From The West of Ireland
    Go to Castlebar | Photo Gallery | Castlebar Directory | Nostalgia Board
Photography : Tom Campbell Last Updated: 2, Apr 2018 - 10:02

Sr Frances Retires
By Tom Campbell/ At Angelas NS
6, Mar 2012 - 08:44

Email this article
 Printer friendly page


Wednesday 29th February 2012 marked the end of an era in St Angelas National School, Castlebar with the retirement of Sr Frances who has now written herself into the history books, as the last Sr of Mercy to serve as principal of St Angelas N.S. The sisters came to Castlebar in 1853 and have a long involvement with education in the town. To date eight Mercy Sisters have served as principals at the school. Sr Frances came to Castlebar in 1974 and became principal in 1986, an office she held for ten years, When family circumstances dictated that she take a career break to care for her ailing mother R.I.P. an acting principal was appointed for two years and this paved the way for the appointment of the first lay principal of the school.

During her time as principal Sr Frances witnessed many changes, The introduction of the new curriculumin 1971 saw a more child centered education. The child would now be enabled to realise their full potential as a unique individual, with a special emphasis on their social development, and a preparation for further education and lifelong leraning. She strove might and main as teacher and principal to further these aims. This she did through listening to and working with a very dedicated and supportive staff, B.O.M. and Parents' Assoiciation. St Frances is a quite, gentle unassuming person who led by example, She is a person of deep faith and prayer and these qualities were reflected in her respect for and treatment of her stall, parents, pupils and all in the work place. She treated everyone equally and with fairness-indeed fairness is a hallmark of Sr Frances. She had a special love for and interest in the undeprivileged and was almays there for the poor and marginalised, for whom Catherine McCaulay founded the Sisters of Mercy.

She had an open door policy and a listening ear for all, and was noted for her understanding of the individual needs of families, for her support of them and her confidentiality at all timers. Her time - table knew no bounds as she viisited familiesin in the evenings and late at night when the daylight hours didnt facilite them visiting the school.

Following her career break Sr Frances returned to St Angelas to work as Learning Support Teacher for the past number of years. Once again she gave this priviilege and worth while job one hundered per cent and made a significant impact on the lives of her pupils, all of whom loved their helping teacher as they called her She always believed in the philosophy that the teacher should have three special qualities, A readiness to forgive a childs misdemeanours, a reluctance to punish them and a willingness to forgive them. She believed in a positive affirming attitude which certainly helped her pupils to grow in confidence and self-esteem and to progress in theiracademic work.

During her time as principal she presided over a school in an era of great societal change when our country became inter- cultural rather than insular, and pluralism became a reality. On leaving the school she has witnessed the presence 27 different nationalities attending it. The presence of these pupils is in no small way due to the influnce of the Mercy Srs and their ethos of welcome, acceptance and tolerance, togeather with the high standard of education which has always been a hallmark of Mercy Education. Sr Frances saw the school as an extension of the home a place where children are given a good grounding in moral and religious principles, whatever their beliefs and instilling in them worthwhile life skills.

We salute you on your retirement Sr France we thank you for what you did for education in Castlebar. We wish you many years of good health to enjoy a happy well-earned retirement and in saluting you we also remember the former Mercy Principals and sisters who served at St Angelas since the early days of education in 1853. Our hope is that the Mercy ethos and values continue ad multos annos. Photo Tom Campbell.

© Copyright 2012 by © Contributor(s) and Castlebar Web Pages 1997 - 2018

.. Top of Page

Tom Campbell
Latest Headlines
Tim Hayes
Papal Visit 1979
Brendan Henaghan RIP
Knock Shrine Novena Aug 2017
Remembering Musician Michael Tierney (Mick Melodeon)
Looking back to 1970
John (Sean) Kenny RIP
Fr Richard Horan - Magician
The Inaugural Flight from Knock Airport
The Waits, Castlebar
Mayo GAA Presentation 1978 & 1997 Final Preparations
Candle of Grace
Castlebar Municipal District New Chair
McDonnell New Cathaoirleach Mayo County Council
Enda Kenny Lays Foundation Stone for New Swimming Pool and Outdoors Pursuits Centre
Commemoration Ceremony Marking the 1916 Rising
Castlebar Regional Training Centre
Civic Reception for Visitors from Realschule, Hochstadt
Seven Oaks for Seven Signatories
N59 Rossow Bends Contract
Retirement of St. Angela's Principal
Castlebar Community Development Association presents cheque for €400,000
Terry Wogan at the Castlebar Song Contest 1977
Official Opening of New Line
St. Angelas Remembers Life In 1916
Melissa Patterson Fund Presentation
Switching on the Christmas Lights
New Swimming Pool Complex
Civic Recognition for Cresham Academy of Irish Dancing
Joe Dolan in Castlebar 1970
MCC 1916-2016 Commemorations Workshop
Achievements Awards 2014 - 2015 at St. Angelas
Blackie Gavin New Cathaoirleach
N59 Rossow Bends Contract
Cllr Michael Holmes - new MCC Cathaoirleach
Greenway Landowners Recognised
Launch of Castle Street Bring Bank
Castlebar Mourns the Late Michael Parsons
Civic Reception for the US Ambassador
Pantomime Civic Reception
Did You Plant a Tree During National Tree Week?
Christmas Lights Switch-On 2014
Pools Winner 1970
Julie Conlon
Four Sisters from Larmenier School
St Angela's Achievement Awards 2013-2014
Fleadh Cheoil Civic Reception
First Meeting Castlebar Municipal District Council
The New Mayo County Council 2014
The End of the Line
St Angela's First Communion Classes
Soroptimists Civic Reception
Photos from the Launch of 'Castlebar's Municipal Government 1613-2014'
Mayo Association Luton and Claddagh Gaels
Taiwan Ambassador Visits Castlebar
Old Photos of Castlebar
Belcarra Gathering
Belcarra Tidy Towns 1988 - 2013
International Boxing Training Camp For Castlebar
Long Service Awards at Abbey Breaffy
Past and Present Councillors
Last Meeting of Mayo VEC
St Angelas Achievements Awards 2013
New Cathaoirleach for Mayo County Council
Cllr Noreen Heston elected Town Mayor
Presentations to Town Councillors
Sean Horkan Granted Freedom of Castlebar
St Angela's First Communion 2013
Civic Reception for Nacie Rice
Civic Reception for Sonia and Cora
50th Wedding Anniversary
St. Patrick's Day Parade Prizes
Hochstadt Visitors Civic Reception
Easter Tree Celebrating Twinning with Hochstadt.
Built Heritage Photography Competition
Lough Lannagh Bridge
Hoechstadt Crib Unveiling
Christmas Lights 2012
Wild Mayo
Rolling Wave
Waterworks Upgrade
The Rolling Waves - Crowned Champions
St Angela's Prize Winners 2012
Croagh Patrick Climb
Civic Reception for Maureen Dowd
Brendan Henaghan
Maureen Dowd and Neill O'Dowd at the Museum
New Cathaoirleach - Cyril Burke.
Mayo County Council - New Cathaoirleach 2012
Chess Champs - St Pats!
St Angela's First Communion Class 2012
A Welcome for New Irish Citizens
Formal Handover of Barracks
Education and Training Expo 2012
National Outdoor Pursuits Academy
Mayo Fleadh Winners
An Flota is Fearr
Parade Winners 2012
Sr Frances Retires