About 10 years ago it was decided to set up a Student Council in St. Mary's College. A steering committee was chosen by the students and this group, along with two teachers, worked for almost a year drawing up a constitution. A number of questionnaires were undertaken to find out the students' opinions about representation and the issues which they felt students should have an imput into. Finally, the constitution went to the Staff and Board of Management for ratification and the following September the Council began work. There were representatives from 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th years on the Council. The Head Girl and Deputy Head Girl were also members. Members of the Council undertook to liaise with 1st and 2nd years. We were able to avail of the training which was organised by Brother Columba for the de la Salle schools.
One of the early items on the agenda was changing the school uniform. Again, there was extensive consultation among the students, and parents, staff and Board of Management members were also involved and a new uniform was adopted. In recent years the Council has been consulted on the Code of Behaviour and on the drawing up of a School Policy in relation to bullying. Also, 1st and 2nd years are now represented. Having a Students' Council is very worthwhile. It gives the students a voice in matters which affect them and is a valuable exercise in democracy.
St. Mary's Student Council 2014-2015
Head Girl: Gillian Donohoe, Deputy Head Girl: Jennifer O'Donovan
6th Year Representatives: Orlaigh Behan, Jane Kenny, Caren Lee, Jill McNamara, Kiva Sammon
5th Year Representatives: Christine Mulligan, Ornagh O'Reilly, Niamh Prendergast, Jane Rigby, Clare Scanlon
4th Year Representatives: Alice Linehan, Éadaoin Rice, Áine Sheehan
3rd Year Representatives: Sophie Hamzat, Kia O'Brien, Bonny O'Halloran,
2nd Year Representatives: Lauren Jordan, Rachel Steel,
St. Mary's College Student Council 2013-2014
6th Year :Megan O'Driscoll (Head Girl - Chairperson), Sarah Benn (Deputy head Girl- Deputy Chairperson),
Éadaoin Burke, Maebh Cullen, Sophie Deans, Sydney Harper, Katie Hunt, Rachel Kinnerk.
5th Year: Orlaigh Behan, Shauna Keevans, Kiva Sammon, Mary Taiwo
4th Year: Caoimhe Duffy, Clare Scanlon
3rd Year :Sasha Gregory, Gemma Robotham, Áine Sheehan, Sinéad Whelan
2nd Year Sarah Babiker, Kia O'Brien, Bonnie O'Halloran
1st Year: Nicole Jordan, Rachel Steele
The Student Council have achieved so much in the first term of school. They decided on those charities that would be allocated Rag Days after receiving applications from both staff and students. This was a lengthy discussion process as it was very difficult to decide between the various applications.
One of the first projects the Student Council undertook was to raise funds for the TY Musical and the Battery Hen Rehabilitation Programme in the school. The hen rehabilitation project involved battery hens being rescued from a poultry farm and rehoused on the school premises. Over time the almost featherless hens have been rehabilitated and have now been rehomed with students' families. It is hoped to continue this project in the future as it may be tied in with aspects of the new Junior Certificate.
Megan, our Head Girl and Sarah, our Deputy Head Girl have had many meetings with Ms. McCabe, our Principal, and as a result many student suggestions have been taken on board and implemented.
Christmas time is one of the busiest for Student Council members as they try to raise as much funds as possible for the local conference of St. Vincent dePaul. They are actively involved in promoting and organising a food drive, which to date has resulted in 25 large boxes of nonperishable food being donated. This drive will continue up to the Christmas holidays. The Student Council are also organising the selling and distributing of chololate santas. Pupils may buy a santa in secret for their friends and these will be delivered by the Student Council on Friday next.
Many thanks to all the local businesses in Naas and surrounding areas who so generously donated prizes for our Christmas hampers. Raffle tickets are on sale all week and the draw will take place on Friday. The Student Council would finally like to wish all the staff and students of St. Mary's, along with their families a very happy Christmas and prosperous New Year!