Newsletter Spring 2003










Our Certificate exam results this year were excellent as usual. Congratulations to all the students who did their Leaving Cert last June. The majority of those who did the Leaving Cert in June 2002 achieved the points for their first preference career choice. Some of these girls are now studying as follows:

·                    The College of Surgeons - Medicine

·                    UCD - Bachelors of Arts, Commerce and Science.

·                    DCU - Sport Science and Health, Science, Science and Education

·                    Institute of Technology, Blanchardstown - Business Studies

·                    Trinity College Dublin - Therapeutic Radiography

·                    Griffith College - Journalism and Media Studies

·                    UCD and the Mater Hospital - Nursing .

·                    Maynooth College - Bachelors of Art

·                    St Pat's Drumcondra - National School Teaching, Montessori Education



A "Study Skills Seminar" was held for Leaving Cert students. The "Student Enrichment Service" delivered the seminar. Thirty students participated and places were allocated on a "first come, first served" basis. The day cost 20 Euro. The coordinator gave us tips on how to take notes and how to put study plans into our week.

This made us feel at ease and settled a lot of fears that we had about the Leaving Cert. The day was thoroughly enjoyable and if the opportunity arose again I would recommend that each and every student should participate fully as they would benefit enormously. The Leaving Cert now seems like an everyday assessment. We have no worries about study and we are looking forward to the challenge that is ahead of us.





The Choir of Mercy College Coolock have taken part in numerous events throughout the past year. Our most recent success was the launch of our  CD "Blessed Are They Who Sing". The launch took place on September 23rd last in the school hall. The choir performed two songs from the CD on that night. Our CD was officially launched by our special guest Minister Ivor Callely. Huge numbers of our CD's had already been sold and so we were able to present a cheque for 1,252 euros to Father Jimmy McElroy, the Parish Priest of Coolock. This was the first instalment and the profits from the sale of the CD will go towards the cost of a new organ for the church in Coolock. The CD is on sale in the school and in St Brendan's Church, price €10.

The Choir led the singing in the school carol service on December 12th. It took place in St. Brendan's Church and was appreciated by all who attended.

The choir is presently preparing for competitions such as Feis Ceol and the Wesley College Coral Competition. We are really looking forward to these events in 2003.

The choir would like to take this opportunity to thank Ms. Hogan and Ms. Daltun for their tireless work as without them none of this would be possible.





Mercy College Hockey Club has approximately 100 members. There are three teams in the Leinster League - Senior, Junior and Minor. The Juniors have gotten off to a very good start. The Senior and Minors are playing very well. After Christmas we will have seven teams in the Northside League - one Senior, two Juniors, two Minors and two First Year teams.

The new pitch is a tremendous success. It is very nice to play on, has a good surface and is dry all the time. It is hoped to start Soft Ball in the spring. The Hockey Club is very grateful to the Board of Management for the investment in the pitch.


Sixty-six members of Mercy College Hockey Club went to Paris to celebrate Halloween. Ms Whelehan organised this trip for the Hockey players from Second Year to Sixth Year. Ms Somers, Ms Harrison and two of our past pupils accompanied us.

The trip began on October 29th when everyone met in the airport at five a.m. By ten thirty we had reached Paris. A tour of the city of Paris was organised. We were taken to all of the major attractions of Paris, for example The Arc De Triomphe, The Ritz Hotel, The Louvre Gallery. We really enjoyed the tour of Notre Dame Cathedral. We also had the opportunity to examine the shops and sights of the Champs Elysees. That night we had a beautiful boat trip along the River Seine. We were in such high spirits that we sang for most of the boat trip.

On Wednesday we went to The Paris -Disneyland Theme Park. The day was absolutely fun packed and the only way we could describe it is just brilliant. It was so enjoyable that we could not help smiling all day. We had to leave at six 0 clock. Then we went to the Aquaboulevard water park. There were lots of different slides and rides. We had a wonderful time. We got back to our accommodation at ten thirty- exhausted. We were all tucked up in bed by 12.30 !!!!!!!!!

We went to the Paris-Walt Disney Studios on Thursday. We discovered the behind the scenes world of cinema, television and animation. A tram took us around the studios and we were shown the sets, wardrobes and special effects of some famous films. We were invited to join in as extras in the making of a film. The Second and Third Years agreed to participate in the singing. It was great fun. This was also a theme park so there were lots of exciting rides.

On Thursday night we all went to the top of the Eiffel Tower. It was a lovely way to spend Halloween. We had to come home on Friday. It was a really great trip.

We would really like to thank Ms.Whelehan for organising this wonderful trip.




We have had an unusual season so far. We started in September with the Cadets (Under 16) and Seniors (Under 19) but we had not sufficient numbers for the two teams so we entered the Senior League. This meant that our girls had to play against older players. However they did record some good wins against St. Finians, Dominican Cabra and St John of God's losing out in the semi final spot by only one point. Ammo, Fiona, Lisa, Liz and Gemma all played well with our under 14's with Laura, Natalie and Ciara also contributing.

After Christmas sees the start of the First Year League when the girls will be training every Tuesday and Thursday as well as playing matches. This looks like a good bunch of players for the future.

We ran a basketball camp from Jan 2 - 4 in the hall and training resumed on 7th January.




The number of students participating in the Junior Certificate Schools Programme (J.C.S.P.) continues to increase with groups from First, Second and Third Year taking part. The aim of the programme is to help and encourage students to organise their work into more manageable sections. This should help to motivate and improve exam performance.

"Folder Week" took place in November and many students received postcards from school to compliment them on their work.

The highlight of this term was when Room 6 organised a Christmas celebration and play.

Next term a "Paired Reading" programme will start. This involves a partnership between the students in Mercy College and adults in the local community. We hope it will be enjoyable and educationally valuable.




This is an enhanced Leaving Certificate Programme where students study the established Leaving Certificate with an added dimension - the Link Modules. The link modules include Preparation for the World of Work and Enterprise Education.

Since September the students have undertaken two activities: Helping the Social Services and the Citizens Information Centre KARE (part of forging links with local volunteer organisations)

A visit to a local enterprise... Olhausens... A very informative visit, which opened up the students' eyes to the whole idea of operating a factory, the hygiene regulations for the market for the product etc.

We are very grateful to Olhausens for facilitation the visit and are appealing to other local businesses who would also facilitate future visits by the students to please get in touch with the LCVP Coordinator.

In March the 43 students who are undertaking the programme are going to St. Vincent's Hospital for a full day seminar where they will attend lectures about the job opportunities in the medical area. They will be shown around the various areas in the hospital so that they can experience what working in a hospital is really like.





The Student Council meets once every month to discuss agenda items which have filtered through from the student body. The student council has sometimes sought requests such as permission to install a drinks machine or permission to survey the whole school regarding a possible change in school uniform.

At present the Student Council members are investigating the possibility of having a sandwich machine and a tea and coffee machine installed. The Student Council is also looking into the need for blinds in some of the classrooms. Another challenge being addressed by the Student Council at the moment is a way to promote a positive image of the school and the students on the 27 buses.

The next meeting of the Student Council will take place on Tuesday January 27th.

The members of the Student Council are:

FIRST YEAR. . . Kerrie Hogan, Therese Redmond, Lisa O'Reilly, Kim Curry.

SECOND YEAR. . Nicola Kennedy, Grace McBryan, Natasha Duffy, Tammy Lumsden.

THIRD YEAR. . Anne Madden, Lisa McSweeney, Alison Harrington, Suzanne Shields.

ROOM 32 . . . Suzanne O'Connor

ROOM 35. . . Melissa Dunne

FOURTH YEAR. . Maria O'Reilly and Sarah Grey.

FIFTH YEAR. . . Emma Burch, Orlaith Fallon, Sabrina Woods, Pamela Ward.

SIXTH YEAR. . . Sinead Gregg, Aoife Hughes, Tracey Wosser.

The CHAIRPERSON is Lorna Howard the Head Girl and the VICE CHAIRPERSON is Aine Hallissey.




Health Matters On Wednesday November 20th the Transition Year students attended a talk on Health and Nutrition and the importance of exercise in the Portmarnock Leisure Centre. This session, sponsored by the National Dairy Council, to consisted of a very informative discussion of the importance of a healthy diet, a fun quiz and ended with a hip-hop / aerobic workout. All had a very enjoyable afternoon.

The Musical The Transition Year students of Mercy College and Chanel College will be performing "Joseph and his

Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" in Chanel College in March 2003. Rehearsals are well under way at the moment under the guidance of Maureen Gilligan, Producer / Director.

New G.A.A. Coaches During last year, 8 Transition Year students did a coaching course with the G.A.A. They were presented with their G.A.A. Foundation Level Coaching Certificates in Croke Park on the afternoon of Friday, November 29th. The 8 girls who are now fully qualified coaches are: LESLEY BRANT, EMMA BURCH, PAULINE DILLON, LOUISE FOX, CLARE HAMPSON, MAEVE KILLEEN, AISLING LYONS, CAROLINE MCCALL

Congratulations to all involved.




On Mercy day Fr. Jimmy Mc Elroy, celebrated the beginning of year school mass. Every student participated fully. A number of sixth year students were Eucharistic Ministers, They chose to become Eucharistic Ministers last year. Susan Robinson and Miriam Doran invested a lot of time helping these students in becoming Ministers of the Eucharist.

Two first year students were altar servers at the mass too. At this time we would like to express our appreciation to these students for their contribution to the school mass.

Retreats took place for first, third, fourth, fifth and sixth years during the last term. Second year retreats will be on the Tuesday 14th and Wednesday 15th of January 2003.

Advent services took place on the first Monday of Advent for every year

All the school attended a Carol Service in St. Brendan's Church, Thursday 12th December. The Carol Service was a tremendous success as always.

This years first years, in Mercy College will sit Religious Education for their Junior Cert. in June 2005. All future students will do likewise.

We wish them every success in this undertaking.

We would like to take this opportunity to wish Ms. Finnerty a speedy recovery and an equally warm welcome back to Mercy College in the new term.

In the New Year the Religion Department will have Lenten Services for all groups.




Thirty-two students and three teachers made their way to Delphi, November 13th 2002.

All were aboard the bus and set westwards before our departure time. The bus journey while uneventful was certainly by no means quiet. The students with stereo on board thrilled the bus driver with their renditions of various popular songs from Shania Twain, and other artists.

Arriving at our destination the students were whisked away to land activities. The students were divided into three groups who attempted activities such as

"High Ropes", an assault course approximately eight feet from the ground. Some students covered the course in a matter of minutes while others' determination shone and they stuck at it, until they completed the course.

Day two, after an early wake up call, the students went to their water activities. Appropriate as it was the wettest day recorded in Dublin for years. Then we went up to the forest for activities.

Some students did not attempt some of the higher activities but their enthusiasm and delight at seeing others trying was contagious.

Each night there were indoor activities, such as table quizzes, or practical joke. Some of these activities required teamwork and cooperation. Sometimes the practical joker was also caught out too!! The girls volunteered for everything.

Day three, the students went up "Jacob's Ladder" not an easy feat! After lunch the girls piled onto the bus, sad to be leaving but happy to be going home. The journey down there was absolute silence on the bus, as everyone was exhausted. I think everyone will agree that Delphi was as always a great success.



The Fifth and Sixth Year students went on a field trip to the Botanic Gardens. They went to see the "Sculpture in Context 2002" exhibition. The exhibition involved various different kinds of sculpture placed throughout the garden, indoor and outdoor. There were a huge variety of different kinds of sculptures. The students enjoyed producing sketches of the exhibits.


Senior Science students visited D.C.U. on November 13th as part of "Science Week Ireland". The Faculty of Science and Health in D.C.U. organised a number of events. Laboratory tours and scientific demonstrations were held throughout the day. There was no admission fee and the only expense involved was bus fare.




The Board of Management of Mercy College has kindly agreed to continue its generous sponsorship of students of French. The Board offered a scholarship of 250Euros to each of two students to attend a course run by Eurolanguage. We applied to the French Department and were accepted.

The course ran from July 15th to August 2nd. It was residential and took place in Multyfarnham in County Meath.

French tutors taught the course. It was attended by 110 students between the ages of 15 and 18 from all over the country.

Our days were very structured. We had classes from nine in 'i the morning till two in the afternoon. In the afternoon there were activities and we could choose from a wide range of things such as sport, music, dance, craft etc. In the evening times we participated in plays, concerts and mock "Eurovision" contests. The course was good fun and was an enormous learning experience because everything had to be done in the French language. The tutors were very strict in enforcing the rule of French only and if a person was found to have used English on more than two occasions, s/he was sent home.

We learned a lot on this course and did not realise how much we had learned until we got home. When we came back to school we had a far greater understanding of French. We had far more confidence about the spoken word and we are not so nervous about our oral exams for the leaving Cert.

We would recommend this course to our fellow students. It was hard work but extremely enjoyable. It provided a great opportunity to meet other leaving Certificate students from all over the country.

We would like to thank the French Department for giving us the experience of a Eurolanguage college and we would like to thank the Board of Management for their generous sponsorship.




On December 1st and 8th, four girls from Fifth Year stood in Arnott's shop window fundraising for the C.R.C. Santa Bear Appeal.

We had to dress up in big bear costumes and stand in the window / live in the window for the day. There was a television and video for us to watch during the day but we all preferred to be over at the window. We danced and waved for the children on the street and the smiles and the expressions on their faces were priceless. It was very hard work though because it was so hot in the window; especially in the huge bear suits. It was a great experience for us all because as well as having a laugh we knew we were helping people in the Central Remedial Clinic.




Five students from Mercy College took part in the "Coming of the Nazarene". This production took place in St. Brendan's Church in Coolock from the third to the sixth of December. We danced and played the drums. And we also had some speaking parts. We had a full audience every night. The people really liked the show. We really enjoyed taking part.




Mercy College is very proud of the fact that so many of the students are talented dancers who have taken part in a variety of different competitions all over the country and abroad.

The school would like to congratulate KAYLEIGH TIGHE who has recently begun to train as a dance teacher and to wish her every success with this challenge.

The school would also like to say good luck to all of the dancers who are entered into competitions in the New Year.



Needle Craft

Parents from Mercy College, along with parents from Scoil Caitriona and St. Brendan have met for needlecraft sessions on Monday mornings from nine to one o'clock. An exhibition of the work produced was displayed in the foyer of the school in December. Congratulations to all involved. New members to the group would be most welcome.


Art classes took place on Thursday mornings from ten to twelve o'clock. The teacher was Yvonne O'Brien. Yvonne is the parent of a past pupil of Mercy College. She is very well known in the community for her marvellous contributions and vast experience in teaching art. The classes were attended by parents and members of the local community and ranged from grandmothers to young mothers. An exhibition of the wonderful work done was mounted in the foyer of the school. the classes will continue after Christmas and new members- including beginners - are more than welcome.

Coolock . Artane Local Committee Craft

Mercy College is a member of this committee. It represents Mercy College, Scoil Caitriona, St. Brendan's and Chanel College. The Principal of each school along with parents and members of local community groups make up the committee. The committee meets three times each term. Last-year the committee produced a directory of services and facilities in the area. It contains contact numbers and addresses of an amazing range of local activities and services e.g. nursery schools, sports clubs etc. If anyone would like to have access to this directory, a copy is available in each of the above schools. Last year the committee identified 'Drug Awareness' as a need. A draft drugs policy was produced and work on this is ongoing.

The committee has identified 'Self Esteem for Everyone' as the theme for 2002-2003.

Talks for Parents

Maria Somers and Peter Hegarty arranged talks for parents on 'Drug Awareness'. There were four talks in all and they were held on Thursday nights.

Plans for 2003

A new course on 'Assertiveness' will start in January. The exact dates and times have yet to be arranged. All will be welcomed.

Support Groups

Vincent Byrne, an Adlerian Counsellor continues to provide support for parents and students helping them to understand family life. He is available for parents in Mercy College Parents' room on Tuesday nights between 7.30 pm and 9.30 pm. and on Wednesday afternoons between 2.00 pm and 4.00 pm. All are welcome and the service is free of charge.