North Dublin schools named county winners of art competition

by Rachel Darcy

Scoil Chiarain Special School in Glasnevin and Balrothery National School in Balbriggan are celebrating this week, after being named Junior and Senior County Winners of the national art competition, Someone Like Me.

Both schools will now join 46 other schools to compete for the much sought-after national title at an online national awards ceremony, which will be held on January 28.

The competition, which is organised by the National Disability Authority, attracted more than 1,500 entries from national schools across the country. 

Now in its fifth year, Someone Like Me aims to foster more positive attitudes towards persons with disabilities by highlighting the similarities that exist between all people.

During the last school term of 2020, teachers and pupils worked through special lesson plans which challenged them to respond creatively to the theme of Someone Like Me, while developing a shared understanding of how we should treat others in a caring, sensitive and inclusive way.

The judges were particularly impressed with the submissions from pupils and teachers at Scoil Chiarain Special School and Balrothery National School, selecting them as County Winners based on the inspirational responses to the theme.

Congratulating Scoil Chiarain Special School and Balrothery National School on being named County Winners, Minister of State with special responsibility for disability, Anne Rabbitte T.D. said that she was hugely encouraged by the growing interest in the competition.

Scoil Chiarain Special School

Minister Rabbitte said: “We are exceptionally pleased with the response to this year’s competition.  2020 was a difficult year for everyone, not least teachers and their pupils. 

“Despite the challenges of living in the midst of a global pandemic, primary school teachers and pupils have demonstrated their commitment to helping to build a more inclusive society by dedicating important classroom time to work through the specially created lesson plans and create their competition entries.  

“I would like to pay tribute to the National Disability Authority for adapting this year’s competition to ensure that Covid-19 did not prevent pupils taking part, and teachers for continuing to use the cross-curriculum lesson plans as part of their classroom teaching.

“While I know it will be an anxious wait for the pupils and teachers to hear which of the 48 county winners will be awarded the national title, we must remember that every entry is a winning entry when it comes to nurturing a positive understanding of, and attitude towards, disability.”

The competition, offers a range of prizes up to the value of €750 and was open to all primary school pupils from junior infants to sixth class.

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