Home |  Search |  Contact Us |  Website & Cookies Policy

News & Press Releases

Catholic Schools Week 2018 - 28 January to 4 February


CATHOLIC SCHOOLS WEEK 2018 – ‘Called to be a Family of Families’
Down and Connor Art & Poetry Competition
(Catholic Schools’ Support Service)
29 January 2018

Catholic Schools Week (28th January – 3rd February 2018) is an annual celebration which commemorates the ongoing and inspirational contribution of Catholic schools to the education and faith formation of children and young people.

In preparation for the forthcoming World Meeting of Families (www.worldmeeting2018.ie), Catholic Schools Week provides a timely focus on the role and significance of the family as experienced within the lives of children and young people today.

Catholic Schools Week also provides an opportunity to affirm the ongoing work of teachers as they seek to form young people in their intellectual, moral, spiritual and social development.

It is within the lived reality of family life, in all its complexity, that children and young people encounter God in faith. The child’s experience of love within the family; this cradle and sanctuary of life, is foundational for educational and faith development.

Celebrating diversity, the ethos of the Catholic school is one of inclusivity, welcoming all, irrespective of faith, ability, culture or ethnicity, and cherishing each child and young person in this family of families.

In preparation for the World Meeting of Families (August 2018), the Catholic Schools’ Support Service invited children to enter an Art and Poetry Competition reflecting on the significance of the family.

Earlier this morning, Bishop Noel Treanor, Professor Peter Finn (Principal of St Mary’s University College) along with staff from the Catholic Schools’ Support Service gathered together with teachers, students, and their families from schools across the diocese of Down and Connor for an award ceremony celebrating the family life of children within nursery, primary and post-primary Catholic schools.

The Catholic Schools’ Support Service congratulates each of the category winners and all the children who took part in the Art and Poetry Competition. The hundreds of entries received bear testimony to the perennial significance of the family, capture a real sense of the diversity of family life across the diocese, and showcase how children and school teachers embed an ongoing commitment to living out the spirit of Catholic Education.


Winners of the Art and Poetry Competition
Nursery Category
1st Prize            Grace Carville (Holy Child Nursery School, Belfast)
2nd Prize           Aoife Bassett (St Teresa’s Nursery School, Belfast)
Foundation & Key Stage 1 Category
1st Prize   Cillian Clarke (St Mary’s Primary School, Kircubbin)
2nd Prize    Casey McCabe (St John the Baptist Primary School, Belfast)
Key Stage 2 Category
1st Prize   Aine McIntyre (St Patrick’s Primary School, Aghagallon)
2nd Prize    Erin McKay (St John’s Primary School, Carnlough)
Special Commendation:   Kaitlyn Dunlop (St Colmcille’s Primary School, Ballymena)
Key Stage 3 Category
1st Prize   Lucie Hickson (Our Lady & St Patrick’s College, Belfast)
2nd Prize    Ross Douglas (St Patrick’s Grammar School, Downpatrick)
Key Stage 4 Category
1st Prize   Adela Polakova (St Patrick’s College, Ballymena)



Catholic Schools Week 2018 - 28 January to 4 February



St Mary’s will be celebrating Catholic Schools Week (28 January – 4 February 2018) in a number of ways:

  • There will be a PowerPoint presentation in the Students’ Union displaying images and information relating to daily themes.
  • A prayer wall for staff and students relating to the theme of family will be set up alongside a display of children’s art and poetry.
  • College Liturgy on Thursday will celebrate St Brigid and the Catholic Schools Week themes of family and faith.
  • St Mary’s student teachers will be sharing on our “Latest News” photos and accounts of activities organised during the course of the week.