independent

Sunday 20 August 2017

Principal John Connor gets fantastic send-off

 

John Connor with the children who sang his farewell song
John Connor with the children who sang his farewell song

Mary Fogarty

Principal of St Mary's and St Gerard's National School in Enniskerry, John Connor, has retired after 25 years at the school.

There was a prayer service and presentation at the church before finishing up for the summer holidays, as well as tea and coffee in the hall afterwards.

The celebrations were attended by pupils, parents and grandparents, past pupils and staff.

The children prepared a performance of the song 'The Green and Red of Mayo' in honour of Mr Connor, a native of Mayo. He now lives in Delgany but has not lost his love for his home county.

He had chosen a prayer service to mark the occasion, but was not aware that there would be a presentation or anything else. He said later that every time he went into a classroom prior to the event, everyone stopped what they were doing, so he knew something was up.

Chairperson of the Board of Management Sr Maighréad led the prayers on the day. A member of the parents association spoke and made a presentation on behalf of the association.

Teacher Alison McConnell addressed those gathered to praise Mr Connor and talk about all he had contributed to the school during his career.

The children presented Mr Connor with a visual depiction of the phrase 'education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire'. The flame in the picture was made up of the fingerprints of each child in the school.

Two past pupils presented him with a silver baton, representing his encouragement in sport, engraved with 'thank you for inspiring us'. Pupils, past pupils and parents sang and played instruments in a beautiful and moving ceremony.

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