Introduction by Chairman of the Board of Governors
Foreword from the Principal
Aims of the School
Pupil Enrolment and Attendance
School Organisation and Management
Organisation of Pupils and Curriculum
The School Curriculum
Curriculum Innovation 2003/4
Vocational Education Programme
Special Educational Needs
Learning Support Centre
Whole School ICT
As Chairman I am pleased to present this annual report to the parents of St. Paul’s pupils, in doing so I acknowledge the support of my fellow Governors and thank them for their commitment to the school. I am impressed by the achievements of St. Paul’s in a challenging and constantly changing environment. I congratulate the students and staff on excellent results and thank the parents for their ongoing support. As we approach an uncertain future with financial cutbacks and the demands of the Entitlement Framework I have every confidence that this school will continue to provide the young people of south Armagh with a first class education. Instilling in them the attitudes and values necessary to take them through life. May St. Paul’s continue to be ‘Rooted and Founded in Love’ – ‘In Caritate Radicati’ (Ephesians 3:17) John Campbell Chairman Board of Governors
FOREWORD BY THE PRINCIPAL Foreword by the Principal The 2010/11 school year was another year of huge achievement by the students of St Paul’s. Each year the students continue to amaze me with their prowess in examinations, their great talents in Music and their success on the sports’ fields. I am also aware that our staff are constantly setting new targets for their students and assisting them in not just reaching those targets but surpassing them. St Paul’s is a vibrant and exciting place to work and study and it is characterised by the wonderful good humour that exists throughout its corridors and classrooms. The easy but respectful relationship between students and staff underlies the happy and purposeful atmosphere in the school making the sense of successful partnership tangible. Our students have again travelled the world in the past year visiting such places as Kenya, Romania, Sweden, Germany, France and Spain as well as other countries less distant. Our choirs and orchestra have continued to mature and blossom and on stage our young performers have brought great enjoyment to hundreds in the audiences that have filled the assembly hall. I would like to thank all the staff who have come together to bring this report alive for you the reader and especially Mr. Burns, the Pastoral VicePrincipal who has co-ordinated this production. I would also like to thank the Board of Governors for their assistance and support and for their constant challenge to all of us to make St Paul’s even better. I hope you enjoy reading this report and I would refer you also to our Prospectus and our website, www.stpaulsbessbrook.org for additional information. God Bless, 3
ST PAUL’S HIGH SCHOOL
St Paul's High School, opened in 1966, is a Maintained School built to educate the children of the following parishes: • • • • •
Lower Killeavy, part of Upper Killeavy, Loughgilly, Dromintee Part of Lower Creggan. The school caters for pupils in the 11-18 age group.
AIMS OF THE SCHOOL 1.
To be a community inspired by the Catholic faith, living out Gospel values and reflecting all aspects of our Irish Cultural Heritage.
To enable pupils acquire a sense of purpose and have a good opinion of themselves by giving all access to a religious, academic, moral, social and physical education with appropriate provision for pupils with Special Needs in an attractive school environment.
To provide teaching and non-teaching staff with the accommodation, equipment and training to achieve aim 2.
To involve parents, Educational Bodies and Industry in the work of the school.
To foster a spirit of cheerful co-operation and provide a caring environment which promotes high achievement and self esteem among staff and pupils.
PUPIL ENROLMENT AND ATTENDANCE In 2010-2011 the school had an admission quota of 215 pupils and a total enrolment of 1464. In addition there is a Learning Support Unit which caters for 45 pupils. In September 2010, 257 pupils were admitted and there were 41 pupils in the Learning Support Centre. Average attendance was 90.9%
SCHOOL STAFF The Principal together with three Vice Principals and five Senior Teachers form the Senior Management Team. The Senior Management Team is responsible for the day to day running of the school, pupil learning and pastoral care, examinations and assessment, primary school liaison, inservice training, staff development, performance review, ICT, newly qualified teachers, Special Educational Needs, curriculum innovation, child protection and advising the Governors as requested. There are 19 Heads of Departments who are responsible for the academic work of the school. Most teachers are form teachers, working under 7 year tutors who are responsible for pupil welfare and discipline. 38 other teachers are on Graded Allowances for a variety of responsibilities to ensure the effective running of the school and to promote Staff Development. TEACHING STAFF The teaching staff consisted of Principal plus 100 teachers - 3 of whom teach in the Learning Support Unit. Religious Education Head of Department: Mrs Maria Wilson Mrs Imelda Smith Mr Lawrence Muckian Mr Tohiln Murney Mrs Margaret Murtagh Mrs Deirdre Graham Mrs. Kathy Branagan Health and Social Care/Sociology Head of Department: Ms. Christine Fearon Miss. Caroline McShane Ms. Clare Maguire Miss. Marian McNamee
English Head of Department: Mrs. Sinéad McKenna Mrs Theresa Magee Miss. Geraldine McClinton Miss Niamh O’Rourke Mrs. Kelly McCormick Mrs. Kelly McShane Mrs. Gráinne Campbell Mrs. Mary Mone Mr. Ciaran O’Hare Mrs. Julie Donaghy History/Geography/Environment & Society Head of Department (Geography): Mrs Anne Mackin Head of Department (History): Mr. Emmett McCafferty Mrs Anne Marie Murray, Mr Damian McKenna, Mrs Bernadette Cunningham, Mr. Neil McArdle, Mrs. Verneta Hillen, Mr. Liam O’Keeffe. Mathematics Head of Department: Mr Maurice McKey Mr Eugene Hollywood Miss Una McLaughlin Miss Margaret Keenan Mrs Bronagh McArdle Mrs Aine Kearney Mrs. Laura Hollywood Mrs Elaine Cahill Mr Martin Canavan Mrs. Mary Laverty ICT Head of Department: Mrs Brenda Murray Mrs Siobhán Bradley Mrs Katrina Trainor Mr Paul Caldwell Mrs. Geraldine Hughes Ms. Joanne Leonard French Head of Department: Mrs Sinead Pelissou Mrs Mary McMahon Mr Liam O’Keeffe
Irish Head of Department: Miss. Ciara McCoy Mr Jarlath Burns Mr Dáithí Murray Mr. Stephen Quinn Science Head of Department: Mrs Brigid McConville Mrs Una McNulty Mr Noel McKevitt Mr Patrick Hollywood Miss Karina Traynor Mr Jarlath Digney Mr Jim Murray Mrs Ashlyn Kimbley Mrs Catherine Rafferty Mr Brendan Lenagh Miss Martina Bradley Miss Lisa Taylor Miss Sharon Duncan Miss Marian McNamee Art Head of Department: Mr Tony McParland Mrs Siobhán O’Hare Ms Oonagh Magee Mr Brendan McArdle Ms. Joanne Leonard Learning for Life and Work/Citizenship Head of Department: Ms. Clare Maguire Miss Julie Donaghy Mrs Anne O’Hare Mrs. Siobhán Kearney Mary McManus Mrs. Pauline McGuinness Mr. Martin Canavan Miss. Grace O’Neill Mrs. Lisa McConville Miss Michaela Downey Spanish Head of Department: Mrs Noella Murray Miss. Louise Mulholland
Technology and Design 7
Head of Department: Mr Sean O’Neill Mr Brendan Connolly Mr Bill Geoghegan Mr Donal Murray Mr. James Quinn Ms. Bronagh Breen Construction Head of Department: Mr. Charlie Byrne Mr. James Quinn Miss. Laura Hollywood Ms. Bronagh Breen Mrs. Anne Mackin Home Economics/CACHE Head of Department: Mrs Monica Tate Mrs Brenda Fegan Miss. Grace O’Neill Miss. Lisa McConville Business Studies Head of Department: Mrs Pauline McGuinness Mrs Anne O’Hare P.E/BTec Sport/Dance Head of Department: Mr John Rafferty Mrs Anne Hollywood Mr Martin O’Rourke Miss Catherine Murphy Mrs. Paula O’Hare-Armstrong Mr. Barry Shannon Mr. Martin Rafferty Miss. Michaela Downey Music Head of Department: Mr Colm Murphy Ms Bridie McAvoy Mr. Peter Slane Learning Support Centre Head of Department: Mr Paddy McAvoy Mr Ciaran O’Hare Ms. Vernetta Hillen Success Maker Head of Department: Mrs Mary Laverty
Vocational Education 8
Head of Department: Ms Mary McManus Miss Julie Donaghy Mr. Martin Canavan Careers and Employability Head of Department: Mrs. Siobhán Kearney Mrs. Christine Fearon Mr. Martin Canavan Ms. Catherine Murphy Miss. Julie Donaghy Miss. Louise Mulholland Miss. Grace O’Neill Ms Joanne Leonard Drama Ms. Pauline Lynch Ms. Roisín Patton ANCILLARY STAFF There are 65 Ancillary Staff who are employed as follows: • • • • • • • • • •
4 Office Staff 2 Receptionists 13 Technicians 2 Caretakers 33 Classroom/Domestic Care Assistants 7 Lunchtime Supervisors 1 Study Supervisor 1 Librarian 1 Matron 1 Bursar Office Staff Mrs Joan O’Neill, Miss Sarah Barry, Mrs Michelle Murphy, Miss Sinead Britton, Classroom Assistants Miss Anne Davidson Miss Caroline Parker Miss Colleen McArdle Miss Junona Baleisa Miss Rosemary Kieran Miss Cathy Fitzpatrick Mr Colm Murney Mrs Alison Boyle Mrs Ann McElroy 9
Mrs Bridget McAleer Mrs Bronagh Nugent Mrs Carmel Hearty Mrs Edel Hughes Mrs Geraldine Egan Mrs Geraldine McAllister Mrs Jacqueline Ward Mrs Jane Poland Mrs Teresa Walsh Mrs Lelia McIntyre Mrs Madeline Kerr Mrs Mary Mc Kenna Mrs Noelle Davey Mrs Patricia McAleavey Mrs Rosemary Carragher Mrs Siobhรกn Loughran Ms Shauna Maginnis Mrs Celina Burns Miss Colleen McArdle Mrs Judith Roker Mrs Aine Gregory Miss Jody Keenan Mrs Joan Keenan Miss Claire McTaggart P.E. Technicians Miss Geraldine King Mr Patrick Mackey Receptionists Miss Kathleen Moore Miss Danika McKay Caretakers Mr Leo Vint Mr Kevin Kearney Librarian Mrs Michelle Morgan Study Supervisor Mr Gerard McMahon Reprographics Technician Mrs Catherine McAnulty Science Technicians Mr Thomas Reidy Mr Connor Teggart Ms Mary Shevlin 10
Technology Technician Mr Gabriel Morris Art Technician Mrs Mairead MacMahon Home Econ. Technician Mrs Ciara McDonnell I.C.T. Technicians Mr Martin Browne, Mr Michael Sutton (Placement) Miss Hannah Loughran (Placement) Mr Conor Oâ€™Higgins (Placement) Matron Mrs Angela Meehan Bursar Mrs Sharon Cowan Chaplain Rev. Father Dermot Maloney Education Welfare Officer Mr Sean Monaghan Canteen Supervisor Mrs Rita McClorey Cleaning Supervisor Mrs June White
SCHOOL ORGANISATION AND MANAGEMENT The Board of Governors comprised the following; DENI Governor John Campbell (Chair) SELB Governors Ciaran Mackin Donna Sloan Trustee Governors Martina Murphy Fr Rogers Fr Larkin Eileen Fearon (Child Protection) Elected Teacher Governor John McParland Elected Parent Governor Patrick O’Hanlon The Governors are responsible for the educational policies of the school, the appointment of staff and determining their salary, discipline of staff, pupil admissions to the school, pupil discipline, school budget and maintenance of building and grounds. The Governors have formed two committees. • •
A Salary & Finance and Appointments Committee consisting of 6 members. A Salary Appeals Disciplinary and Grievance Committee consisting of 4 different members. ORGANISATION OF PUPILS AND CURRICULUM In Year 8 pupils were divided into ten classes with three bands, 4 classes in the first band, 4 classes in the second band and a third band which consisted of two classes with special needs in English and Mathematics. In Year 9 pupils were also divided into ten classes with three bands. There were four classes in the first band, two of which consisted mainly of pupils who obtained Grade A or B in the Transfer Tests. The second band consisted of four classes of mixed ability pupils and a third group consisted of two classes with special needs in English and Mathematics.
In Year 10 pupils were divided into ten classes with three bands, 4 classes in the first band, 3 classes in the second band and 3 classes in the third band. In Year 11 and 12 the pupils were divided into 11 classes. The first band had 5 classes, the next band consisted of 4 classes and the third band consisted of 2 classes. In Years 13 and 14 pupils were organised in subject groups. THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM – KEY STAGE 3 The curriculum for Years 8, 9 and 10 enables each pupil to realise his or her full potential at Key Stage 3. The curriculum caters for each pupil’s individual needs by offering an extensive Careers Programme in Year 10. During Years 8, 9 and 10, pupils have the opportunity to study the following subjects: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Art and Design Careers Drama English Environment and Society French Geography and History Home Economics Information and Communication Technology Irish Learning for life and Work Mathematics Music Personal and Social Education Physical Education Relationship Education Religious Education Science Spanish Technology and Design
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM – KEY STAGE 4 The G.C.S.E. core subjects are compulsory in Years 11 and 12. • • • •
Religious Education Studies English Mathematics Science (Single Award, BTEC First certificate and Double Award) The following subjects are offered at examination level to pupils in Years 11 and 12.
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Additional Mathematics Art and Design BTec 1st Certificate Sport BTec 1st Certificate Performing Arts Business Studies CIDA – Certificate in Digital Applications Construction Drama English Literature French Geography Health & Social Care History Home Economics: Child Development Home Economics: Food Information and Communication Technology Irish LLW Music Physical Education Studies Spanish Technology and Design All students have classes in Careers Education and Physical Education BTec FIRST/EXTENDED CERTIFICATES
In addition to the GCSEs above, students may study the following BTec First/Extended certificates in collaboration with Southern Regional College (SRC) and the schools in the local ALC: [Pupils who wish to study these are transported by bus at 9.10am, returning at 12.30pm.] • Children’s Care, Learning & Development • Creative Media Production • Engineering 14
• Health & Social Care • Travel & Tourism • Construction and the Built Environment • Hospitality OCCUPATIONAL STUDIES Some pupils who wish to sample a variety of trades may opt to spend a FULL day each week in the S.R.C. The qualification gained is Occupational Studies; the highest grade is equivalent to GCSE Grade C. Pupils who undertake Occupational Studies in Greenbank Campus will choose from a variety of Trade Experiences, the following may be available:
Motor Vehicle Studies
Carpentry and Joinery
Painting and Decorating
Pupils who undertake Occupational Studies in Patrick Street Campus will choose from a variety of experiences, such as:
Sport and Leisure
Alternative Education Programme In Year 11 two classes avail of a mixed vocational and academic programme to enable them to gain a wide skill base in a variety of vocational areas. This programme is delivered in collaboration with SRC and Training for Business. Two classes in Year 11 spend three days in school – Monday, Wednesday and Friday where they follow a varied curriculum leading to qualifications in Essential Skills Number and Communication, Entry Level Art, Technology and RE. On a Tuesday they attend Training for Business, where they study Essential Skills in ICT and have an opportunity to study for a BTec Foundation Learning, Level 1 Award in Caring for Children, Construction or Engineering. On a Thursday they join the rest of Year 11 and choose from the BTec and Occupational Studies courses on offer in SRC. In Year 12, one group spends two days in St. Paul’s, one day in Training for Business, one day in SRC and one day on Work Experience. The STEPS Programme: Year 12
This programme in School Training Education Partnership takes place at Training for Business, located in the Greenbank Industrial Estate, Newry. It is based on Vocational and Occupational Training delivered in both formal and practical ways. It is a five day week programme where pupils remain on our school register and follow the rules laid down by Training for Business and St Paul’s High School.
Independent Learning at St Paulâ€™s High School At St. Paulâ€™s we aim to have a consistent approach to Numeracy and Literacy across departments. Pupils develop the relevant numerical skills to access the curriculum and to function in every-day life. Successmaker Literacy and Numeracy Package tests the ability of children from National Curriculum levels 3-7. It assesses studentsâ€™ abilities and differentiates material so that each pupil is presented with activities at an appropriate level. Lessons provide materials for curriculum enhancement and can be integrated with other classroom activities encouraging classes to develop Literacy, Numeracy and IT skills. Alta Online Mathematics assessment tests the children on NC levels 3-7. The programme detects the strengths and weaknesses of each child and the pupils then work independently at their own level. Skills in Literacy and Numeracy are developed. The Alta Online Maths assessment programme covers 5 main areas: Numeracy Number, Measure, Algebra, Handling Data and Shape and Space. It has proven to be an excellent resource and revision guide and has helped raise the mathematic levels and self-esteem of pupils at Key Stage 3. The Alta programme has been developed to be used by the Mathematics Department to benefit all students within the Junior School. All Year 8 pupils are timetabled for 1 period weekly. There have been significant gains in Numeracy since the initial placement in the programme. Pupils are encouraged to access other independent learning programmes and websites at home for revision. An updated list of these websites is in 17
the pupils’ planners. The programmes have raised the levels achieved in KS3 Maths, English, Science and IT. The Independent Learning Programmes have had a positive impact on teaching and learning in St Paul’s and have helped students develop confidence in Literacy, Numeracy and IT skills. Pupils are rewarded with trophies and certificates of achievement at the Junior Prize giving. THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM – YEARS 13 AND 14 Year 13 pupils are offered a choice of three or four A Levels from the following list
Art and Design Biology Business Studies Chemistry Construction in the Built Environment Drama & Theatre Studies English Literature French Geography Health and Social Care History Home Economics Information and Communication Technology Irish Mathematics Music Performing Arts: Dance Physical Education Studies Physics Politics Religious Education Studies Science Sport: Performance & Excellence Sociology Spanish Technology
A 2 Level
In Year 14 students are expected to study at least three of their A.S. subjects to A2 level. CURRICULUM ENRICHMENT. Pupils in Year 13 have the opportunity to achieve an E.C.D.L. (European Computer Driving License) and a Certificate of Personal Effectiveness. Year 13 pupils also sample an extensive range of curriculum enrichment modules including: • • • • • • • •
Religious Education Physical Education Yoga Cookery First Aid Public Speaking Interview skills Health & Fitness SPECIAL EDUCATION NEEDS
A policy on Special Education Needs has been developed by the staff and approved by the Board of Governors. Mr N McKevitt is S.E.N. Co-ordinator (SENCO). Saint Paul’s holds a board view of Special Educational Needs (SEN) and is committed to developing an inclusive education for all children. A policy on SEN has been developed by staff and approved by the Board of Governors. Our principle aim is to acknowledge the 2005 SENDO legalisation outlining the rights of children with SEN to be educated in mainstream education where possible. All our pupils have access to a board balanced, inclusive education including access to the National Curriculum. As a school we actively promote learning support awareness through out the school and disseminating of information on the SEN of pupils to all staff. In order to meet these requirements on going in-service training is organised by the Special Needs Co-ordinator for all staff. Mr N McKevitt is SEN Co-ordinator (SENCo). Current Provision & Access to the Curriculum. As an all ability (11 – 19) school, Saint Paul’s provides for the academic, social, personal and cultural development of all its pupils. Pupils’ entitlement to the Northern Ireland Curriculum is made through the setting of differentiated work and the provision of suitable materials for 19
individual needs. The SENCo is available to advise on appropriate teaching strategies. Withdrawal or in class support is provided where the need is identified. All SEN pupils in mainstream have access to all subjects with appropriate support in place. There are 23 Classroom assistants in mainstream assigned to deal with specific pupils with SEN. The role of the Classroom assistant is to support both the pupil and the subject teacher in ensuring that the pupils’ individual SEN are met. Duties include in class support, preparation of resources and examination support. The SENCo acts as the line manager for the Classroom Assistants. When a pupil is identified as requiring any sort of SEN provision, parents are always consulted. Parents are given an opportunity to meet and discuss any aspect of their child’s SEN provision with the SENCo. All pupils on stages 2 – 5 on the SEN Code of Practice are placed on the SEN Register. Literacy Support / Reading Recovery / Reading Partnership withdrawals are organised according to prioritised needs and are arranged by the SENCo and the English Department. Pupils with SEN have access to an ICT programme called ‘’Success Maker’’. Primary seven pupils visit the school in June, when they complete a Midyis test which forms the basis of their class placements along with an informal report from their P7 teachers. Standardised norm – reference screening tests are carried out in September. These are used to identify pupils with reading or Maths difficulties. Additional reading and spelling diagnostic tests are carried out with pupils for whom screening test results give cause for concern and their progress is closely monitored. The SEN Register is drawn up and maintained by the SENCo, and an electronic version is available to all subject teachers. Individual educational Plans (IEPs) are drawn up for all pupils at stages 2 – 5 by November and are reviewed in February. The SENCo also co-ordinates the involvement of outside agencies when appropriate intervention is required from an Educational Psychologist, BMT, OT etc. Pupils with statements of SEN are placed in the school at the request of the SELB, Special Educational Needs section. In Saint Paul’s a child with a statement may be placed in Mainstream or in the Learning Support Centre (LSC). (for pupils with Moderate Learning Difficulties). The pupils who are allocated a Mainstream place are the responsibility of the SENCo, who co-ordinates appropriate provision for the child; those in the Learning Support Centre are the responsibility of the Centre staff. These pupils are supported and integrated into Mainstream for some of their subjects. Pupils in the LSC join in the full range of school activities. In order to facilitate those pupils who have mobility problems or are physically disabled have access to two lifts. This enables these pupils to move easily between the three levels of the school building.
THE LEARNING SUPPORT CENTRE The Learning Support Centre delivers the Curriculum to students with moderate learning difficulties and who hold a statement of Special Educational Needs. Students share the resources, physical and human, that the school has to offer and are integrated with their peers in mainstream, both socially and academically. There is a holistic approach to the education of each child which support and encouragement to achieve full potential in a caring, secure environment. Students are entered for public examinations when appropriate. Close links are maintained with other schools in the SELB area and students regularly participate in ‘inter-schools’ competitions. There is a comprehensive ‘Leavers Programme’ incorporating vocational skills sampling in Newry City Institute and employed based work experience. Close links have been established with prospective employers and ‘Training for employment’ agencies. WHOLE SCHOOL ICT The effective and innovative use of ICT, embedded throughout the St Paul’s curriculum, as well as a tool to assist staff and management with the smooth and cohesive running of the organisation is a core strategic priority for the school. The current ICT strategy for the school (published in 2007, and revised in 2009) is coming to an end, and with changes to C2k planned for implementation in 2012/13, it is fitting that a new strategy incorporating the whole-school priority of e-learning is devised and implemented. E-Learning St Paul’s continues to innovate with elearning. The school’s bespoke Virtual Learning Environment, Oscail 24/7, is growing at a very fast rate. All students have access to the learning platform, and as part of the PRSD 21
programme, staff received training in the effective use of Oscail 24/7 in their classroom, and how it can be a beneficial tool to improve learning experiences of students. Good practice has been identified in a number of curricular areas including Science, Religious Education, Languages and Mathematics, and departments are encouraged to develop their online presence at an appropriate pace, determined by their own departmental development priorities. During this academic year, three staff members (Mrs E Cahill, Mrs L Taylor and Mr D Murray) graduated from the RTU’s OLTE (Online Teacher Education) programme and funding has been secured to allow for the development of a bespoke online course to facilitate the delivery of GCSE Irish via e-learning. Online platforms The school website was relaunched in September 2009 using WordPress software and receives over 1,000 unique page impressions (visits) per day. The site facilitates daily news and information posts, as well as functioning as a comprehensive archive of events and photographs. The site allows for interactivity, inviting comments from students, parents and friends of the school, which can be dynamically published and pushed to the site’s homepage. St Paul’s has developed a significant online presence utilising social networks such as Facebook and Twitter to accelerate this growth. The school’s Facebook page and Twitter feed is designed to allow news, photos and videos from St Paul’s to be ‘pushed’ automatically to these networks with minimal curation from ICT Support Staff. The school’s effective use of social networks to inform parents of emergency school closure due to adverse weather in December 2010 and January 2011 was highlighted in the local press as an example of good practice. St Paul’s High School was awarded the silver prize in the education section of the inaugural Northern Ireland Social Media Awards in June 2011, being pipped to first place by Queen’s University, Belfast and beating the University of Ulster into third place. ICT Support ICT Support is the cornerstone to the effective implementation of the school’s ICT strategy. The team is managed by ICT Support Manager, Mr Martin Browne, and he was very ably assisted by ICT Technician 2, Mr Conor Starrs. Mr Starrs left St Paul’s to take up a new post in March 2011. The school’s partnership with the local universities continues to prove very beneficial. Each year we are able to offer a number of paid (ICT Technician 1) positions to students studying a range of computer, ICT or 22
multimedia related courses. In 2010/11 we welcomed back past pupil Miss Hannah Loughran (BSc Interactive Multimedia at University of Ulster), who managed the school’s photo and video archive, and who maintained the school website on a daily basis. Mr Conor O’Higgins and Mr Michael Sutton (BSc Computer and Information Technology at Queen’s University, Belfast) joined the team, with Mr O’Higgins working as deputy to the ICT Support Manager and assisting in day-to-day management of the school network, and managing the Post 16 netbook programme. Mr Sutton managed the school’s VLE Oscail 24/7, and assisted with departments in improving digital literacy, and offering increased access to web 2.0 tools and software within the classroom. The ICT Support team provide a full range of services to the school, and have a wealth of experience and expertise. Their attention to detail and ‘at elbow support’ has been recognised by C2k and other visitors to the school, including SELB ICT Team, and professionals from BECTA. Post 16 Netbook programme The Post 16 netbook programme was introduced in September 2009. The scheme allowed students in Years 13 and 14 to lease a Wi-Fi enabled netbook from St Paul’s for their own personal use while in class, in private study or at home. The programme was very successful, with a near universal uptake. The first generation of netbooks was powerful, and lightweight. ICT Support staffs were able to customize the device operating system (Linux) to fit the needs of the individual students. In September 2010, the second generation of netbook devices was purchased, which allowed improved Wi-Fi connectivity, and featured Windows XP and Microsoft Office software. These devices were issued to Year 13 students, and the returning Linux machines (from the previous Year 14) were recycled and used as replacement machines, or were allocated on short-term loan to departments. The programme will come to an end in June 2012, when the current Year 13 students will leave and return their devices. Due to financial constraints of the school budget it was decided to progress with a further purchase of devices, but instead to explore the possibility of allowing incoming Year 13 students the opportunity to use their own personal devices (laptops, iPads etc.) on the school network. Through liaison with C2k and through the ingenuity of the ICT Support Team, students will be offered the facility of Wi-Fi access on their own devices from September 2011. Key Stage 3 ICT Accreditation St Paul’s continued to take part in the Key Stage 3 ICT Accreditation scheme. The following departments have designed tasks which have been approved by CCEA: Technology, Art, Maths, Irish, Employability and 23
Music. The Technology and Art departments each designed a new task this year which were approved. The top four classes in Year 10 take part and as yet this is still a voluntary scheme. The bank of tasks delivered must meet criteria set out in an accompanying handbook. St Paul’s has taken part in the new revised scheme since it was introduced in the academic year 2009-2010. 2010-2011- Outcome… • •
100% of the pupils were awarded an ICT competence at level 4 or 5. 118 pupils achieved level 5 and two achieved level 4
ICT remains integral to improving teaching and learning opportunities for staff and students of St Paul’s High School and to allowing equality of access to all. DEPARTMENTAL REVIEW Art and Design The study of Art and Design provides students with opportunities to enrich their sensory experiences and develop aesthetic sensitivity and awareness by making personal, visual and tactile responses to feelings, ideas and environments. Students develop intellectual and practical abilities, appreciate the relationship between their work and that of artists, designers and craft workers in their own and other cultures and become aware of the history and social aspects of the European Community. In their use and exploration of materials, processes and technologies in both two- and three-dimensions students learn to be selective and discriminating. At present we enter all KS4 students who have selected our subject for G.C.S.E. Art and Design except 11c groups who do Entry Level in 4th year. Year 13 and14 students are entered for GCE AS and A2 level. Art GCE “A” Level and GCSE results were excellent in 2011 with 100% pass rate A* to C grade. We offer a versatile programme, covering a wide range of experiences and activities to all pupils from KS3 to A Level. Pottery and Ceramic Design From KS3 pupils are involved in exploration and experimentation in the development of skills and techniques in the use of clay and glazes,
progressing to realistic, functional and creative ceramic design at GCSE and A Level. 3 Dimensional Design Investigation and research into media (wire / wood / plaster / fabrics / clay) with emphasis on skills and techniques in the designing of artefacts in 3 dimensions such as pots, figure sculptures, clocks, chairs etc. takes place from KS3 onwards.
Textile Design Students explore and experiment with media and processes used in dyed and printed fabrics, batik, and hand and machine embroidery at GCSE and A Level. From KS3 onwards pupils are involved in the development of skills and techniques in designing and creating for fashion and fabrics such as wall hangings, cushions, dresses, hats etc.
Graphic Design / ICT All pupils are involved in the development of skills and techniques in the use of graphic tools and equipment including Photoshop. Year 8 students use “Photoshop” to distort a face as part of their Portraits and Colour theme, Year 9 use “I Stop Motion animation” in an undersea theme and Year 10 produce a short film on the life of a chosen artist. Progression to well planned layout ideas and final presentations for packaging, poster design, book cover, CD design, and illustration etc. are part of Yr. 8 to Yr.14 units of work. All students are encouraged to use the Internet for theme research.
Printmaking From KS3 skills and techniques in printmaking as a means of developing pattern and design ideas or for Fine Art is developed using lino, polystyrene and screen printing. Fine Art and Sculpture All students explore and experiment with media and processes including drawing, painting, collage work, Mixed media, sculpture, modelling and printing. Further development of these skills and techniques using materials and equipment including ICT, Photoshop and photography takes place at GCSE and A level. Discussion and emphasis on research into the historical aspects of the various areas of practice, critical selfappraisal of work at various stages, and the use of visual language and key words inherent in all tasks is an important aspect of our course.
Department staff and areas of expertise are: Head of Department: Mr. Tony Mc Parland - Fine Art Mrs. Siobhan Oâ€™Hare - Textiles/Fashion Mrs.Oonagh McArdle - Fine and Applied Art Mr. Brendan McArdle - Design Mrs. Muiread McMahon â€“ Technician
Business Studies At Key Stage 4, students have the option to study GCSE Business Studies. We offer the Revised examination specification where students are tested as follows; Unit 1 – Business Start Up Unit 2 – Business Development Unit 3 – Controlled Assessment At Post 16, we currently offer A Level Applied Business as an option and continue to achieve excellent results with our students progressing onto many different courses at Higher Level Education. The Business Studies Department have established close links with Young Enterprise Northern Ireland over a number of years. Business students have taken part in numerous programmes offered by this support agency. One programme which we have taken part in on a number of occasions is the Company Programme. As part of their Applied Business course, Year 14 students operate their own company and compete with approximately 30 similar companies in the Cross Border Annual Trade Fair held in February each year. In the past 4 years the companies operated were “All Seasons”, “The Stalk Market”, “Teamo” and most recently “J’Adore”. All of these companies have been established, financed, operated and then wound up by the students. This gives all involved excellent practical knowledge while experiencing the pressures of business. Products of the companies are researched, marketed and made available for sale to junior students in school and the general public through the Trade Fair. Our students have achieved excellent success at these competitions and the individual companies received the following Awards; The Stalk Market 2010:
Best Display Award and Best Overall Winner Award
Teamo 2010: Best Organised Company Award As competition is fierce we are honoured to have received these awards and the students’ hard work acknowledged by the independent judges. We are hoping for continued recognition of our work this year. The Business Studies Department have ongoing links with many local firms which include: First Derivatives The Carrickdale Hotel SuperValu Grounded The Canal Court 27
Newry and Mourne Enterprise Agency We are indebted to the staff of these organisations for their co-operation in the following ways: • • • •
On site visits Guest speakers from the firms giving talks in school Allowing A Level students to conduct research on site Liaising with their companies for investigative purposes for Year 14 Coursework
Careers The Entitlement Framework Curriculum ensures that young people have a much broader access to a wide range of subject pathways at Key Stage 4 that will meet their interests, talents and aspirations. Therefore there is a greater responsibility on schools to make sure that young people have the highest quality Careers Education, Information, Advice and Guidance (CEIAG). CEIAG was highlighted as a priority on the school development plan. Training was organised for all staff in order to promote the importance of Careers across departments and help to place high quality CEIAG at the heart of the curriculum in St Paul’s. In addition, a department help pack was produced to assist staff in promoting the value of CEIAG and in making a valuable contribution to the CEIAG provision. We have continued to develop strong partnerships with the Careers Service N.I. in order to provide impartial careers advice and guidance and the most effective support available for our pupils. In addition, Mrs Kearney and Mrs Mc Guinness attended a two-day effective career guidance training programme during May. Resulting from this, formal Year 13 guidance interviews were conducted throughout June for all pupils. St Paul’s hosted the “It all STEMS from here” Year 9 theatre production event attended by various local schools. The presentation aimed to encourage young people to think positively about their future and promote life-long learning and skills development. All pupils in Year 9 attended the highly successful “Taste and See” initiative at Southern Regional College.
The following events were organised by the Careers Department this year: September Year 14 visit to Queen’s University Open Day Year 14 visit to University of Ulster Open Day Year 14 visit to St Mary’s University College Open Day Year 14 Liverpool John Moores Careers Presentation October Year 14 Daisy Hill Health Professions Open Day Year 14 visit to Dundalk Institute of Technology Open Day December Year 14 Interview Skills Day February Year 13 Work Experience Week Year 11 ICT Invest NI Careers Event Year 12 Training Agencies visits March Year 14 Student Finance Presentation Year 13 Daisy Hill Medical Careers Symposium Year 13 UCAS Convention Year 12 SRC Careers Presentations Year 12 Post 16 Information Event Year 9 STEM Careers Theatre Production Year 12 Job Opportunities Fair April Year 14 DKIT Careers Presentation Year 13 University of Ulster Careers Presentation Year 13 Queen’s University Careers Presentation May Year 13 visit to Stranmillis University College Year 12 Link works Presentation Year 9 Taste and See Southern Regional College Day 1 June Year 9 Taste and See Southern Regional College Day 2 Year 13 Guidance Interviews Year 10 Training for Business visit
Learning for Life & Work The Learning for Life and Work Department has continued to prosper and is now one of the largest departments in the school. We have eleven members of staff, to include Ms C Maguire (HOD), Ms M McManus, Mr M Canavan, Ms L Muckian, Mrs M Murtagh, Mrs A O’ Hare, Mrs S Kearney, Ms L Leonard, Mrs M McCreesh, Ms V Hillen & Mrs M McMahon; each of whom contribute to the vivacity and success of this department. This academic year Ms Maguire is on maternity leave and Mr M Canavan has taken over her duties of HOD and Ms O Coulter is taking her classes. All KS3 students have 3 periods of LLW a week in which they cover Employability, Citizenship and Personal Development. At GCSE level, the course is 40% exam & 60% controlled assessment. Grades in the subject have remained high, with students obtaining well above the Northern Ireland average. Last year, sixty students from Year 10 successfully completed and passed the Learning for Life & Work GCSE course in one year. Due to their success the Year 10 GCSE programme is continuing this year. Moreover, this year sees a greater number of students completing the LLW GCSE course as those students who had previously completed Entry Level LLW will now complete the LLW GCSE. As part of the Sharing Education Project (SEP) the Learning for Life and Work departments within St Paul’s High School and Newtownhamilton High School have been working together on a unit of work entitled My Cultural Identity over the past year. The programme has been designed by staff in both schools to encourage students to investigate aspects of our cultural identity and to promote a greater understanding of the unique traditions and customs that exist within all communities in Northern Ireland. In April the culmination of the first year of the collaborative project was marked by a Cultural Identity Show in St Paul’s High School, Bessbrook. This event provided students with a platform to showcase their talents. The performances included Irish and Ulster-Scots dancing, traditional instrumental music performances as well as a celebration of an array of time-honoured songs from both cultural backgrounds. The programme is now in its second year and the students are working on several cross community projects. The over-riding success of the programme has been the opportunity for staff and students from both schools to work together to enhance not only the curricular aspirations of the project but moreover to continue to forge meaningful and lasting relationships between the two partners. Furthermore, St Paul’s High School was yet again recognised for its successful implementation of Learning for Life & Work in the CCEA publication called the BEST OF FEST which is circulated to all schools in Northern Ireland.
Drama The Drama Department in St. Paul’s High School has in the Years beginning 2008/2009 introduced Junior Drama to year 8 and Year 9. Drama Workbooks within Junior drama ensures progression and reflection and a firm foundation for future study. In the year 2009 GCSE Drama has been introduced and A2 Drama, both GCE and GCSE are following the AQA specification. Year beginning September 2009 witnessed the introduction of Year 10 Drama and workbooks, therefore, completion of Junior Drama schemes of work form Year 8 to Year 10 has been accomplished. Progressive innovative schemes are introduced each year and workbooks updated. G.C.S.E. Drama and A Level Drama are being taught through AQA Drama Board and as Theatre Trips are an essential part of both Drama Courses and we arrange theatre visits throughout the year for students. We are currently entering a competition with our Year 8 Drama Students who will compete for a place on professionally run drama workshop. This initiative has been introduced by Translink and is a Health and Safety project to promote safety on the railway lines. Drama is also being taught to Special Needs classes both in St. Paul’s High School and in collaboration with Rathore High School, Carnegat, Newry. Cross-Curricular skills have been adapted as Diversity Week 2009 as the cast were directed to perform a play about diversity. Learning For Life and Work and Drama collaborated for this project. Extra-curricular activities have seen the development of the Drama club and the rehearsal of the Irish play for entry to An Scoil Dramaiochta in March 2010. We reached the finals of the festival, a proud time for our students and teachers involved. We look forward to our new entry ‘Saighduiri’ which will take place this year March 2012. ‘Oklahoma’ October 2008 was another exhibit of extra-curricular drama and whole school collaboration as was ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ 2012. We look forward to a School Production October 2012.