Amber Flag Committee / Cycle against Suicide – report by Ms. L. Kelly
We have been working hard to educate students on a different mental health theme every month for the last 3 months.
In October we had “Look Out- Talk Out” where we encouraged students to enhance our positive friendly atmosphere in Loreto so that people would look out even more for each other and be more open to talking to people if they needed help.
In November we had “How Adolescents Cope with Stress” where we worked hard to encourage students to get outside into the school grounds at lunchtimes to get some fresh air and exercise. This one small change in culture can have a positive effect on a students’ coping strategies.
Finally, in December we educated students on the topic of anxiety. The Guidance Counsellors and SPHE teachers worked together to deliver talks to each class group (some classes still have to have their talk in January) to educate students that anxiety is a normal and human reaction to a stressful situation. We taught students that the little things really are the big things when it comes to reducing anxiety. We can never totally eliminate anxiety but we must learn to manage it. Please see www.healthpromotion.ie and www.yourmentalhealth.ie for more information. Each year group added a piece to our noticeboard this month and I’d like to thank sincerely all the students who got involved in our themes over the last three months.
Ms. Foley, Ms. Rowe and I look forward to working with the school community in 2020 to continue to promote positive mental health and to reduce the negative stigma attached to mental illness.
Have a brilliant New Year.
New School Building – report by Mr. O’ Shea
It is now almost 18 months since we made the move to our new school building. In that time, we have settled in to our new surroundings very well and have come to appreciate the space, warmth, comfort and wonderful facilities in the building. Teething problems have been overcome and ongoing issues are being dealt with by a very efficient Helpdesk facility that is available to us on a daily basis.
This week marks a very significant development in that students will, for the first time, have the use of our new GAA pitch. This is a superb facility that will allow us to finally play home matches on our own pitch. We have waited a long time for this and we are most grateful to have finally arrived at this point. Let’s hope that Ballynagee Park will become a home fortress in the coming years!
The situation in relation to the all-weather hockey pitch is, however, not as pleasing. A considerable number of creases have appeared on the surface since last summer that make the playing of competitive matches impossible. This has caused a lot of inconvenience to students, staff and members of Wexford Hockey Club who also use our facility.
The school is involved in detailed negotiations with the Department of Education and Skills, National Development Finance Agency and Public Private Partnership Company to rectify this situation as soon as possible. The issues are complicated but I am pleased to report that progress is being made and we are hopeful of a favourable outcome in the near future.
The following pictures of our school campus were taken on 21 December 2019.