School Ethos and Philosophy of Education
Ethos in Action
Mission Statement outlines our educational philosophy in full:
As part of the family of Loreto schools
and in cooperation with parents and the community,we are dedicated
to Christian education.
We aim to provide a balanced education, academic, pastoral
and physical for all students, affording
space for reflection and for learning through experience.
We seek to promote self-esteem, self-discipline and the goal of self-fulfilment
and to foster in our students the virtues of courage, sincerity and truth.
College is one of thirty five Loreto schools in Ireland. Loret
schools are to be found in twenty one countries and on all five
Ward, a young Yorkshire woman, founded the first school in St.
Omer, France in 1609. She and the sisters of her new religious
community had as their aim the education of young women and the
support of victims of injustice. She travelled Europe on foot
founding schools in The Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, Germany,
Austria, The Czech Republic and Slovakia. She sought to empower
women to fulfill whatever part God called them to play. She invited
her followers to ' become lovers of truth and workers of justice'.
Her vision placed particular emphasis on education inspired by
the values of joy, justice, freedom and sincerity.
Ward’s core values of justice, freedom, sincerity, truth
and joy are at the heart of school life.
Education in a Loreto school:
Catholic values, attitudes and principles.
for the all-round development of the student.
the personal worth and dignity of each student.
awareness of the responsibility to work for peace, justice
and unity in society.
to encourage excellence in all areas of the student’s
life in an atmosphere of interest, concern and friendship
for each person.
was a woman ahead of her time. Pope John Paul 2nd described Mary
Ward as 'that extraordinary Yorkshire woman....who became a pioneer
of the active, unenclosed congregations of women'. Almost two
hundred years after Mary Wards death, Frances Teresa Ball, a
young Dublin woman, began Mary Wards dream in Ireland with the
establishment of 'Loreto House' at Rathfarnham. By degrees a
number of young women joined Teresa and her first companions
to become Loreto Sisters, members of The Institute of The Blessed
Virgin Mary. Today, in the 21st Century, the thirty five Loreto
schools in Ireland continue Mary Ward's dream of providing a
Catholic education for young women. We, in Loreto Cavan, are
proud to be part of this tradition.
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and Religious Formation
|We, in Loreto
College Cavan, foster the spiritual and religious development of our
students in accordance with our school ethos and its emphasis on holistic
education. We are a Catholic school in the Loreto tradition, promoting
the values espoused by our foundress Mary Ward: love, joy, freedom,
justice, truth and sincerity.
We have a comprehensive religious formation programme, which is
implemented by our Religion teachers, supported by our school chaplain.
This programme includes:
· Religious instruction for all year groups. Students in Junior Cycle
follow the Department of Education and Science syllabus for Junior
Certificate Religious Education. In Senior Cycle, religious education
is provided in a modular format. Modules include: The Search
for Meaning, Christianity- origins and expressions, World religions,
the Journey of life, Morality, Religion and Science, Relationships
· Retreats for Third year and Sixth year students.
· Reconciliation Services during Advent and Lent
· Celebratory masses, including the annual Opening mass
and Graduation mass.
· Prayer Services
· Supporting Trocaire`s Lenten Fast and collections for
· A Christmas Carol Service
· Projects with local community involvement
· Information sessions
on important topics and issues
Ethos in Action
Tuesday November 8th 2005, The Bishop of Kilmore, Dr. Leo O'Reilly,
gave the following homily when he offically opened and blessed
our new Prayer Room in Loreto College.
the Loreto Trustees, the Board of Management, the Principal, Ms.
Donagh, the Religion Department and everyone involved in the provision
of this oratory for the school community here. An oratory like
this is a statement of faith about the place of God in the life
of this community. It is a space for God, a place for prayer, for
quietness and reflection. If you were taking a narrow, utilitarian
view of things this might seem like a waste of space that could
have been used for Maths or Music or Science or even storage. You
could say that aprayer space is no earthly use, and you'd be right,
in part anyway. It reminds us that there is more to life and education
than the earthly. And that's precisely why it is so important.
the Loreto tradition of education that extra dimension - beyond
- the spiritual dimension, the God dimension - has always held
a pride of place. And I was very pleased to see that stated so
eloquently by the Principal in a recent article in the local paper.
well as a statement of faith, this oratory is a statemnt of identity.
It proclaims that this school values and promotes the whole person
in all her dimensions, the physical, the intellectual and social
- of course - but also the moral and emotional and the spiritual.
room will be a valuable resource for the teachers of religion,
the chaplain and others involved in the religious formation of
the young people here, and it will help to ensure that the education
provided will be Catholic, not only in the sense of a particular
denomination, but in it's literal sense of universal, forming the
whole person, embracing the whole reality.
of course the oratory is first and foremost for you, the students.
In the gospel I've read, the story of the Transfiguration, Jesus
took his closest disciples up a mountain to pray. Why did he have
to go up a mountain? The mountain is a place apart - a place of
solitude, of silence. To get there you have to detach yourself
from your everyday occupations. You leave the distractions and
'busyness' of work or pleasure and enter the sphere of the holy.
This oratory is your mountain. You will be able to come here -
to leave the other pursuits of school life behind for a while and
experience God in the quietness and solitude.
apostles' experience of God when they were on the mountain with
Jesus was very satisfying in one way - so much so that they wanted
to stay: 'Let us build three tents here......' But it was also
a bit scary. When they entered the cloud - symbolising the presence
of God - they were afraid. There is always that mixture in our
relationship with God: a deep down attraction, a desire that is
rooted in our being, in the way we are. St. Augustine said it most
eloquently: 'You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and we will
not rest until we rest in you.' So there's that deep longing for
God. But there is also hesitation, a reluctance, a fear of getting
too close to God, because if I do get close, He might ask me for
things that I do not want to give.
three apostles learned a lot from their visit to the mountain:
- A new understanding of who Jesus was - they saw the divine dimension
which shone out there for the first time
- A new experience of God
- A great joy in God's presence
Perhaps the most important lesson they learned was that they couldn't
stay up on the mountain. They had to go back down and engage in the
earthly work again. They learned that prayer is not an escape from
reality. It's an invitation to step back from the everyday, to get
a new perspective, to see things in a new way - to see them from
Gods point of view. And that enables us to go back to our earthly
tasks renewed and strengthened and encouraged. It helps us to engage
in our earthly tasks with greater commitment and a new awareness
that God is not only to be found on the mountain, or in the tabernacle,
but in every person and in every thing. It helps us to acquire the
vision of Kavanagh who could say: 'God is in the bits and pieces
of every day', or Joseph Mary Plunkett who said: 'I see His blood
upon the rose, and in the stars the glory of his eyes', or Hopkins
who could see Gods glory in everything, even something as mundane
as an upturned sod or a dying fire:
'Sheer plod makes ploughdown
And blue bleek embers, Ah my dear,
Fall, gall themselves and gash gold vermillion.
Crest is the badge worn by all students in Loreto schools throughout
the world. The design includes four symbols:
- The Cross - the emblem of salvation.
- The Heart of Jesus - symbolises His personal love for us.
- The pierced Heart of Mary - depicting her courage as a guide
- The anchor - the symbol of hope encouraging us to trust Him.
The crest is surmounted by the title - Mary, Queen of Angels. This
reminds those who wear it of the protective presence of Mary.
At the bottom of the crest are cthe words which bring us comforton
our journey through life. They read:
will always trust in the cross"