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Holy Cross pupils learning through digital technologies

Education Minister John ODowd has visited Holy Cross Boys Primary School in Ardoyne.
Thursday, 14 March 2013

During his visit he met with the Principal, teachers and other staff and had the opportunity to visit classrooms to meet some of the pupils. Holy Cross has a strong tradition of using ICT effectively to complement the delivery of the curriculum and has been awarded the prestigious NAACE ICT Mark Award. In addition, the school have recently begun using ipads in some classes to further develop their pupils’ ICT skills and the Minister had the opportunity to observe this.

He said: “Technology is progressing at an ever-increasing rate and young people are always among the first to embrace and enjoy new devices. This applies to the world of education and learning as much as to recreation, and it is clear that digital technologies can enhance the learning experience and help improve educational outcomes for children.

“Holy Cross pupils have been given the opportunity to use ipads in some of their lessons. This helps instil in them a great enthusiasm and eagerness for learning and I commend the school for embracing this technology. Credit goes to the Principal and Governors for making the investment and to the teachers who have worked very hard to roll out the programme to the pupils.”

The Minister’s visit also coincided with the school’s Transition Week Programme. This programme is organised annually within the school for P7 pupils as a means of providing them with a taster of their future post-primary school experience. During the programme, classes are divided into three form groups and supplied with a post-primary style timetable of classes. Teachers from local post-primary schools come into the school to teach a number of the lessons along with staff from Holy Cross Boys’ PS.

The Minister said: “I was very interested to hear about the Transition Week Programme the school holds each year. Transferring from primary to post-primary school is an exciting time in a child’s life. However, some pupils can be understandably a bit anxious at moving to a new school and studying new subjects in a timetable format they have not experienced before. This programme, run by Holy Cross in partnership with other schools in the area, is an excellent initiative. I commend all those involved, particularly those teachers from the post primary schools who have given their time to help the Holy Cross pupils prepare for this important stage in their education.”

In conclusion the Minister said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Holy Cross Boys’ today and I would like to thank the school Principal Terry Laverty, the staff and all the pupils for their warm welcome.”

Notes to editors:

  1. The Department of Education has launched a new ‘Education Works’ advertising campaign. The campaign encourages families to play, talk, read and count with their child and to ‘Get Involved Because Education Works’. Watch out for the ads on television, radio and outdoor locations. The campaign highlights the vital role families can play in helping children do well at school and improve their life chances. Visit nidirect website for more information or watch the TV ad on the Department’s YouTube channel.
  2. View photos from the Department of Education in our Flickr collection.
  3. Media enquiries to the Department of Education’s Communications Team on Tel: 028 9127 9207. Out of office hours contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07699715440 and your call will be returned.