vibrant language and characters.


Irish Heart Foundation Coffee Morning
Thank you to all those who donated to the coffee morning before the mid – term break; the event raised a total of €336.20. The event highlighted heart health and as we are a school who promotes Wellbeing it is vital we look after our heart health as cardiovascular disease is the number one killer in our country. Thank you again to all who baked and donated!

Couch to 5k
Our runners are still training hard for the ‘Couch to 5k’! There are many mental health benefits of running as well as health benefits for our students and staff. The programme will run on Monday, Wednesday and Friday after school on the track. Please feel free to join regardless of your fitness level!

Operation Transformation
The pounds are slowly dropping off as the staff continue to battle with shifting weight as part of ‘Operation Transformation’. We hope we can keep up the healthy eating and loose even more!

A reminder that entries for this year’s Texaco Art Competition are due on Wednesday 28th February. The Texaco Art Competition are “inviting artists across the island of Ireland to participate in a national celebration of Children’s Art as they mark 64 years of the Texaco Children’s Art Competition.  Acknowledged as the longest running sponsorship in the history of art sponsoring in Ireland the Competition has been in existence since 1955 and has enjoyed an unbroken history of success. The closing date for their next Competition is Wednesday 28th February 2018 and they hope that they will continue to see outstanding creativity and talent reflected in the finest and widest choice of entries that we receive. You can download a School/Art School Application Form or a Home Application Form from www.texacoartcompetition.ie. Mr Daly and Ms Mc Callig have forms available also.

Transition Year students are organizing a photography competition which is open to all students in the school. There will be a first, second and third place prizes. There is no specific theme or format (dimensions) and images may be colour or black and white. Entries can be submitted as hard copy to room 38 or can be emailed to avsphotographycompetition@gmail.com. The deadline for entries is Friday 2nd March.

Transition Year:

Work Experience
This week our TY students completed their second week of work experience. We can’t wait to hear the feedback next week and see how they got on in the world of work!

Young Social Innovators (YSI)
A number of our TY students are in the middle of preparing their YSI projects which they will present at the Speak Out competition next week in Ballybofey on the 27th February. Our students will be hoping to progress from the regional stages of the competition on this day. YSI is Ireland’s largest social awareness and active citizenship and education programme for 15-18 year old teens. Its main goal is to get young people (15-18yrs) involved in action which helps improve the lives of others in their community. YSI involves thousands of young people in Ireland each year in hundreds of projects and social enterprises which are youth-led, team-based and action-focused. Each year, each YSI team is invited to present their project at the YSI Speak Out Regional fora. A national Showcase of Young Social Innovators takes place in May each year where thousands of young social innovators come together and showcase their projects.

Architect in Schools Project
Ms Siobhan Gallagher will visit AVS to work with TY students on Monday 26th  February on the TY Architect in Schools Project. The National Architects in Schools Initiative is an exciting programme for Transition Year students. Architects are placed in schools to facilitate hands-on design workshops with student groups in 25 schools across Ireland. This initiative builds on five years of successful schools programming from the Irish Architecture Foundation and provides students with the opportunity to develop an appreciation of architecture and design, learn a variety of new skills and gain insight to the professional life of designers and architects. Participating architects are recruited and mentored by the Irish Architecture Foundation (IAF) and placed in schools to devise and facilitate workshops in collaboration with teachers.

Cake Decorating
On Tuesday 27th February the TY’s will participate in a Cake Decorating workshop – we are hoping for some cakes that Mary Berry would be proud of! Groups A and B will participate in this Tuesday and C and D on Friday 2nd March.


Training continues every Tuesday after school for all age groups. Cross country training is on Friday at lunch time.  The Donegal schools cross country final will be held in the coming weeks.

The finals for the Ulster Schools Cross Country were held this week in Mullish playing fields Belfast on Wednesday 21st February. Thank you to Dara Kervick from Athletics Ireland who came into the school on Tuesday 20th in conjunction with the Bank of Ireland to do a series of fitness tests with our 1st and 2nd year athletes. The students had to do a warm – up, then a series of timed sprints, standing long – jumps, vertical jumps and they played games. The 1st year are attending an athletics workshop

Girls Basketball
1st year girls training continues every Wednesday after school in the school gym. The 2nd year girls training has been moved to Monday after school in the school gym. The girls play St. Catherine’s Vocational school in Killybegs on Thursday 1st March. In addition, there’s no rest for the girls as they play Ballinamore Community School on Friday 2nd March, in Ballinamore, Co. Leitrim, Ireland. Good luck to Ms Mc Donnell and the team.

1st and 2nd Year Boys’ Basketball
Mr Mc Hugh’s team will take on the 1st and 2nd year’s boys’ basketball team in Castlebar Co. Mayo on Wednesday 21st February where the AVS boys’ will play St Gerald’s. 1st and 2nd year boys’ basketball training has moved to Thursday after school with Mr McHugh and Saturday morning at 9-11 in the school gym. Our 1st and 2nd years played St Nathy’s College on Thursday at home.

Both 1st & 2nd Year Boys teams played their second games of the league on Thursday 23rd February at home against St. Nathy’s of Roscommon. The 1st years produced another fine display, to go along with their win two weeks ago against Coláiste Cholmcille, Ballyshannon, by recording a second win in as many matches. After a closely contested first quarter, the Abbey boys found their feet and ran out convincing winners by 45-15.

The 2nd Year game was a much closer affair and indeed needed overtime to separate the sides. After a real nip and tuck game, St.Nathy’s took the lead for the first time in the final quarter and led by 4pts with 40seconds remaining. However, the AVS battled bravely, scoring two late baskets to bring the game to OT. Within OT, AVS opened up a 5pt lead which they never looked like relinquishing to seal a dramatic win.

1st Year Team: E. Kenny, J. Kenny, J. Graham, D. Quinn, C. Gillespie, B. McNeely, C. McCallig, S. Óg Caldwell, P. Lyons, N. Prenderville

2nd Year Team: D. Quinn, J. Graham, S. Quinn, M. Jordan, C. Sweeney, H. Pearson, R. Kennedy, D. O’Donnell, L. Carey-McDermott, C. Campbell

Girls Gaelic
The U14’s girls Gaelic team will play Virginia College, Cavan, away next Thursday 1st March – best of luck to the girls!

Boys’ Soccer
Mr Mc Hugh’s U15 Boys Soccer team will play Cootehill, Cavan next Tuesday, 27th February. Good luck to the team!

1st year boys Gaelic
The boys have begun training for the U13’s competition in March. We are delighted also to have county coach Paddy Hegarty visiting the school to do some coaching.

Ladies Gaelic Football
U14 girls training will continue after school every Tuesday.  Please bring runners, a warm top, water and a gum shield. The U14 league will start in the coming weeks.

Girls Active
The Girls’ active is every Friday 3:45pm- 4:45 pm. These groups are taking part in hip-hop, which will finish this week. All 1st, 2nd and 3rd years are welcome. After dancing the girls will be participating in running in the hope of building up to a 5k.

U14’s hurling training continues Tuesday at lunchtime. All 1st and 2nd years are welcome to attend training especially new members. Declan Sherlock, Ulster coach, will be in attendance with Mr O’Neill at training. Four Masters U14 Hurling are also looking for new members any student interested please contact coach Damien Mc Dermott. The team trains Tuesday at 6:30 pm.

Lunchtime activities
Lunchtime activities continue as normal. Please check the notice board in the gym. There is a least two activities a day. We remind all students that anyone can get involved and it’s good to participate in new activities.