Loreto College - Coleraine, Co. Derry, Northern Ireland
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News & Events Archive


The annual Senior Prizegiving at Loreto College Coleraine took place in the College Hall on the evening of Wednesday 19th September 2007.

Welcoming those present, College Principal Mr Brian Lenehan said,

“Guests, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, on behalf of my fellow members of staff our Board of Governors and the Loreto Community, I’d like to welcome you to our senior prizegiving.

“We’d particularly like to welcome back our ‘old’ Yr14’s, first time back as past pupils; our current year 12, 13 and 14 students and you, the parents.  Welcome to you all.

“We hope you find the evening enjoyable and relaxing.

Introducing the guest speaker for the evening, Mr Barry Burgess, Mr Lenehan continued:

“Ladies and gentlemen, our guest this evening is a well-known and highly regarded educationalist.

“He is the Associate Head of Education at the University of Ulster with responsibility for initial teacher education.  He is also the Course Director for Music Education at the University of Ulster for both post-primary and primary schools.  He has a great interest and life-long love of music, particularly Irish traditional music and choral music.

“As a Research Fellow at Magee College he chose to research aspects of traditional Irish music and was involved with the UTV Choir of the Year series since inception.  He currently plays in the Alister Kingham jazz quartet and close harmony group – The Brassnecks.

“He also has a great love of sport.  He played hockey for his old school, Friends Lisburn, and as a young teacher here in Loreto, not that many years ago, introduced the game into the school.  At that time he played for Portrush and has been a life-long member of Cliftonville football club.

“He has an avid interest in Irish railways – an interest that has brought him to visit every nook and cranny of Ireland in its pursuit whilst accumulating an extensive collection of Irish railway literature.  Indeed it was this passion that he spoke most extensively about in conversation with me.

“Ladies and gentlemen, I’m delighted to welcome Mr Barry Burgess.”

Following an inspiring and interesting speech by Mr Burgess, Mr Lenehan continued:

“I’m sure you are all familiar with the Irish wit relayed to the American tourist.  The American was enquiring about how to get from Ballybofey to Glencolmcille from his Irish host.  Instead of the expected ‘head towards Donegal town, taking west through Killybegs’, and so on, his host wittily replied, ‘Sure if I was going to Glencolmcille I wouldn’t be starting from here’.

“The educational landscape is not unlike Donegal with is mountains, valleys and craigs, its mists, storms and bogs – it is certainly varied, expansive and like the weather there it is going through a period of great change and considerable uncertainty.  The lack of locally accountable political institutions added significantly to this uncertainty, indeed education, along with other civil interests, had become something of a political football in recent years.

“But like the American in Ballybofey he had to begin his journey from where he was at and so too it is with education – we have to move forward from where we are now.

“John Stuart Mill was emphatic when he wrote ‘An education ought to be very good to justify a child being deprived of its liberty’.  It’s worthwhile pondering this because for at least 6 hours per day and 190 days of the year that is what we do.  The extended schools concept will ‘deprive children of their liberty’ for a greater length of time in the future.  The concept of educare is now being bandied about – where pre-school and primary school children will have access to care, provided by the state, from 8.00am to 6.00pm.  And, of course, we all know that change doesn’t occur simply for the sake of it; it occurs to bring about improvement.  Is this an improvement - for the child?  We live in a time when, ironically, change often seems to be the only constant.  Education is as much to the fore in this regard, if not more so, than any other area.  The difference is we must get it right, not simply because children don’t get a second chance at it, but critically because they don’t get a second chance.

“There are so many changes currently happening and so many on the near side of the horizon that it would be impossible to do justice to all of them here tonight.  The rationalisation of the Education and Library Boards, the setting up of the new Education and Skills Authority, and other changes to the administration and management of education under the review of public administration in NI are happening, or will happen, at a level that is likely to have little direct input on pupils or parents.

“However, there are changes that certainly will impact on pupils and parents directly and it is worth explaining the more important.

“The first and most talked about change is that relating to the transfer from primary school to secondary school.  The 11+ has gone and will be sat for the last time in 2008.  Many parents mistakenly confused this with the end of academic selection.  The question of academic selection really did become a ‘political football’ in the period prior to 26 March – the date for the restoration of the NI Assembly.  We don’t know what form selection will take, nor are we sure at what age it will occur.  For parents of pupils in primary school this is deeply worrying and is compounded by the additional uncertainty as to whether schools outside local areas will be available to them.  The Dickson Plan in Lurgan sought to delay selection until 14, creating a system of junior and senior schools.  It partially succeeded.  However, with grammar school choices outside that area, bus loads of pupils choose to travel to Armagh, Newry and Banbridge.

“This brings me to the second change that may directly impact on pupils – age of selection.  If a system of junior and senior schools were set up, it would be to delay pupils making choices about subjects until 14.  One of the major effects of this would be to localise schools – it would not make a great deal of sense for pupils to travel a distance to go to a junior school.  The breadth of catchment areas of school would therefore be lost.  With political opinion hopelessly divided over academic selection at 11, the notion of delaying choice until 14 was the route forward around which there was a degree of political consensus prior to the break-up of the Assembly.  This consensus is emerging again as a way forward.  The Lurgan experience clearly illustrates that where there is a choice for grammar/selective schools there will be gravitation towards them.  The corollary of course is that same or similar systems stifle parental choice – the old adage that ‘variety is the spice of life’ is as applicable to the health of education as any other field of human endeavour.

“Another change that will impact directly on pupils is the revised curriculum.  This will role out from September 2007 over the next 4 – 5 years and we have been working for some years on this in advance of this date.  The revised curriculum brings a measure of greater curriculum autonomy for schools to exercise, a welcome change from the strait jacket of the common curriculum, in place for almost the last 20 years.  It was clearly unsuitable for a significant number of pupils.  It was only in more recent years that schools were permitted to disestablish this curriculum in the best interests of their pupils, but only after a lengthy and time consuming bureaucratic exercise where schools appealed to the Department of Education.  The new revised curriculum places a great emphasis on skills, on cross-curricular links and on the elements within Learning for Life & Work.  In the absence of ‘formal’ examinations at the end of KS3 (3rd year) the revised curriculum provides teachers with a wonderful opportunity to fashion a curriculum that is motivating, pupil centred and makes connections with the world the pupils will grow up in.  However, at GCSE and A Level the curriculum is, and will remain, dominated by formal examinations.  Here, if the changes intended are not reflected in examinations then they will fail because schools and teachers will teach to get the best possible examination results for their pupils.  Whatever we may think of this, employers and universities look for qualifications and skills.

“The revised curriculum also challenges schools to provide access to a wide variety of courses.  Where the numbers 24 and 27 come from no-one can adequately explain but those are the number of courses schools are expected to provide access to.  Wider access is a commendable objective and certainly beneficial in rural areas where small schools have been unable to offer wider subject choices.  The simplest way to achieve this would be to create larger schools which would entail school closures and amalgamations.  The Bain Report has all but said this when it identified secondary schools of less than 500 and primary schools of less than 140 and 105 in towns and rural areas as being uneconomic.  The alternative is for schools to work more closely together to share resources and courses.  Again a highly commendable objective and one that most schools would subscribe to.  However, this alternative will always only be able to accommodate a small number of pupils and the disadvantages to a school’s own pupils quickly becomes apparent when the timetable adjustments needed to secure the movement of pupils and/or teachers between schools are made; and not to mention the pastoral, accountability and monitoring the quality of teaching this would incur.

“The fifth significant factor that will impact directly on pupils’ educational experience is finance – nothing new in that you may say.  There is no doubt that Northern Ireland has not attracted the same level of exchequer funding for education that the rest of the UK has attracted and this is clearly evidenced by the poor state of schools’ estate.  And there is no doubt that the political uncertainty here has been a major factor.  Voluntary grammar schools like our own have been funded significantly by the generosity and vocation of the Loreto sisters over generations.  The widely held perception that Westminster’s thinking was, ‘unless you get your political act together here then the status quo remains’, strikes true with many.

“Various initiatives have been introduced to attract additional funding, especially private funding, into the system, the Public-Private Partnership Initiative being the most high profile.  This initiative has largely failed – principals and governors do not want to be tenants in a building.  One such school planned and built under this scheme in Belfast only a few years ago has now closed and the BELB will continue to pay ‘rent’ of ¾ million pounds on the building for the next 20 years.

“Under its review of public administration the government has promised significant resources for schools’ estates here and it has accepted the recommendations of the Bain Report as the vehicle for affecting change in education.  It looks very much as though finance will be allocated to schemes where decisions taken, whether by Education and Library Boards or Trustees, are compatible with the direction the reviewers of public administration in education want them to go.  The great danger is that sameness, rather than diversity, will prevail.  Within what parameters will schools be able to be different?  If they go beyond these parameters will they be disadvantaged financially?  Will schools that are less able to move in a direction because of geographical or site locations be disadvantaged?  Will there be the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’ in the new dispensation?  Our own Loreto Kolkata guidelines say of inclusivity

‘Loreto education values and respects each student.  It seeks to educate all – irrespective of ability, creed, or ethnic, social and economic backgrounds – in an open learning environment.’

It is vitally important that socially disadvantaged areas are funded according to need, not dogma and formulae.

“There is widespread acknowledgement that the inefficiencies arising from surplus places in schools and demographic changes need to be addressed and the economics achieved directed back into the system.  But a fundamental contradiction in the present approach is that at a time when schools are being encouraged/directed to collaborate they are financed largely by the number of pupils on their rolls – what greater incentive to compete is there than that?

“In the past educational research was largely the preserve of academia.  Whilst acknowledged as being useful it was seldom used to bring about informed change – much of it left to gather dust on university library shelves.  That has changed dramatically in the last 10 – 15 years.  An area of educational research that has attracted significant attention is the gender issue in education.  The educational literature often contradicts whether single sex or co-educational schools are best – it depends on how you define ‘best’.  I’ve no doubt that in terms of a broader, rounder education, encompassing academic as well as social and moral development co-educational schools, like our own, give our pupils a first class start in life.  However we cannot ignore that within the last 20 years girls out-perform boys at almost every level throughout the education system.

“What began as a small difference has grown into a significant one with real implications for society as a whole.  Girls out-perform boys at every level from GCSE through to university e.g. last year the proportion of girls continuing on to university was significantly higher than boys at 44.3% and 30.9% respectively.  Girls also out-perform at A-level where 47.3% of girls achieved three or more A-levels compared to 32.6% of boys.  More boys drop out of university and leave school with fewer qualifications.  It is now common for university schools of medicine, engineering and dentistry to have a majority of females.  This is something all in education and youth organisations ought to be aware of and, whilst it is the aim of educators to raise the achievement of all, the gender gap needs to be addressed.  Yet in the midst of all this educational change it does not attract and retain the attention and strategies it ought to – this lies at the heart of teaching; not the new structures, the new administration, the access provision, the council for this and that; but the teaching and learning that happens in the classroom.

“I have on several occasions referred to the fact that the ethos of this school is grounded in its history and tradition as a Loreto school and that the challenge for us is preserving and maintaining that ethos in the face of such rapid change in society.  A key aspect of this is the value that parents put upon and will put upon the type of education schools like our own offer.  It is essential that trustees have a strong voice, those who founded, funded and ran such schools.

“Last May we were delighted to learn that Loreto College was one of only thirteen schools province-wide this year to be awarded Specialist School status by the Department of Education.

“Specialist School status is a whole school improvement initiative that seeks to share and spread good practice within the school and with the wider community.  This involves forming links with other primary and post-primary schools, business and community groups for the mutual benefit of all.  Loreto College will use its specialist status to drive forward a variety of initiatives for development and improvement in every area of school life.

“We will be able to share this initiative with our partner Primary and Post-Primary schools, as well as working closely with a number of business and community partners.  Indeed this is one of the principal benefits of the Specialist scheme – to demonstrate that education operates best through a series of partnerships which allow our students to gain a broader vision of what learning entails.  At the same time, our participation in the scheme will help the local community to benefit from the expertise and energy on offer inside the school itself.

“Our school ethos is one of outreach to the community and to an achievement of excellence founded securely in a sense of spirituality.  The community element of the scheme is of even more tangible value to us than the considerable financial implications of the funding which our new status will attract.

“We are greatly indebted to the members of the business community for their support and their faith in what we can achieve, and will, as our Specialist status begins, be expressing our gratitude to our sponsors and supporters through our various school publications.

“The acquisition of Specialist School status is, more than anything, a recognition of the commitment and dedication of all of the staff of the College, its pupils and you, the parents, for the years invested in making the College what it is today.”

Mr Lenehan went on to give a summary of the events and achievements of the 2006-2007 academic year.

“We provide a great range of extra curricular activities, sport and opportunities for pupil participation in the wider life of the College.  We firmly believe that this participation complements the academic side of school life helping to develop the many different attributes of our students, whilst making a great contribution to the life of the College and the individual pupils.

“In Gaelic games teams competed in the McLarnon, the Herald and the Loch an Iúir Cups.  Although teams didn’t advance as far as in previous years, junior teams and participation is strong.  The strength of previous teams can be measured by the fact that the local Eoghan Rua CLG team had 10 former Loreto players in their All-Ireland Intermediate final team.

“In Hurling the College was represented at Senior, U-16, U-14 and U-13 levels in Ulster Colleges’ Competitions, proceeding to the semi-finals of the Casement and the McGreevy cups.  Michael Kelly, Lorcan McCloskey and Liam Morrow were selected for All Star trials.

“In Camogie a similar number of teams entered Ulster Colleges’ competitions.  The U-12 and U-14 teams both won their Ulster Colleges blitz competitions and the College progressed to the semi-finals of the Kirk Cup.  Year 14 students Sinead Cassidy and Meabh McGoldrick received Ulster Colleges All-Star awards for the 2nd successive year.  Both have represented the College with distinction in camogie and sport throughout their years at Loreto.  The Derry All Ireland Intermediate camogie champions had 6 recent past pupils represented on the team.

“In Soccer six teams competed in the Coleraine and District Leagues where the Year 8 team outshone all the others by winning their first of many titles in the future, captained by John McLister.

“In Hockey U-12, U-13 and U-14 A & B teams together with the Senior 1st, 2nd and 3rd XIs competed in the Derry & Antrim Leagues.  The senior teams were captained by Sinead Cassidy (1st XI), Meave McAllister (2nd XI) and Paula Carlin (3rd XI).

“Sam Boylan, a Year 9 pupil, continues to excel in Schools Judo Championships, taking gold and representing N Ireland at international level – not someone you’d want to meet on the wrong side of the corridor.  He received the Junior Sportsman of the Year award at the Coleraine Sports Awards.  Here also Hannah Johnston, Shannon Reynolds (Yr12) and Christopher Kwong (Yr10) received a prestigious team award as members of the Bann Rowing Club.

“Netball and trampolining continue their popularity.  In the former five teams entered the Coleraine and District leagues.

“In trampolining Adrian Craig (Yr12) took top honours winning the NI U-17 championships.  The Yr 8 team of Aidan Carlin, Maeve Lofthouse, Anna McIlroy and Eve O’Loan took third place in the team event.  All proceeded to the British zonal semi-finals where Aidan took the bronze medal in the U-13 section and went on to represent the College in the UK finals.

“In Athletics a 16 strong team proceeded through to the NEEBSA finals where Emma Doherty (Yr10), Ciara Cunning (Yr11) and Stephen Dooley (Yr11) took silver medals in the 100m, 800m and 400m respectively.

“At junior level, this year marked the 11th year of the Mary McCabe and Challenge Shield Yr8 cross-country competition.  The 2000m course saw some excellent performances and personal bests with Maeve Lofthouse and John McLister taking the top awards.  Many of these promising young athletes will go on to represent the College with distinction in a whole variety of ways in the future.

“The Yr8s also competed in their annual swimming gala where impressive individual and team performances were recorded.

“The talented athlete Emma Doherty (Yr10) took the bronze medal in the NI indoor athletics championships and went on to compete in the All-Ireland finals.  Despite injury she battled her way through the heats to the final when unfortunately she had to withdraw.

“In tennis the Senior Boys’ team of Patrick McIlroy, Ruairi McVeigh, James McLister and Dermot Donnelly took part in four competitive fixtures during the Summer term.

“The Upper Sixth outdoor pursuits challenge continues to be very popular with a record 30 students taking on the challenge of climbing Slieve Donard, running and swimming.  In only its 2nd year in the College a group of seven students completed the President’s Silver Award, while a group of Yr12s completed their Bronze Medallion Life Saving Award.

“At the Causeway Open Dance Championships pupils from the College brought home a selection of the main prizes for the 2nd successive year.  Maria Ward and Rosanna Jack (Yr14) took gold and silver in their classes; Katrina Lynch (Yr13) and Rachael Gaile (Yr10) took bronze and silver respectively; Megan Cunning, Elizabeth Lane and Lois Quigley (Yr11) took bronze.

“Art students have enjoyed great success over the years.  Bronagh Ward, Caomhan McKeever (Yr9s) and Naomi Lynch (Yr11) had their work selected for publication in the “Who is my neighbour” calendar.  Martin Lynch (Yr14) took first place in the Coleraine Art Society’s Most Promising Artist Award scheme.  A group of Year 10 students took first place in the Coleraine Council’s competition warning about the dangers of smoking with their life size model lady entitled “Nicontina and baby Tara”.  Claire McAtamney had her work adopted for a poster campaign by the Equality Commission for NI while Erin Costin (Yr10) had her cyber-bullying piece reproduced for anti-bullying week in schools.  Each year pupils’ work is selected for our own Loreto Christmas cards.  This year Chloe Moore, Aisling O’Kane and Eve O’Loan (Yr8s), Megan O’Kane (Yr9) and Claire Hill and Casey Moore (Yr10s) produced wonderful designs, the proceeds of which go to St Vincent de Paul.

“The school has a fine tradition in public speaking.  In the Coleraine Council “Road Safety” Public Speaking Competition Orlagh Mailey (Yr10) took 1st place in Class A, Therese Doherty (Yr10) took 2nd place, Elizabeth Lane (Yr11) took 1st in Class B, while Aoife McNicholl (Yr12) and Christine McClements (Yr13) took 1st and 2nd in Class C.  Three of the students went on to the NI finals where Elizabeth Lane took 1st place – speaking about the distractions to drivers of GPS systems.  Christine and Aoife also took 1st and 3rd place in the local Soroptimist Public Speaking competition.

“Music and Drama make a great contribution to the life of the school through the Drama club, Senior and Junior Choirs, Traditional group, Orchestra, the biennial Musical and music and singing tuition.  Highlights of the College’s talented singers came at the Coleraine International Festival where the Senior Choir was awarded 3rd place and at the Bangor International Festival where the Junior Choir also was awarded 3rd place.  At the Coleraine Festival the Junior Choir won the Louise Barnes Cup and the overall DH Anderson Cup while the Seniors entered the Bord Na Móna Navan Choral Festival, winning both the Youth Choir Competition and the National Youth Choir of the Year.  The Seniors were also invited to record a piece for the BBC programme “Our Wee World”, directed by John Anderson, which is due to be screened on BBC Northern Ireland this autumn.  The 75th Anniversary Senior Choir CD is still on sale.

“The Spring Concert in April last was a wonderful exhibition of students’ talents producing exquisite performances and we are well on our way with ‘Calamity Jane’, our school musical for this year in October.

“The performance of Economics students in competitions has been remarkable over the years.  Yr14 students Oonagh Diamond, Meabh McGoldrick, Eoin McWilliams and Liam Morrow took first place in NI in the Bank of England Target 2.0 Interest Rate Challenge competition and went on to the UK finals in Manchester where their expertise and presentation won them 2nd place.  This was the 6th year in succession a team has reached the UK finals.

“The junior Mathematics Challenge attracted great interest and its usual crop of high achievers as always.  And in the Mathematics Sans Frontières competition Yr12 pupils Anna Maguire, Kevin McLaughlin, Malo Scullion and Charles Stuart, representing their Additional Mathematics class, gained a highly credible 2nd place in the NEELB.

“Our junior scientists have enjoyed great success in the NI Science quiz over the years.  This year Luke Stuart, Claire Hill and Dearbhla McCotter, Yr10 pupils, took a very commendable 5th place.  The Year 9 quiz team bettered this when Conor Doherty-Greene, Catherine Giddens, Emma Kelly, Thomas McNeill, Caoimhe Bond and Odhran McKee took first place in the NI Schools’ Challenge Quiz.  They went on to represent NI in the UK finals in Birmingham.

“Loreto students have entered the ESAT/BT Young Scientist competition for many years and with outstanding success.  As a result of her involvement in Your Scientist and Seagate Young Innovators’ competition Stephanie Paul (Yr12) took 2nd place in the Silver Award category for Science at the British Academy Science Fair in London.

“A Year 13 team, Ronan Bradley, Jarlath Bond, Monica Brolly, Daniel McCollam and Brendan Sweeney took 3rd place in NI in the annual Paperclip Physics competition run by the Institute of Physics, while a group of Yr12 Technology students Stephanie Paul, Malo Scullion, Daniel Hendrie, Hannah Johnston and Charles Stuart won through to the final of the BBC NI Bright Sparks competition.

“Yr14 Physics students Donal Hill and Martin Quigg were entrants in the Irish Physics Olympiad with Martin winning through to the final selection procedure in Dublin at Easter, while Emma Carlin and Maria Ward were highly commended in the equivalent British Biology Olympiad.  At the junior end Shane Philips (Yr8) won the Physics in Motion digital photograph competition.

“Science Week is now a regular slot in the school calendar with a number of exciting activities highlighting the place and relevance of Science in the curriculum.  The week culminated in the Mission to Mars day when pupils from local Primary Schools participated.

“Residential courses for Irish students were organised once again in the Gaeltacht.  A wide variety of cultural and linguistic events marked An Seachtain Gaelige (Irish week) and European Day, culminating in Mass in Irish.  In the Abair Linn public speaking competition Thérese Tunney, Eimear McCoy, Aidan Mullan, Patrick Kelly and Andrea O’Connor represented Loreto.  Andrea took 3rd place in the GCSE section and Thérese 2nd place in the AS/A2 section.

“On the European scene a group of German students from Vechta spent 10 days here hosted by the College and students of German, part of our annual exchange programme.

The History department will retain their European history links by returning to visit Berlin next term.

“The German debating team of Philip Martin, Fiona Bailey, Benjamin McKillen and Jeanette McCollum reached the semi-finals of Queen’s University German debating competition.  Philip also won best speaker in the competition.

“In the area of creative writing Shannon Law (Yr10) was one of two top prizewinners in Creative Writing competition organised by Coleraine Library.  Over the summer, eleven Yr12 students had their work selected for publication in an anthology of Mini Sagas, due out this November.  At the senior end Kerri Martin and Caoimhe McCotter were in the top 10 students in the whole of the UK in A-Level English Language last year.  Benjamin McKillen was offered an Oxford place to read Medicine.  The school was ranked 4th in Northern Ireland Grammar schools for A-level results – the percentage of pupils scoring three or more A-levels at grades A – C.

“In the field of Careers and Higher Education the College hosted its 25th annual Trial Interviews, an invaluable experience for Yr14 students making course/career choices.  This has now been successfully replicated for our Year 12 students by the Careers department in conjunction with Sentinus, a major provider in NI of links between education and industry.

“Young Enterprise also provides links between education and industry and provides an opportunity for students to set up and run their own company.  With considerable past success to draw upon, this year’s team of Chelsea Ferguson-Smith, Marc O’Hara, Jan Toner and Stephen McGrath took the Best Company Presentation Award at the awards ceremony in Derry.  Others in the team included Sarah McCloskey, Shane Rainey, Michael McKeown, Shane McLaughlin and Ronan McShane.

“We also avail of entrepreneurial links promoted by Invest Northern Ireland.  And in the Future is Yours Competition Claire Hill, Bronagh Mullan, Jarleth Eastwood and Jordan Kealey, all Yr10 pupils, designed and produced a healthy living product that took 2nd place in the N Ireland wide competition.

“All of Yr 8 and Yr11 students benefited from workshops organised by Young Enterprise N Ireland to foster a sense of business and enterprise awareness.

“Last year saw the setting up of a Student Council in the College.  Made up of a group of students elected by their peers, it is designed to give students an opportunity to participate and input into the life of the school, for the benefit of the pupils.

“The College attaches great importance to Education for Mutual Understanding, reaching out and engaging with other groups and institutions across the whole of the community.  You can see the great range of our pupils’ participation.  We are especially proud of our links with Sandelford Special School, our involvement in the Seven Schools Cross Community Project, the community work of our Christian Life Community group, our links with the St Vincent de Paul and our links with other Loreto schools in developing countries, especially Sudan and our sister school in Daejeeling, India.  Our St Vincent de Paul group, led by Sorcha Mellon, raised £1932.89 and engaged in weekly visits to our neighbouring retirement home throughout the year.

“In the area of personal development the College awarded 5 bursaries to students to pursue aspects of their own development outside of school.  The Miss Diamond Bursary was awarded jointly to Paraic Rafferty and Shane McLaughlin; the Miss Murray Bursary was awarded jointly to Sarah McCloskey and Odhran Mullan; the Parents’ Bursary to Roisin O’Kane and the Founders’ Bursary to Bonnie Diamond.

“We are also especially proud of how generous and caring our students are.  Last year they raised a total of £21,065.13 for our designated charities. 

“There are numerous other events, activities and opportunities available to students throughout the year, including liturgies, retreats, trips, outings, fieldwork, competitions and so on.  And although I have highlighted the higher profile events throughout the last year, there are numerous other pupils giving generously and participating consistently in a whole host of ways.  This is what contributes to the richness and variety of the College.  I commend them all highly and I firmly believe that academic success and wider participation go hand in hand.

“Boys and girls, ladies and gentlemen, I’m sure you would agree that the College provides a wealth of opportunities for all its students, from the gifted to those who find school more of a challenge.  We are very proud of our students’ achievements and delighted at the high levels of participating and hope that we provide every pupil with the opportunities to develop and further their interests and help find their niches in life.

“Every school year brings its challenges, its highs and lows and occasionally moments of great sadness.  The school community was shocked and saddened by the loss of Ryan just weeks after he had completed his A-Levels in the summer.  Ryan displayed all that spirit of youth so typical of someone his age.  We are delighted that Mr and Mrs McCloskey, Dean and Emma are with us this evening.

“On your behalf I would like to pay tribute to the professionalism and dedication of the teaching staff, day in, day out, they give of their very best in the interests of the students and I believe that they provide a level of service to our young people here that is second to none.

“The non-teaching staff also plays a vitally important role in the service of our students, often working unobtrusively and quietly to maintain the quality of services, buildings and grounds.  My thanks to Mrs Duddy, the librarian; Mr Lynn, the Bursar and Mrs McGuckian, the Bursar’s assistant; Mrs Maxwell, my own secretary; Miss Stewart and Mrs Ferris, the office secretaries; Mr Otterson, senior technician on behalf of all the technicians; Mrs Johnston and Mrs West, classroom assistants; Mr Weir and Mr Mullan, caretakers and on behalf of cleaning staff; Mr Turner, groundsman; Miss McCann, head cook on behalf of the canteen staff.  Thanks also to Fr Page, our school Chaplain, Fr Keaney, and the Religious Education Department for the time and effort they put into organising the liturgies, retreats and seminars throughout the year.

“My thanks to the Loreto Community both here in Coleraine and further afield for their continued prayers and support this year and every year. 

“Thanks also to you the parents for your trust and co-operation.  Working together we can achieve so much and we are very grateful for your support.

“Finally my thanks to you the students for your courtesy and co-operation throughout your years here – that is something we appreciate very much.

‘Young people now have luxury
They have bad manners, contempt for authority.
They have become tyrants in the household.
They contradict their parents.
They tyrannise their teachers.’
Socrates 400BC

“Every day in school here we see young people who are full of energy, who are inquisitive, creative, caring and supportive and who have the boundless potential to do good.

“I can’t imagine as a teacher or as a parent what in the name of goodness Socrates was talking about.  Can you?”

The prizes were distributed by Mr Burgess, Mr Lenehan and various Heads of Year and Heads of Department from among the College’s teaching staff.


Year 14 Academic Awards
Emma Brown
Kevin Butler
Emma Carlin
Sinead Cassidy
Gillian Dixon
Kelly Doherty
Joe Farquharson
Stephen Friel
Donal Hill
Connor Hodges
Daniel Howell
Rosanna Jack
David Lyness
Philip Martin
Martin McAlister
Charlene McCafferty
Kirsty McCloskey
Ryan McCloskey
Meabh McGoldrick
Tanika McGowan
Catherine McHenry
Benjamin McKillen
Emer McNicholl
Eoin McWilliams
Sorcha Mellon
Stephanie Millar
Emma Mullan
Sarah Mullan
Maria O’Halloran
Eoin O’Hara
Catherine Quigg
Martin Quigg
Kerry Shaw
Joni Traynor
Maria Ward
Patrick Welch

Year 13 Academic Awards
Ciaran Barclay
Aileen Bradley
Ronan Bradley
Kirsty Crawford
Aoife Daly
Chad Eastwood
Elaine Gallagher
Niall Leake
Orla Louden
Katrina Lynch
Maeve McAllister
Kathy McAneney
Deborah McCloskey
Sarah McCloskey
Mary McCrory
Jeanette McGill
Karen McIlvar
Thomas McKeever
Michael McKeown
Shane McLaughlin
Maeve McLernon
Eimear McMahon
Bronagh McNicholl
Ronan McShane
Odhran Mullan
Marc O’Hara
Michael O’Loan
Kevin O’Neill
Spiros Papachristopoulos
Colin Quigg
Jan Toner
Therese Tunney

Year 12 Academic Awards
Helen Bacon
Louise Bogues
Gerard Carlin
Kerri Cassidy
Damian Christie
Adrian Craig
Michaela Cunning
Aisling Devine
Catherine Diamond
Kirsty Doherty
Ryan Dowds
Peter Dowds
Neal Fisher
Paul Friel
Katie Howell
Hannah Johnston
Rebecca Keenan
Patrick Kelly
Sinead Lagan
Janette Loughlin
Anna Maguire
Stephanie McAleese
Donagh McAllister
Caroline McCambridge
Fergal McCloskey
Conor McCotter
Ronan McIlvenny
Kevin McLaughlin
Nicola McLister
Sean McWilliams
Rory O’Kane
Aisling O’Neill
Rory Owens
Stephanie Paul
Malo Scullion
Christopher Sharkey
Charles Stuart
Neville Teacy
Patrick Tunney

Year 11 Academic Awards 
Zoe Cheng
Andrew Crozier
Hannah Eastwood
Elizabeth Lane
Cillian McCotter
Aoife McGrath
Fiona McLaughlin
Niamh Nugent
Beth O’Loan
John Ward

Year 11 Diligence
11A Kerrie McConville
11B Clare Kelly
11C Suzanne McGahon
11D Paraic Rafferty
11E Catherine Anne Martin

Year 11 Progress 
11A Ciara Cunning
11B Sean McNicholl
11C Richard Moffett
11D Naomi Lynch
11E Harvey Webber

Year 11 Co-operation and Leadership
11A Donal McQuillan
11B Aine O’Kane
11C Marie Cassidy
11D Claire Butcher
11E Adrienne Bradley

Year 12 Diligence
12A Rachel Law
12B Barry O’Kane
12C Cormac Hasson
12D Megan McGonigle
12E Connor Lennon

Year 12 Co-operation and Leadership
12A Lucy McLaughlin
12B Kerriann Traynor
12C Eimear McDermott
12D Catherine Diamond
12E Shannon Reynolds

Other Awards

1. For outstanding contribution to the Loreto Ethos in GCSE years:
Patrick Kelly, Anna Maguire
2. For outstanding contribution to the Loreto Ethos in A Level years:
Donal Hill, Maria Ward
3. The Patricia McDermott Memorial Trophy for achievement in GCSE English:
Sean McWilliams
4. The Macaulay, O’Neill and Martin Perpetual Cup for achievement in GCSE Mathematics:
Anna Maguire
5. The BKS Perpetual Trophy for achievement in A Level Geography:
Philip Martin
6. The AVX Computer Awards for achievements in Computing:
A Level: Kevin Butler
GCSE: Damian Christie
7. The Stanleigh Cup for achievement in Music:
Aisling Devine
8. The McGeown Cup for achievement in A Level Economics:
Meabh McGoldrick
9. The N&N Trophies’ Cup for achievement in A Level Art and Design:
Emma O’Boyle
10. The Physical Sciences award:
Daniel Howell
11. Corn Brugha for achievement in Irish:
Anna Maguire
12. The Michael Clarke Memorial Cup for achievement in Drama presented by Year 14 2002-2003:
Eoin O’Hara
13. The Bank of Ireland Trophy for achievement in A Level Home Economics:
Catherine Quigg
14. The Northern Bank Award for achievement in A Level Physics:
Donal Hill

The following awards are for outstanding achievement in individual subjects:
15. A Level Biology:
Maria Ward
16. A Level Chemistry:
Daniel Howell
17. A Level Religious Education:
Catherine McHenry
18. A Level History:
Kirsty McCloskey
19. A Level Government and Politics:
Joni Traynor
20. A Level Mathematics:
Martin Quigg
21. A Level English Language:
Benjamin McKillen
22. A Level English Literature:
Emma Carlin
23. A Level Technology:
Martin Quigg
24. A Level French:
Maria Ward
25. A Level German:
Philip Martin

26. Award for achievement in Public Speaking:
Elizabeth Lane
27. Award for best article in School Magazine:
Odhran Mullan
28. The Teresa Ball Trophy for Commitment and Spirit:
Connor Hodges
29. The Kathleen Toner Memorial Cup:
Liam Morrow, Lorcan McCloskey
30. The Ciara McLaughlin Memorial Cup:
Emer McNicholl
31. Sports Captains 2006-2007:
Sinead Cassidy, Lorcan McCloskey
32. Sports Person of the Year, receiving the Louise McLaughlin Trophy for outstanding contribution to the sporting life of the College:
Sinead Cassidy
33. Representing the College in Sport at National Level:
Sinead Cassidy, Meabh McGoldrick
34. The Mother Rose Cup for best Female Athlete in Year 11:
Ciara Cunning
35. Best Male Athlete in Year 11:
Aaron Duffy
36. MacLarnon Player of the Year:
Liam Morrow
37. Loreto Challenge Gold Award:
Oonagh Diamond, Meabh McGoldrick, Eoin McWilliams
38. The Sister Colmcille and Sister Aidan Bursary (Founders’ Bursary for Personal Development):
Bonnie Diamond
39. Parents’ Bursary for Personal Development:
Roisin O’Kane
40. The Miss Murray Memorial Bursary:
Sarah McCloskey, Odhran Mullan
41. The Miss Diamond Bursary:
Shane McLaughlin, Paraic Rafferty
42. The Award (President’s / Duke of Edinburgh Silver Awards):
Louise Bogues, Adrian Craig, Hannah Johnston, Caroline McCambridge, Eimear McDermott, Kevin McLaughlin

43. For Full Attendance:
Year 11: Zoe Cheng, Stephen Dooley, Eimhear Kealey, Rachel McCloskey, Cillian McCotter, Suzanne McGahon, Fiona McLaughlin, Alex McQuillan, Richard Moffett, Catherine O’Kane, Fiona O’Neill, Aine Quigg, Orianne Scullion, Fiona Shannon, Eunan Smyth
Year 12: Damian Christie, Adam Deeney, Aisling Devine, Catherine Diamond, Cormac Hasson, Patrick Kelly, Joanne Law, Connor Lennon, Conor McCotter, Kevin McLaughlin, Sean McWilliams, Barry O’Kane, Malo Scullion, Patrick Tunney
Year 13: Ronan Bradley, Maureen Heneghan, Christine Hickey, Bronagh Kelly, Niall Leake, Brian Lenehan, Maeve McAllister, Sarah McCloskey, Michael McLaughlin, Shane McLaughlin, Maeve McLernon, Michael O’Loan, Shane Rainey
Year 14: Ciaran Boyle, Oonagh Diamond, Philip Martin, Martin McAlister, Charlene McCafferty, Lorcan McCloskey, Richard Mailey

Senior Prefects
Fiona Bailey
Ciaran Boyle
Bronagh Bradley
Emma Brown
Emma Carlin
Jamie Cassidy
Sinead Cassidy
Mary Chivers
Oonagh Diamond
Gillian Dixon
Steven Dooey
Gemma Hegarty
Connor Hodges
Daniel Howell
Rosanna Jack
Eamon Kelly
Philip Martin
Bernadette Martin
Martin McAlister
Eimear McCartney
Kirsty McCloskey
Lorcan McCloskey
Thomas McGuckian
Catherine McHenry
Benjamin McKillen
Michael McLaughlin
Megan McLoone
Ciara McNicholl
Emer McNicholl
Ciara McQuillan
Natalie McWilliams
Stephanie Millar
Liam Morrow
Emma Mullan
Jessica O’Donnell
Eoin O’Hara
Grainne O’Kane
Martin Quigg
Joni Traynor
Maria Ward
Patrick Welch

Special Awards
Deputy Head Boy: Donal Hill
Deputy Head Girl: Kelly Doherty
Head Boy: Stephen Friel
Head Girl: Meabh McGoldrick

Following a presentation of a token of thanks to Mr Barry Burgess by Loreto Head Boy Shane McLaughlin and Head Girl Maeve McLernon, the evening concluded with a speech of reminiscence and thanks by 2006-2007 Head Boy Stephen Friel.