Wicklow People (Arklow) - - NEWS - By MYLES BUCHANAN

NEWTOWNMOUNTKENNEDY Pri­mary School has proudly raised its first Ac­tive Flag, which is awarded to schools that strive to achieve a phys­i­cally ed­u­cated and ac­tive school com­mu­nity.

For­mer teacher Jim O’Rior­dan re­turned to the school from re­tire­ment to carry out the of­fi­cial flag-rais­ing du­ties.

In order to re­ceive the flag, schools must meet a num­ber of cri­te­ria, in­clud­ing or­gan­is­ing an Ac­tive School Week pro­gramme and mak­ing it part of the an­nual school cal­en­dar. The flag re­mains valid for a pe­riod of three years af­ter, which time schools will be in­vited to re-ap­ply.

Prin­ci­pal Carmel Dempsey praised the pupils and teach­ers for their ef­forts to se­cure the flag.

‘It’s not an easy flag to achieve. You have to put a lot of work in. The school had to com­plete dif­fer­ent fit­ness and sports pro­grammes. There was also a fo­cus on well-be­ing and nu­tri­tion. It was all very de­tailed. We es­tab­lished a com­mit­tee made up of pupils and staff and set about reach­ing cer­tain goals. We also set up a PE pol­icy and en­cour­aged walk­ing to school,’ said Ms Dempsey.

Pupils and staff were also de­lighted to see the re­turn of Jim O’Rior­dan, who re­tired this year af­ter al­most than 40 years ded­i­cated to the ed­u­ca­tion of chil­dren. He was also in­stru­men­tal in putting in place the mea­sures re­quired to achieve ac­tive flag sta­tus. He was also re­cently hon­oured at the New­town Com­mu­nity Awards cer­e­mony.

Teach­ers from the com­mit­tee Ms Maguire and Ms McConn, Jim O’Rior­dan, Canon Sean Smith and Prin­ci­pal Carmel Dempsey with the stu­dents of the com­mit­tee at the rais­ing of the Ac­tive Flag at Newtownmountkennedy Pri­mary School.

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