ST Vincent’s Secondary School recently held a very successful open day for prospective students and their parents.
The Cork city secondary school typically assign a teacher or an SNA to walk around the school with the students and their parents/guardians as they outline the many benefits of attending the second-level school on the northside.
Deputy principal Rosemary Ferriter said this format enables the student and parent to make a ‘connection’ with the school.
“It went very well. We had lots of students and parents attend on the day. We have a different format compared to most schools. We ask the parents to come in with their children so when they come in, we assign a teacher or an SNA to walk around the school and answer their questions. This enables them to make a connection and get a feel for the school,” she said.
The secondary school also holds a follow-up taster programme with the perspective students as they seek to increase the number of students attending their school said Ms Ferriter. The contact they meet at the open day will be a friendly face they hold in connection with the school. As a follow-up to this, we do a taster programme with the students that are coming in from the primary school.
“It is good for the parents to see where their students will be going and what is on offer. We had students from eight to nine primary schools who called on the day from the locality. We have strong relationships with the local primary schools. We also have ASD units so those kids can come from the country or from other parts of the city.”
News emerged in recent weeks that the Catholic Education Irish Schools’ Trust (CEIST) and the Religious Sisters of Charity will apply to the Department of Education to amalgamate North Presentation Secondary School and St Vincent’s Secondary School and for the amalgamated school to become co-educational.
Currently, both secondary schools are single-sex schools with only female students. Ms Ferriter said St Vincent’s Secondary School will definitely be all girls only next September. “There is talk of it going co-ed. It won’t be next September. That will take a bit of time to plan for that change so next year will 100% be all girls.”
The deputy principal said St Vincent’s Secondary School possesses a ‘proud’ history and is academically very strong.
“Academically we are very strong. We have a broad curriculum with the core subjects, while we also do home economics, art, and languages such as French and German. The school has a proud history and reputation. We also have a beautiful indoor full-size hall where the girls play indoor soccer and basketball.
“We have a very strong student council which we encourage. We always promote the need for students to have a strong voice.
“We are the only secondary school in Ireland to have UNICEF Ireland gold status. We are also very strong on mindfulness and mental health issues. There is great spirit and sense of community in the school,” she added.