As this year’s Blue Star Programme comes to a close, here’s the final newsletter of the academic year!
This has been an incredibly exciting year of the Programme, with 161 schools and all 26 counties across Ireland represented. Over the course of the year, it has been amazing to receive your work and we can’t say enough how much we appreciate all of your efforts. So thank you very much!
Firstly, a big thank you to everyone who sent in their Final Report! The Final Report is your chance to illustrate to us the fantastic work you have been doing as part of the Blue Star Programme over the course of the year. We were blown away by the level of creativity and hard work evident in the Reports and we really enjoyed reading through them all and seeing your pupils’ imaginative work!
Over the last few weeks, we have been busy getting all the Certificates of Achievement signed off and ready to send to schools across the country. For those of you who have submitted your Final Report, your Certificate of Achievement – signed by the Minister of State for European Affairs, Dara Murphy TD, and European Movement Ireland’s Executive Director, Noelle O Connell – is now on the way! In addition to the Certificates, we have also sent out a European flag to all schools participating in the Programme for the first time and to those schools who requested one.
If you have any questions about the Final Report, don’t hesitate to get in touch and we’ll be happy to help. We will continue to accept Final Reports throughout the summer, so if you haven’t yet submitted yours and would like to, please do and we’ll try our best to get your Certificates of Achievement sent out to you.
We would also like to make a note that we appreciate all the feedback you have sent our way as well, and that we genuinely take it all on board in order to keep the Blue Star Programme improving. So thank you very much for that!
Europe Day took place on Tuesday 9 May and celebrations took place in schools all over the country. We were delighted to receive hundreds of pictures, tweets and stories from the day.
As part of our Europe Day celebrations, we were delighted to welcome Askeaton Senior National School, Co. Limerick, and Scoil Réalt na Mara, Co. Clare, to Iveagh House in Dublin to celebrate their fantastic achievement of completing 5 years of the Blue Star Programme!
This is the second year that we have been able to present the 5-Year Achievement Award and it is something that we feel provides repeat schools with the recognition they deserve for their consistent efforts for the Programme.
To mark the occasion, we were joined by Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Charlie Flanagan TD, and Minister of State for European Affairs, Dara Murphy TD, who came to congratulate the schools on their achievement and admire a selection of the pupils’ Blue Star Programme work.
Together with pupils and teachers from both schools and European Movement Ireland’s Executive Director, Noelle O Connell, the Ministers formed a ‘Handshake for Europe’ to celebrate Europe and symbolise the solidarity and diversity between them as EU citizens. It was brilliant day all round and the event was covered by RTE’s News2Day programme. Thanks again to Askeaton Senior NS and Scoil Réalt na Mara for being involved!
Once again, there were numerous school visits during the month of May, especially during Europe Week. We would like to thank all the MEPs, Ambassadors and TDs who visited Blue Star Programme schools, and of course the schools and teachers themselves for all their work on the Programme and in organising the visits. Here’s a collection of just a few of the visits which took place during the past month:
One of our favourite parts of this year’s Blue Star Programme has been the new One a Week feature. Every week, we selected a picture, a video or a story sent to us by a Blue Star Programme school, and shared it via the Blue Star Programme website and on social media. There were so many fantastic submissions that often it was hard to choose only one each week. We were truly blown away by the creativity and the effort so many of you put into your work – so once again, thank you very much for everything!
Once again, all of us here at the Blue Star Programme would like to take this opportunity to thank and congratulate all of you for your hard work over the course of the year. You, the teachers, make the Blue Star Programme what it is and we really appreciate your efforts.
Have a lovely summer and we hope you’ll participate in the Blue Star Programme again next year!
– 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.