Friday 19 January 2018

Why this politician and reformed wild child put a 'sex tape' online

Classroom Confidential: Phil Prendergast

Phil Prendergast, Labour MEP. Photo: Damien Eagers
Phil Prendergast, Labour MEP. Photo: Damien Eagers

John Costello

She was naughty but nice, and something of a wild child at school, but how the hell did she manage to set her socks on fire? We spoke with Ireland South MEP Phil Prendergast to find out about her tearaway teenage years and why she is very proud of her YouTube sex tape!

So, what school did you go to?

I went to St Fintan's College in Durrow.

And were you the teacher's pet or a classroom devil?

Well, if there was a scale between teacher's pet and classroom devil, I would be closer to the devil end of things [laughs]. I was always in trouble.

What type of shenanigans did you get up to then?

I can remember in secondary school getting out on to a roof between two classrooms and I had to stay there because the teachers arrived [laughs].

So, not quite the model student, hey?

I was one of the wilder ones out smoking in the bike sheds. I kept cigarettes and matches in my socks. And I remember one time my sock went on fire [laughs].

Yikes, how did your parents cope?

I was the third oldest of 11 children, so my parents were too busy to really worry and fret about stuff that wasn't going to kill us.

What were your favourite subjects?

I loved English, geography and social scientific/home economics. That is actually why I went into nursing after school.

How good were your grades?

I had no ability to concentrate in school, so in my Leaving Cert I got three 'C's, two 'D's, an 'E' and an 'F'. But when I went on to study nursing I was one of two people out of the class to get honours. So it was a case of horses for courses.

If I made you Minister for Education for a day, what advice would you give teachers?

My advice would be to remember that everyone has strengths. Teachers play a very important role in encouraging students and should not write people off. Students who don't get the points need to understand there are other ways of achieving.

So, you are probably the only politician worldwide who is proud to have their sex tape on YouTube?

[Laughs] I have been doing sex education classes in schools for 15 years [Phil is a former nurse, midwife and sexual health expert]. Sex is a very natural part of life, but teachers are never comfortable teaching it. Students are frequently not told the right information. So I decided to do a video to help.

  • As part of University of Limerick's Sexual Health Awareness Week, Phil Prendergast posted a sex advice video on YouTube. Go to

Irish Independent

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