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Message to our school community.

Dear Parents, Staff and Students of Thornhill College,

I would like to provide you with an update of the variety of events and activities that have been ongoing over the past few weeks. 

Many random acts of kindness have been demonstrated by our girls during Mental Health Awareness week and beyond.  These have included shopping for neighbours, baking treats, teaching piano and running errands for elderly neighbours.  In addition, our Year 10 pupils participated in the ‘Errigal Stair Climb Challenge’ as part of their Ambassador of St Paul Award to raise funds and support a very worthy local charity Children in Crossfire.

Our thanks go to Miss Lynch who led staff and Pope John Paul 11 award girls in a virtual weekly Rosary throughout the month of May.   In addition, the RE department awarded the Mercy Moment Awards to Cait Ni Cheallaigh for her beautiful music and to Lucia Gallagher and Ava Ward for helping parishioners in their Ardmore parish to stay connected spiritually with each other.


Girls you have engaged wonderfully in a range of competitive and creative opportunities.  Special congratulations to our Year 11 student Trinity McKeever who recently had her award winning article ‘Tackling Our Throwaway Culture’ featured in the Irish News.  Trinity shared her thoughts on food waste, Laudato Si and the impact of Climate Change.  A very mature and thought provoking read. You can read it yourself at...

https://www.irishnews.com/lifestyle/faithmatters/2020/06/04/news/tackling-our-throwaway-culture-1959965/


 Whilst we may not be able to go on Summer holidays this year the Geography Department tasked Year 8 students to take a virtual world tour. We were most impressed by the collage postcards depicting destinations you would choose to visit.  Here is hoping we will get there one day girls!  Year 8 have also been on Virtual Field trips this week with our History department and Abbie has very much summed up the sentiment shared by many of us when she said ‘back to school is where I want to go next’.


As we move into Joyful June I have been overwhelmed by the joyous creations submitted as part of The Great Thornhill Lockdown Bake-Off set by our Home Economics department.  The extremely high standard presented in the wonderful signature dishes has now secured some students their place in the Showstopper Finale.  I would like to acknowledge the sheer skill and talent exhibited in the entries- Apple Palm Pies, Chocolate Pistachio Biscuits, Lemon Meringue Pie, Jaffa Cake Cheesecake and the aptly named Quarantine Cupcakes and ‘We are all in this together’ cake for the NHS.  I am sure some very difficult decisions will have to be made by the judges.  We are so disappointed that we cannot get to sample some of these delights!


Our Year 11 and 13 students have now moved on and commenced work that will be hugely beneficial to their studies in the next academic year.  Girls I must congratulate you on your level of engagement and the commitment you are showing.  I have been so heartened by the positive comments forwarded by your teachers about your enthusiasm and diligence.  Very well done.


Plans are ongoing for our end of Key Stage 3 celebrations.  This will culminate in a service conducted by Fr Clerkin which will be shared with Year 10 pupils and parents on our App in the near future.  You may have also seen some video memories charting the 7-year Journey of our Year 14 leavers.  We hardly recognised the innocent Year 8 images when they are contrasted with the glamorous formal pictures of Year 14!   A range of activities and events are currently being planned for you girls and the finer details will be shared with you soon. 


As one journey ends then another begins as yesterday over 200 primary school girls received their formal confirmation that they too will take their place as a Thornhill Girl. Whilst normal induction and transition activities and even our Summer School have been postponed we will make sure that a warm welcome awaits each and every one of these girls.


Something to look forward to is our Virtual Sports Day which our PE department will hold on Friday 19th June.  I would encourage all Key Stage 3 pupils to take part in 6 fun challenges from home and send results through Google Classroom.   This event is kindly sponsored by Four Star Pizza.  Look out for the promotional video on our school and PE Twitter accounts over the coming days.

My thanks are extended to the staff involved in the mammoth task of awarding Centre Assessment Grades for Years 12,13 and 14 students and to our Heads of Department who are currently uploading all this information onto the various examination portals over the coming days and weeks.

A reminder that our school counselling facility provided by Family Works is still available & self-referrals can be made.   Details on how to do this have been provided by Ms Barr on our School App.

I would like to thank you all for your continued support over what has been a challenging few months for us all.  Remember “The difficult times will always come to an end but the wisdom and strength you gain from them will be yours forever”.


School is open daily should you need to contact us about anything I would ask that you do so through at info@thornhill.derry.ni.sch.uk.   A brief reminder that we continue to be available daily should any key workers require educational supervision for their daughters.

Warmest wishes

Sharon Mallett (Principal)

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