Abbey Vocational School News

New website launched

Abbey Vocational School News

Launch of School Website and Video

On Tuesday night last the new website and school video was launched at the school Board meeting. Our CE Anne Mc Hugh was also in attendance on the evening and partook in the launch. We encourage all of our parents and students to look to the website regularly for school updates and information. Website - Video =

CAO/UCAS/DARE/HEAR Information Night for parents of Leaving Cert students

The Guidance Department hosted an Information Night for parents of Leaving Cert students on October 18th at 7.00pm here in the school. Many aspects were covered on the night including how best to support your son/daughter throughout this very difficult year. We thank Helen Kelly and the Guidance Department for hosting this information evening.

Parents Association Meeting

The first PA meeting took place on Monday night last. The officers for this year are: Chairperson - Lisa Staunton, Vice Chairperson - Patrice Duffy, Secretary - Bridin Jordan, Assistant Secretary - Arlene O Neill, Treasurer - Teresa Mc Donnell, and Vice Treasurer - Fiona Mc Hugh. Committee members are Sorcha Begley, Geoffrey Browne, Mary Coughlin, Sharon Gallagher, Muriel Mitchell, David Morrow, Ruperta Gallagher, Anna Meehan and Chris Darby.

The first event on their calendar is the planning of the Mock Interviews for Leaving Cert students in the school.

Third Year Higher Level students will be travelling to Dunlewey to the Lakeside Centre on 17th October. Students will be immersed in the Irish culture and language throughout the course of the day. In addition, they will participate in various events and activities through the medium of Irish.


A group of 4th and 5th year Art students attended the opening of the Annual Suile Na N'og Art Exhibition at the Regional Cultural Centre in Letterkenny last Friday 14th. Suile Na N'og showcases the best of Junior Cert Art work from around the county each year.

Mentoring programme

On Wednesday 19th September the Senior Perfects and a selection of TY students will take part in a Big Brother Big Sister Programme. This programme is an internationally recognised Youth Mentoring Programme that forms supportive friendships for young people inspiring them to brighter futures. Big Brother Big Sister is nationally and internationally proven through research to improve young people’s wellbeing, improve their social support and relationships with others. BBBS is operated in Ireland by Foróige.

School service

This Thursday 20th October all students in the school will attend a whole school service in the school gym. The service will be attended by our local priests, reverends and ministers. 

Student Council

The first student council meeting of the year took place last Wednesday, 5th October.  At this meeting student council members discussed various issues relating to the student body. On the day different roles were elected. Chairperson for the coming year will be Michal Drzewiecki, and secretary will be Damaris Scott.


This week personnel from DCU will attend the school to inform our senior students of the many courses that are available in their University. They will provide detailed information and advice to all the students in relation to college life in DCU.

The 3rd year annual orienteering trip to Gartan takes place in the final week of the term.

Mental Health Week

Real Talks
On the morning of Tuesday 11th, Alan O'Mara from ‘Real Talks’ came into our school and gave a talk on Mental Health and Wellbeing. ‘Real Talks’ is a vibrant organisation founded by Alan O’Mara to facilitate discussions on the importance of mental health, effective communication, and leadership. He told students how he founded ‘Real Talks’, the company which travels around the country giving inspiring talks. In addition, he spoke about his personal battle with depression and how it affected his own life. This talk was beneficial as it helped students to realise that they shouldn't be afraid to talk to others about any issues or problems they are experiencing. 

Jigsaw (Supporting Young People’s Mental Health)

On Tuesday evening Sean McGroary from Jigsaw Donegal came to the school and delivered a talk to parents. This talk was based on Supporting Young People’s Mental Health. The talk helped parents to build understanding of the mental health issues affecting young people and provided guidance on how to support young people who may be struggling with their mental health. During the talk Sean helped parents to have an understanding of the key issues impacting on the mental health and wellbeing of young people. Sean showed them how to identify ways of promoting positive mental health in young people. He also explained to them the value of listening as a way of supporting young people.

The Shona Project

On Thursday last Tammy Darcy, founder of the Shone Project came to talk to the junior students in the school. The Shona Project is a non-profit organisation which provides a website and school workshop aimed at challenging the culture of rivalry, negativity and pursuit of perfection. They provide advice and guidance on the challenges teenage girls encounter such as; bullying, anxiety & depression, body issues, relationships, stress and boys. Tammy delivered a very inspiring talk to all students by expressing the beliefs of the Shona Project which is, ‘We reckon that when we embrace and celebrate our differences, we expose our glittery, sparkly selves and truly stand out’.

Wellbeing Day Foróige Day
On Thursday, 13th October, TY students attended a Wellbeing Day in the Abbey Hotel along with students from Killybegs, Ballyshannon and Carrick. The students were divided up into groups and they took part in multiple workshops. The workshops included a lively cooking demonstration with Zach Gallagher, peaceful meditation with Sarah Gillespie from the ‘Energy Hub’, Positive thinking with Emily Whelan, an active dance class with Theresa from the ‘Energy Hub’ and an inspirational talk from ‘Jigsaw’ Donegal.  At the end of the day each student received a Foróige goodie bag. This was a fun and enjoyable day for all the students involved.

Donal Walsh Talk
‘The Live Life’ foundation visited the school on Friday, 14th October. The foundation established for the Kerry teenager, Donal Walsh, was started by his family to promote his ‘Live Life’ message. Donal Walsh has touched so many lives since his appearance on Brendan O’Connor’s ‘The Saturday Night Show’  Donal’s mother, Elma Walsh,  delivered the inspirational story of Donal, his life, his illness, his spirit and his untimely death to our students.

Internet safety

On Wednesday last Kerry Gallagher from Foróige delivered a workshop on Internet Safety to first year students. During this workshop students learned the basic knowledge and skills to help them keep control of their safety and security while online and consider how they can interact in a responsible way online. This workshop also focused on advanced skills for internet and social media use and allow students to explore how to build a profile and presence online which is true to who they are.

Study Skills
‘The Amazing Brains’ workshop came to the school last Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. The workshop is a motivational day where students were provided with advice to help them succeed in their State Exams. Bernard Thompson delivered the excellent workshop. All 3rd, 5th and 6th year students got the chance to take part in this workshop. It was a very worthwhile and enjoyable experience for all of the students involved; they all came away with some great tips and advice to help them with their up and coming exams.


'Aisling' the Musical

On Tuesday 18th October the TY students along with the Music Department travelled to the Hawkswell Theatre in Sligo for a performance of 'Aisling' a musical composed by Shaun Purcell. This musical has been highly rated by many in the media. 'Its power sends tingles down the spine.... full of many toe tapping tones, Broadway style belters and ballads.' - The Irish Times.

Dragons Den 
Dragons Den competition starts on Monday, 17th October.  All final business plans need to be completed along with a prototype, a PowerPoint presentation and a speech.  Each team member will have an important role and should be able to answer all questions directed at them.

Road Safety Road Show
On Tuesday, 11th October TY students went to the Aura Centre in Letterkenny and attended the Road Safety Roadshow. Students heard different versions of a story about a road traffic accident from the perspective of the Gardaí, firemen, paramedics, nurses and survivors. This was an emotional talk as we saw the dangers of the road through others experiences.  This talk really helped the students become more aware of how safety is vital on our roads. 

Donegal Women's Network Service

Donegal Women's Network Service 20th Anniversary took place last week. A selection of TY students attended various talks in the Presbyterian Church on Friday, 14th October. During these talks the speakers educated them on women's rights and gender equality. It was a very informative and enjoyable day for all the students that attended.



Boys U16 AVS vs St. Catherine’s

On Friday 14th October the U16 boys faced St. Catherine’s Vocational in the 4th round of the group stage. Daniel Gallagher scored the first point of the game with Killybegs scoring a free putting them back in the game. Abbey kept the clock ticking gaining most possession throughout the 1st half. Shay Travers scored two fantastic points from play but Killybegs were quick to react scoring two points making it level. Daniel Gallagher scored another point from a free giving Abbey the lead at halftime by two.

Abbey started very strong in the second half with Enda O'Hagan precise kick outs launching many of Abbeys attacks leading to an early point from Jamie Crawford and another from Ryan Brogan. Killybegs scored a goal and a two points making it 0-6 to 1-5.  Jamie Crawford scored an outstanding goal and Daniel Gallagher with another point. Killybegs followed with three more points as Thomas White came on as a sub for Abbey scoring two points. Killybegs came back with a goal and further scores from Jamie Crawford, Eoin Gorrell and Odhrán Quinn. Final score AVS 1-15 St. Catherine’s 2-9.

U16’s have won three games so far this term against Ballyshannon, Carrick and Glenties. This coming Friday, 14th October, U16’s will play Killybegs. Next Friday, 21st October, U16’s will play against Dungloe.


The U14’s will be playing Rosses in Ballyshannon next week. A date is yet to be confirmed. 

Girls Gaelic

Our senior girl’s Gaelic team will take on Rosses College in their first game of the league. The game will take place on 20th October in Tir Chonaill Park, Donegal town at 12.00am. Good luck to the all the girls. Training continues every Wednesday after school.


This Wednesday 19th October a team of 16 athletes with patriciate in the Donegal Schools Cross Country. Good luck to all the students that will be taking part.

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