Crumlin Integrated College held its prize night last week and invited EA Regional Managing director, Barry Muholland to be their guest of honour.
Principal Mrs Lynda McGarry opened up the evening by presenting the school year report for the year. She thanked everyone who fought to keep the school open over the previous five years.
She said that Education Minister John O’Dowd’s decision to keep the school open was a “testimony to the hard work that has been carried out to date and a challenge for the EA and NICIE to work with us to develop strategies to rejuvenate and enhance community confidence in the school.”
The school achieved much better GCSe results than in previous years.
Mrs McGarry said: “The GCSE results of August 2015 reflect the way in which the school has flourished over these past four years – from 52% of pupils achieving 5A*-C grades or equivalent to an outstanding 78% in 2015 and it gets better.
“When 5A*-C grades, including English and Maths, are taken into consideration, the results have increased from 25% to an unbelievable 57%. These results are now well above the Northern Ireland average for non-grammar schools.”
The school aims to ensure that all pupils make progress in external examinations.
Mrs McGarry said: “Once again, the results in 2015 highlight the value added both academically and pastorally for everyone. Jordan O’Hara for example, a pupil who followed an Occupational Studies Course two years ago achieved a Learner of the Year Award for his exemplary work in Engineering and Engineering Services.
“Jordan was one of only 25 students from across the province to receive this honour at CEA’s Award Ceremony in the Stormont Hotel.”
Mrs McGarry also praised the outgoing Board of Governors and welcomed their replacements.
She said: “2014/15 also saw the reconstitution of a new Board of Governors many of whom are with us this evening and I think it appropriate that we thank the out going representatives for all of their dedication to the school particularly, at times, under very difficult circumstances and I hope I can be forgiven for singling out Mr Stanley Smith the Chairperson for all his guidance.
“Over his five years as Chairman, he developed a genuine commitment to the school and to the wellbeing of the staff and pupils.”
The school’s charity work was presented by Mrs McGarry.
She said: “Last year saw the charitable nature of the college demonstrated once again as we raised hundreds of pounds for many charities – including, Macmillan Cancer, the Fare Share Initiative Project designed to donate grocery items to the local community and Parkinson’s (Lisburn Branch).
“We must pay tribute to Miss Stacey McGookin and the Student Council who last year participated in many of these fund raising events”
The award winners were presented with their awards by teacher Mr Jamison and Mrs McGarry before guest of honour, Barry Mulholland gave his speech in which he praised the school.
He said: “Crumlin Integrated College is a school blessed with good leadership, effective team work, strong vision and sense of purpose.
“Despite the challenging context and changes, this school has been able to raise standards and achievements, stabilise and develop leadership and strengthen the teachers’ capacity for effective teaching and learning.”
He added: “Parents, I appeal to you. Please continue to support this school.
“Spread the word. This is a good school.
“It is committed to continuous improvement and this is reflected in its pupil results.
“It’s abundantly clear, all members of staff don’t just work in this school, they along with you, parents and pupils, are part and parcel of the education community that has made Crumlin Integrated College the growing success it now is.”
To conclude the evening, Mr Mulholland was presented with a gift by the Head Boy JP Macauley and Head Girl Kerry Callaghan, before the Year 8 vocal group put on a performance and Mr McNally form the Board of Governors thanked everyone for attending.