In an historic move, St. Mary’s Limavady has recognised up to 200 pupils for their efforts outside of the classroom at a special celebration event.
Like most schools, each year St. Mary’s highlights the academic achievements of pupils at an annual prizegiving.
This is a way to recognise the role they all play, a role in which everyone involved goes above and beyond for the schoolSt. Mary’s Principal, Mary McCloskey
But with so many pupils involved in so many different sports, and the effort that involves, Principal Mary McCloskey wanted to do something special for students and staff.
“Sport is an essential part of life at St. Mary’s,” said Mrs. McCloskey.
“We have 21 teams with 200 students involved in sport, and 11 staff members involved as well. This is a way to recognise the role they all play, a role in which everyone involved goes above and beyond for the school.”
St. Mary’s has enjoyed its fair share of success on the pitch,including winning an Ulster Colleges title in GAA football.
However, Mrs McCloskey is quick to point out the special event on Wednesday evening was about more than the school silverware, and is about recognising all players regardless of success. On top of training at school, and their clubs, students have to keep on top of their school work, she said.
She said each time students put on a St. Mary’s strip, they are also ambassadors for the school, their clubs andthe Parish.
Among those in the sports hall, transformed for the event, were pupils from sports including netball, soccer and GAA.
Year 11 student, Corin McMonagle plays football for St. Mary’s and Slaughtmanus.
“Sport helps take your mind off coursework, and it is a great stress reliever,” said Corin, adding he is thankful to be part of the special event.
Year 10 pupil, Fintan Curley agrees. The Limavady Wolfhounds footballer says playing football for the school is a great distraction from school work. He says the event recognising all sports, and all levels of talent, is a great idea.
Faughanvale GAC footballer, Anthony McGuinness in Year 10 was honoured to be part of the evening highlighting good work away from the books. He says sport is a good match for school work.
Year 10 student Chloe Mullan plays football for St. Mary’s and Wolfhounds GAC. She said the event is a good way to reward students for something other than academic results.
Séana McLaughlin in Year 8 plays camogie for St Matthews GAC, Drumsurn and for the school. She said she felt privileged to be included in the evening.
Niamh McIlroy is one of four sisters playing sport at St. Mary’s. The Year 11 pupil plays for Limavady Wolfhounds and netball for the school. “I think it’s a nice idea,” said Niamh.