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Connacht Tribune

External factors pile on the pressure for Leaving Certs

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The pressure on Leaving Cert students comes more from external factors, rather than from the exams themselves – according to one secondary school teacher speaking ahead of this year’s State exams.

“Students are under a magnifying glass from people around them; it takes away from their chance to focus on their own capability and flourish,” said Anna Flaherty, a Science and Mathematics teacher at Coláiste Cholmcille in Inverin.

With the Leaving Certificate exams set to start on Wednesday, tensions are already high – not only for the students taking the exam, but for the parents who are at a loss of what they can do to help their child.

Anna believes that the pressure from the outside asking how many points did you get can just ‘inhibits a student from relaxing and putting their best foot forward’.

She claimed that the overshadowing worry from this can be damaging before the exams even begin.

“We as a society must acknowledge how we treat the younger generation and have more sensitivity and respect,” she said.

The National Parents Council Post Primary (NPCPP) offers information on their website but also a helpline phone number, 1800 265 165 and email, helpline@npcpp.ie which gives access to qualified guidance counsellors who offer support and advice to both students and parents during this difficult time.

Many people believe that the Leaving Certificate is unnecessarily stressful and does not give an accurate reflection of what the student is capable of, but Anna believes that it is a ‘well rounded, though undoubtedly tough exam to get through’.

“The array of subjects that the students have under their belt provides them with diverse opportunities and areas that they can delve in into again and again, depending on where their choices and interests take them as they learn more about themselves and as they mature with life,” she said.

This is in stark contrast with the A-Level Examinations in the UK, where the student must pick two to three subjects after the junior cycle and are therefore more restricted if they change their career choice.

Scoil Chuimsitheach Chiaráin Leaving Cert student, Shannen Flaherty, disagrees. “Its importance is overrated and exaggerated,” she said.

And she felt the amount of emphasis based on one set of exams is ‘simply cruel’.

“It’s all based on academics which leaves no room for those with practical minds to expand and allow themselves to acknowledge their own talents, that can’t be shown in a classroom or on a piece of paper.”

On the other hand, Clíona Lee, also a student of the same school, believes we have a ‘decent system’.

She feels that there is a wide variety of subjects and a variety of levels within the subjects to accommodate all people, although she does acknowledge it’s hard not to get ‘bogged down by external pressures from peers and parents’.

She believes there are so many ways to achieve whatever career interests you and that the Leaving Cert is ‘merely a stepping stone in that direction’.

“For me the Leaving Cert is a very intense yet pleasant experience,” she said.

The Leaving Certificate is different for everyone – but, as Anna Flaherty says to all her students, at the end of the day the most positive, encouraging thing to say to your child is to do their best.

“That’s all that matters in life; then you can always be proud regardless of the results.”

Connacht Tribune

Magnificent property boasts all the elegance of a showhouse

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High standard of finish: Bóthar na Mias in Kinvara.

Farrell Auctioneers are handling the sale of this magnificent home at Bóthar na Mias in Kinvara.

Number 19 simply oozes style and there’s no question it’s right up there with the best of showhouses.

It boasts character and comfort with its design allowing light to flow brightly throughout – thanks to the large glass wall window it features.

A three-bed property, there is also potential for a fourth bedroom on the ground floor. The living area and kitchen are tastefully designed and laid out with modern day comforts in mind.

The bespoke kitchen is every homemakers dream, with its floor to ceiling kitchen units as well as many other features.

This beautiful residence is located within walking distance of Kinvara Bay which is one of the most desirable places to live in the world. Not alone would the property make a beautiful family home and the occupants would have the benefit of the unrivalled natural beauty that the area has to offer, but this lively picturesque village has all amenities needed for everyday living such as schools, childcare, post office, a host of restaurants/cafes/bars, playground, medical centre, hotel, GAA facilities not to mention the instant access to a selection of beaches dotted along the Wild Atlantic way.

Selling agent Colm Farrell said: “This property has to be viewed to appreciate both the dwelling and the stunning setting.”

 The asking price is €450,000. For further information or to arrange a viewing, contact Farrell Auctioneers on 091 632688.

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Country Living

Bemoaning loss of innocence in a sport driven by big bucks

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Brazil dazzled the world of football in 1970 with their mix of pace, grace and sheer footballing class.

Country Living with Francis Farragher

I’m not big into trying to resolve the huge issues of the world like wars, climate change or attempting to dethrone the obnoxious Elon Musks of this world, primarily on the basis that my influence would be akin to a moth trying to stop a herd of charging elephants.

And, I suppose at this stage, I have to accept that it’s far too late to try and call a halt to the World Cup proceedings in Qatar but for the life of me, the event doesn’t even send a sliver of enthusiasm through my nervous system.

Maybe, it’s an old-fashioned streak that’s there inside of me, but the thought of watching World Cup matches in the run-up to Christmas just doesn’t seem right. Okay, so it will be about 30°C in the heart of the Qatar desert but watching a World Cup semi-final in the middle of the Christmas office party is just a stretch too far for me.

Alas, World Cup memories go back a long way with me to a late Sunday in July 1966 when as a ‘small boy’ I was given the job of ‘minding’ the house while the ‘rest of them’ saved a small field of hay a couple of miles away from the house.

Of course, at the time there wasn’t even a faint chance of a black-and-white TV in the house, while visits to any abode that might have a telly, were strictly confined to a Sunday with the stipulation that Galway footballers had to be involved.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Tractor run will remember a local legend

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Some members of the 10-person organising committee for the PJ Mahoney Memorial Tractor Run that takes place in Ardrahan on Sunday, December 11. (Left to right): Anthony Whelan, Brian Kilkelly, Declan Sylver, Patrick Mahoney and Aonghusa Fahy. Absent from the photo are: Mary Forde, Lena Taylor, Conor O’Dea, Gerald Harney and Mícheál Kelly.

THE PJ Mahoney Memorial Tractor Run will take place on Sunday, December 11, in memory of a very well-known and highly regarded figure within the Ardrahan and South Galway local community, who passed away just a year ago this month.

PJ Mahoney was steeped in farming and the GAA and for this he was known far and wide. He was a talisman for Ardrahan GAA, playing in goals for the senior hurling team when they won county hurling titles in 1974, 1975 and 1978.

All down through the years, he was a most dedicated and guiding servant to the club up until his untimely death in a road accident last year.

PJ farmed locally throughout his life and was well known as an agricultural contractor in both Galway and North Clare, a business carried on by his son Patrick.

There are many tales and anecdotes of PJ Mahoney that still bring a smile to the faces of those recalling them.

He was a keystone in the local community, the neighbour you could always call on, and indeed the neighbour that didn’t need to be called upon as he would turn up to help regardless.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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