The story of Transition Year in St. Mary’s began at the pilot stage in the early nineties. The decision was a visionary one at the time as over the years those early pioneers saw the programme go from strength to strength thanks to the collaborative effort of a dedicated staff and willing students. Transition Year in St. Mary’s is optional. The vast majority of students choose Transition Year and so reach out for opportunities to develop new skills, discover personal strengths, learn about the working world and engage with civic, social and political issues. They are aware of the growing evidence from 3rd Level institutions that students who have taken Transition Year are more self-reliant learners.
In St. Mary’s much of the programme encourages students to think in terms of multiple intelligence – linguistic, mathematical, musical, spatial, artistic and inter-personal. Our Transition Year programme is also in accordance with Department of Education And Science Guidelines. According to the Department of Education (Circular 3193 – Transition Year Programme – Guidelines for Schools):- “Pupils entering the Leaving Certificate programme, on completion of Transition Year, should be better equipped and more disposed to study than their counterparts who did not have the benefit of this year”.
Acadamic work builds on what has been achieved at Junior Certificate and creates a good foundation for Leaving Certificate. Apart from the core subjects, there is also an emphasis on Drama, Art, Home Economics, Music, Business and outdoor pursuits. In addition there is Japanese, Spanish and sign language. Optional modules include Chinese, Mini Company, Steerclear, Environmental Science. The challenge of work experience, Community Work, Third World issues allows students to grow in confidence and self worth. They learn about leadership, co-operation, conflict resolution and personal discipline.
Transition Year in St. Mary’s is an invitation to students to explore their own inner worlds, to grow in grace and courtesy and to look out to the wider community.