New era ushered in at Cork city primary school

New era ushered in at Cork city primary school

Boys who are now attending second class at North Presentation Primary School on the opening day of the new school year. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

“The students skipped in the gate with huge smiles on their faces,” said North Presentation Primary School principal Nickie Egan as a new era dawned in the school as their first-class boys continued into second class for the first time.

Previously once the boys had completed first class, they moved to another primary school, while the girls progressed all the way to sixth class. The new initiative will now see both boys and girls complete their primary school education in North Presentation Primary School.

Nafiz, 2nd class, and his sister Nafiza Hassain, senior infants at North Presentation. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Nafiz, 2nd class, and his sister Nafiza Hassain, senior infants at North Presentation. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

School principal Nickie Egan said the start of the new school year was ‘chaotic’ but great. 

“It went great. It was chaotic but great. There was great excitement and a lovely atmosphere. The kids were just ecstatic. They love coming to school. The students skipped in the gate with huge smiles on their faces. They were delighted with themselves.” 

Saoirse, Alex, and Cody Forde-Duggan pupils at North Presentation Primary School on the opening day of the new school year. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Saoirse, Alex, and Cody Forde-Duggan pupils at North Presentation Primary School on the opening day of the new school year. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

The principal said the new initiative which enables the boys to complete their primary school education in North Presentation has been well received by all. 

“The boys are delighted. They have gone up another flight of stairs for the first time ever. 22 boys started second class today. The boys previously went to another primary school after completing first class. The girls would stay and complete their primary school education in the same school. We always would have two classes so when the lads finished the two classes would merge into one class for second class.

“It caused upset to the families and upset to the boys as they had an unnecessary transition. They had the upset of moving to a new school and learning new faces and teachers. It makes more sense and it is more cohesive,” she added.

Jessica Byrne and her daughter Safiya arriving at North Presentation Primary School on the opening day of the new school year.Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Jessica Byrne and her daughter Safiya arriving at North Presentation Primary School on the opening day of the new school year.Picture: Eddie O'Hare

46 pupils started as junior infants this year in North Presentation NS. Ms Egan said the parents were more emotional than the pupils when they arrived at the school gates. 

“It is great to be back. We have two classes for junior infants. There weren’t many tears from the kids. There were tears shed from parents alright."

"It is good to be back in a routine. We are looking forward to a safe and successful year ahead. We are looking forward to our new era in our school.” 

Nickie Egan, principal North Presentation rimary School with Bemnet Legesse (2nd class pupil) on the opening day of the new school year. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Nickie Egan, principal North Presentation rimary School with Bemnet Legesse (2nd class pupil) on the opening day of the new school year. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

The North Presentation principal said there is a more relaxed feel with regards to enforcing Covid-19 guidelines and procedures this year. 

“This time last year there were a lot more nerves with regards to the various guidelines and whether the correct procedures were in place. We did really well last year so we are keeping all the same procedures along with the same routines.

“People came in so much lighter than this time last year. The tensions and the stress from last year was hard going. We have done this before and we can do it again. Things are only going to get better. The staff are all vaccinated,” she added.

Boys who entered the North Presentation Primary School 2nd class for the first time, Dani Selman (left) and Armando Rostas on the opening day of the new school year. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Boys who entered the North Presentation Primary School 2nd class for the first time, Dani Selman (left) and Armando Rostas on the opening day of the new school year. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

Ms Egan paid tribute to her teaching colleagues as she looked forward to the new academic year. 

“We pick and choose the teachers very carefully. We always pick teachers with compassion and kindness. 

"It works well. There is a lovely atmosphere in the school. Everybody pulls in the same direction. It is all about providing the kids with the best education possible.”

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