BY DECLAN VARLEY
The ‘Pres’ Athenry as it is fondly referred to, has had thousands of students pass through the doors since the Presentation Sisters commenced Secondary Education in the town in 1947. It is fitting that 2018 is the 300 year (Tercentenary ) celebration of the birth of Nano Nagle, the founder of the Presentation Sisters. The Presentation Sisters are to be thanked for their pioneering work in establishing and cultivating a centre of excellence in education that the town of Athenry has benefited from.
Through the decades of education we now find three generations of the community have an association with the ‘Pres’. Past students are found all over the world. The impact that teachers have made on students, the friendships formed, and the life lessons learned during the moulding of those formative years are positive associations with the school. The school became a community for so many in the time they spent there.
A major change is facing the ‘Pres’ school community which has been central to the town of Athenry since its existence. The buildings of the existing school comprise 1947 building and 1981 building will close in 2019 when the school relocates to a state-of-the-art school at a greenfield site in Ballygurraun, Athenry. This new chapter of progress and change is exciting for the current staff and students. The pending relocation has created an opportunity to recognise the current ‘Pres’ and celebrate its existence.
In order to mark the significance of the school a farewell party is planned for Wednesday August 15 when all persons with a connection to the school are welcome to meet in the school, wander the corridors, recount memories and reminisce. Light refreshments will be provided.
“Cairde Pres” has been set up by the Project 2019 Working Group to reach out to the diaspora of the school. It is hoped to provide a facility for the ‘Pres’ community to connect and celebrate the wonderful years spent in the ‘Pres’.
This is an open invite to past staff, teachers, pupils, comrades, friends and neighbours of the Presentation College Athenry. From 6pm you are invited to join them in a nostalgic journey to bid farewell to the final assembly. Feel free to connect on Facebook @cairdepres