News and Events
An Invitation - Y14 Performing Arts Performance Posted May 8 2018
Glastry College’s Year 14 Performing Arts’ students have organised an exciting evening of performances, which will take place on Wednesday 23 May, beginning at 7pm. As part of their A-Level grade in this subject, students were tasked with creating a theatre company, a Performing Arts event, and assigning themselves roles in the production. Two performances will take place on the night. The first performance is ‘The Aftermath’ which follows four individuals from differing backgrounds after the Manchester bombing attack, and the second is ‘The Fight For Freedom’ which charts one woman’s struggle for equal rights in the Middle East.
The students have worked very hard and would be delighted to have you in attendance. Tickets are £3.00. Please see Mrs Brown in the Drama department or email firstname.lastname@example.org for tickets. Refreshments will also be served.
Year 14 Leavers' Assembly Posted May 8 2018
On Thursday 3 May, Year 14 Leavers and their parents attended a special assembly to mark the end of their schooling in Glastry. Mr Breen gave a short presentation in which he talked about the last seven years, showed some interesting photographs and each student was given a momento and certificate to mark the occasion.
Glastry wishes all its school leavers a successful exam period and a happy and healthy future!
10 Apps Teens are Using that Parents need to Posted Apr 25 2018
In an increasing digital world, new apps are being created everyday which children and young people are using. Here are some of the latest ones that parents should be aware of.
Organ Donation Talk Posted Mar 26 2018
On Thursday 8 March, Mrs Heather Savage, Specialist Nurse for Organ Donation at the Ulster Hospital, spoke to our Sixth Form students about Organ Donation. In a most interesting talk, Heather told us about organs which can be donated as a live transplant (Kidney, liver lobe, lung lobe) and after death (heart, corneas, lungs, pancreas, liver, small bowel).
A former pupil of the school, Mrs Audrey Keenan, spoke to the group of her personal experience of receiving a kidney transplant at the end of September last year, and the incredible difference that this had made to her life. She no longer has to travel to the Ulster Hospital for long dialysis sessions three times per week.
Both ladies repeated their talk to interested members of the public later in the day. The group was surprised that many young people under 30 have Organ Donor Cards, and that statistics indicate that it is middle-aged people who are most reluctant to talk about transplant issues. Mrs Savage underlined the importance of prospective donors speaking to their family members and loved ones about their wishes before their death, so that organ donation could proceed as quickly as possible. There was also an opportunity for members of the public to ask questions.
Mrs Keenan, who is a committee member of the Northern Ireland Kidney Patients’ Association(NIKPA), also brought some NIKPA cups, pencils and badges for distribution to pupils in Year Eight who participated in the Carol Service in December, where a retiring collection had raised over £300 for the charity.
Y8 & Y9 Shared Education History Drama Workshop Posted Mar 26 2018
On 13 March Year Eight pupils from St Columbas’, Portaferry and Strangford College joined our Year Eight pupils in a Shared Education History workshop at Glastry College. The hall was filled with excitement and there was a real sense of anticipation. The pupils re-enacted the roles of the Normans and Irish Celts, and explored their shared history of the Normans in Ireland with convincing enthusiasm. The gentlemen from Armagh City Council engaged the pupils’ imagination and had them dressing up in medieval armour, trying out weaponry and deploying various battle techniques. Pupils from the three schools competed against each other in the skills of warfare and in role-play activities. There were lots of laughter and giggles, which, combined with active learning, brought History to life and made the drama workshop a great success. In the afternoon the production changed to match the Year Nine Programme of Study on the Ulster Plantation, which the pupils also thoroughly enjoyed! The workshops were extremely worthwhile leaving our junior school students feeling prepared for the History course…and for medieval war!
PSNI Anti-Social Behaviour Trip to Tollymore Posted Mar 26 2018
Earlier this month, we had the opportunity of going on a residential organised by the PSNI for our presentation on anti-social behaviour and what we as pupils can do to prevent this. We headed off to Tollymore early on the Wednesday morning, full of nerves. On our arrival there, we were delighted to find an abundance of snow everywhere making Tollymore look like a winter wonderland! Having unpacked, got settled we were divided into two different groups to do team building activities with other pupils from Priory College, St Columba’s College, Strangford College and Glenlola. They were great fun – although you had to actually think about how to complete the task which we all found slightly challenging! The following day, we were able to engage in more outdoor pursuits, which was even more fun as we had to complete them in the snow. That evening, we had a chance to share our presentations with the other students. It was amazing to see how we had similar ideas and thoughts on anti-social behaviour. As a group, we collectively agreed, that we as the next generation need to take a more proactive approach and we need to remember that we should be setting a better example to younger children who will look up to us. We all really enjoyed ourselves and were privileged that we were selected. We hope that our message, which was delivered in assembly will be listened to and acted upon by our peers.
Kasha Mellon, Malwina Karwowska and Joshua McClements
AS Level Geographers Brave the Beast from the East Posted Mar 12 2018
The AS Level Geography class braved the -8 windchill on Benone Beach to collect primary data on sand dune succession for their upcoming CCEA AS Unit 3 exam in May. The wind on the beach was amazing and gave first hand insight into how saltation leads to dune formation. Having collected data the class returned to the lab to collate results and weigh soil samples which were then heated to remove moisture and heated again to remove organic content - the aim being to see how the abiotic environment improves as the dunes move in land. The class also completed questionnaires and land use surveys in Coleraine. While there was also time for a few snowball fights around the grounds of the fieldwork centre, for the class to lose multiple games of Dobble to Mr Viner and for some pool on the worst pool table in Northern Ireland. The class were excellent throughout especially considering the conditions and will benefit greatly from the experience of collecting data first hand actually in the environment they're studying.
Year 10 Trip to Stormont and the Somme Centre Posted Feb 26 2018
On Tuesday 20 February, all Year Ten pupils participated in a Citizenship and History trip to Parliament Buildings, Stormont, and the Somme Centre, Conlig.
The first stop of the day to Stormont, entry to which was through a security check and some pupils were quite surprised that they had to pass through a metal detector, just like at the airport. Our knowledgeable guide, James, told us about the history of the building and how the Assembly works. 90 MLAs work together to govern Northern Ireland, although at the moment meetings of the Assembly are not taking place due to a political crisis. Pupils were able to see the impressive Entrance Hall and the Debating Chamber, in which the pupils debateD the motion ‘all school uniforms should be abolished.’ Following a lively debate, students voted and the motion was carried. There are definitely some budding politicians at Glastry! Upon departure, our guide commented on the exemplary behaviour of the Glastry students. Well done, everyone.
After lunch we travelled to the Somme Centre. We started with an interactive workshop and were able to handle some of the weapons and headgear used in World War One. Our guide told us about the build-up to the war, both at home and abroad, before telling us details about the Battle of the Somme in July 1916. The group also saw various short films, was able to experience trench life, and see a representation of ‘no man’s land,’ together with the sound and sight of exploding shells. It was a most enjoyable day for everyone.
Donation to NI Kidney Patients' Association Posted Feb 26 2018
Some Year Eight members from Glastry College, who participated in the school’s annual Carol Service in December, are pictured with Dr S Timpany (Head of Music) and Ms J Raife (Head of Year Eight). Thanks to the generosity of pupils, staff and parents, over £300 was raised for the Northern Ireland Kidney Patients’ Association (NIKPA). The work of NIKPA was highlighted to the school community earlier in the year when Dr Timpany became a live kidney donor to his sister who was suffering from
There will be an opportunity to find out more about NHS organ donation at a short presentation at Glastry College at 4pm on Thursday 8 March. To register your attendance, please ‘phone the school or email mthompson852@C2Kni.net. All members of the local community are welcome to attend.
Girls bow out of IFA Junior Cup Posted Jan 26 2018
Unfortunately the Glastry girls were knocked out of the IFA Junior Cup on Wednesday 24th January 2018, being defeated by Assumption Grammar School. A great team spirit and performance was shown throughout the Cup. Thanks to everyone who helped with transport and supported the team throughout this cup run. We look forward to future fixtures with this team.
Elle Allan, Rachel Angus, Olivia Carlisle, Ciara Herron, Shannon Herron, Kornelija Joneikyte, Jodie Keenan, Nadine Keenan, Leah McCartney, Jane McMaster, Bethan Milligan, Alex Presho, Abi Rutherford.
Mr Eddie Beckett, College Principal 1968-1988 Posted Jan 24 2018
It was with much sadness that the school learned of the death of Mr Eddie Beckett, Principal of the college from 1968-1988. Born in Belfast, Mr Beckett attended Sullivan Upper in Holywood before proceeding to Queen’s University, Belfast, where he graduated in Geography. Mr Beckett taught in Movilla High School before being appointed Vice-Principal of Glastry School (as it was then known) in 1957, one of twelve teachers in the newly-opened school.
Mr Beckett was held in great esteem by staff, former pupils and the local community and retained his interest in all aspects of school life, and the well-being of staff and pupils, well past his retirement. Mr Beckett regularly attended the school’s Prize Night and was guest speaker at the school’s Golden Jubilee Prize Night in 2007.
Mr Beckett was a man of many parts. Along with his two brothers, he enlisted in the Royal Air Force and completed his training in Canada shortly before the end of World War Two. In addition to many geographical and historical interests, Mr Beckett volunteered at the Bangor branch of the Samaritans and was a mainstay of his local parish church where he was a former Sunday School Superintendent and member of the Select Vestry and other church committees.
There is no doubt that the success of Glastry College in 2018 owes much to the firm and deep foundations laid by Eddie Beckett many years ago. The college sends its sympathies to the family circle at this difficult time.
The writer acknowledges the assistance of Mr McMaster, former Principal, with the writing of this article.
The photograph shows Mr Beckett and the winners of the Minor Badminton competition in 1975-76, with Mrs Ormsby.
Girls' enjoy 1st round success in IFA Junior Cup Posted Jan 8 2018
Glastry competed in the first round of the IFA Junior Cup against Breda Academy on Mon 18th December 2017, at Londonderry Park. It was a fantastic team performance from all pupils in years 8-10, with an assured win of 10 – 2. We play Assumption Grammar school in the second round in the New Year. Well done, Glastry!
Squad –Elle Allan, Rachel Angus, Olivia Carlisle, Ciara Herron (2), Shannon Herron (5), Jodie Kennan (1), Bethan Milligan, Leah McCartney Jane McMaster (1), Alex Presho (1) and Abi Rutherford. The number in brackets indicates the number of goals.
Glastry Rugby U14 take on Local Rivals Posted Jan 8 2018
On Friday 15 December, Glastry College under 14s rugby team took on a strong Strangford College team in a competitive match at home. On a cold winter’s day Strangford started very well, and soon raced ahead into a 35 – 0 lead. Glastry fought back well, producing some great running rugby and tackling well. Kylan Cassan, Ben Hawthorne and Callum Strain scored fantastic tries, with the result that the final score was 65 – 15. This result and performance show that this team has a lot of potential going forward into the new year, with continued positive attitudes and dedication to training. Rugby at Glastry College continues to grow.
PTFA Christmas Quiz Posted Dec 20 2017
Congratulations to the winners of the PTFA Christmas Quiz competition. The winners this year are: Mr L Breadon winning first prize and Ms K Fowler winning second prize. The PTFA would like to thank everyone who supported the PTFA fundraising efforts this term. We will you all a very safe and happy Christmas.
60th Anniversary Carol Service Posted Dec 19 2017
Since 1957, when Glastry College – then known as Glastry School - opened, much in the world around us has changed. What has not changed, however, has been the Glastry Carol Service, which has taken place annually over the past sixty years. This year was no different. Initially the Carol Service was held during the school day, but in recent years, the event has taken place in the evening to allow parents and friends of the school to attend.
On Thursday 14 December, the Christmas Story was retold once again through readings and seasonal music, at an impressive event held in the school’s Assembly Hall, which had been specially decorated for the occasion. Students from Year Eight told the familiar Christmas story with Biblical readings, while choral and instrumental items were interspersed with familiar carols which the audience was able to sing. The Number One from 1957,
‘Mary’s Boy Child’ was included in the service, and a special feature this year was the inclusion of a choir of former students who contributed two items during the evening.
Glastry College staff and students would like to wish everyone a happy Christmas and a happy and healthy 2018.
Shared Education Carol Singing Posted Dec 19 2017
Under the auspices of Shared Education, members of our choirs recently participated in Carol Singing at Castlecourt Shopping Centre in Belfast, with Strangford College and St. Columba’s College, Portaferry. Each school sang two pieces, with the combined choirs singing well-known Christmas carols and songs together. The choirs stood beside the large Christmas tree at the front of the shopping centre and there was a very festive
atmosphere. Members of the public joined in singing the carols with the school choirs and generously gave over £150 for the charity ‘Autism NI.’ Students enjoyed eating at the Food Court, with two students paying a visit to Santa on the way past! Everyone enjoyed the day and would be keen to go carol singing again next year.
Year 8 CLEAR at the Radar Centre Posted Dec 14 2017
Ards and North Down Borough Council provided Year Eight pupils with the opportunity to attend the CLEAR (Community, Learning, Environmental, Awareness, Responsibility) programme at the Radar Centre in Belfast, this week. This was a two hour interactive tour where we explored how everyday actions have a local and global impact on our planet. Littering, recycling and biodiversity were just some of the issues addressed.
The learning did not stop at the end of the two hour session! Every pupil was asked to educate family members at home and sign up to an ‘Environmental Family Pledge’. This is a promise to Recycle, Reduce waste, Refuse to litter and Remember to be a responsible dog owner. For every signed family pledge, Ards and North Down Borough Council will give the school £7 to be spent on improving the college environment!
We would like to thank our hosts at Radar for making such an important issue so much fun and also thank ANDBC for organising this brilliant event.
Shared Voices Posted Dec 14 2017
On Monday 11 December Year 9 pupils took part in the Shared Voices programme run by Ards and North Down Good Relations team. The programme is designed to address diversity in our society. Pupils engaged in a myth-busting workshop involving local volunteers from diverse backgrounds, whilst looking at finding common ground and acceptance of everyone in our society. It was a most thought provoking and enjoyable morning. Thanks to all the volunteers who came to share their personal stories with us.
Word Millionaires! Posted Nov 29 2017
Caitlin Adair 8G
“ I love reading SOOOOO much! I really only began reading in P6 when Accelerated Reading was introduced in my primary school. Before that I had never really taken much of an interest in reading, but when I discovered JK Rowling and the world of Harry Potter, I was hooked. I read every single night in bed. I so love getting into my cosy bed with a gripping book. There is NOTHING better! When I go on holidays I even take books with me and while other people are out buying clothes for their summer trip, I am actually buying books! I’d actually think that the majority of my suitcase weight belongs to books and not clothes!
Now that I have done book quizzes on all of the Harry Potter books I have moved on to ‘The Tales of Beedle the Bard,’ still written by JK Rowling, but with greater focus on a minor character who featured in ‘The Deathly Hallows.’ Another series I have enjoyed is the Jamie Johnston series which I reckon is suitable for males and females who are interested in football.
Personally I do not think that children should be forced to read as this can put them off for life, especially if they are forced to read about something which they have no interest in! Instead, encourage them to find an author whose style they like, and to stick with them.”
Bethan Milligan 8G
“I absolutely love reading…AND writing! My earliest memories are of my mum reading to me as a child, even before I started school. I used to love the bed-time stories and the pictures I had in my head, thanks to my imagination. My first ever story was ‘Mog the Forgetful Cat’ and I remember mum reading me The Wishing Chair series. Those books really got me hooked! I still have a copy of my first book which was a Ladybird storybook entitled ‘Heidi.’ I really loved that story!
Personally I love reading: in school, in bed, in class. At the minute we have two kittens in the house and sometimes I actually have to shoo them off the pages as I try to read my book in bed. They clamber up and just want attention, while I am trying to find out what happens next! Sometimes mum gets cross when my sister and I try to read at the dinner table. Bad manners!
I haven’t found it hard to read one million words, because since the summer I have probably read 30 books. Most of these have been Jacqueline Wilson stories and I get so engrossed that I feel that I am actually in the story! Things can become very tense!
I now plan to aim for my second million. I don’t think that it’ll be too difficult as I have read all of the Harry Potter stories and still haven’t done any of the quizzes. Reading, for me, is a pleasure and I believe that people who don’t read are missing out on so much fun.
Christmas Carol Service 2017 Posted Nov 29 2017
Some of our students have been busy rehearsing for the Glastry College’s 60th anniversary Carol Service, which will be held in the College on Thursday 14 December, beginning at 7.30pm. In addition to traditional readings from the Bible and congregational carols, the school choirs and instrumentalists will be taking part. A special feature this year will be the inclusion of a choir of former students. Seasonal refreshments will be served afterwards, and everyone is most welcome to attend.
Operation Christmas Child Posted Nov 29 2017
Pupils and staff at Glastry donated enough items to send away 51 shoeboxes full of Christmas cheer with Operation Christmas Child. Thanks very much to all who donated and well done to the Year 11 CoPE classes for their excellent packing!
PTFA Craft Fair a Great Success Posted Nov 8 2017
The annual PTFA Craft Fair took place on Tuesday 7 November. There was a great atmosphere and support from the local community. The hardworking PTFA would like to thank everyone for their support. All monies raised from the event go to College funds, increasingly important in a time of cutbacks in the education service.
Glastry College Celebrates 60 Years Posted Nov 7 2017
‘Getting into the spirit of things are Naomi Scott (Head Girl) and Jamie Anderson (Head Boy). This year Glastry celebrates its 60th birthday.’
College Prize Night Posted Nov 7 2017
The College's annual Prize Night took place on Wednesday 25 October. As usual this was an impressive occasion when pupils are publicly rewarded for their achievements in the last school year. Mr Hutchinson gave a speech in which he talked about many aspects of the last school year in Glastry. He began by quoting some lines from Charles Dickens – ‘it was the best of times, it was the worst of times’ - observing that the last school year could be described as such. It was the best of times as the school had achieved its best GCSE and A level results for ten years, amongst many other achievements, and it was the worst of times as Rachel Williamson, a Year 12 student, had tragically died at the start of the summer holidays. Mr and Mrs Williamson presented the Rachel Williamson Cup to the school, which will be awarded to students who show compassion and kindness to others. They presented the cup to Courtney Bailie, Rachel Lappin, Aimee Lee, Ruth McCormick, Alexia Michael, Jesika Stanger and Krystina Stanger, for their help and support to the Williamson family since Rachel’s untimely death. Mr Hutchinson also highlighted the political impasse at Stormont, which meant that key decisions were not being made, and the severe financial constraint under which schools must now operate.
Prizes, for attendance, achievement in sport and in academic merit, were distributed by Ms Attwood and Mrs Harris.
The guest speaker for the evening was Mr Stephen Agnew, leader of the Green Party. He suggested that it was always important to try new things, because they often lead to new opportunities, and not to be put off if things don’t work out at first, citing experiences from his own schooling and personal life to illustrate this.
The evening concluded with a Vote of Thanks from the Head Boy and Head Girl, and refreshments in the gymnasium.
Futsal IFA Area Heat Posted Oct 23 2017
Girls’ Football at Glastry continues to progress, under the guidance of Mrs Patton, with two teams completing in the IFA Futsal five-a-side area heats, held at Aurora Leisure Centre, Bangor, on 13 October. The Year 10/11 team finished third in their section but did not progress any further. Well done to Shannon Herron who scored all of the teams goals!
The Year 8/9 team finished runner-up in their section and had Our Lady and St. Patrick’s, Knock, to play in the semi-finals. After a goal being disallowed for Glastry, the team eventually succumbed to a 1-0 defeat. The team was bitterly disappointed not to reach the final. Well done to our top goal scorer Jane McMaster, and also to Bailie Lockett and Ciara Herron who hit the back of the net as well!
Year 10/11 - Rachel Angus, Shannon Herron, Kornelija Joneikyte (Year 9), Charlotte Kerfoot, Becky Orr, Alex Presho (Captain)
Year 8/9 – Olivia Carlisle, Ciara Herron, Bailie Lockett, Leah McCartney, Jane McMaster (Captain), Bethan Milligan, Abi Rutherford
Y12 GCSE Geography River Fieldtrip Posted Oct 20 2017
In early October, Y12 Geography pupils embarked on their annual foray into the North Down countryside to investigate changing river characteristics. As on previous occasions, the River Enler - that flows from the Craigantlet Hills, through Dundonald and Comber and into Strangford Lough - would be the focus of their investigation. Pupilsmeasured the river’s width, depth, velocity and the changing size of its bedload at five stops between the source and mouth of the Enler. This involved water, wellies and the currently in vogue armpit high waders. Pupils also enjoyed their lunch at McDonalds. Hard work is now well underway as pupils use the data collected to write up part of their GCSE Controlled Assessment Task, which is worth 25% of the final GCSE grade. Much fun was had with waders not fulfilling their waterproof properties but this added to the effectiveness of the learning as well as the memories!
Y8 Induction to Crawfordsburn Country Park Posted Oct 19 2017
At the beginning of September, students in Year 8 had a day out of school together to get to know each other and their teachers, and to learn to work together in teams. We went to the Scout Centre at Crawfordsburn Country Park and were very lucky with the weather.
The year group was divided into two groups and attended Crawfordsburn on
different days, with the Wednesday group being much luckier with the weather. For our first activity on each day we all made our way down to the beach to make sand sculptures. Our task was to communicate Glastry College through sand, seaweed, stones and shells. It was amazing just how imaginative the teams could be! One group even fashioned Mr Hutchinson and Mrs Harris out of sand! Having spent over an hour on the beach we made it back to the Scout Centre just in time not to get soaked by heavy rain. For the second challenge each group was asked to design and make a poster of their team-name. The names varied from Mrs Brown’s Boys and Girls, GCY8, Refreshers, the ‘Sandy Doods’ to the Wasp Killers, who won the competition. We took a break for lunch and enjoyed a little sunshine and then the rain came on.
On Thursday, we also enjoyed making sand sculptures down on the beach but our fun was cut a little short by very heavy rain. We made it to a large tree where we sheltered until the rain was over. When we got back to the hall the teams were again asked to design and produce a poster containing their team name, and we had more talented artists. We had lunch in the sunshine, sharing it once again with the wasps!
On both days, after lunch we had many team games which everyone seemed to enjoy, especially when they knew there were prizes for the winning teams. Unfortunately, time got the better of us and we had to head back to Glastry. Everyone enjoyed the day, especially making sand sculptures on the beach.
Here are some comments from our pupils:
Lewis Dowie: ‘It was one of my favourite trips, ever!’.
Rachael Stewart: ‘I had a really fun day at Crawfordsburn’.
Rhys Dalley: ‘My favourite part was the Corners game - it was a really fun day. Yeah!!!’
Paige Kirk: ‘We all had a great day at Crawfordsburn for our Induction Day.’
Joel Scott: ‘We enjoyed our trip. I enjoyed the games as our team was the best. We won every time!’
Glastry College Celebrates 60 Years Posted Oct 12 2017
As part of the 60th anniversary of the opening of Glastry College in 1957, students and staff took part in a special Games Afternoon, on Friday 29 September. Students competed in Dunleath, McCormick and Montgomery House teams in a variety of activities, including penalty shootout, wheelbarrow racing and chairlifts. Competition was intense and it was a most enjoyable afternoon for everyone.
Year 14 Attend QUB Open Day Posted Oct 4 2017
Some of our Year 14 students were able to travel to Queen's University Belfast for their Open Day in September. It was a most enjoyable and informative day for everyone.
PTFA Christmas Fair Posted Sep 25 2017
Examination Success for Glastry Posted Aug 25 2017
The students, parents and staff at Glastry College have had a week of celebration as Sixth Form and Year 12 students received their A-Level and GCSE Results.
Mr Hutchinson, Principal of Glastry College, was delighted with the continuing improvement and success with regard to examination results. He commented ‘The students at Glastry enjoyed their best ever A-Level results which were well above the Northern Ireland average for 3 A-Levels at grade A* to C. Continuing improvement was also evident at GCSE with a 13% increase in the number of students achieving 5 or more GCSE grades at A* to C including English and Maths. In addition, a remarkable one third of all students achieved 8 or more GCSE grades at A* to C including English and Maths. These results are testament to the commitment of the staff, support of parents and hard work of the students’.