In the final act of its 30th year celebrations, teachers and students at Castleisland Community College also marked the winter solstice by planting a symbolic red oak tree in the grounds of the school.
The end of the calendar year, in which the college celebrated the 30th anniversary of its relocation to its current base, was also marked by the burying of a time capsule.
This final act was performed as the college prepared to close for the Christmas holidays after one of the busiest years in its history.
Items of Interest
The time capsule contains items of interest from the college with the 30th. Year Celebration Book taking a central role.
Also included are: an old school bell along with a copy of the current school journal; letters from past and current principals and deputy principal and teachers.
Photographs of the first year class of 30 years ago and of the current first year class group. The capsule also contains some student work and other bits and pieces of interest from the college.
The mid winter or yule solstice have influenced the many of the traditions surrounding this time of year.
A Store-house of Courage
“Hope is the true meaning of the winter solstice and the oak has been long considered as a store-house of courage with truth and wisdom embodied within its towering strength,” said Principal Carmel Kelly at the planting ceremony.
Indoors, there were photographs to be taken of first year’s basketballers who won the Kerry ETB title recently and got four of its members on the Kerry team as a result.
There was also the remarkable piece of art in the form of a Christmas card by Agne Arlauskaite. Agne’s work was runner-up in the countywide competition recently.
A gifted musician who plays a string of instruments from saxophone to ukulele and who cites Mozart as one of her great musical heroes, Agne began work on her Christmas card on a background of precise, hand-drawn, staff notation.
Science and Technology Curious
And maybe just to show that school can sometimes be a bit of fun, Ballymacelligott student, Ruairi Mannix was a winner in the comedy section of the Kerry ETB competition.
That’s quite a talented team in first year to get the next 30 years off to a flying start. Mol an Oige.
There’s no letting up either on the 2018 side of the big step-over.
The college is preparing to host a horde of science and technology curious, sixth class pupils from national schools in the area and from the neighbouring parishes.
Earlier in the month Minister for State Pat Breen presented Castleisland Community College with the Tidy Town Youth Award.
Castleisland Tidy Towns also received a €1,000 bonus as part of the overall award.
Increased Points Total
The Castleisland Tidy Towns Committee was set up in 1987 and this year the town increased its points total by nine over the previous year.
“This is truly a testament to the dedication of Sheila Hannon, Mary Walsh and their cohort of volunteers. They have worked tirelessly behind the scenes to improve Castleisland town and they have also invited schools and their pupils to become involved in generating pride in their community,” said community college teacher, Doreen Killington.
“Castleisland Community College began working with Castleisland Tidy Towns in order for students to learn about what they can do for their local community.
Activities on the River Maine
Last year the Transition Year students undertook activities that involved the River Maine.
“These included testing the water purity, a clean-up of the river, learning about the geography of the river and water pollution.
“Their hard work was rewarded as they won the regional youth award and were presented with this award by the Minister of State Pat Breen, TD.
“These Transition year students are now in fifth year and the activities are certainly helping them in their subject areas such as Geography, Chemistry and Biology.
Hands on Approach
“The advantages of the ‘hands-on’ approach cannot be underestimated in how it benefits students in
understanding and learning for their Leaving Certificate.
“In addition to this it has also benefited our local community and has hopefully passed on to the next generation a sense of pride in Castleisland town. Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireann na daoine,” Ms. Killington concluded.
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