On Friday 15 November, RTÉ and the Houses of the Oireachtas convened the country’s first ever Youth Assembly on Climate in Dáil Éireann. It was a chance for young people to discuss what Ireland needs to do to tackle climate issues. In the context of the centenary of the first Dáil, 157 young people were selected to take part in this one-day Youth Assembly to establish the next urgent steps for Ireland. Congratulations to our sixth class pupil, Katie O’Mahony, who applied and was selected as one of the 157 young people. The number of young delegates was the same as the current number of TDs in Dáil Éireann. Proceedings on the day were chaired by Ceann Comhairle Seán Ó Fearghail. Those selected got together in groups, with a facilitator, to work out exactly what their proposals were on climate action. Then they got a chance to present their views to our elected officials. The final session, in the historic Dáil Chamber, was broadcast on RTÉ News Now and Oireachtas TV. Well done Katie, we really enjoyed watching you on TV!

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Our school debating team entered the Concern Primary Debating Competition. They researched and wrote speeches on the following motions – ‘Social Media is a force for good in the World’, ‘We are not doing enough to end food waste’ and ‘Primary School Students should be banned from owning a mobile phone’. This year our debating team reached the final of the West Cork Concern Primary Debating Competition. We were so proud of them! This was a magnificent achievement. Unfortunately they were defeated in the final. However they had already qualified for the National Finals of the competition. When the schools closed in March, our debating team were preparing for a debate against the winners of the Kerry competition. They learnt how to research their topic, how to structure their arguments, how to rebut or refute an argument and they all grew in confidence at public speaking. We are looking forward to the competition in 2020-21 which will take place on zoom!

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