Students from Ardee Community School were honoured at their annual awards ceremony on Thursday afternoon – as fellow pupils, teachers, staff and family came to recognise the outstanding work done by the student body during the academic year.
Celebrating the achievements of students in all five year groups as well as other academic, extra curricular, voluntary and sporting successes throughout the school year, the ceremony held in the school during class time and was split into Junior Cycle and Senior Cycle groups – in a change to the regular evening format.
Sixth year student Conor Myers was the big winner on the day, taking home the Tom Dalton Award for Best Sixth Year student. Described by one teacher as “the closest to a genius I will ever meet”, Conor’s award was fully merited. Among Conor’s many achievements this year was reaching the Irish Maths Olympiad.
Ruth McAnespie won the Fifth Year Student of the Year award while Doireann Balfe, Leah Glass and Ellen O’Brien won the main honours in third, second and first year respectively.
As ever, the winners of the Excellence in Public Examinations Awards were eagerly awaited. Rachel Mangan won the award for Best Overall Leaving Certificate result in 2016 while Lee Hamill won Best Leaving Certificate Art Award and Niamh McBride won the Credit Union Award for Best Leaving Certificate Business Student.
As far as the Junior Cycle was concerned, Tara McGuinness (science), Niamh McGuinness (language), Donal McKenny (geography) and joint winners Jenna Callan & Ruth McAnespie (Business) took home the big awards on the day.
In the more quaint setting of the Dalton Room in the school, the awards took on a different look to previous years but honouring the oustanding achievements of the student both in a variety of fields as ever took centre stage. Head Girl Chloe Mant and Head Boy Ben Hannity were acting as comperes for the day’s activity and they introduced principal Mary Jackson and chairperson of the student council Aine Wardle to speak before each ceremony.
Aside from the Certificates of Excellence and Prize Winners from each year, Matthew Bell was named A Team Student of the Year on the back of a year which has seen him flourish in school, his kind nature complimented by growing confidence.
The sports awards are hostile contested every year and this year was no different – Jonathan Commins and Abbie Sheridan won the Junior Male and Female accolades for excelling in GAA and athletics while Neill Kerr and Niamh Tenanty won the senior awards.
Niamh has done tremendously well to overcome injury to star for school GAA, rugby and athletics while Neill plays for Dundalk FC in the SSE Airtricity League Under 17 league. Rugby star Conor Hennessy was given the Sports Leadership Award for 2017.
There were many, many more award winners on the day – most of which are listed below – but there was time for principal Jackson to pay tribute to all of the students in the school who have done themselves, their teachers and the school proud in 2016/17
As proceedings wrapped up, there was one more award to hand out – and this time, a teacher was the recipient. After 41 years of teaching at Ardee Community School, Mary Kavanagh hangs up her easel at the end of the academic year.
The teachers and staff presented her with a special memento and unsurprisingly, tears were shed as Mary took a round of applause from an appreciative audience of coworkers, current pupils and parents, many of whom Mary taught during her time in Ardee.
LIST OF AWARD WINNERS
A Team Student of the Year – Matthew Bell
First Year Student of the Year – Ellen O’Brien
Second Year Student of the Year – Leah Glass
Oonagh Matthews Award Best JC Art Project – Fiona McAnespie
Best Junior Certificate Woodwork Project – Robert Fedigan
Enda Matthews Third Year Maths Award – Fiona McAnespie
JCSP Student of the Year – Jamie Murray
Third Year Student of the Year – Doireann Balfe
Junior Female Sports Personality of the Year – Abbie Sheridan
Junior Male Sports Personality of the Year – Jonathan Commins
Jubilee Award for Excellence in Home Economics – Lauren Commins
Fifth Year LCA Student of the Year – Arran Durrigan
Fifth Year Student of the Year – Ruth McAnespie
LCVP Student of the Year – Aine Wardle
Musician of the Year Award – Lorcan Conlon
Attendance Award – Laura Young
Sixth Year LCA Student of the Year – Sarah Butler
Tom Dalton Student of the Year – Conor Myers
Senior Female Sports Personality of the Year – Niamh Tenanty
Senior Male Sports Personality of the Year – Neill Kerr
Sports Leadership Award – Conor Hennessy
Amber Flag Award
Green Schools Award – Kazyz Lengvinas
Best Fundraiser for Concern – Paul Malone
Chairperson of the Student Council – Aine Wardle
TUI/ASTI Award in Senior Technology – Shawni Dowdall
Aiken Award for Excellence in Senior Cycle Practical Studies – Cormac Sharkey
Mark McCreanor Award – Rebecca Kerr
Eddie O’Doherty Award Junior Certificate Science – Tara McGuinness
Jennifer Caine Cup Junior Certificate Language – Niamh McGuinness
Derek McDonnell Award Junior Certificate Geography – Donal McKenny
Best Junior Certificate Business – Jenna Callan & Ruth McAnespie
Best Overall Junior Certificate – Ruth McAnespie
Credit Union Award for Best Business Student Leaving Certificate – Niamh McBride.
Best Leaving Certificate Art Award – Lee Hamill
Best Overall Leaving Certificate – Rachel Mangan