Gaelscoil Ultain Cnoc an Chonnaidh, Bóthar Ard Mhaca, Muineachán t: 047-39711 e:

8 June 2011

25 Bliain

Filed under: 25 Bliain — Joe Shiels @ 9:21 am

Gaelscoil Ultain 1986-2011

25 bliain ag fás!


Tá Gaelscoil Ultain ag ceiliúradh 25 bliain ar an fhód i mbliana.

coiste ag eagrú roinnt imeachtaí le linn 2011 chun an cuimhneachán seo a cheiliúradh agus déanfar an clár imeachtaí a sheoladh i Mí Eanáir. Is é an Damhsa thuas a bheidh mar phríomh imeacht.  Beidh an imeacht is mó a bheith ina Seoladh Leabhar in Óstán Hillgrove, Muineachán ar an Domhnach an 5ú Meitheamh, 2011.

The Gaelscoil Ultain 25th Anniversary Committee organised a series of events in 2011 to celebrate 25 years of Gaelscoil Ultain.

The committee planned a packed programme of events to mark the occasion which included a mass, publication of a pictorial history of the school, and concert for the children.  The main event will be the Book Launch in the Hillgrove Hotel, Monaghan on Sunday 5 June 2011. We hope to see many past pupils and parents at this event.

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Ceathrú Céid ar an Chnoc

Filed under: 25 Bliain — Joe Shiels @ 8:24 am

‘Ceathrú Céid ar an Chnoc’ NOW ONLY €15!A commemorative book, entitled “Ceathrú Céid ar an Chnoc”, which was compiled and edited by Joe Ó Gallchóir, was launched at the Celebration Ceremony on the Sunday night by Department of Education Inspector, Rita NicAmhlaoibh. She said the book would prove to be a very comprehensive record of life in Gaelscoil Ultain during its first 25 years. She expressed delight at the wealth of pictorial records that existed in the school in the pre-digital image era.

The 280 page publication was designed by Faela Nig Aonghusa and printed by R and S Printers.

Copies of “Ceathrú Céid ar an Chnoc” are available for sale. Contact Tracey 047-84321, price €25.

The committee collected photographs related to Gaelscoil Ultain over the previous 25 years. Any original photographic contributions sent to the school were scanned and returned.

Here is a small sample of some of the photos from the archives used in the publication.
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Filed under: 25 Bliain — Joe Shiels @ 8:20 am

In April 2011 the programme of events to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of Gaelscoil Ultain was launched.  The programme  included:

  • John Spillane in concert do pháistí na scoile
  • Sean Nós Dancing Project sa scoil Rang 1 go Rang 6
  • Seoladh Leabhar
  • Márta 2011: Mór shiúil Lá Fhéil Pádraig
  • Aibreán 2011: Ceolchoirm Páistí

Tá lúchair agus bród orainn clár imeachtaí do chomóradh 25 bliain Ghaelscoil Ultain a fhógairt. Tá súil againn go dtiocfaidh slua mór daltaí agus tuismitheoirí, ó inné agus inniu, le chéile don ocáid mhór ceiliúrtha seo. Ní imeachtaí chun airgead a bhailiú atá á n-eagrú, ach deis teacht le chéile agus ceiliúradh a dhéanamh ar 25 bliain de Ghaelscoil Ultain ar an Chnoc.

Ba mhór linn tú/sibh a bheith i láthair ar an lá.

An Domhnach 5ú Meitheamh 2011 – Sunday 5th June 2011

10.30am Aifreann Ghaelscoil Ultain san Ardeaglais 

Gaelscoil Ultain Mass in the Cathedral.

11.30am- 1.30pm Gaelscoil Ultain ar oscailt. Fáilte romhat cuairt a thabhairt ar an scoil. 

Opportunity to visit Gaelscoil Ultain.

8pm Drinks Receptions sa Hillgrove Hotel
8.30pm Book Launch – Seoladh Leabhar: Ceathrú Céid ar an Chnoc (pictorial history of the school) 

Video Presentation of 25 Bliain ag Fás

followed by Hot Main Course Buffet and music by Rico’s Groove

ADMISSION was FREE to this special occasion.

Many families from the school community attended the Hillgrove for this very special night in the history of Gaelscoil Ultain. (over-14s only)

A number of pupils and parents, past and present, helped out with prayers, readings and other items at the mass and/or Book Launch on Sunday 5th June 2011.

Ag súil tú a fheiceáil ar an Domhnach 5ú Meitheamh 2011.


Filed under: 25 Bliain — Joe Shiels @ 8:20 am

The 25th Anniversary Committee is comprised of members of the Board of Management, the Parents’ Committee, and staff of Gaelscoil Ultain.

We would welcome any past pupil who would be willing to join the committee – contact Joe Ó Gallchóir at

The organising committee of the Gaelscoil Ultain 25th Anniversary celebrations at the launch of the programme of events

The organising committee of the Gaelscoil Ultain 25th Anniversary celebrations at the launch of the programme of events

The members of the committee are:

Joe Ó Gallchóir
Niamh Nic Aonghusa
Amanda Healy
Patricia Mallen
Mairéad Ni Chorragáin
Ann McKenna
Patrick Kelly
Joan Drohan
Jeannie McCleary
Ian O’Neill

Tá failte roimh aon iar scolaire ar mhaith leo bheith mar pháirt den choiste eagraithe.

5 June 2011

Ceiliúradh 25 Bliain Ghaelscoil Ultain 1986-2011 – Joe Ó Gallchóir

Filed under: 25 Bliain — Joe Shiels @ 7:50 am
Joe Ó Gallchóir, Príomhoide Ghaelscoil Ultain

Joe Ó Gallchóir, Príomhoide Ghaelscoil Ultain

Cuireann sé luchair agus áthas orm scaifte chomh mór sin a fheiceáil anseo anocht ar an oiche faoi leith seo, ní amháin i saol Ghaelscoil Ultain ach i saol na paróiste agus an bhaile seo.

Tá súil agamsa go raibh tionchar dearfach ag Gaelscoil Ultain ar shaol an cheantair seo le cúig bliana ‘s fiche agus gur mór gur fiú teacht amach anseo anocht, agus theacht amach níos luaithe inniu, le ceiliúradh agus comóradh a dhéanamh ar an ócaid speisialta seo.

Tá sé go deas an oiread sin de iarscolairi agus de iar thuismitheoiri a fheiceáil anseo anocht mar atá pobal scoile an lae inniu, agus glacaim leis gur comhartha é ar an meas agus an dea thoil a bhraith mise ar Ghaelscoil Ultain ó phobal na scoile, le ceathrú céid.

It is an honour for me to be part of Gaelscoil Ultain from the beginning, as a teacher in Sruth Ultain from 1986 to 1989 and as principal of Gaelscoil Ultain since 1989.

Parental involvement, interest and good will were the driving forces behind Gaelscoil Ultain from the start. I personally witnessed that on my arrival in town in late September 1986 when one of the Gaelscoil families, the Gilheanys who were in Tully at the time, offered accommodation to me.

The parents had from the beginning a dogged determination that the school was going to succeed. They had in the early months taken a chance on a 23 year old from Annyalla and were now taking a chance on a 22 year old from Donegal. It was easier for parents in the later years when they had something to go on, but those very first parents were the ones who took the chance, they laid the path for future parents and parents committees to follow. They had fought to establish their own school and had a great pride in it.

That special spirit that the first body of parents had and showed, gave Gaelscoil Ultain something distinctive, and it is a spirit that is alive and well in Gaelscoil Ultain to this day.

In sending children to Gaelscoil Ultain parents are making a decision and the very fact that they make a decision, shows that they have a particular interest in education, and I think that that interest manifests itself in how motivated the pupils we have are. Each and every parent that send children to Gaelscoil Ultain have their own reason for doing so…bilingualism, smaller classes, extra curricular activities, availing of a possible educational advantage or love of Irish but the Gaelscoil is there for one reason and one reason only, to promote language and culture through the medium of education. And regardless of reasons for coming here, I would like to think that each child is treated equally in Gaelscoil Ultain. I would also like to think that Gaelscoil Ultain has enriched the town of Monaghan, that it has been a good and positive influence on the town, that it has raised cultural awareness and has produced and continues to produce a generation of gaeilgeoirí.

Beidh áit speisialta i gcónaí ag na chéad ranganna de pháistí a d’fhreastal ar Ghaelscoil Ultain. Tthings were much simpler in those early years, the furniture was sparse, resources scant, it was chalk and talk, but staff in the early years did the class work and our dramaí, our peil and our ceol, and I think did them well, and I believe that the emphasis on both academic development and artistic and creative development, that was an integral part of the school from the beginning, has also contributed to the success of the last 25 years.

Agus gach grúpa páistí a tháinig ina ndiaidh ó shin, they benefited from the good foundation that was laid in the early years, and all members of staff that were subsequently employed in Gaelscoil Ultain gave and still give all they have and more to the school, and we have today a committed staff, both teaching and non teaching, with a great love of Irish and of Education, all with deep roots in the Monaghan area.

And it is that combination of parents, pupils and staff working together that make Gaelscoil Ultain a successful and vibrant school in 2011, something that was evident earlier this week when the whole school commnuinty participated in the John Spillane concert.

A book like this will not really tell the story of the three Rs, of what happens in the classroom, but I hope that it does capture the spirit of Gaelscoil Ultain, and that it does tell the story of what constitutes a school community.

Outside the classroom, as a school community, we have had some great experiences over the last 25 years, most of them happy ones, and some of them sad.

They are all in the book. Memories are important to us all, and I hope that this book will give parents and pupils a bank of good and fond memories of their time in Gaelscoil Ultain. Tá súil agam go mbainfidh sibh uilig sult as.

This is the night and occasion to acknowledge the contribution made by particular people to Gaelscoil Ultain over the past 25 years.

  • Brendan O Dufaigh, our founder, who had the vision to set up up the school, who wouldn’t take no for an answer.
  • An Chéad Phatrún, an tEaspag ó Dufaigh, who facilitated the setting up of the school as patron.
  • Sean Mac Thaidhg, principal of Scoil Mhuire during the three years of Sruth Ultain.
  • The three vice principals of the school – Aine Ni Mhuiri, Cathal Ó Caoilte agus Ciara Nic Gabhann.

Ciara has given 21 years of great commitment to Gaelscoil Ultain, she has been vice principal since 2004, has carried out her duties with great care, and has been a great source of advice and support to me.

  • and to the staff of Gaelscoil Ultain, again teaching and non-teaching, míle buíochas as an obair iontach a dhéantar taobh amuigh agus taobh istigh den seomra achan lá.

Tá an chéad 25 bliain thart. The next step is our move to the new site. It’s an exciting prospect but also a challenge. A building is not what makes a school so we must all ensure that it will be the same Gaelscoil Ultain we have, regardless of where it is located.

Ceiliúradh 25 Bliain Ghaelscoil Ultain 1986-2011 – Rita NicAmhlaoibh

Filed under: 25 Bliain — Joe Shiels @ 7:31 am
Rita NicAmhlaoibh, Department of Education Inspector, launched the book ‘Ceathrú Céid ar an Chnoc’

Rita NicAmhlaoibh, Department of Education Inspector, launched the book ‘Ceathrú Céid ar an Chnoc’

Síol Curtha, Fómhar Bainte

Seo mar a labhair Rita Nic Amhlaoibh, Cigire de chuid na Roinne Oideachais agus í ag seoladh an leabhair, Ceathrú Céid ar an Chnoc.

Bail Ó Dhia oraibh uile, a dhaoine uaisle, idir chléir, tuismitheoirí, múinteoirí, daltaí agus bhur gcairde. Is ócáid mhór ceiliúrtha an ócáid seo anocht.  Monaghan is famous for its drumlins agus is ar chnoc maorga Muire a thosaigh sé ar fad. As an bhfís agus an smaoimeamh a bhí ag Brendan Ó Dufaigh agus a chairde,  d’eascair pobal láidir aontaithe agus é mar aidhm acu oideachas trí mheán na Gaeilge a chur ar fáil dóibh siúd a bhí á éileamh.

It is interesting to look at the evolvement of primary education in Monaghan.  150 years ago An Modh Scoil, The Model School was founded to provide education for the pupils of all religions in the town.  The Christian brothers and the Louis sisters were to follow providing education for Catholic children.

Shní pobal Ultain isteach i gcóras oideachais Mhuineacháin ag leanúint dhá traidisiúin ach go háirithe, traidisiún comhoideachas na modhscoile agus traidisiún láidir na mBráthre i leith na Gaeilge.  Bhí Gaelscoil Ultain chun oidhreacht órga na hÉireann a thabhairt dá gcuid daltaí ar bhealach nua tainteamhach.

Léiríonn an leabhar seo, Ceathrú Céid ar an Chnoc, conas a tugadh faoin teanga agus a gcultúr a thabhairt don ghlúin óg.

A culture is not an abstract thing.  It is not as an indulgent conversvation of an extinct entity that it should be cultivated, rather it should be nurtured as a living heritage from which we benefit and which we will pass on to the next generation with our own stamp on it.  It has to be a living, evolving process, a living reality for children.

A gaelscoil does not exist in a cultural or societal vacuum.  Gaelscoil Ultain therefore had to create a pobal Gaelach to stimulate and reinforce the children in their learning of language and culture.  The book clearly shows how this was done.  Ní hé gur múineadh an teanga chun cur ar chumas an pháiste teagmháil níos dlúithe a dhéanamh leis an gcultúr sin. This book is full of photographs illustrating how the children were enabled by its community of teachers and parents to understand, embrace, transform, and express aspects of their culture and heritage in a tangible creative and enjoyable way.

Tugtar le tuiscint i nGaelscoil Ultain go bhfuil oidhreacht luachmhar ar fáil i ‘dtobar na Gaeilge’ agus gur fiú go mór í a bhlaiseadh agus í a chaomhnú.  Tá na múinteoirí cosúil leis na haspail, saothraíonn an fhoireann ag scaipeadh an soiscéil ar fud an cheantair ag déanamh a gcuid féin as a n-oidhreacht, á tabhairt isteach sa 21ú aoise, á chur in oiriúint do pháistí na linne seo le spiorad breá deimhneach spraoiúil, gealgháireach.  Ní gan dúshlán/dua a dhéantar é sin ach le fuinneamh agus le fonn, le taitneamh agus le spleodar.

Is tríd an drámaíocht agus an scannánaíocht, an spórt, an ceol agus amhránaíocht agus na Feiseanna filíochta scéalaíochta a thugtar seans do dhaltaí: a dtallann agus a gcruthaitheacht féin a aimsiú, a gcuid ionnannas féin a thuiscint, a gcuid scileanna a fhorbairt ar son a leasa, a bhféinmheas, agus a bhféinmhuinín a chothú agus é uilig déanta i gcomhthéacs a gcultúr ársa.

All of those extra-curricular activities, not only contributes to the holistic development of the children ach ardaíonn sé spriorad agus meanma na ndaoine sa bpobal.  It continues to regenerate its own community and to create a consciousness of what it is to be Irish among them agus cé chomh tábhachtach is atá a n-oidhreacht teanga agus chultúrtha do thodhchaí an phobail.


Tá Oideachas den scoth tríd an dara teanga á chur ar fáil do na daltaí sa scoil.  We know that bilingualism supports the cognitive and social development of the child.  They learn how to cope with two vocabularies, two grammatical systems etc., developing their diverse thinking, their conceptual knowledge and further language acquisition

The gaelscoil not only develops a high standard of fluency in the immersion language, at no apparent cost to their academic skills.  But it has also, ensures a similar level of achievement in the mother tongue.


All of this good work is down to a very dedicated group of múinteoirí agus treoraí an-mhaith, an excellent leader.  Muineachán. We were lucky that Joe, an t-údar agus an t-eagarthóir, the author and editor, remained with us here in the Monaghan drumlins.  Joe is a determined, organised, efficient, hands-on leader.  One could meet him anywhere, any place agus de ghnáth páistí ag tarraingt as….. ag tabhairt faoin spóirt, ag gabháil don drámaíocht, ag aisteoireacht, ag moltóireacht, ag léiriú, ag eagrú agus ag múineadh, ach is í an aidhm chéanna atá aige i gcónaí; a theanga agus a chultúr dúchais a chur chun cinn.

We would like to thank Joe for his untiring leadership in bringing this project to fruition…. And also for the hours of burning the midnight oil, pouring over photographs that he had carefully kept for all those years to turn it into such a wonderful production that will give hours of enjoyment to so many people.  Ba mhaith linn buíochas a ghabháil le Faela Nig Aonghusa a rinne an dearadh agus gach duine eile a chabhraigh.

The book also honours the memory of parents atá imithe ar shlí na firinne agus ar ndóigh níl cengal ag am ná aois ar an spiorad a deirtear.  The book remembers Sinéad in fondness.  Aingeal aoibhinn álainn ar neamh, aingeal cuimhdeachta, a guardian angel for Gaelscoil Ultain.  Tá sí ar chnoc níos airde, cnoc glas na bhFlaitheas ag breathnú anuas orainn anocht.  Bíonn sise ag canadh leis na daltaí agus iad ag saothrú guth binn na bliana, ag imirt spóirt….


Agus ar ndóigh ní fhéadfainn an seans a ligeann tharam gan focal buíochais a ghabháil le Brendan chomh maith.  Fear Eanaigh Gheala.  Is fada an lá ó chas mé ar Bhreandán agus ar ndóigh is ag saothrú don Ghaeilge a bhí sé ansin agus atá ó shin i leith.  Éacht oibre déanta ag an laocha seo agus a shaol caite aige chun ár dteanga dúchais a chur chun cinn ní hé amháin i Muineachán ach ar fud an chondae agus ar fud na tíre.  Go maire tú a Bhreandáin.

Tá toradh na hoibre le feiceáil anocht, Tá an síol curtha agus é ag fás le 25 bliain agus anois tá sé faoi bhláth.  Is iomaí fomhar atá baint, is iomaí iarscolaire atá imithe agus tuiscint agus grá acu dá n-oidhreacht ársa.  Tá a áit féin aimsithe agus saothraithe ag Gaelscoil Ultain i Muineachán anois. Beidh an pobal seo ina cheannródaí arís agus acadamh oideachais dá chuid féin á oscailt aige – a new education campus to serve from pre-school to third level.  The excitement of it all!!!!!

Joe and Breandán and all of you must be very proud tonight – 25 years of great work and what better way to celebrate than to capture it in this wonderful colourful book.  Bainfidh na glúnta taitneamh as an leabhar seo.

If you are on a hill your light cannot be hidden under a bushel.  Tá loinnir lasrach beo ag lonradh ó bharr an chnoic as Gaelscoil Ultain ón lá a bunaíodh í 25 bliain ó shoin.  Mairfidh a thionchar i bhfad inár ndiaidh. Ceiliúraimis – is le háthas agus le gliondar croí a fhógráim an leabhar seo seolta……. i measc an pobhail.

Ceiliúradh 25 Bliain Ghaelscoil Ultain 1986-2011 – Brian Mac Domhnaill

Filed under: 25 Bliain — Joe Shiels @ 7:25 am
Brian Mac Domhnaill, represented parents, past and present

Brian Mac Domhnaill, represented parents, past and present

Parent Predicts return of Irish as an Everyday Language in Monaghan

Speaking as a past member of the Coiste Tuismitheoirí at Sunday night’s 25 Year Celebration, Brian Mac Domhnaill spoke about the transformation in attitudes to the Irish language in Monaghan from the start of the 20th century to the successful development of Gaelscoil Ultain and other local Gaelscoileanna.

‘In the census of 1901 my great grandparents in Carrickmacross were returned as Irish speakers. Like huge numbers of people in Farney, they had the language from birth, yet they never spoke Irish to their children. It was regarded as a badge of poverty, as something to be ashamed of, as a legacy best forgotten. It was this refusal of parents to pass on the language to their children that signalled the death of Irish as a spoken language in County Monaghan.’

Pointing out that the last native speaker died in Inniskeen in the late 1940s, An tUas MacDomhnaill recalled his own experience of Irish language education in the 1960s and 70s. Despite the commitment of many teachers to Irish, the reality was that for most schoolchildren it was a case of ‘in one ear and out the other’. This had resulted in deep-seated resentment towards the language and active hostility from some quarters.

The foundation of Gaelscoileanna had resulted in an entirely new approach to the teaching of Irish and it was an approach that worked. Children learned Irish naturally and effortlessly, not only in the classroom but in the playground and in all activities associated with the school.

The success of the Gaelscoil movement in County Monaghan had created a new and vibrant Irish language community, yet there were those in the media who tried to undermine what had been achieved and to question the motivation of parents in sending their children to these schools.

‘Far from apologising, the parents who have opted to send their children to Irish medium schools should be very proud of what has been achieved. Together with teachers and pupils, they have put in place an educational infrastructure that is ‘second to none and is going from strength to strength’.

Adding that it had been a privilege to serve on the parent’s committee over several years, An tUas Mac Domhnaill expressed confidence that a census taken in 2101 will show a strong population of fluent Irish speakers here in County Monaghan, thanks in large part to the role played by the gaelscoileanna across the county.’

Ceiliúradh 25 Bliain Ghaelscoil Ultain 1986-2011 – Ailis Ní Ghiolla Eanaigh

Filed under: 25 Bliain — Joe Shiels @ 7:18 am
Ailis Ní Ghiolla Eanaigh, former pupil

Ailis Ní Ghiolla Eanaigh, former pupil

‘Part of something truly special…’

Píosa cainte Éilis Nic Giolla Sheanaí, who spoke on behalf of the past pupils of Gaelscoil Ultain:

Is mór an onóir domhsa bheith anseo anocht i bhur gcuideacha chun mo chuimhní ar an nGaelscoil a roinnt libh. My family has had a long affiliation with Gaelscoil Ultain. Myfather John was a member of the first parents’ committee and my brother James was in the first class of what was then Sruth Ultain.

Ba mhaith liom ar dtús cúpla rud a rá faoi m’eispeireas féin leis ar gcnoc.  For most people, their school experience begins with their first day of school but by that time in 1990, I felt I was already a veteran of Gaelscoil Ultain.  There was such a sense of family and community in the school during those early years between teachers, parents and pupils.  It’s a credit to everyone involved in the school, both past and present, that this sense of family and community has prevailed.

Tá cúigear i mo chlann James, Orla, Seán agus Joe.Thosaigh James i 1986 agus níor fhág Joe an scoil go dtí 2009.  Mar sin, bhí Grace agus John cleachtaithe ar an tslí suas an cnoc le breis agus fiche bliain.  Táimid tar éis a bheith páirteach sa scoil i ngach ghné de stair s’aici.  Ní mór dom a rá cé chomh bródúil agus atáimid ag féachaint ar an scoil inniu go raibh muid páirteach inti.  Na rudaí a chuimhním orthu i gcónaí faoin scoil ná an méid imeachtaí a cuireadh ar fáil do na daltaí agus na rudaí eiscuraclaim ar fad a raibh muid, mar dhaltaí, páirteach iontu.  Ag an am, ghlac muid leis na himeachtaí seo mar chuid den saol reatha.  Ní go dtí anois, agus mé féin mar mhúinteoir go dtuigim an méid ama a thug na múinteoirí do na himeacthaí seo agus cé chomh neamhleithleasach ‘s a bhí siad.

Ba í Gaelscoil Ultain a d’eagraigh na céad laethanta oscailte i Muineachán agus lig siad do thuismitheoirí nua súil a chaitheamh ar an saghas scoil a bhí ann agus tá sé soiléir ón slua atá baillithe linn anocht go bhfuilimid ar aon intinn gur ionad sároideachais í Gaelscoil Ultain.

Bhí tradisiún spóirt le brath ón tús i nGaelscoil Ultain.  Cuimhním i gcónaí ar an gcluiche peile cinniúnach sin i 1992.  Shroich Gaelscoil Ultain cluiche ceannais Corn an Northern Standard don chéad uair i gcoinne Latton.  The game went to extra time and then to a replay and in the end Gaelscoil Ultain lost by one point.  I’ll never forget the tears on the day from the players and the parents.   All was not lost for Gaelscoil Ultain, we finally got our first piece of silverware in 1995 when Benny Óg Magennis lifted the Northern Standard Cup on the steps of Clones – a proud day do phobal na scoile.

Ag smaoineamh siar ar na himeachtaí uilig idir ceol, spórt, drámaíocht, feiseanna, tráth na gceist, Eureka ar RTÉ, agus TnaG sa scoil, tá sé deacair gach rud a lua agus tá mé cinnte go bhfuil rud éigin fágtha ar lár agam.

Sa tréimhse a chaith mise ar scoil idir 1990 agus 1998, bhí an t-ádh liom go raibh múinteoirí iontacha agam.  Bhain cuid mhaith acu le ceantar Ghaoth Dobhair; Múinteoir Nic Aodha, Múinteoir Nic Niallais agus Múinteoir Nic Ailín.  Is minic a smaoiním orthu agus ar na modhanna múinteoireachta a bhain siad leas astu.  Ach an bheirt a spreag mé ar an bhóthar na múinteoireachta ná Poilín Uí Ruanaí agus Joe Ó Gallchóir.  Bhí Poilín mar mháthair ag pobal na scoile uilig agus leag sí béim speisialta i gcónaí ar an bhfilíocht, rud a d’fhan liom i gcónaí.  Agus Joe, cad is féidir a rá faoi?  Is duine spreagúil, cabhrach, fad radharcach é Joe agus tá fás na scoile stiúraithe go fial aige.  Bhí an bhua i gcónaí ag Joe, sílim, foireann cuí a roghnú don scoil agus tá sé soiléir go dtugann gach ball foirne rud speisialta chun na scoile.

Unfortunately not every member of the school community has the pleasure of being with us tonight for one reason or another.  Emmigration has a big part to play in this.  We have iarscoláirí in England, Scotland, America, Australia and China to name but a few.  My own brother James is now base in Perth, Australia and, although he can’t be here tonight, I can assure you that he is keeping the Gaelscoil connection alive.

Finally, I want to acknowledge the support that Joe and his staff continue to show to the past pupils of the school.  Is minic iarscoláire ar lorg taithí oibre nó teastas cailíochta a lorg.

In a few weeks time Rang 6 2011 will, no doubt, be shedding a tear on their last day of school.  I know that their experience with Gaelscoil Ultain will not have ended.  They are, as we were, and are tonight part of something truly special.

I know the future of the school is certainly bright and will continue to flourish under the commitment shown by teachers and parents, both past and present.  For anyone that has had any experience with the school, it certainly holds a special place in all our hearts.

Comhghairdeas le Gaelscoil Ultain agus go maire sibh an céad!

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