Blue Star Update, January 2017
Happy New Year!
We hope you had a great Christmas break and are back in the full swing of things! We have seen some fantastic work in 2016 and we can’t wait to see what you all come up with in 2017. So here’s your monthly update on everything that’s currently going on, in regards to the programme:
To those schools already registered, we hope you are enjoying working on the programme! From the many Action Plans we have received, there seems to be an amazing level of creativity being put into projects and we are really looking forward to seeing your work in the new year. For those of you who have not yet submitted your Action Plan, we would ask you to please do so as soon as possible. If you are looking for inspiration, have a look at our Sample Action Plan.
We would encourage you to keep an eye on the Blue Star programme website and the European Movement Ireland Twitter account at @emireland throughout the year for info and updates. We love seeing your work so please Facebook, Tweet or email us with photos, videos and feedback.
Each year we organise a Blue Star programme teacher training workshop which facilitates teachers to learn more about the programme and to share best practice with each other. The 2017 workshop (which is kindly hosted by the European Parliament Information Office) will take place on Saturday, 4 February 2017 . There will also be a MEP at the event for you all to meet. If you would like to attend, then we need to hear from you by no later than Monday, 23 January. Please note that we only have a certain amount of spaces so please e-mail ASAP if you are interested, as places are assigned on a ‘first come, first served’ basis. More detailed information on the format and content of the day will be sent out to those who register to attend.
Please keep us posted if you have Ambassadors, TDs, Senators, MEPs or other visitors coming to your school as part of the programme. There are plenty out there who are aware and greatly interested in getting involved in the programme so please don’t hesitate to contact whoever it is you’d like to visit your school. This always tends to be a great day for the pupils who get a wonderful chance to show off their on-going work. You can fill in this short form to let us know if you’ve organised a visit: www.bluestarprogramme.ie/school-visit-form/. And please don’t forget that we can help with approaching local media if needs be. Just drop us a brief note about your plans and we’ll do our best to help in any way we can.
Just a quick reminder also on the civic society element of our Programme for this year. During the 2016-2017 term, we have decided to focus on the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome. The Treaty of Rome was signed on 25 March 1957 and established the European Economic Community. This treaty paved the way for European integration. In March 2017, there will be celebrations to mark the 60th anniversary around Europe, with a big event planned for Rome. Please note that it is not compulsory to include in your work but given the significance of the year, it could be a great topic for you and your pupils to run with in your action plans. As always, we will be more than happy to publicise your work throughout the year.
Once again, congratulations to all the schools that have received an award for completing the Blue Star Programme for 5 years! Minister Pat Breen recently visited Scoil na Maighdine Mhuire, Co. Clare, to present them with their award. Fenor National School, another 5 year Blue Star Programme school from Clare, also took part in the visit. The event was a great success; even receiving coverage in the local media!
And that’s a wrap! If you want any more information on anything discussed above, feel free to get in contact with us and we’ll be more than happy to advise. Once again, Happy New Year to you all, and we wish you much success with the Programme.
– The Blue Star Team
The Blue Star Programme is a venture of the Communicating Europe Initiative, supported by the Office of the Minister of State for European Affairs, Data Protection and the EU Digital Single Market in the Department of the Taoiseach, the Department of Education and Skills, the European Commission Representation in Ireland and the European Parliament Information Office in Ireland.