New school context
Colaiste Mhuirlinne/ Merlin College is a mixed school, which was established in 2013 under the patronage of Galway city VEC and amalgamated in July 2013, when the school came under the support of the Galway and Roscommon Education and Training Board (GRETB). Initially, the school life began for a short period in temporary accommodation in Renmore while the school was being built; then moved into their state-of-the-art campus the following year in Doughiska road., on the east side of Galway City. During our induction, the principal couldn’t stress more about the school’s mission statement, which outlines to foster an environment of respect, integrity and positive learning in a safe and enjoyable setting. This ensures that all students of all faiths and ethnicities can enjoy their education equally in a fun environment outside their homes.
How is this new context like or different from the school where I taught last year?
Regarding all members of management and staff, they exercise a caring role towards the students. Students are assigned Class Tutors who will always be looking out for the welfare of their tutor group. Likewise, Year Heads will look to support students especially in times of difficulty. The Career Guidance counsellors assist students who need personal support. At the initial start of placement, the school suffered a tragedy over the loss of one of its pupils and all the staff played the supportive role in looking after the pupil’s welfare at this heart-breaking time.
What was different to last year that stood out was that every morning before class began, all year groups attend for assembly. At this time, students will receive information from their Year Head or Class Tutor about events that are happening in the school. It is also a time to reflect on issues that are important to students while also concentrating on serious matters like respect, bullying and the school’s Code of Behaviour. I believe having an assembly every morning as part of a routine is important to establish structure in the student’s day. It makes them feel energetic with positive vibes. School life is the foundation of every student, so morning assembly must be good for every child, because it’s not only good for their health but also good for their minds.
Merlin college also promotes cultural diversity, which I think is critical in a student’s education in preparing them for their future. In todays’ world, when students head off to school, they are not going to find just one culture out there; they are going to find ethnicity out there. In our country, we have more people from other cultures and nationalities, particularly in the Doughska area living nearby. In Merlin College, they promote this cultural diversity to teach kids the importance of celebrating this change. Having diversity in the classroom not only help children to learn and think differently, but also prepares them for the real world and interacting with those of differ...