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Transition Year News

4A comp

Transition Year News


February News


Date                     Activity                          Time                               Location


29th January          Driver Theory Test

                             Workshop – 4 groups


30th January          Driver Theory Test

                             Workshop – 4 groups


1st February          Chinese


6th February          Social Concern 4B


7th, 8th &                Amsterdam School Tour

9th February          (until 10th)


November News

The school musical will take place on Wednesday 22 nd and Thursday 23 rd
November, times to be confirmed.

PPracrice will be taking place in the weeks leading up to the musical.

October News

Sustainability is the theme for this year’s TY classes.
The short video competition below links in perfectly with that.
Please feel free to open the link.


Mon 2nd Oct                   RSA Talk             9.40am-10.40am            

 Mon 2nd Oct                   Tipperary Enterprise 2-4pm                                                 

Tues 3rd Oct                   UL Careers Trip  9am – 2pm               

 Fri 6th Oct                      Marie Keating   Foundation Talk          

Mon 9th Oct                   Ballycuggaran   Mountain Loop 

Mon 16th Oct –               Musical Rehearsals

Fri 24th Nov                   

TY Competition

September News

Please see a list of TY activities taking place this term. 
Date Activity Time Location
Mon 11 th Sep Law Module All Day GP Room
Tues 12 th Sep Law Module All Day GP Room
Mon 18 th Sep Walk/Hike TBC TBC
Mon 25 th Sep RSA Shuttle Bus 10.20-11; 2-2.30 Outside
PE Hall
Tues 26 th Sep Retreat Group 1 All Day Castletown
Wed 27 th Sep Retreat Group 2 All Day Castletown
Thurs 28 th Sep RSA Shuttle Bus TBC Outside
Mon 2 nd Oct RSA Talk TBC GP Room
Fri 6 th Oct Marie Keating TBC GP Room

Foundation Talk
Mon 16 th Oct – Musical Rehearsals/
Fri 24 th Nov Musical


We congratulate our TY students on the completion of their year and well done to all on their fantastic achievements.

Tues 2 nd Coding 4C 9.30am – 1.15pm
Tues 2 nd Driver Theory Test Workshop – GP Room – Teachers to supervise please

9.00am to 10.20am 4C 10.20am to 11.55am 4B
11.55am to 1.15pm 4A

Wed 3 rd Coding 4C 9.30am to 1.15pm – Canteen
Thurs 4 th Coding 4C 9.30am to 1.15pm – Canteen
Thurs 4 th Water Safety talk from MLI – 9.00am GP Room
Fri 5 th Coding 4C 9.30am to 1.15pm – Canteen
Mon 8 th Breast Cancer Awareness talk
Tues 9 th Kilfinane – overnight stay – group 1
Wed 10 th Kilfinane – group 1
Thurs 11 th Kilfinane – overnight stay – group 2
Fri 12 th Kilfinane – group 2
Mon 15 th Ballcuggaran Mountain Walk – TBC
Wed 17th Driver Theory Test Workshop – GP Room –

Easter Newsletter 2023

Please follow our twitter page for recent events.

Mon 6th – Zumba – PE Hall – activity time
Tues 7th – Zumba – PE Hall – 11.55-1.15.
Wed 8th – Seó Bóthair. GP room. Two groups. 9-12.45.
Wed 8th – Pitch & Putt – TBC
Wed 8th – 4B – Food Safety Test – 2-3.20
Thurs 9th – 4B – First Aid – GP Room – all day
Fri 10th – Pitch & Putt – 4C
Mon 13th – Zumba – PE Hall – activity time
Tues 14th – Zumba – PE Hall – 11.55-1.15.
Tues 14th – Talk with Nenagh Special Summer Camp. 9.40-10.20. GP
Wed 15th – 4A – Limerick Prison
Wed 15th – Pitch & Putt – TBC
Thurs 16th – 4B – Limerick Prison
Thurs 16th – 4A: Food Safety, 9-1.15.
Tues 21 st – Actor’s Vision Workshop in GP Room.
Wed 22nd – Pitch & Putt – TBC
Wed 22nd – 4A – Future Leaders Event with C. O Halloran
Thurs 23rd – 4C – Limerick Prison
Thurs 23rd – 4A: Food Safety, 9-1.15.

Thurs 23 rd – Some students picking daffodils for Daffodil Day
Fri 24 th – Some students helping collect money for Daffodil Day
Fri 24th – Pitch & Putt – TBC
Mon 27th – Fri 31st – Work Experience


The transition Year Trade Fair will take place in the Sports Hall on Thursday 12 th January 2023
commencing at 9.00am. The event is anticipated to run up until 12.00 noon, all students in the school will get the opportunity to attend.

Tues 7 th; and the 10th 4B Coding – GP Room – 9.30am-1.15pm


Tues 10 th Some students visiting Nenagh Heritage Centre to help with a project being carried out on the centre.
Wed 11 th Tinpot Recording – 9.30am to 12.30pm.
Thurs 12 th Trade Fair – 9.00am to 12.00 noon
Wed 18 th 4B – Trip to the Criminal Courts and the EPIC Museum
Fri 20 th All TYs visiting the Nenagh Heritage Centre for the Debs Exhibition
Tues 24 th 4A – Trip to the Criminal Courts and the EPIC Museum
Mon 30 th Forensic Science Workshops – 9-11am – one group in GP Room.

Mon 14 th Goshh talk – 11.15am – 12.15pm 4A
Tues 15 th Gaeilge24 – all day
Mon 21 st Think Languages – all day
Tues 22 nd Ascend – 4B – 10.15am to 11.55am
Wed 23 rd 4A First Aid – all day
Thurs 24 th 4B First Aid – all day
Fri 25 th 4C First Aid – all day
Mon 28 th Nenagh River Walk
Tues 29 th Coding 4C – 9.30am to 1.15pm.
Tues 29 th Ascend 4B – 10.15am to 11.55am
Wed 30 th Coding 4C – 9.30am to 1.15pm.
Thurs 1 st Coding 4C – 9.30am to 1.15pm.
Fri 2 nd Coding 4C – 9.30am to 1.15pm.
Mon 5 th School of Life Workshop
Tues 6 th Panto
Wed 7th – 21 st Work Experience

Halloween News

Well done to our TY students who were Pumpkin carving for Halloween.

Well done to our TY students who held a breakfast morning in aid of the Irish Cancer Society.

Transition Year – Term 2 – Activities

November 7th
9.30 – 4
(two groups)

November 8th
4B – Ascend
Coding – 4A

November 9th
Coding – 4A

November 10th
Coding – 4A

November 11th
Coding – 4A

November 14th
Goshh talk

November 15th

November 16th
No school

November 17th November 18th

November 21st
Think Languages –
Languages Connect

November 22nd
4B – Ascend
Nenagh River Walk

November 23rd
4A – First Aid

November 24th
4B – First Aid

November 25th
4C – First Aid

November 28th
Caitlin White –
History Workshop

November 29th
Coding 4C
4B – Ascend

November 30th
Coding 4C

December 1st
Coding 4C

December 2nd
Coding 4C

December 5th
School of Life –
Michelle Harding –

December 6th

December 7th
Work experience

December 8th
Work experience

December 9th
Work experience

December 12th
Work experience

December 13th
Work experience

December 14th
Work experience

December 15th
Work experience

December 16th
Work experience

October News

Musical: The musical will take place on Monday 24 th and Tuesday 25 th at 7.30pm.
The matinee for the local primary schools is at 10.30am on Monday and our
own school matinee will be between break and lunch on Tuesday.


Transition years had a team bonding day on 19th September. Thanks to Teamworks who facilitated a very enjoyable day.

Bake Sale

Well done to our transition years who raised €180 for the Make a Wish foundation by holding a bake sale on Friday 23rd September.

Pitch & Putt

Transition years have now started pitch & putt at the Riverdale Pitch & Putt Club.

Paris Trip 2022

We arrived in Paris at 8:15 am after a full night of traveling.  We got on our double decker and headed off on our adventure. Our first stop was in Montmartre, where we walked up to the Sácre Coeur de Montmartre, had a bite to eat and then got going again. We toured around the city of Paris for the rest of the day, seeing the Arc de Triomphe, the Place de la Concorde and passing the Eiffel Tower. On the second day we went to Euro Disney and we stayed there for the whole day.  It was great fun and at the end of the day, my friends and I discussed what the best ride was: the Hollywood Tower of Terror won.  On the third day we went to the Palace of Versailles, the Louvre where we saw the Monalisa.  We also went to the top of Montparnasse and at the end of the night we went on a boat ride along the river Seine. On our fourth and last day we drove to Cherbourg and got on the ferry from France to Dublin.  It was a great trip overall.

 Isabel O’Connor

Law Course

From Wednesday the 21st of September to Thursday 22nd of September, we had the pleasure of learning about the Irish Legal system from barrister James Fahy.  Over the two days we talked about the civil and criminal court and cases that changed Irish law such as the James Bolger case in Liverpool, England. James presented the information in a way that was easy to comprehend and provided us with insightful and useful information. At the end of the second day we did a mock trial, we were all given roles such as barristers, jurors, witnesses etc. This gave us the opportunity to experience what life is like in the courtroom and taught us about the importance of each person in a trial.

 Jamie Lynn Taylor

Poetry Slam Workshop

On Friday 23rd of September we were joined by Stephen Murray from Inspireland for a Poetry Slam workshop. Throughout the workshop we had an exceptional conversation about misogyny, gender equality, religious equality and homophobia. We learned about the many different forms of poetry and writing such as music and religious books like The Bible. Despite the heavy conversation topics, the workshop was extremely enjoyable and entertaining. Towards the end of the workshop we were given the opportunity to write our own poems. This was an incredible experience and everyone got creative and wrote about topics they’re passionate about. The poems were kept anonymous so everyone had the chance to express themselves.   


Jamie Lynn Taylor

September News

Updated Activities


Mon 19th                                  –           Ascend – Group 1 – 10.15am – 11.55am

Wed 21st                                  –           Law Education

Thurs 22nd                               –           Law Education

                                                –           Make a Wish – Bake Sale

Fri 23rd                                    –           Poetry Slam 9-11am & 11.15am -1.15pm

Tues 27th                                 –           Ascend – Group 1 – 10.15am – 11.55am




Tues 4th                                   –           Ascend – Group 1 – 10.15am – 11.55am      

Wed 5th                                   –           Road Safety Authority

Fri 7th                                      –           Ascend – Group 2 – 10.15am to 11.55am

Tues 11th                                 –           Ascend – Group 2 – 10.15am to 11.55am

Fri 14th                                    –           Ascend – Group 2 – 10.15am to 11.55am

Tues 18th                                 –           Ascend – Group 2 – 10.15am to 11.55am

Mon 24th                                 –           Musical

Tues 25th                                 –           Musical

Thurs 27th                                –           Ascend – Group 3 – 10.15am to 11.55am


August News

We welcome out TY students back to school on Wednesday 31st at


The students will be met by Miss King the TY Co-Ordinator for their induction. We wish them well for the upcoming year.

Transition Year – Term 1 –  subject to minor changes






August 29th

August 30th

August 31st

September 1st

September 2nd

September 5th 

September 6th 

September 7th

September 8th

Marie Keating talk


September 9th

September 12th 

September 13th 

French Tour

September 14th

French Tour

September 15th

French Tour

September 16th

French Tour

September 19th 


September 20th 

September 21st 

Law Education

September 22nd

Law Education

September 23rd

Poetry Slam 9-11 & 11.15-1.15

September 26th 

September 27th

September 28th 

September 29th 

September 30th 

October 3th 

October 4th 

October 5th

Road Safety Authority

October 6th 

October 7th  

October 10th 

October 11th 

October 12th 

October 13th 

October 14th  

October 17th 

October 18th 

October 19th 

October 20th


October 21st 


October 24th 

October 25th 

October 26th 

October 27th 

October 28th  


May News

We wish our transition year students well for the Summer and well done on all your efforts and achievements during the year.

16th May Fencing – 9.00-11.00 – 4A 11.15-1.15 4B

Catherine Hough (Fiserv) – Junior Achievers 2-2.40
YSI Speaker 2.40 – 4B

17th May Gaisce Walk – some students – a list will be sent to teachers
18th May Kieran McCann (Fiserv) – Junior Achievers at 2
19th May 4A – First Aid all day
20th May 4B – First Aid all day

April News

Use the link below to access the TY Easter newsletter.

 Easter Newsletter 2022 (1)

TY Maths

Congratulations to TY students Holly Whelan and Nicole Murphy who won 3rd place in the John Hooper National Statistics Competition titled “How to Write a Piece of Chart-Toppiing Music’ the students are now eligible to participate in the European Statistics Competition in June.

Best of luck to Emilija Greisle and Alannah Slattery who have reached the final 8 of 105 teams of the Construction Industry Federation Design a House Competition.  Virtual final takes place on Friday 8th April 2022 from 11.30am to 12.30pm.

April Activities

Work Experience – 4th to 8th April 2022 – All TY students will be on Work Experience.

25th April 2022 –         Activity Time – guest speaker from Irish Guide Dogs.

Third year students will be doing interviews for Transition Year on Monday 4th April and Wednesday 6th April.  A timetable will be sent to teachers.  Students should only be out of class for 15 minutes before their assigned time and during their interview.  Thank you to everyone for your co-operation.

March Activities

28th March 2022                      –           Activity Time – Chinese Activities

30th March 2022                      –           Personal Safety

31st March 2022                      –           TY class 4B will host the sixth class girls from St. Mary’s  

                                                            9.40am to 11.55pm – Basketball Blitz – in the school hall.

February Activities

7th February 2022                   –          Activity Time – Amber Flag Speaker

10th February 2022                 –          iWish Workshop

14th February 2022                 –           Activity Time – Step Aerobics & Yoga

15th February 2022                 –           Marie Keating Talk – 9.40am to 11.55am

16th February 2022                 –           School of Life

28th February 2022                 –           Activity Time – TBC – Mini Med

January Activities
Monday 10 th January 2022
4A & 4B Activity Time 12 Angry Men DVD (Pre-Law Module) Base Room
Monday 17 th January 2022
4A & 4B Activity Time Mental Health Awareness Day – workshop by Antonia O’Keefe CAMHS

Monday 24 th January 2022
4A 10.20am – 1.15pm (TBC) History Workshop – Caitlin White
4B 11.15am – 1.15pm Law Module (Introduction) Activity Time
Monday 31 st January 2022
4A 9.00am – 11.00am Forensic Science Work Shop (Time TBC)
11.15am – 1.15pm Law Module (Introduction) Activity Time
4B 11.15am – 1.15pm Forensic Science Workshop – Activity Time
Mental Health Awareness Week – 17 th – 21 st January 2022

A committee of Transition Year Students are working towards attaining the Amber Flag for the School. The Amber Flag initiative aims to generate discussion, raise awareness, reduce stigma
and promote positive mental health among the school community. Holding a mental health awareness day is mandatory in order to be awarded the flag. It is planned for Monday 17 th
January. As part of this, a clinician from the child and adolescent mental health service team will deliver a workshop to Transition Year Students on strategies that assist in maintaining wellness.
In addition, members of the Amber Flag committee have organised activities for the day. It is their intention to design a noticeboard with positive affirmations in the social area and use posters
to encourage random acts of kindness across the school.

November/December Activities
Monday 15 th November 2021- Friday 19 th November 2021
4A &; 4B Stand Up Awareness week – class activities during the week.
Monday 15 th November 2021
4A &; 4B Presentation by Edel Mitchell – GOSHH
4A Pitch/Putt (PE class
Thursday 18 th November 2021
4B Pitch/Putt (PE class)
Monday 22 nd November 2021
4A ; 4B Languages Connect – Activities during the day
4A Pitch/Putt (PE class)
Thursday 25 th November 2021
4B Pitch/Putt (PE class)
Monday 29 th November 2021
4A Coding Workshop – 9.30am to 1.15pm
4B Christmas Market Preparation – activity time
Tuesday 30 th November 2021
4A & 4B Panto Dublin
Thursday 2 nd December 2021
4A Coding Workshop – 9.30am to 1.15pm
4B Pitch/Putt (PE class)
Friday 3 rd December 2021
4A Coding Workshop – 9.30am to 1.15pm
Monday 6 th December 2021
4A & 4B Christmas Market – (time to be confirmed)
Thursday 9 th December to Wednesday 22 nd December 2021
4A & 4B Work Experience (2weeks)
Our TY students recently took a trip to Gurteen College where they learnt about the history of the College, the courses offered to students today and modern farming practices.

On Wednesday 1st September, the new group of Transition Year students at St. Marys Secondary School began their school term. On that first day, they had their induction morning and met with their class tutors, year head and TY coordinator.  Over the past few weeks, the Transition Year students have been busy with many different activities. Steve from Inspireland held a poetry workshop on 8th September and spoke about poetry and mental health. The students all had unique stories and poems by the end of the 3 hour zoom call. A Transition Year soccer match was also held that week, organized by the games/events committee as a year bonding activity. The students were split into four teams: black, grey, blue and red. The final was a draw between black and blue.

On 15th September, a member of the Nenagh Walkers Club Donal Mackey, brought the Transition Year students on a guided Nenagh River walk. He also provided historical facts about various locations in Nenagh town en route.

The activities culminated that week with a trip to Portumna Forest Park where the students enjoyed a tour of Portumna Castle and gardens and orienteering in the forest. 


Louise Griffin, Justyna Was and Emilija Griesle 


September News

Friday, 27thAugust 2021: 1st Years Induction – 10.00am to 12.30pm
Monday, 30th August 2021: 5th Years, 6th Years & LCA – 9.00am to 1.15pm
Tuesday, 31st August 2021: 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 6th Years & LCA – 9.00am to 1.15pm
Wednesday, 1st September 2021: Second Day for 1st Years
Transition Years return and all other classes as normal
Full Day for all students
The full School Calendar 2021/2022 is available on our school website,
Please note school will be closed for students on the following dates due to compulsory staff Continuous
Professional Development: Tuesday, 14th September 2021
Friday, 21st January 2022
Thursday, 10th March 2022
Friday, 18th March 2022

May News

We wish our transition year students the best as they graduate on Tuesday 25th May and wish them good luck in their future studies.

January activities

February activities

December News

Work Experience

We wish all our TY students and their families a happy Christmas. We look forward to seeing all students on January 6th.

All TY students will be on work experience from Monday 14th December, we wish them every success in their placements.

Christmas Crafts 

Over the past two weeks our Transition Year students have been working hard making hand crafted Christmas decorations to display around the school, writes Grainne O Meara. Christmas Trees made from dry pasta, Christmas Wreaths as well as hand painted wooden snowmen made from upcycled timber pallets now adorn the school.  All the girls really enjoyed themselves as well as adding some festive cheer around the school. A big thanks to Ms Shelly for organising this activity.

Visiting Author 

Last week we welcomed Johanna Ryan Purcell, a former student from St. Marys, to talk to us about her new book “Children of Lir The Journey Through The Curse”, writes Hayley Clancey. She spoke about the parts most authors would brush past, going into great detail about the curse and how it affected the swan and it’s life. The swan’s journey through the curse represents Johanna’s own journey through depression and how she was able to come through. Johanna also explained how Covid-19 affected her work, usually she performs readings but because of Covid-19 she was unable to do this. She also had to wait months to launch her book. She also shared her experiences of writing plays, creating short films and collaborating with musicians.  She talked about entrepreneurship and how her TY Mini Company in Ty taught her important skills for marketing and selling her work. 

Gaeilge 24 

On Thursday, Transition Year students participated in Gaeilge24, writes Aisling O Meara. Gaeilge24 consisted of students making their best efforts to interact with both other students and teachers through Irish for 24 Hours. The students also took part in Irish themed quizzes, making Irish themed Tik Toks and other activities all through Irish. The Tik Toks will be entered into a competition where students have the chance to win prizes. Each student wore a Gaelige 24  t-shirt and we look forward to an Irish workshop that will take place later on in the year. A huge thanks to TY class 4A and Mrs.Whelan who put a lot of effort into making this day enjoyable for both the students and the teachers.

Stand Up Awareness Week

This week St Mary’s Secondary School celebrated ‘Stand Up Awareness Week’, writes Caitlin Maher.

The Transition Years engaged in a week of cross curricular activities to promote the event. Posters were displayed around the school with positive messages such as ‘Come in, so, no one has to come out.’ This message supports the normalisation of young people coming out without fear of being ridiculed for being who they are. .

Beautiful bunting of rainbow flags covered the school’s social areas as well as an informative display on the topic. The steps leading to the TY entrance are to be painted in the colours of the rainbow and students were busy at work cleaning and priming the area for the exciting artwork .

To end the week Transition Years came to school decked out in Reds, Oranges, Yellows, Greens, Blues and Purples to create the Pride Flag. The colourful day brought smiles to many and created a beautiful day of unity and support.

November News

Upcoming Activities

Monday, 2nd November 2020

4A – Step Aerobics with Francis in the Canteen during Activity Time

4B – Pilates with Sharon from the Fitness Factory in PE Hall upstairs during Activity time.

4C – Tennis with Dermot from the Tennis Club during Activity Time

Monday, 9th November 2020

4A – Step Aerobics with Francis in the Canteen during Activity Time

4B – Pilates with Sharon from the Fitness Factory in PE Hall upstairs during Activity time.

4C – Tennis with Dermot from the Tennis Club during Activity Time

Tuesday, 10th November to Friday, 13th November 2020

4a, 4B and 4C – Participation in Sophia Project UL – Live events online

Monday, 16th November 2020

4B – Step Aerobics with Francis in the Canteen during Activity Time

4C – Pilates with Sharon from the Fitness Factory in PE Hall upstairs during Activity time.

4A – Tennis with Dermot from the Tennis Club during Activity Time

Thursday, 19th November to Monday, 23rd November 2020

4A, 4B and 4C – Participation in Scifest Stem Talks 2020 – live online

Monday, 23rd November 2020

4B – Step Aerobics with Francis in the Canteen during Activity Time

4C – Pilates with Sharon from the Fitness Factory in PE Hall upstairs during Activity time.

4A – Tennis with Dermot from the Tennis Club during Activity Time

Monday, 30th November 2020

4B – Step Aerobics with Francis in the Canteen during Activity Time

4C – Pilates with Sharon from the Fitness Factory in PE Hall upstairs during Activity time.

4A – Tennis with Dermot from the Tennis Club during Activity Time

Monday, 7th December 2020

4B – Step Aerobics with Francis in the Canteen during Activity Time

4C – Pilates with Sharon from the Fitness Factory in PE Hall upstairs during Activity time.

4A – Tennis with Dermot from the Tennis Club during Activity Time

Monday 14th December to Friday, 18th December 2020

4A, 4B and 4C – Work Experience

Activity Day

Well done to 4B for organizing a very successful activity day before the Halloween break for all TY students. This activity gives them credit towards their Future Leaders module.

October News

Walk in my shoes by Ellen Mulligan

Walk in My Shoes


Monday, 12th October 2020

4A – Step Aerobics with Francis in the Canteen during Activity Time

4B – Pilates with Sharon from the Fitness Factory in PE Hall upstairs during Activity time.

4C – Tennis with Dermot from the Tennis Club during Activity Time

Wednesday, 14th or Thursday, 15th October 2020

4A, 4B & 4C – Annual TY 5km Run/Walk in aid of the Charity CRY

Monday, 19th October 2020

4A – Step Aerobics with Francis in the Canteen during Activity Time

4B – Pilates with Sharon from the Fitness Factory in PE Hall upstairs during Activity time.

4C – Tennis with Dermot from the Tennis Club during Activity Time


Transition Year 5k Run

35 Stars by Aisling Nevin

35 Stars – TY

River Walk by Oliwia Walenciuk.

River walk

History Walk by Grainne O’Meara

History Walk

September News

Return to school by Cadhla Shanahan

Return to school

We welcome back all our TY students and wish them well for the year ahead


Monday 21st September  Nenagh River Walk

Monday 28th September 35 Stars Team Building.

The students all all engaged in the first nine week group of subject modules as well as commencing ICDL and the Future Leaders course.

Monday, 7th September – Team Building activities with Activity Teachers.

Monday, 7th September – E-portfolio Training with Miss Hogan in A4 Computer Room

                                                4C – 9.00am

                                                4A – 2.40pm

                                                4B – 3.20pm

August News

FAO: Parents of Transition Year Students 2020/2021

27th August 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I hope you are keeping well and I look forward to communicating with you throughout the year.  We look forward to welcoming your daughter back to school and into the Transition Year Programme on Thursday, 3rd September 2020.

On that day she will be met by both myself and our Transition Year Tutors and we will begin with an induction morning.  The induction morning will give the students an overview of the programme for the year and they will be briefed specifically on work experience, community placement, Garda vetting, the Gaisce Awards, Youth Social Innovators and Future Leaders Programmes.  We will also update the students on the courses/activities that they will expect to experience during the year.  Your daughter will receive forms that should be completed by you to ensure that we have up to date information on our systems.

The benefits of the Transition Year Programme have been well documented and The Department of Education are no less committed this year to Transition Year students receiving a quality programme.  They have provided us with comprehensive guidelines in how to deliver such a programme and these have been used for the basis of our programme planning.  Here at St. Mary’s Secondary School we intend to proceed with the Transition Year Programme with the same spirit and determination as we did pre-Covid-19.  However, these are unchartered waters that we find ourselves in and we ask for your understanding and support as we attempt to navigate them.

Accordingly, the Transition Year Programme has been restructured to take account of the new guidelines.  As previously communicated to you, we have reduced the Transition Year fee required at the beginning of the year by deferring monies due for Law Education, Food Safety, First Aid and the outdoor pursuits.  We expect to provide these certified courses later in the school term and will require monies for these as and when they occur.

The more immediate courses we will begin this year with are a ‘Covid-19 and the workplace training course’ and ‘a health and safety in the workplace course’ in order to prepare the students for their work experience placements.  The work placement this year will be take place from Monday, 14th December to Friday, 18th December 2020 and Monday, 15th March to Friday, 26th March 2021.  These dates are subject to change as per HSE guidelines at the time.  It is advisable that students now begin to consider their placement options for these two block releases.  As in other years, we are committed to our Transition Years gaining as much experience in their areas of interest as possible, however, all work placements outside the two block release dates must be sanctioned.

It may not be possible to begin the year with our parent induction in person, however, I would hope to provide you with an alternative so that I can answer any questions that you may have.  I will be in contact at a later date and at that time I will update you further with details regarding the timetable, structure of the first term, new courses, etc.

We are looking forward to getting started.

Yours sincerely

Michelle Whelan

Transition Year Co-ordinator

March News

Monday, 2nd March 2020

4A – Pilates in St. Joseph’s – Activity Time

4B – Food Safety – 10.20am to 1.15pm

4C – Judo in the GP Room – Activity Time

Tuesday, 3rd March 2020 – 4A visiting the Criminal Courts and Dáil in Dublin – all day

Thursday, 5th March 2020 – TY students Book Launch (My Healthy Ways) – The Abbey Court Hotel, 6.00pm to 7.30pm

Monday, 9th March 2020

4A – S.P.A.C.E. – All day

4B – Judo in the GP Room – Activity Time

4C – Pilates in St. Josephs – Activity Time

Wednesday, 11th March 2020 – 4B visiting the Criminal Courts and Dáil in Dublin – all day

Monday, 16th March 2020 – NO SCHOOL

Thursday, 19th March 2020

4A – Prison Trip

4C – Criminal Courts and Dáil

Monday, 23rd March 2020

4B – Pilates in St. Joseph’s

Monday, 30th March to Friday, 3rd April 2020

Work Experience all week.


January News


It was back to school with a bang last week for Transition Year Students. On Monday 4A began with a HACCP Food Safety Course conducted by Ms. Mary Corkery. The material was both interesting and useful with many employers requesting that staff have completed this course. Students found the presentation extremely informative and are busy studying so that they can pass the exam and earn their certificates.

First Aid was next up and members of the Order of Malta delivered a basic first aid and training course over two days. The students learned about the symptoms of various illnesses, how to help a patient and ring for help. They reported feeling confident that they learned skills which would help them to cope with an emergency at home, in school or work or on the sports field.


Third Year students were lucky enough to travel to the BTYSTE with their teachers on Thu. They had an educational and fun- filled day seeing the work of teenagers from all over the country.

December News

We wish our TY students well as they complete two weeks work experience before the Christmas break.

TY Enjoy the Gaiety Panto

This year’s pantomime at the Gaiety is Aladdin. Children all over the country know the story of Aladdin and the magic lamp but the TY students were most impressed by the flying carpet. It was a mesmerising and magical display of engineering and creativity that the students will never forget. Natalie Creamer from 4A will remember the day fondly too as she was invited on stage to share in the fun.

November News

RSA Awareness Day

On Tue 19th Nov students from St. Mary’s joined Transition Years from the CBS and Newport in the Abbey Court Hotel for a day’s education on the important topic of road safety.

Speakers representing the Gardai, fire brigade and paramedics explained how they deal with accidents and what a typical day can mean for them. Statistics were shared concerning young people’s involvement in road accidents. Simple methods which could make driving safer were also outlined. A representative from Toyota explained about the “Face It Down” app which allows young drivers to collect rewards for not picking up mobile phones during journeys.

The most moving and thought provoking contribution came from a mother whose son died as a result of a collision involving a drunken driver.

Students also had the opportunity to experience a virtual reality car crash. As a result of the day we were left with a real sense of the possible consequences of getting behind the wheel.



On Thursday last TY students were fortunate to have a day- long retreat in school, facilitated by Gerry Keegan. The importance of self-love and awareness was the main focus. Gerry’s style of presentation added greatly to the event. He sang, told personal stories and conveyed the message in a positive and fun way.

Gerry is a very good singer and songwriter and he spoke in a way to which teenagers easily related. Also the students felt that their interaction with each other added to the educational aspect of the retreat.



 On Mon Nov 4th TY students began a Water Safety Course in Nenagh Swimming  Pool, writes Ailbhe O’Neill and Lucy Hogan. They first did the front crawl for a length of the pool and were then divided into groups which reflected their ability.

The instructor showed them different styles and had them treading the water to build endurance and fitness. The girls practiced breathing properly while swimming, a skill that will be useful always. The students are looking forward to the next session.

October News

We wish our TY students well in their Musical production this week. The show will be held on Thursday 18th and Friday 19th at 7 30 pm.

All are welcome.

Dates for your diary 13/10/19

    • Registration for Mini med programmes in Royal College of Surgeons Ireland (Monday 24th February to Wednesday 26th February 2020) or (Monday 9th March to Wednesday 11th March 2020)( names to Miss Gibbs)
    • Mini med in Waterford Dates to be confirmed Please give your name to Miss Gibbs if interested.
  • Application form for UNICEF Ireland Transition programmes that can be used in school are available online now. Applications for transition years looking for work experience are also welcomed. Contact for available dates
  • Contact if interested in a week long workshop in the school of Computer Science and Statistics in Trinity.
  • If interested in a week of experience normally in March)in the Chemistry department of Trinity College application forms will be available online on the Trinity Transition year webpage at 9 a.m on October 10th.
  • Application form is available online for a week of work experience (20th to 24th April) in the Department of Botany in Trinity College. Application deadline is Friday 31st January 2020 Application form is now online.
  • Applications will open in September for the week of exploring materials in Trinitys Crann Institute Nanoscience Department. For the week work expereience (11th Novemebr to 15th Novemeber 2019) the form which is available online must be submitted by 30th September         
  • The application form week long programme (date to be announced) in the Nursing and Midwifery Dept in Trinity will be made available online in October 2019(This date will be announced two weeks in advance). Places will be on a first come first served basis. Other documentation will also be needed. Look online and have it ready.
  • September : information will be sent to schools about the forthcoming November TYPE programme in the Physics department of Trinity. Names to be given to Miss Whelan by Wednesday 18th September (students have applied)
  • Applications can be made between 1st and 31st December (for a week in February or March) to for a week in the Pharmacy Department of Trinity. Check online for the necessary documentation.
  • Zoology in Trinity The Ty week is usually run in March and email for updated info.
  • Applications for a week in the Science Department of UCD registration usually opens in February for one day workshops in March. Registration is essential and places are limited.
  • The Faculty of Science and Engineering in U.L offers a week from 3rd -7th December. The application form is available to download online and the closing date is 1st October.
  • UCD school of Physics will host a one day workshop from 2nd to 5th of December. Applications will open at 9.a.m on Friday 4th of October and will close at midnight on Sunday 20th October. Junior cert results needed. 
  • Application form is now online for a weeks work experience 6th to 9th 2020 at the Cork School of Music email programme website is
  • Applications are available online now for High Tech Elec in Corks CEIA.IE There are two weeks10th -14th February or 2nd -6th March 2020 Closing date for application forms is 6th December
  • The 2019/2020 weekly online competition begins on 17th September to be entered into a draw for a trip to the European Parliament in Strasbourg. Week 1 winner has been announced. You must register to be in with a chance
  • Abbey Theatre do a week work experience normally in April. Information and application for the 2020 programme will be available online in October 2019.
  • Monday 14th October application process opens for The Bar of Irelands ‘Look into Law’ Transition year programme in February( 3rd to 7th Feb 2020). Closing date is 11th November. One student only can be nominated from the school so if you are interested give your name to Miss Whelan before that date.
  • Other Ty Work Placements to be applied through careers portal are:Abbey TheatreAquarium in BrayDefence forces in KildareSocial care with Don Bosco in DublinChemical and Physical sciences in DCUUNESCO in DublinTour Guide with Glasnevin CemeteryLilly BipPharma Lilly Co. CorkMKF Institute in DublinNational Institute for Bioprocessing and Research DublinCivil Engineering Taster Day NUIGEngineering (STEPS) DublinThe Hunt MuseumHair Stylist Peter MarkRadio na life Dublin City centreSt Vincents University Hospital DublinTeen Turn Tech work placement DublinScience UCDScience University Limerick
    • Science Waterford IT
    • Nursing and Midwifery University Limerick
    • Biological, Earth and Environmental sciences UCC
    • Science includes me, ty mentoring TCD
    • South Dublin County Council
    • Pig Nut Productions Sligo
    • The National Reptile Zoo Kilkenny
    • Tallaght University Hospital (2 day) Closing date 30th SEPT
    • County council (South Dublin County Council)
    • NCBI Dublin City centre
    • National Gallery of Ireland
    • IBM in Dublin
    • Irish Film Institute
    • Community Action with Friends of the Elderly in Dublin
    • Computing in Dundalk
    • DSPCA in Dublin
    • Politics and international Affairs in Dept of Foreign Affairs(Dublin City Centre)
    • Concern in Dublin
    • Aviation in Atlantic AirVenture Aviation centre Shannon
    • Budding Biologist in APC Microbiome Institute in Cork
  • As other dates for other programmes are released Miss Gibbs or Miss Whelan will let you know.



On Monday 23rd September, the Transition Year students watched the documentary created and directed by Nicholas Ryan-Purcell about his experiences in life. It is called “This is  Nicholas-Living With Autism”.

The film deals with the happy times and the struggles Nicholas has experienced in his life to date. He recalls how he found his passion for filming and the important people in his life who helped him along the way. Nicholas is lucky to have a kind and caring family and he was raised in a very supportive community in Emly.

There were memorable interviews throughout the film and especially impressive were those with Nicholas’ parents. The family moved to Cloughjordan and Nicholas did TY and 5th and 6th year in Nenagh CBS before going on to study in Ballyfermot, graduating with a Higher National Diploma in Television Operations and Production. His first feature-length film “  Against The Odds, Racing With Gordon Lord Byron”  won two prizes at a documentary festival in the U.S. “ This is Nicholas- Living with Autism” also included interviews with Joanne of The Blue Door, Nicholas’ sister and a former student of St. Mary’s.

Nicholas attended the screening and was given a huge round of applause at the end as the girls were really impressed by his film and they learned a lot from his story. He then addresses the students before answering questions. The students were especially glad to hear that he is planning a follow-up of this most enlightening and successful documentary.



School Musical

We wish our Transition Year students well as they prepare for their school musical in October.

Enterprise Workshop

Enterprise Workshop-Mini Companies are an important and, usually, fun aspect of Transition Year. Students set up companies and go on to produce goods and/or services which they sell. There are Student Enterprise Awards and competing for these is one of the highlights of the year. Last week Sue Anne O’Donnell presented a workshop in which she explained about mini companies and gave examples of products which and services which had been successful. Then the students gather in their own mini companies groups for personal advice from Ms. O’Donnell. We look forward to the results of the planning.


We welcome back all our Transition year students and wish them well in the year ahead, already they have settled into their new classes and are taking part in a wide range of activities this month including Coaching, Ceili, visit to the Dromineer Literary Festival, Law Education, Enterprise Projects and much more.


TY students reacted enthusiastically to a two day course on the Irish legal system which was presented by barrister James Fahey. Mr. Fahey is an engaging and entertaining speaker and as well as learning there was lots of fun .The  second day culminated in a Mock Trial so the students were able to put some of the new information to good use. They all look forward to a visit to the Criminal Courts in Dublin later in the year.


On  7th. July a group of young people who have been involved in the 6pm mass in St.Mary of Rosary set off for the Eternal City. They were accompanied by Fr. Michael Geraghty, Ms. Theresa Maher and Ms.Marcella Dillon.The group was accommodated in the Irish College and upon arrival was greeted by the priest in charge and three adorable turtles. These pets ,Faith, Hope and Charity stole the hearts of everyone.

The next three days were filled with trips to as many of the sites of Rome as could be accommodated. The highlight was the day in the Vatican which began(very early) with a Mass in the Irish Chapel of St. Columbanus, celebrated by Fr. Michael. It was a privilege to be together in such a wonderful place.

Later, from the Dome of St. Peter’s there was a glorious view that was worth all the steps climbed to reach it. Over the next couple of the days there was an opportunity to visit the Trevi Fountain, to climb the Sacred Steps in the traditional way- on the knees- and see beautiful churches and famous ruins.

The trip to Rome was also a chance to grow the bond which has developed within the group over the last couple of years. People had an opportunity to pray, to talk, to laugh and to make memories together.

The 6 o’clock mass continues in St. Mary of the Rosary on Sunday evenings and all are welcome.

May News


On Tuesday 28/5/19, the Transition year class graduated with a Ceremony held in school. The students were congratulated on there many achievements during the year and wished well in their future studies in 5th year.

4A preparing to graduate.

Outdoor Pursuits

Kilfinane Outdoor Centre-TY students participated in a variety of outdoor pursuits in Kilfinane, Co. Limerick last week. They experienced a range of activities including kayaking, mountain biking, hill walking, archery, rocking climbing and orienteering in most pleasant surroundings .

The staff in the centre were helpful and encouraging and the comfortable accommodation all added to a challenging but enjoyable trip which was one of the highlights of the year, reports Phoebe Kelly.

Visit to Nenagh Castle- First Year students were out of the classroom last week too- they were learning about history in one of Nenagh’s best know landmarks-the castle. Kevin Whelan guided them around the building and told them of its history and about life in the town when the castle was occupied. The students learned lots and enjoyed the magnificent view from the top.

April News

Monday, 8th – 12th April 2019:          All Transition Years on Work Experience

TY Students To Take Part In Midwest Empowerment and Equality Conference

The Midwest Empowerment and Equality conference is designed to empower, educate and encourage men and women to take better care of themselves. Our Transition Year students will attend the event and last week a school final was held to choose one speaker who, along with other TY and Fifth years from Midwest schools, will make a presentation on issues related to empowerment and equality.

The school finalists were Anna O’Keeffe, Katie Grace and Anna Powell. Two former St. Mary’s teachers, Ms. Carmel O’Keeffe and Ms. Virginia O’Dowd very kindly took on the difficult task of choosing the speaker who will go forward to the conference. Three very different and powerful speeches were delivered and after deliberation the judges announced Anna Powell as the winner.

Dr. Mary Ryan organiser and presenter of the event is a past pupil of St. Mary’s .



On the same day the students of 4A also visited Dublin. First stop was Kildare St. and a tour of Dail Eireann. It was interesting to hear of the history of the buildings and to sit in the gallery and look at the chamber where many important debates take place.

Later the group headed to the Criminal Courts and were welcomed by a barrister who explained various aspects of the legal system. Before leaving there was an opportunity to sit in on some of the cases which we read or hear about in the media.

A large number of TY students went to Poland on Friday and returned on Monday.

It was another busy week for TY students and a highlight was poetry workshops by slam poet Stephen Murray. The founder of  Inspireland he  provides poetry workshops to schools all over the country. He certainly achieved his aim in St. Mary’s as so many students reported feeling much more positive about poetry following his visit.


TY Activities

Transition Year Students have been very busy since Christmas and have been involved in many activities such as Yoga, Fencing, SPACE, Step Aerobics, Charity Fundraising and a wide range of sporting activities. Well done to all on their participation.

First Aid Skills

Do you know how contact the emergency services, apply a bandage properly, take a pulse, move a person into the recovery position, deal with strains, sprains, fractures and dislocations? The Transition Year students learned many of these skills in the last few weeks, writes Ciara McCabe. We had the privilege of being taught Basic First Aid Skills by members of The Order of Malta Ambulance Corps. Local members John, Shane and David conducted the courses and we acquired many valuable skills which may someday help save someone’s life.

We really benefited from the experience and I now feel confident about being able to help someone who needs medical attention. It also opened my eyes to the work of paramedics. Who knows in future I may become a paramedic as I found every minute of the course interesting and useful. On behalf of TY students I would like to express deep gratitude to the Order of Malta for this opportunity.

First Dail.

St. Mary’s Student , Anna Powell represents Young People of Ireland at Centenary of First Dail

Anna Powell , a TY student , was one of two members who were chosen by Comhairle na n Og to represent the young people of Ireland at the centenary meeting of the Dail, which was held in the Mansion House on Monday 21st. January.  Comhairle na nOg is an initiative set up by the Department of Children and Youth Affairs to allow young people to have a voice in local affairs and to be able to link with the National Executive to voice their opinions on national issues. Anna is the Tipperary representative on the National Executive .



On Thu.6th Transition Year students took a trip to our nation’s capital to see the Gaiety Theatre’s Panto; The Snow Queen.

It was an early start for all: 6-45 to be exact, to avoid being stuck in traffic but this gave us an hour before the show to busy ourselves in the many shops in Grafton Street and the Stephen’s Green Shopping Centre.

Christmas cheer was in the air and excitement bubbled in each of us as we neared show time.

The Snow Queen was very enjoyable and created an excellent atmosphere for the  audience of school students, staff and families. There was excellent interaction with the crowd and the characters received great acclaim from young and older.




On Tuesday our TY students took part in a Disability Awareness in Sport Training Workshop, writes Shauna Grace. During the two hour session, led by James Murrihy , we learned about different types and levels of disability. We discussed how people with disabilities who want to play sport feel and how the problems they face may be solved.

After spending some time thinking about the issues we put our work into action. James presented us with common scenarios.  In each case we had to consider the person with the disability, the sports’ organisation and any conflict between the two. We were asked to suggest a solution to the conflict.

Everyone enjoyed the workshop and it opened our minds to how everyone can be included in sports.


Well done to our TY students who have had a busy term and are now coming to the end of their first Module. The group have been involved in a range of sporting and Cultural activities over the past two months. Well done to all.


The Transition Year of St Mary’s Nenagh Secondary School are delighted to be doing a production of “Grease “the musical as their annual TY musical. After weeks of hard work with costumes, set design and hours of rehearsals,we are pleased to announce that all our hard work has paid off as this year we had a record amount of people in our audience and got standing ovations at the end of our shows.

Doing the musical is always a highlight for transition year students and it is no different this year as this experience has been extremely challenging but amazingly fun and worthwhile. I would like to give a big thanks to Mr Calinan, our music teacher and Mrs Shelly,our head of costumes and everyone who helped us to make this musical real and memorable.

Sophia Leamy


We welcome back the class of 2018/19 and hope they have a wonderful year. There are many activities planned for the month of September including a Ceili which all the group participated in, work experience at the ploughing over three days, a law workshop and auditions for the school musical which will be held in October.


Well done to all our TY students who are preparing for their graduation, we wish them every good luck in their future studies.


A Transition Year Mini-Company set up and run by Elle Mulqueen  and Aoife Carroll has made a lot of people happy in the last few months. “ Glorious Gifts” produced  and sold Christmas Eve boxes for children. Containing such items as a carrot ( for Santa’s reindeer),two cookies ( for the big man himself), hot chocolate, a colouring book and crayons the boxes were a huge success. The girls worked hard and their product was a sell-out. Many children and parents went to bed happy on Christmas Eve having spent the evening enjoying the contents.

Elle and Aoife wanted to spread the joy so they decided to donate their profits to a local group. Last week a group representing Nenagh Special Summer Camp were in St. Mary’s to accept a cheque for 800 euro.


We wish all Parents, Staff, Students and the wider Community a happy and peaceful Christmas.

School Musical

On the 29th of November the 2017 St Marys Secondary School transition year class put on their musical production in the school.

Preparation for the musical began a little over 3 weeks ago, with a two day retreat in the middle of it. With the time constraint came a bit of pressure, but the things we accomplished in just 13 school days was quite amazing. Our year really came together to put on the best show possible.

Each student had a job of their own, each as important as the next. The delegating of these jobs really helped in the completion of as much work as possible as quickly as possible. Every dance was choreographed by the very talented girls in our year. A lot of work was put into getting everyone their chance to shine on stage, and for each girl an opportunity to show off their different talents.

Our music teacher, Mr Callinan was the musical director, along with three TY students who also directed. He has been musical director for many TY musicals in the last few years and lent his experience to perfect the scenes. With some of the amazing leads it really excelled the musical to new heights.

Even though it has been quite stressful to put on this performance, it was very enjoyable at the same time. There is an amazing sense of accomplishment that comes with being part of a show like this, and I’m sure it will be one of the highlights of the year.

The Full Cast


We wish our TY students the best of luck on their staging of the annual school musical. The show will be performed this week for the students of St Mary’s and the staff. There will also be a show for parents and friends this Thursday and a show will be held for the primary school students in January.

23/10/17 – Leadership course

Over the past few weeks the students in 4B have had the opportunity to participate in and complete a leadership course organised by the school. This involved taking part in activities and learning leadership skills and traits which would help us in the future in the areas of organisation and communication.

In conjunction with this, on Wednesday last, the Gaelscoil pupils from fourth class came to St. Mary’s to allow 4B to complete the course. The TY girls were divided into pairs and given 15 minute time slots to teach and supervise the children while they learned and played a game. The games, including basketball, soccer, and rounders, were  chosen by the TYs. It was an amazing opportunity and such an exciting day. All the TY students who completed the course will receive a certificate in leadership.

The course has helped us to understand how to be a successful leader. It gave us the opportunity to bond, not only with our class but also with the children who enabled us to put what we learned into practice.

11/9/17 – TY Law Days

The Transition Year students from St. Mary’s Secondary School Nenagh took part in a two-day event, entitled, ‘Law Education for Schools’. Barrister James Fahy gave a presentation to us about the Irish Legal System and he informed us about the court cases he has to undertake as a barrister. He explained to us how the courts work, from The District Court right up to the Supreme Court and we learned the differences between Civil and Criminal Law.

On the second day, having studied Criminal Law we held a mock murder trial in school. All of the students participated and it gave everyone a clear idea as to what happens in court.

For me, it was a great experience as my knowledge on law was very poor, previous to the talk. I liked the way James Fahy could explain complicated things through simple stories and his humour made him easy to listen to and understand. I would recommend all T.Y. students to take part in something like this, as it will benefit you for life!Return to school