Page 1

December 2012, No 34

The Phantom of the Opera is here! The Phantom of the Opera was another triumph for the staff and students of Newpark. It has been twelve years since the first musical, Grease, was staged in the gym and the latest production was by far the most ambitious to date. Newpark’s Phantom was worthy of any audience with its astounding production values. It is hard to comprehend the level of organisation that went into producing Phantom. The commitment shown by students and staff was superb, with people from diverse areas, from Engineering, Woodwork, Home Economics, Art and of course Music, playing crucial roles to make the production a success. Phantom would not have been an obvious choice for me but I was enthralled from the opening scene to the finale. Those who saw it recently said the Newpark production outdid the London version. John Cummins did an outstanding job as the Phantom with his magnificent singing and his obvious command of the stage. Equally superb were Isobel Horner and Emily Hogarty with their angelic singing, while each girl created her own air of vulnerability for their character Christine. [continued on page10] 1

This year Newpark is celebrating 40 years of comprehensive education. When our school opened all those years ago the chief aim was to provide a broad education for all students which allowed opportunities for the individual talents of each and every student to shine. Each subject on the curriculum was valued for its contribution to the development of the students’ talents. Not being considered ‘academic’ did not mean being ignored and relegated to the back of the class or—worse still—not allowed in at all. This commitment to providing opportunities to develop the skills and talents of each and every student through a wide range of subjects and courses (and in particular through the varied programme in TY) remains at the heart of Newpark. Over the past term we have seen this aim being fulfilled in many areas. This newsletter is testament to all the work undertaken by staff, students and parents. It is this collaboration that makes so much possible. The Transition Years have completed module one with positive feedback from all quarters. It is very heartening to see the high levels of participation in so many different areas. Students have had access to activities including surfing, rock climbing, bowling, Japanese, Chinese, Thinking, Salsa, and First Aid. The programme has great variety and depth with opportunities for students to be actively involved in so many areas. Our challenge is to try and increase the opportunities for active learning across more of the curriculum and throughout First to Sixth Year. In November the meetings for parents/ guardians and teachers in Second and Sixth Year took place with a great turnout for both. This is an invaluable opportunity for students, parents and teachers. The logistics of organising 900 appointments are immense and I thank our Chaplain Suzanne Harris for her fantastic organisational work. I thank both teachers and parents/guardians for their patience and commitment during the meetings. Transition Year form teachers also met with the parents/guardians in very positive interactions. In the next school year we propose to switch the Third Year meetings to before the October half term and hold the Second Year meetings after Christmas. This will give the Third Year parents/guardians an earlier indication of student progress in the Junior Certificate year. One important initiative for First Year is the ‘Book in the Bag’ scheme. Following a First Year survey on reading habits and interests, the library has been re-stocked with fiction and non-fiction titles. All First Year students are expected to have a book in their bag to read for pleasure in class but also when a teacher is absent or class-work is completed early. There is a strong correlation between reading habits and academic performance: we want to build and improve on the culture of reading within the school. Please engage with your daughters/sons about 2

Mr Derek Lowry

their reading and remind First Years always to have a book in their bag. In the New Year we will be reinvigorating this campaign and introducing other simple initiatives. How about including a book as a stocking-filler for Christmas? In rugby the senior team are preparing for the upcoming cup campaign. This will be testing as the success of recent years has promoted Newpark to the Section B of the Cup. The First Year rugby team are showing great promise and we look forward to seeing their development in the coming months. All the hockey leagues are under way with a great increase in the number of our teams. A very young Senior Girls team have started their league campaign in a positive fashion and with the increased numbers it augurs well for the future of the game in Newpark. In basketball both boys and girls are showing great promise and working hard to improve performance. The Senior Girls in particular have had a very successful start and have reached the quarter-final. Best of luck to all Newpark teams this year. For all students involved in various extracurricular activities it is vitally important to show commitment. Being involved means being part of a team. Staff and others involved are giving up their time voluntarily. Many have family commitments which are put on hold while they organise the matches, training or rehearsals. If students do not turn up, teams end up short of players or the rehearsal cannot go ahead properly. Where there are genuine reasons for non-attendance students should let the coach, director or organiser know in good time. For all who attend regularly at training and matches it is very disappointing and disheartening when others seem to care nothing for the impact their choices make on every else. I would ask all parents/guardians to talk to their daughters/sons about this need to commit fully and to show respect for all their teammates, coaches and directors. You will read in this newsletter about many of the positive experiences which packed this term. We have had a number of Newpark 40th Anniversary events. There was a very enjoyable and well attended party in Blackrock rugby club with attendance spanning almost the whole of the forty years, compered in his own superb style by Philip Hollwey. Many thanks to parents Caitríona MacAonghusa, Mary-Kate Halpin and Aideen Jones for a fantastic job in putting the evening together. The Ghosts of Newpark which ran over Friday and Saturday 9th and 10th November was a unique representation of so many memories of the school through photography, music, drama, art, Christian worship, personal memories—and even through cake! The standard of performance and presentation was extremely high and I thank Ciaran Byrne and Anna Johnston for all their great work in putting it together. [C on tin ued on p ag e 3]

Letter from Mwenge

In this, our 40th birthday year, it is good to take the opportunity to look back at the school’s long and proud history of connecting with and supporting those less fortunate than ourselves at home and abroad. Over the years, through the combined efforts of students, staff and parents alike, Newpark has brought fresh water to a village in Uganda, supported homeless girls in South Africa, sponsored a blind Malawian boy’s education and sent a Bóthar heifer to an Albanian family sheltering Kosovan refugees during the war. We’ve bought sleeping bags and blankets for the homeless on the streets of Dublin, sent medical supplies to victims of war, a boat to victims of the Asian tsunami, and cared for former street children in India. We’ve marched to free East Timor and Aung San Suu Kyi, played football for famine victims and danced against racism. Uniforms have gladly been left at home, fancy dress worn, and the legs of staff, students and management have been waxed and shaven in the name of charity! I hope that each current and past pupil, parent and teacher who has supported any of these efforts knows that your act of kindness has not been forgotten and that it has truly made a world of difference to those who received it. This year, a group of 3rd year CSPE students is raising money to provide school books to primary school children in Tanzania. Bad as things are here at Many thanks also go to Ms Berteloot and Ms Kennedy who organised a very successful and beneficial trip to Paris for History and European Section students in Senior Cycle. We have had Science Week and the excitement of three students qualifying for the BT Young Scientist. Newpark Theatre Company put on a fantastic production of All My Sons in October. The week of the 19th November saw Newpark’s inaugural Shakespeare Week with a great variety of events including performances of Cahoots Macbeth and a visit from Shakespeare himself. Cathy Devis put the programme together with her usual expertise and tireless energy—all in the weeks leading into her maternity leave. [Continued from page 2]

home, many schools in Tanzania struggle with absolutely no resources (not even books or writing equipment) and are dependent upon teachers from abroad. Over the past two years retired Newpark teacher, Seán McDermott, has worked in Tanzania and, through him, we have established a link with Mwenge Primary School, a school of about 700 students. So far, we have managed to purchase text books for four of the eight classes in the school, and this year we hope to supply books to the other four classes. To raise the necessary money, Miss O’Dwyer’s 3rd year CSPE students are organising a ‘Sponsor a Book’ campaign. Aware of the financial challenges at home, we suggest €5 sponsorship per book but any and all donations will be gratefully accepted. In return, we will ensure that your name, or the name of the person to whom you would like the book dedicated, will be written on each book sponsored. If you wish to dedicate a book to the memory of someone you love or to sponsor a book in your own name, please complete the form below and return to 3CSPE via G. O’Dwyer.

If it is not possible for you to support us this year we understand. We appreciate your invaluable support in the past, and hope that we will work together again in the future. Wishing you a very happy Christmas and New Year. Gearoidín O’Dwyer and 3 rd Year CSPE class.

The term ended with Phantom of the Opera: a truly inspiring experience. Every aspect of it was so professional and of such a high standard that it was hard to believe it was a school production. The clever and creative design of the set and stage really maximised the impact. Sound and lighting were of the highest standard, the orchestra was superb and it was fantastic to see professional musicians playing with past and present students. The standard of the choreography was so high and the range and depth of onstage talent quite breath-taking. Huge thanks to Ethel Glancy for having the vision, determination and skill to bring together all these different elements to make it such a memorable evening. 3

Mr Derek Lowry

Cross-country in Phoenix Park The Annual Cross Country Race was held in Phoenix Park on Thursday 25th November 2012. The race is open to all community and comprehensive schools in the Dublin region. Over six hundred students competed this year. Races varied from 1100m at junior entries to 3300m at senior level. The course is set out on the field near the papal cross. The spectators wrap up warmly to cheer on the competitors and occasionally even the deer pause to cast an eye on the exertions of the runners! Below are reports of the day by some of the Newpark athletes. Congratulations to all who took part. Gormlaith Ormond, Athletics Co-ordinator

A word from the athletes The race meet was held on Thursday 25th of October. I was nervous before the race as I was the only Second Year boy present out of 70 athletes. When the race began, I started off at a fast

pace to keep up with the head of the group. I was watching out for potholes that I had discovered when I had previously walked the course. I increased my pace

about halfway through the race. When the finish line came into sight, I sprinted right until the end to try and overtake the people in front of me and I was pleased to come in third place. Congratulations to all the Newpark First Years that took part this year for the first time. Rory Kelly 2nd year

Ella and I were the only girls involved in running the annual cross-country race this year. I was really nervous (but also happy because we got to miss m os t of school that day!). We arrived in Phoenix Park and went to the start line. We did a short warm up; the grass was wet but at least it wasn’t raining. At the start of the race, lots of girls were sprinting but I decided to stay at my pace. I ended up passing out a lot of those sprinters and came 27th in a race of over seventy competitors. This result made me happy. I enjoyed the day but next time I would like to be fitter. Polly Paul 1CQY The cross country race in Phoenix Park was a great experience. It was a nice short 1.5 km race and Polly and I ran together till the end. The boys did really well in their races and us girls didn’t do too badly either. Ms Brennan was kind enough to buy us sweets and we all enjoyed ourselves. That is important to me even though we were FREEZING in our shorts and tshirts. Ella Slate 1CQY

Newpark Gymnast on National Squad Congratulations to First Year gymnast Taylor Coyle who has been selected for the Irish Junior National Squad. Taylor has a busy year ahead of her. In January she is going to England to train with the coach of Olympian medallist Beth Tweddle. Later in the year Taylor hopes to attend High Performance training in the USA. The squad will be training for the Junior European and World Gymnastics championships as well as the 2014 Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing. We wish Taylor the very best of luck in the National Squad and will be watching her progress with great interest. 4

Congratulations to Jamie Salinger, Niall James and Aindriú Conroy Lennon who were selected for the Leinster A School squad

To the Future! In this fortieth year we are delighted to report that the Department of Education has finally signed off on the new school building plans and the temporary school will begin construction in summer 2013. After so many false starts over the past few years, we were delighted and relieved this week to get the official goahead from the Department of Education to go to tender for construction. We have three phases to manage:  The construction of a temporary school at the back of the hockey pitch, and decanting from the existing main building into the temporary building.  The demolition of the existing school building, the construction of the new building, and the move into the new school in two stages.  The renovation of the red brick and sports centre, the demolition of the old portacabins and the temporary building. This will all start in the second half of 2013 and will take under two years to complete. It will be a complex build on a very busy campus. Not only do we have a school to manage and run while a new one gets built, we have a sports centre that requires refurbishment, some older buildings that need to be retained, a busy evening school, music school and a hockey pitch and club. Access, parking and traffic will be huge issues, and we have had several meetings with the stakeholders who use our site and who will be enormously affected. We will need a huge amount of patience, understanding and tolerance during the demolition and building phase. The Chairperson of the Board of Management, Micheal Johnston is stepping down after a productive and much appreciated term of office. Having seen us safely through the often frustrating process of getting the building project back on track, Micheal is taking a step back for a well-earned rest and to work on other projects. Huge thanks go to Micheal whose long association with Newpark extends throughout its forty years as a teacher, parent, grandparent and constant supporter as well as his more recent role as Chairperson. Derek Lowry

Newpark Quality Enjoy the photographic and text record that follows of all the fun and hard work that has gone into celebrating Newpark’s 40 years. Many individual students contributed way beyond what could be asked of them and we thank them from our hearts. Niall Sherlock, Isla Hoe, Mollie McAlister, Anna Moran, John Brennan, John Cummins, Charles Marchant, Mark Ball, Madison Porter (to name but a few): we salute you! May your determination, commitment, humanity and good humour take you far in life.

Newpark 40th Birthday Party The party held in Blackrock Rugby Club to mark Newpark’s 40th Birthday had everything but the cake, but more than made up for that with seriously good deserts supplied by the PTA! First rate organisation by Caitríona Mac Aonghusa, Mary-Kate Halpin and Aideen Jones produced an evening which attracted a representative sample of the great and the good of the school spanning the full forty years. Parents, past pupils and staff mingled, chatted and danced to some really marvellous 80s music courtesy of The Moogies. Stories and slides brought alive some of the people who have given so much to the school over the years, illustrating once again how many past pupils have become present parents, maintaining the loyalty and the linkages which do so much to foster the ethos of Newpark. There’s never been any doubt about Newpark’s ability to party, and this was one to be repeated! Philip Hollwey

Thanksgiving Service As part of the Newpark 40th celebrations there was a lovely Thanksgiving Service in St Brigid’s Church where a whole range of people from the past and the present came together to celebrate being part of the Newpark Community. The service fittingly took place on Remembrance Sunday and we remembered fondly many friends who are no longer with us but were an important part of the school community during the last 40 years. The former Principal, Reverend Michael Classon, took us on a trip down memory lane through Newpark’s history with many amusing anecdotes about the school and the times he had spent there as the school developed from a small private school to a new state comprehensive. The lessons were read by another former principal, Dr John Harris, and two former teachers and chaplains to the school, the Reverend Jack Black and the Reverend John McCullagh. The hymns were chosen by two past pupils who are current staff members—Laura Martin and Philip Hollwey—and past pupil Josh Johnston made the organ dance! We were also treated to a magnificent piano solo by Josh and a unique composition by another past pupil Ciaran Smith on guitar which he had written while a student in the school. The cast of Phantom of the Opera sang three fabulous music pieces and gave us a taste of the musical which at that stage was still to come. Prayers were read by former staff member Pat Rossiter, former school secretary Betty English and former matron Winnie Kelly as well as past pupil Amy Keating and present parent Marilyn Nyquist. The whole service was a very uplifting and celebratory event and a terrific occasion to renew old friendships and collegiality and see people who have all helped to shape Newpark into the school it is today. Many thanks to all the people who so willingly got involved and attended this service to celebrate Newpark’s special birthday. Suzanne Harris, Chaplain 5

Ghosts of Newpark Ghosts of Newpark was an eclectic and unusual exhibition organised by Newpark Arts to celebrate forty years of Newpark. Everyone in the wider Newpark Community was invited to share their interpretations and memories of what the school meant to them. The event included photography exhibitions, performance art, arts archives, sound installations, film, drama, music and an interactive memory bank! It was a drop in event which took place over two days Friday 9th and Saturday 10th of December.

The Memory Bank was launched in the weeks leading up to the event both in the staffroom and at the party at Blackrock Rugby Club so it already contained an interesting (!) collection of Newpark memories on post it notes and visitors to Ghosts were asked to add their own. The Memory Bank shared B6 classroom with a slideshow of photographic memories collated by Philip Hollwey for the Newpark party the previous week. B6 also housed a sound installation by Ros Steer using past students saying their names for a virtual 40 Year roll call. Ros had put out the word for anyone who had been to Newpark to send a soundfile to her for this project. Facebook was a great help for this and we also rounded up many bemused guests at the 40th party to come into a small alcove to record their names for the collection! Music, Drama and RE all put together archival exhibitions. The Music archive was in A corridor and included photographs and memorabilia of the many Musicals and concerts over the years as well as a digital video collage showing extracts of the live performances. The Drama archive was in P1 and included beautiful displays of costumes, masks and props as well as a photo slideshow. Isla Hoe and Sian worked with Ms Devis to create this temporary museum of Newpark Drama. The armchairs and soft lighting made this a very peaceful place to sit and remember good times. Suzanne Harris created another lovely sanctuary in A5 where many visitors joined her for tea and a chat as they enjoyed the RE exhibition on the past, present and future of the Christian Union. This focused on students who had passed through Newpark (and Christian Union in particular) and looked at the positive contribution they had gone on to make in Christian Ministry around the world. 6

Visual Arts There were five separate photographic exhibitions at

Ghosts of Newpark.

Past student Finn Van Gelderen (1986) put together a series of portraits of people who figured in his memories and association with Newpark. He followed up many contacts to track down his 22 subjects and photographed many of them in locations that reflected their lives and interests. This lovely collection included people who would be familiar to many Newparkers over the years (such as previous principals John Harris and Michael Classon), others were teachers (past and present) while the majority were past students Finn encountered while in Newpark or since. Amongst those portrayed were artists, broadcasters, musicians, scientists, a humanist celebrant and an archivist. There were many more people that Finn had hoped to photograph. Perhaps the collection will be added to over time by Finn or by other Newpark artists looking at Newpark’s legacy through people. Many thanks to Finn for his huge investment of time in this labour of love.

C u r r e n t students Anna Moran and George Hannaford both produced photographic work. George had a beautiful black and white time lapse photo of the Mall on show in The Gallery space outside the art room. Anna put together a fascinating series entitled Exits and Entrances which shows a series of ghostly figures (including some rather familiar ones!) passing in multiple forms in and around the school buildings. Anna exhibited her work on the B Corridor.

Ghosts of Newpark Daniel Siberry, another graduate of Newpark exhibited a series of photographs from an ongoing project he began while a student at Newpark. His large format black and white analogue photos portray the current building as a relic of modernism. This unusual record focusing on usually unnoticed spaces is a document to take with us into the new school.

Dr Ferdia Marnell, Zoologist

Rachel Joynt, Artist

Broadcasters Brian Dobson and David McCullough

Prof Andrew Butterfield, Computer Scientist

Clea van der Grijn, Artist

Kwaku Fortune, Actor

Transition Year Photography classes put together responses to the Ghosts of Newpark proposal too and their work was displayed in G1 with paintings by past students Sarah Cullen and Stephen Cullen. They were joined by edible art-work in the form of a cake designed to represent Newpark by Beatrice Ritzen and Kristen Nyquist of Fifth Year. On Friday evening this beautiful piece of work was for exhibition only so Becky Johnston and her team of cooking elves came to the rescue with trays of divine Newpark 40 cupcakes which could be eaten by visitors and curators made hungry by art and memories!

Transition Year art had made fascinating shadow puppet films based on Newpark memories and stories and these were on show in the art-room.


Ghosts of Newpark Revisiting

First Person in Newpark First person in Newpark was a play first performed in 2004 when Irish playwright Conor MacPherson came into Newpark to work with Transition year students and teachers as part of the first Voice our Concerns project with Amnesty. As part of the Ghosts of Newpark we managed to record the eight monologues that were used with the original actors: teachers Cathy Devis, Derek West, Anna Johnston and Dee Mulrooney and past students Ciaran Wilson, Nina McCallig, Nick Harvey and Hayley Farrell. Visitors to Ghosts got to listen to an audio loop of our disembodied voices in the backstage changing rooms of the Hunter Theatre. Revisiting First Person in Newpark eight years later was a strange, surreal and heartening experience for all the actors involved. I found it incredible making contacts as farflung as Australia and Berlin. It was fantastic to hear what the past pupils were up to and to hear what a special and unique experience working on this play had been for them. Some of our eight year old words made us cringe, laugh and cry but looking back at that time was very worthwhile. For me personally First Person in Newpark was the start of my love affair with Newpark Drama; it gave me the confidence to go full steam ahead with creating on the Hunter Theatre stage. Conor gave us all a voice; he inspired us with his remarkable empathy and showed that anything was possible on the stage. Something as simple as listening to four teachers and four students speak about their lives really captured a special time at Newpark which is what the Ghosts of Newpark was all about. Cathy Devis

Dénouement On Friday evening past student David Magee presented Dénouement. He was attached to a wall in the canteen by hundreds of tiny strings and visitors were invited by the attendant to cut one or more the strings with a scissors. After many hours he was almost free and a fascinated audience gathered to watch the cutting of the last strings and David’s monologue afterwards. It was a powerful and unusual piece of performance art.

Playback Theatre Also on Friday night Fifth Year Mark Ball led a team of Senior students (Colm Higgins, Madison Porter, Fiachra Kennedy and Richard Harvey) in a highly enjoyable and energetic session of playback theatre. Audience members were invited to sit on the hot-seat and tell their stories and memories from days in Newpark. Their memories were re-enacted with gusto by the improvising actors and afterwards the subject was given the chance to comment and even to 8

alter the memory for the better—or just for the fun of it. Some people never got past Playback because they were having such a good time there! I saw the wall of the art room getting knocked down with increasing vigour each time and (bizarrely) the chaplain lost in a supermarket as a little girl. I also saw these guys portray the old and new buildings in a hilarious warmup piece that will stay in my mind for a long time to come!

Fifth Year Musicians

The live events on Friday night culminated with some beautiful performances from musicians in Fifth Year. Colm Higgins challenged and delighted with his contemporary Jazz improvisation on the saxophone and Mark Ball, Anna McCarthy, Ciara Ryan and Kristen Nyquist performed a beautiful a capella piece

For Emma’.

Voices in the Toilets

On Saturday, the attendants at the Ghosts events kept asking visitors if they had been tot the toilets yet! There was a reason; there were a series of dramatic events taking place in the B corridor toilets during the course of the day. One of these was called Voices in the Toilets and this was a sequence of Newpark memories and musings performed by actors inside the closed cubicles. Some of the memories were very funny, some were sad, combined they created a moving and thoughtful portrait of the place so many people have inhabited at such a critical stage in their lives. Current students Madison Porter and Sam Nicholson worked with past students Jessie Doyle, Jamie O’Neill and David Magee

Ghosts of Newpark using not only their own memories but those of many others Newparkers past and present. Across the corridor in the other toilets there was a different kind of performance. Notices on each cubicle door instructed visitors to trigger a performance by knocking, ringing a bell or slipping small props under the door. All hell broke loose in here as characters trapped in Newpark plays from the past were unleashed. There was Macbeth in one cubicle and the almost the whole cast of The Bald Prima Donna crammed into another. One actor alternated between a chanting witch from Macbeth and Mary Warren’s chilling speech on witchcraft from The Crucible. Cian O Ceallachain had a hilarious monologue between three of his selves from Newpark plays—an amazing feat of editing and performance. The last cubicle contained the surreal and fantastic characters (and script-writers) of Mr Etkin’s Lemons. It was an incredibly bizarre and enjoyable experience for the audiences, and hopefully enjoyable for the actors although The Bald Prima Donnas got a little overstretched in the second session as their very young fan club enjoyed their piece so much that they rang the bell to trigger it seven times in an hour. Huge thanks to current students Sian Demery, Saoirse O’Coineen, Fionn Russell, Oisin Lyons, Adam Boland, Colm Higgins and past students Jamie O’Neill, Cian O Ceallachain, Jessie Doyle and David Magee for their wonderful participation. Thanks also to both of the wonderful toilet attendants Madison Porter and Saoirse O Coineen.

a glimpse of what was to come in Phantom of the Opera and a wonderful performance of ‘Sing’ by Gary Barlow with sound effects, beautifully signed for the

Deaf by Deryn Casey. Phantom of the Opera featured a solo by Emily Hogarty and the duet ‘Think of me’ showcased by Isobel Horner and Jonny McCormack.

Let them eat cake!

The Phantom Cast The cast of Phantom were putting in long hours of rehearsals every day over Mid-Term and during the Ghosts. They bravely agreed to open their Saturday rehearsal and gave Ghosts visitors the absolute treat of seeing the work in progress: to my mind they got to see both the great fun and the hard work behind the

scenes and before the show which are such an integral part of the process and the memories you hold onto. They also closed the Ghosts event with a grand finale Phantom style. Masked and robed figures converged on the canteen to give the waiting audience

At this point it only remained to sing Happy Birthday to Newpark and eat the amazing cake. It was a little sad cutting it up but it tasted so good that we were soon glad we had. Luckily Marilyn Nyquist, mum of one of the bakers, was on hand to help with the cutting and the feeding of hungry Phantoms and their delighted fans. Anna Johnston 9

Phantom of the Opera [Continued from page 1]

Second Year Emily Hogarty was particularly impressive as she played the role on Thursday with maturity beyond her years. Jonny McCormack gave us a very sympathetic Raoul with Natalie Pullen and Sian Demery entertaining us with their comedic abilities. The supporting cast entertained us with convincing performances but also seemed to be enjoying every minute of it and who would ever have thought the school had so many talented ballet dancers? The poise and grace of Mollie MacAlister, Anna Moran and Subin Lee as they danced on points was stunning reflecting years of hard work and commitment! Not only is Mollie McAlister an accomplished dancer she is also a talented choreographer. And finally Ethel Glancy who is both lynch pin and dynamo for the musical productions that have become synonymous with Newpark. Over the years Ethel has raised the bar so high for school musicals it’s a wonder that anyone else can see the bar! My only regret for the production is that more people didn’t get a chance to see it. Without a doubt, it has been the highlight of Newpark’s 40th anniversary celebrations. Nothing else could have showcased Newpark’s spirit, team work and vision better, the appreciation of which was reflected in the standing ovations received for each performance. Mary Kennedy


A Word from the Phantom

Putting on Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Phantom of the Opera was an amazing experience for me and everyone involved. It, I’m sure, will be one of my fondest memories of my time in Newpark. However, it was not easy. We started six weeks before opening night and it became our lives for those six weeks. Everything else in our lives was uncompromisingly shoved to one side. We were upstairs in Ms Glancy’s room every lunchtime, every day after school, every weekend and even over the mid-term break. There is no denying we could have done with a lot more time in which to put it together—we were badly delayed by issues regarding the rights. There were times when I thought it was never going to come together—right up to the week beforehand when things began to get very stressful. It would not have done, had we not had the help of so many different people in the school community. From parents to teachers to students I would like to thank every single person who played any role in making this possible. Particularly Ms Glancy, Ms O’Keefe, Niall Sherlock, Ms Johnston, Ms Devis, Aoife Rooney and Mr O’Neill. It took great amounts of teamwork and the cast all worked so well together. The afternoon and four nights that the show was on will remain with me forever, each one going completely differently but brilliantly. It was a greater success than I ever imagined it would be. It was the perfect musical for me and I’d like to say a massive thanks to Ms Glancy for giving me the opportunity to play my dream role. John Cummins, The Phantom



This has been an extremely busy term for Newpark drama. In October Newpark Theatre Company (NTC) presented All My Sons under the capable direction of Carl Coyle (class of 2010). NTC was founded in 2010 as an initiative to bring together Newparkers with a passion for drama: it includes past and current students, teachers and parents. NTC’s aim is to present high quality productions in the Hunter Theatre to complement the curriculum and enrich the arts environment in Newpark. Since its foundation this company has presented Black Comedy, A Doll’s House and All My Sons with resounding success. We were particularly delighted that the last two productions gave students an opportunity to see live performances of texts on their Leaving Certificate English course. Another past pupil David Magee (class of 2011) returned to direct a fantastic Sixth Year production of Cahoots Macbeth by Tom Stoppard as part of Newpark’s first ever Shakespeare Week. I’d like to congratulate and thank directors Carl and David and both their casts and crews for providing such a high standard of drama for the Newpark community. The past pupils and parents have always made a difference to the school but their drama contribution this year has been exceptional: whether as actors or through assistance with sets and costumes, provision of fantastic workshops and support of the Arts in general. We are so lucky to have this growing bank of talent, skills and experience to draw from.

Photographs by Anna Moran 6DM

take place in the Hunter Theatre. The auditions are now under way and there will be three or four plays performed by First and Second Year actors directed by Fifth Years. As ever there is fierce competition amongst the Fifth Years for positions as directors. The directors work in pairs or threes and have to choose or devise a short play and make a convincing pitch. It is great to see them broadening their drama experience and sharing their enthusiasm and talent with the younger students. In mid March a small group of Transition and Fifth Years directed by the wonderful David Magee will be competing in the St Andrew’s One Act festival. Drama practitioners Jessie Doyle (class of 2009) and Rachel Hatch (visiting teacher) will be working with Transition Year Drama to devise a play for the end of this school year. Anyone interested in helping out with any of these productions please contact me at Cathy Devis, Newpark Drama

Shakespeare week Newpark’s inaugural Shakespeare Week went very well and we hope nearly all of the Newpark Community were exposed to the Bard’s genius at some point during the week. Huge thanks to the many people involved in the week and especially to the outside practitioners who gave up their time to come to Newpark including Amanda Piesse, Aaron Heffernan, David Horan and Freda O’Dea. During the week there were performances, sword fighting and costume workshops, a visit from the Second Age director of Macbeth and even an audience with Mr Shakespeare himself! We had believed him dead for centuries but Trinity lecturer Amanda Piesse assured us otherwise and brought him to Newpark for a hilarious and mind-bending interview. Elsewhere on campus there were elaborate duels of Shakespearean insults and compliments, the walls were festooned with tabloid Shakespeare and some PE classes even dabbled in renaissance dance. We look forward to Shakespeare Week in Newpark next year and are open to all suggestions and contributions. Cathy Devis & Anna Johnston

Costume Workshop

The next productions are the Junior Plays and the One Act senior play. On the 19th and 20th of 12 March the Junior Plays will

For Shakespeare Week we signed up for a costume workshop after school with Freda O’Dea. Freda is a parent in the school and she worked for many years in theatre costume and wardrobe. The workshop was great fun. We looked at old designs and patterns and made an old style dress out of recycling things. We dressed up in costumes from a production of Romeo and Juliet and took lots of photographs. We would highly recommend the workshop and do it again ourselves if we get the chance! Yazmin de Barra, Harriet Yakub & Laura Kendrick 1HG

All My Sons In October a production of Arthur Miller’s post World War Two play All My Sons was staged by the Newpark Theatre Company in the Hunter Theatre. What was unique about this production was the fact that it was directed by Carl Coyle, a past pupil, and involved the wider Newpark community of current students, past pupils, parents and teachers all working together. It is a credit to Cathy Devis that her hard work and enthusiasm promoting Drama in Newpark has made such a collaboration possible. At the centre of Miller’s play is a family in crisis, the Keller family who have lost a son to the war and are unable to move on from the past. Miller based his play on a story he had heard about a family which had been destroyed when a daughter turned the father in to the authorities on discovery that he had been selling faulty machinery to the army. In Miller’s play, the daughter becomes the son, Chris, who has to confront the father, Joe, with the truth of what he has done, with devastating consequences for the family. Joe has to learn that by selling cracked cylinder heads to the Army resulting in the deaths of twenty-one pilots, he must take responsibility for his actions and realise that “they were all my sons.”

theatre spellbound at the end, a fitting response to a riveting production. Margaret Coughlan

The Mother What an opportunity! A chance to play Kate Keller and live with her for five months! What did I let myself in for? Very early into rehearsal, a group of the cast came along to see me perform in the Smock Alley Theatre and I was struck by the support and camaraderie in our dysfunctional little family. Initially, my “son” didn’t turn up for our family gatherings – so he was replaced! Having never met “son no. 1”, meeting replacement “son” was the happiest occasion. To this day, I am very pleased with him! Also, no one wanted to be my “husband” – (he couldn’t be located for a couple of weeks). When Joe did arrive (“Where have you been?”, I nagged!) he was thrown in the deep end and floated, beautifully. My abiding memories are – apart from each draining/exhilarating performance (four in all – seemed like more!) – the workshops/rehearsals when the script was set aside and we sat around on the floor and wrote our biogs (Kate came second in a beauty contest – by way of background info); the language coach for the American accent; and most vividly, the sequel – the aftermath/post mortem – what Kate did next. “Joe is gone and everyone gathers for his eulogy”. So powerful and I think we should perform All My Sons II – Son of All My Sons. Another improv was a BBQ at the Kellers, when the neighbours/family gather in the back yard and the secret is underscoring the dialogue. Superb improvs. Happy Days!!. Eithne (Kate K) Dempsey - mother of All My Sons

The Son The cast of the Newpark production rose to the occasion and really did justice to this powerful play. Ciaran Wilson, who played Eddie Carbone in a previous Newpark production of Miller’s A View from the Bridge, brought experience and authority to the father figure, Joe Keller. Eithne Dempsey was powerful as the distressed and distraught mother, Kate, in denial about the death of her son, Larry. Her anguish as a mother was palpable. A performance that really stood out for me was Diolmhain Ingram-Roche, as the son Chris. He brought an emotional range and depth to the part which was truly powerful and stayed in the mind long after the performance. It was great to see Jessie Paget make her acting debut and so at ease in the role of Lydia Lubey, the laughing girl next door. Finally, it was a great opportunity for current Fifth and Sixth Year students to see such a fine production on stage of a play they have studied on the page for their Leaving Cert. All the students I spoke to were deeply impressed by the production. I still recall the subdued silence as the audience left the

I remember the auditions coming up for All My Sons, and thinking “Ahhh, I won't bother; not really my thing”. Then they came and went and I found myself really regretting that decision. So when a role suddenly “freed up” and I got a second chance to try out, I couldn’t help but grin like an idiot. It was amazing, being a part of a production like this. It was an environment fueled by boundless enthusiasm and filled with unbelievably talented people—an environment the likes of which I’ve never really seen before. I don’t know if that kind of model really exists anywhere else. It’s something very unique to the Newpark Theatre Company. It was almost as if people started to naturally gravitate to these roles within the group that at times felt sort of ... family like ... if that makes any sense. And that alone was worth the months and months of rehearsals and mouuwwldy Sunday mornings; worth it even before that feeling of actually stepping onto the stage or anything like that. So audition for the next one: plays are great. Diolmhain Ingram Roche, Sixth Year


Echange Newpark Belleview Cette année, nous avons accueilli les élèves français du collège Bellevue (Lyon) à Newpark du 19 au 26 novembre. Tous les élèves de la Section Européenne ainsi que ceux de ‘Mainstream’ étaient plus qu’impatients de rencontrer pour la première fois leurs correspondants français. Ils n’ont pu cacher leur joie en les voyant descendre du car le premier soir. Les élèves lyonnais avaient plusieurs visites au programme telles que Dublinia, le Musée de Cire, Croke Park et la Ferme Causey dans le comté de Meath. La ferme a été sans aucun doute l’attraction favorite des élèves. Les élèves français et irlandais ont assisté à des cours de danse irlandaise, ont appris à faire du pain complet, trait une vache et ont même eu l’occasion de se jeter dans une tourbière. Ni le froid ni le vent ne les ont découragés; ils s’en sont tous donnés à cœur joie ce qui a donné l’occasion de belles photos! C’est avec les larmes aux yeux que lundi 26, les élèves irlandais ont dit au revoir à leurs correspondants. Ils ont tous hâte de se revoir l’année prochaine à Lyon et espèrent tous avoir de la neige làbas. Melle McCarthy et Melle Tessier accompagneront les élèves irlandais à Lyon du 28 janvier au 4 février 2013. Vous trouverez détail des vols sur le site internet de l’école. Laetitia Tessier & Aedin McCarthy

DELF Exams Section Européenne Transition and Fifth Year students from the European section are currently preparing for the DELF exams. DELF stands for Diplôme d’Etudes en Langue Française and is a diploma awarded by the Ministry for Education in France. It is recognised worldwide and allows students to have their level of proficiency in French acknowledged wherever they are. It is a huge bonus within the European Union and beyond in terms of career opportunities. DELF is set against the Cadre Européen Commun de Référence which is the European Council’s linguistic benchmarking system for measuring proficiency in all languages. The diploma is based on four exams, each assessing one of the four basic linguistic competencies: aural, reading, written and oral. In Transition Year, students do the A2 level, in Fifth Year the B1 and this year (for the first time) a few students from Fifth and Sixth Year will sit the B2 level. The content of the exams is very relevant to the Leaving Certificate especially the oral and aural components. The exams will take place in the Alliance Française in January and February. Many thanks to Mme Tessier and Mme Berteloot. Alors, bon courage, bonne chance à tous les élèves et un très joyeux noël à tous. Daisy Berteloot


Lundi 19 novembre, nos correspondants français sont venus et nous les avons tous accueillis pendant une semaine. C'était une très bonne semaine et nous étions tous très impatients de pouvoir enfin les rencontrer. Toute la semaine, ma correspondante Victoria et moi nous avons joué à des jeux drôles. Je pense que jeudi a été le plus beau jour, lorsque tous nos étudiants français et nous sommes allés à la ferme Causey dans le comté de Meath. Nous étions tous très tristes de les voir partir le lundi. Rachel Marr, ES 2 nd Year Le premier soir, nous étions un peu mal à l’aise mon correspondant et moi, mais ensuite nous avons joué au jeu UNO et aux cartes. Ça a brisé la glace. Chaque jour, mon correspondent a pris le même déjeuner et il a joué à Mario tous les soirs. Le weekend a été le meilleur moment parce que nous sommes allés faire du patin à glace. Lylhian est tombé cinq fois. Il était vraiment mauvais: D! Après nous sommes allés à une fête et nous avons joué à beaucoup de jeux. Aussi, quand nous sommes allés faire du bowling, il a gagné. Le dimanche, nous sommes allés à Howth. Nous étions souvent avec Leona et Nicolas. La semaine a été courte mais très amusante. Christel Anderson, ES 2nd Year La semaine du 19 novembre nos étudiants français sont venus de Lyon. Tout le m o nde é ta it t r è s impatient de les voir arriver. Mardi, nous sommes allés faire du bowling à Bray. C’était vraiment sympa de faire connaissance avec nos correspondants. Jeudi, nous sommes allés à la Ferme Causey. Nous nous sommes tous bien amusés surtout quand on a trait la vache et avons sauté dans la boue! Samedi nous sommes allés patiner à Dundrum. C'était la meilleure activité de la semaine. Lundi tout le monde était très triste parce que les élèves français sont rentrés à la maison. C'était une semaine géniale et je me suis fait plein de nouveaux amis! Finn Howley, ES 2nd Year

Children Have Rights Too This month our CSPE class visited the Ombudsman for Children’s office for our Action Project. The first thing we noticed was the giant beanbags laid out in the office, it was like something out of Google!

appointed she was interviewed by fifteen young people, ages 11-17 and by three adults. Each term of office lasts six years and she is currently in her second term. She was given the job by Mary McAleese, the President at the time. We all had the chance to ask her questions. Overall it was a really enjoyable day and we learned a lot about the role of the Ombudsman for Children. Sam Whelan and Anna Bielenberg, Third Year

Take a moment to listen

We sat on them and were given an introduction to the role of the Ombudsman. Next, we went into their private cinema (cool!) to watch a short film about what the Ombudsman for children actually does. While we were there, we learned some interesting things such as:  The Ombudsman for children is a nongovernmental agency which stands up and protects children’s rights, such as monitoring people, institutions and organisations to make sure they are doing what they are supposed to do.  They take complaints and investigate claims. The

A recent trip to the Children’s Ombudsman’s Office highlighted once again how important it is for children to be listened to. While the Ombudsman listens to a lot of problems that arise from children having their basic rights violated, violation often starts at home, in school (bullying) and the environment they live in. While children have a right to a safe and happy home, to privacy and self expression one of their major needs is to be respected and listened to. Therefore I think it is important for adults to keep these most important keys in mind when listening to children.  Give children a chance to say what they think.  Explore why they think/feel a certain way about something, while keeping reflection and re-framing techniques in mind.  Consider children's background/environment (e.g. peer influence) and family/cultural background.  Keep children's developmental level in mind.  Don't judge children for who they are, rather help them to become who they want to be.  Try to read in between the lines children's behaviour doesn't explain who they are, but it does give you hints about their emotional world.  Hear/see the positives about a child and don't be selective in your hearing.  Try to remember how you felt when you were young.  Reflect on the expectations you have for a child and respond to the needs that he/she communicates to you through language/body language. Elke MacEntee, Special Needs Assistant

Time for Lego majority of complaints received are made by an adult on behalf of a child, although children do increasingly make more claims themselves.  They also make sure that children’s opinions are heard, such as children in care or homeless children. The Ombudsman then passes on their views to the government. We took part in an interesting activity about children’s rights. It was a case study about two children and what rights were being denied them. Finally we met Emily Logan (the Ombudsman for Children) in person. She talked to us about how she became the Ombudsman. She was really nice and seemed really passionate about her job. To be

Lego Club starting up in Newpark at lunchtimes. If you would like to get involved as a participant or mentor please contact Ms Fiona Kelly in G8. Any donations of Lego (bricks or technical) for use by the club would be much appreciated. Please give donations directly to Ms Kelly. Did you know that there are national and international Lego competitions every year which involve robotics, programming, building and designing to tackle specific challenges? Check out Robotics Ireland or First Lego League online for more information on upcoming competitions. 15

Science Week 2012

This year’s Science Week was a great success with the creation of a ZOO in D6 by Jake McGouran Endall most definitely the highlight of the week. Jake owns and looks after a huge variety of pets and was kind enough to bring them in and show them to other students.

Third Year Science Quiz winners Leo Kurevlev, Cillian Vickers Hayes, Sebastian King Hall, Eoghan Cunningham and Jake


Other events included a Chemistry magic show, live Biological Dissections (very popular!), Science Quiz and a talk by Dr Pauhla McGrance on the Galapagos Islands.

IT is not just for Geeks

Newpark CoderDojo

Newpark had the pleasure this year to welcome again DELL guest speakers Reginald Walsh and three of his colleagues. Joan Byrne, Paul Sheehan and Sharon McCaughan who presented the programme IT is not just for Geeks to all Transition Year students. Three sessions were planned (19th November, 26th November and Tuesday 4th December) to allow all students to attend the lecture. IT is not just for Geeks is a programme Dell has developed for High School students to help raise awareness about Careers in Technology. Its aim is to get students to think differently about careers in IT and Engineering. It shows students some basic facts about how to be successful in a work environment and what they can do as students to better prepare themselves for the world of work. The programme has definitely raised interest among teachers and students. We hope all Transition Year will benefit from it and change their perception of IT. Special thanks to all our guest speakers and also to TY Co-ordinator Marie Fitzpatrick and Newpark Librarian Laura Martin for their generous support and facilitation.

CoderDojo is a global movement of free volunteer coding clubs for young people. Come join Newpark CoderDojo to learn or teach to code, develop websites, apps, games and more! We meet on Saturday afternoons, 2pm-4pm, in the library. All you need is enthusiasm and a laptop. Newpark Dojo got off to a great start in November, launched by guest mentor Lindsay MacVean of Cork CoderDojo whose enthusiasm and knowledge were a great inspiration to both students and mentors/volunteers. Over the last five Saturday afternoons, we have been looking at HTML (the main markup language for displaying web pages) and CSS (a style sheet language for design and layout). Where we go next is up to you, our student coders. We are taking a break for the festive season but sessions will start up again in January, date to be confirmed. All students are welcome to join, numbers permitting. Volunteer mentors are also very welcome. Please check the website in the New Year for information, or email

Laetitia Tessier

Young Scientists 2013 This year Newpark students have been accepted in three different categories for the prestigious BT Young Scientist Exhibition which takes place in the RDS from the 9th-13th January 2013. We are delighted to be building on the success of our students’ involvement over the past three years. Don’t forget to visit the exhibition and support the Newpark scientists. Best of luck to Anna Porter, Jemima Turner and Alice Hamman from Ms Hannan, Ms Clarke and all the science teachers.

New Maths Puzzler See if you can work out the solution to the following problem. The answer is at the back of this newsletter, but make sure you give it a good try before looking! A worked solution will also be posted on the maths notice board in the C corridor. My watch was correct at midnight, after which it began to lose 12 minutes per hour, until 7 hours ago it stopped completely. It now shows the time as 3:12 am. What is now the correct time? Ellen Lawless, Newpark Maths

Natalie Butler, parent

October Maths Puzzler Q? One hundred bushels of corn were distributed among one hundred people in such a way that each man received three bushels, each woman two bushels, and each child half a bushel. Given that there are five times as many women as men, how many children are there? One way to solve this problem is by trial and improvement: If there is one man, there must be 5 women, and 94 children. This means that 1×3 + 5×2 + 94 × 1/2 = 60 bushels of corn were distributed. This doesn’t work, so try again with a larger number of men. If there are 6 men, there must be 30 women, and 64 children. This means that 6×3 + 30×2 + 64× 1/2= 110 bushels of corn were distributed. Close, but still not correct. Try again with slightly fewer men. If there are 5 men, there must be 25 women and 70 children. This means that 5×3 + 25×2 + 70× 1/2= 100 bushels of corn distributed, as required. ANSWER: 70 children Another way to solve this problem is by simultaneous equations: Let x = the number of men. Then 5x = number of women. Let y = the number of children. The total number of people is 100, so x + 5x + y = 100, or 6x + y = 100 (equation 1) One hundred bushels were distributed, so 3x + 2(5x) + 1/2y = 100. Multiply by 2 to get rid of the fraction, and simplify to get 26x + y = 200 (equation 2). Multiply the first equation by −1, then add equations together: −6x – y = −100 26x + y = 200 20x = 100 x=5 y = 70 ANSWER: 70 children 17

Paris sera toujours…. Paris le jour, Paris la nuit, sous le soleil ou sous la pluie. Il y a deux semaines, le samedi, nous sommes allés à Paris! C’était magnifique mais nous avons pris l’avion à six heures du matin et nous étions à l’aéroport à quatre heures! Nous y sommes allés avec notre professeur de Français Mme Berteloot et notre professeur d’histoire Mme Kennedy. Nous avons vu la tour Eiffel, La Joconde (Mona Lisa) au Louvre et l’Arc de Triomphe. Nous avons pris le métro tous les jours et à mon avis, plus de cinquante! En effet, je pense que Paris est une très belle ville mais dans la banlieue, c’était très moche. On a volé le téléphone de mon ami Jack dans le métro! Nous sommes restés dans un grand hôtel et chaque jour, nous mangions dans des restaurants Français, c’était délicieux. J’ai trouvé qu’il faisait plus beau en France qu’en Irlande, il faisait 13 degrés! Nous avons aussi beaucoup parlé Français. C’était super de se changer les idées et d’échapper aux 18

contraintes, c’était un voyage éducatif. Finalement, je pense que le voyage nous a permis de recharger les batteries et découvrir la capitale française. Un grand merci à Mme Berteloot et à Mme Kennedy: c’était un bon voyage! Nathan Huggins, 5 CC

Did you know?      

It’s illegal to kiss on railways in Paris. Parisian men have the lowest level of obesity in Europe. 20% of the French population live in the greater Parisian area. The Eiffel tower is painted every seven years. The most popular tourist attraction in Paris is Euro Disney. It’s against the law to photograph French police officers. Conor Ryan, 5MK

On the Track

Road Safety 26th

On Monday November, the Second Year metalwork class w e n t t o K y l e m o r e Karting for an outing. We were each assigned a num b e r a nd given a racing jacket and helmet. We were anxious to get going, but we had to watch the safety tutorial first. We all did a couple of practice laps in our numbered line-ups. There were 21 heats and depending on how well you did you got into the A,B,C or D final. After the heats Adam Sullivan was winning for the pupils and Mr Power and Mr Breaden were taking it for the teachers. In the finals Karl Sallinger won with a lap of 26.64 seconds, Sam Collier won with a lap of 26.64 seconds and Jeff Fahy with a lap of 26.92 seconds. In the A final were Mr Murray, Fionn O’Sullivan, Jani O’Connell, Mr Breaden and Mr Power. This was the one that everyone wanted to get into. With everyone watching they got started. It was a great race with Mr Breaden being spun out and lots of competition for the top spot. Mr Murray won for the teachers with a lap of 24.68 seconds and Fionn O’Sullivan won for the pupils with a lap of 25.80 seconds. A great day out was had by all! After all the antics of the great day of racing. we were ready for a whopper meal at Burger King. We returned to Newpark at the end of lunch with full stomachs having had an adrenaline filled day out! Stuart Cremin 2 JH and Milo de Freine 2 RS

Deutschland für Anfänger On Thursday 6th December, 4th and 5th Year German students visited an exhibition on modern day Germany hosted by the Goethe Institute in the Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council offices. The interactive sculptural exhibition Germany for Beginners presents today’s Germany and the Germans, using the 26 letters of the alphabet and an array of amusing, serious and informative interactive components. From “A” for Arbeit (work), through to “F” for Fuβball (football), all the way to “Z” for Zukunft (future), the students gained an insight into the German way of life and German identity. Two teachers from the Goethe Institute guided the students through the exhibition with a series of worksheets and a quiz followed up by feedback. Everyone had lots of fun going around the giant sculptures of the alphabet, opening drawers, pressing buttons, putting on headphones and finding out information about German history, politics and culture. Each student was presented with German badges and an Advent Calendar filled with chocolate at the end of the session, which was an unexpected surprise! Deirdre Mackey

Newpark Transition Year students were invited to a lecture in Dun Laoghaire on road safety. The first speaker told us some statistics of road accidents in the Dun Laoghaire Rathdown area. He gave us a casestudy: the story of Seán and Sinéad. Seán had just got his driving licence and bought himself a brand new car. He was really excited and couldn’t wait to show it off to his girlfriend. He was driving too fast and got into a fatal accident. Seán was seriously injured while Sinéad went through the windscreen and unfortunately died at the scene. Then Seán came onstage. He spoke of his excitement at being a new driver on the road. We were then shown a clip of an accident. A Garda spoke about his experiences with road accidents. He was very dramatic which added emphasis. He described trying to save a little girl—it was not successful. Then he explained what his role was in the Seán and Sinéad accident. The Gardai are usually the first emergency services to arrive and have to make the scene safe. The job can be very upsetting: the worst part is when he has to call to the house of someone who has been killed and break the news to their family. A paramedic spoke next. They work in pairs at a road accident and have to assess the scene quickly. They may have to pronounce a casualty dead—as in Sinéad’s case. Next they will look in the car to see if anyone is trapped inside. If so, they often have to wait for the Fire Brigade to get the person out safely. In the meantime they may have to give the person oxygen and reassurance to keep them alive until they can be rescued. The next speaker, a fireman, told us how necessary fire-trucks are at an accident. They provide light so that all the other emergency services can see what is going on. They have the equipment to free trapped people. In Seán’s case the firemen had to cut him out. They must be extremely careful and not interfere with the work the paramedics have already done. An A&E surgeon described his job. He’s often on call at night and frequently his call-up is for accidents with young men. He showed us a few disgusting photos of injuries people have got from car crashes. Towards the end a victim’s mother came and spoke about the tragic loss of her 19 year old son who killed because his motorbike was faulty. She got very upset while speaking – which was understandable. Finally a man who had been badly injured in a car accident came and spoke about hi horrible experience. He has recovered a lot since his crash but still can’t walk without the help of a walking stick. We both really enjoyed this lecture as it was interesting and all the people were really good speakers. It was organised well and ran very smoothly. We enjoyed learning about the different roles and many people it takes to respond to an accident. It was very sad but also interesting. Isi Stewart 4 CD& Nicole Kinsella 4CB


Newpark PTA Hello from the PTA. We meet in the school library on the second Wednesday of every month from 8-9.30pm. This year we are a team of eighteen people which includes the principal, two teachers and one person representing the Board of Management. The rest of the committee are parents from across the school body. At the AGM in September there was a great influx of new members: we were delighted to welcome six new parents on board. There is also a good mix of men and women (take note all you dads out there who would like to get involved with the school!). Recently the PTA has been getting the Newpark CoderDojo up and running (see page 17 for details). We have also been very busy with our annual Christmas Raffle. This year we have made a real effort to appeal to the students with our prizes such as an ipad, ipod touch, ipod nano and a Cadbury’s hamper. The sale of raffle tickets runs right until the draw on Wednesday 19th December so hopefully it will be a successful fund raiser this year. The PTA provided assistance to the 40th celebration party in November by making all the desserts served on the night. We organised three very enjoyable parents’ social evenings during November for First, Second and Third Year parents and guardians. These were received very well by those who attended. We are hoping to have a local Community Guard in to speak at a question and answer session for parents in the New Year: texts and emails will go out when we have the details. With funds raised by the PTA we are delighted to be able to help the school in any way possible. This month we purchased an eight man Scrum Sled for the rugby teams to be able to up their ante in training. The Science Department also have asked for our financial assistance in purchasing some equipment in the New Year. We have also been delighted to offer some financial support to the production of Phantom of the Opera and to the Fifth Year LCA Creative Engagement art project. Many thanks for all your support and involvement. You can contact the PTA via our post-box in the front office or by email at Happy Christmas to all! Phoebe Crowe, PTA

Maths Puzzler

Books for Mwenge

I would like to dedicate a book in the name of _______________________________. Enclosed: €__________. Signed: _____________________________ I would/would not like (please delete as appropriate) a Newpark Gift of Education Certificate in the above name. See page 3 for details of the Mwenge project

Three Cheers! It is lovely to hear news of our past students. Recently we heard great news of three or our graduates in very different areas of expertise. Brian Steer won the prestigious 2012 Innovation Award given by the British Institute of Physics. This award was for his pioneering work in the development of instruments to measure nanoparticles in the air. Harpist Clare O’Donnell has been selected for the National Symphony Orchestra’s 2012 Mentoring scheme for Advanced Young Musicians. Ten young Irish musicians are selected for the programme where they are given the opportunity to rehearse and perform with Ireland’s only professional symphony orchestra. Sarah Cullen has been awarded a three year post graduate scholarship in American Literature at UCD. Congratulations to all three!

Love that Book! As part of an initiative to encourage reading among Newpark students we will be setting up a notice-board beside the reading area in the library. Part of the display will be a ‘Books I Have Read’ section where staff, students and parents can add books that they would recommend. Help us get started by writing a short review or recommendation for a book that you have read and enjoyed. In addition to the name and author please include what you liked or disliked about the book and why you would recommend it. You can email these reviews to Vicky Meredith

Answer: 11 am

Newsletter team: Anna Johnston, Mary Kennedy & Mags Downes Thanks to all our contributors this month. Please email contributions for the next issue to


Newpark Newsletter December 2012  
Newpark Newsletter December 2012  

Newsletter of Newpark School, Blackrock, Dublin, Ireland