Waterford national school St John of God won the county senior category in the Someone Like Me competition
Pupils in two County Waterford schools are celebrating after being named as County Winners in the junior and senior categories of a leading national art competition.
Kilmacthomas Primary School and St John of God National School in Waterford city are now in the running for what has become a much sought-after national title.
The Someone Like Me competition is supported by the National Disability Authority. It aims to promote disability awareness and nurture understanding amongst primary school students and to highlight the similarities that exist within people of all abilities.
Now an annual initiative, Someone Like Me promotes inclusion and positive attitudes towards all persons, allowing children to learn about and discuss these topics and creatively express what they have learned through art and craft.
The entry from Kilmacthomas Primary School was named Junior County Winner. It was created by 1st and 2nd class pupils for their collaborative art work This is us, in which the pupils drew pictures of themselves in a circus ring performing their unique talents in a celebration of everyone’s differences. Teacher Roisin Briggs assisted with the school's submission.
Kilmacthomas Primary School was named Junior County Winner
The entry from St John of God National School was named Senior County Winner. It was created by 6th class pupil Sadbh Brennan, whose drawing depicted people of differing abilities taking part in a variety of different sports including snorkeling, ballet and basketball. Teacher Claire Shane assisted with the school's submission.
Judges Caomhán Mac Con Iomaire, Mark Maguire and Ellen Keane were greatly impressed with the artistic efforts of pupils and teachers at the two schools for their imaginative Someone Like Me submissions, which were selected for being exceptionally insightful and inspirational.
Congratulating the Waterford pupils, Minister of State with Special Responsibility for Disabilities Finian McGrath TD said that he was hugely encouraged by the number of competition entries. “I am delighted to say that this year we received almost 2,400 entries for this wonderful competition, which highlights the passion and continued enthusiasm that teachers and pupils alike have towards this initiative,” he said.
“More than 600,000 people in Ireland have a disability, and children under 15 make up 53,000 of that figure. The National Disability Authority strive to promote inclusiveness in all of the work they carry out, and the fact that an entry was received from every county in Ireland highlights that by providing a creative outlet in which we can build understanding and awareness of our different abilities, we can truly discover the similarities that unite us all.”
Both Waterford schools will now go on to compete with 45 other schools from around the country for the overall national award, which will be announced at a ceremony in Dublin City Hall on Wednesday, December 5.
The competition, which offers a range of prizes up to the value of €750, was open to all primary school pupils from junior infants to sixth class. 2,400 entries were received from individual pupils, class groups and whole schools right across Ireland. Entries ranged from posters and collages to large sculptural installations and multi-media pieces.