‘Difficult year but amazing success’ says Oakgrove Integrated College principal
The hosting of the annual prize-giving ceremony at Oakgrove Integrated College for the first time since the pandemic marked ‘another big step on the road to getting back to normal’, said school principal, Katrina Crilly.
Extending a warm welcome to parents, pupils and invited guests at the ceremony on Friday, Mrs Crilly said she was ‘so proud’ of all her pupils as the young people had demonstrated what she described as ‘mesmerizing resilience and determination’ over the past 18 months, and had achieved massive success in uncertain and challenging times.
Stating that she was delighted with that success, the principal pointed out that the A-Level results were very impressive this year with many students achieving A* - C grade and top achievers attaining 3A*.
“Our ‘A’ level results are increasing year on year with an amazing 72% of students having achieved three A-levels A* this year. We are delighted that all our pupils have achieved what they needed to progress on their desired pathway, be that university or apprenticeship.”
Mrs Crilly pointed out that there was significant improvement in GCSE results too with 85% of students achieving five or more CCSEs at A*-C grade, an increase of 30% in the last four years.
Reflecting on the problems of dealing with the pandemic and paying fulsome tribute to the dedication of her staff during that period the principal stated that without their commitment to providing the very best education possible in very trying circumstances their students would not have been able to achieve the successes they had.
She commented: “In this college our mission is to provide an all ability education and you will see this very clearly in the results we are celebrating. This truly is a school for all of the family – with no exceptions.
“We also aim to provide a character education. This is the hidden curriculum that doesn’t get published in league tables but is the core to every human being.
“And we also provide a ‘can do’ education. Life is tough, so we need to equip our young people with the skills to bounce back in the face of adversity. The last 18 months has demonstrated this.”
Special guest at the event was Mayor Graham Warke, who congratulated all the prize winners on their achievements. He stated: “There’s only one winner of each prize, but it is everybody working together for the good of everybody else that matters most. Let’s hope everyone in out wider community keeps doing that. As Mayor, I represent all the people of this city and it is my hope that we can all work together to share all the strengths and talents of all the people who live here, to make this the best place that it can be. This city has been good at making an effort. It was the big effort of people in this city working together which helped us to move forward from violence, and we are doing very well on that journey. As your school knows, it needs everyone to constantly work to understand and learn from each other.”
Concluding the event, Head Boy, Dara Donaghy and Head Girl, Suranne Mullan paid tribute to their fellow pupils stating that ‘dreams are important and we hope all your dreams come true’.
Photos by Jim McCafferty Photography (not for sale here)