It only seems like yesterday that the class of 2019 lined into Donabate CC as first-year students. Bright-eyed, enthusiastic first-year students – they were eager to get off to a good start. They launched themselves into classes – from new languages to sketching, baking, calculating and everything else in between. They embraced change – the first year group to use iPad devices in the classroom and they created phenomenal pieces of work. They featured in national newspapers, got involved in extra-curricular activities, and when their Junior Cert exams came – they took on the challenge with aplomb and marvellous results followed.
As Transition Year students, they threw themselves headlong into learning new skills, new knowledge, new ways of thinking about the world. They excelled at Gaisce, at giving back to the community and were leaders among the student community. Senior cycle arrived in a blink of the eye and they were in the midst of the curriculum before they knew it. Whole school assemblies, winter shows, soccer and rugby finals, meeting astronauts and former government ministers, poetry, song and a multitude of other events have brought them to their graduation and finishing their second level education.
Their graduation was a beautiful evening with tributes paid to the terrific attitude of students – in how they carried themselves in school, in the example they have set for younger age groups and in their unrelenting pursuit to be better. Very much on our minds were those loved ones we have lost along the journey and in particular, tribute was paid to Darragh Lawless who is very much missed.
Mr Creevey, Mr Adrian Henchy, Mrs Flynn and Ms Lindsay all spoke about how proud they were of the Class of 2019. There wasn’t a spare inch to be had as people filled the Main Hall eager to celebrate the successes and achievements of a terrific year group. 6th Year music students entertained the audience with their rendition of The Beach Boys “Wouldn’t it Be Nice”. Mr Creevey presented Principal Awards to Sinead Moloney, Olivia Dolan, Fíona Gallagher, Adam Hanlon, Anna Power, Cormac Burke, Sarah Hoey, Evan Brooks and Rebecca Kiernan for their contribution to Donabate CC. Cormac McGleenan and Ellen Dunne spoke on behalf of the students and delivered a few home truths. It is true we don’t have it all figured out and that is indeed okay! Both students thanked most sincerely their teachers, Ms Lindsay, Mrs Flynn, Ms O’Hagan and Mr Creevey for their constant support and guidance over the last six years.
Possibly the biggest surprise on the night was the video from students thanking the teachers for their kindness and support. It was a touching reminder of the importance of the student-teacher relationship and our thanks go to Andrew Grace, Eve Moore and Gillian Weston for coordinating and producing the video for the night. Students were presented with their certificates by their tutors and posed for a final time for Ms Clery’s camera as class groups. Those in attendance were then treated to a compilation of photographs put together by TY Journalism students. The final song captured the strength and positivity of the students as they sang out ‘I’m on top of the world’ by Imagine Dragons. And just like that, it was over and students were posing for photos and queuing for ice-creams.
So what is next for the Class of 2019? The Leaving Certificate commencing on Wednesday is just another challenge that this group will soar over. Their minds will be filled with Ms Lindsay’s words – these exams are not the be all and end all. There are many ways to get where you want in life – the Leaving Certificate is just one. They face into the future confident and ready to make their mark on the world. They are indeed on top of the world!
On to the thank yous; a huge thank you to the Parents’ Council – for the fabulous cake and treats and endless support – not just at Graduation but throughout the year. We are so fortunate to have such an active Parents’ Council and we thank them for their commitment to helping our students. A big thank you to Ms Chaloner who was a terrific MC for the evening. Thanks to all those who were involved in setting up the graduation. Thanks to the 6th Year music students for providing the music and to Mr Collins for all his hard work both at the graduation and in the weeks coming up to the graduation.
We thank the Class Tutors; Mr Weafer, Ms McArdle, Mr Clarke, Mr Nagle, Ms Orohoe and Ms Peat for their unending support and kindness – not just in preparation for graduation but for the last number of years. We thank most sincerely Ms Lindsay for her endless hours of dedication to this year group. Her kindness, approachability and encouragement to this year group is second to none and our incoming First Year students will be so lucky to have her guidance.
To the Leaving Cert Class of 2019 – we thank you for your unending enthusiasm, your positivity and your willingness to work hard and strive to be the best people you can be. It has been both an honour and a pleasure watching you grow into wonderful people and we wish you every success in wherever the wind takes you next in life. However, as Mrs Flynn has said – please remember we are still here for you if ever you need us.
From all of us at Donabate CC, we wish the Class of 2019 every success in the forthcoming exams and in their future careers – wherever that may be.
Photos from the Graduation Ceremony are available here.