"I know I'm somebody 'cause God don’t make no Junk"
by Darragh O' Reilly
The above caption encapsulates my whole belief system and therefore my approach as Principal of Tallaght Community School. I believe in treating everyone fairly and am acutely aware that each and everyone of us has good qualities. I worked hard to ensure that these qualities emerged. Self esteem alongside self-belief is the characteristics I tried to instil in my students. I was hugely complimented when Paul Fahy, a 1st Year student, presented me with a picture that he had drawn with the above caption. This picture has a special place in our kitchen, and holds a special place in my heart. God bless you Paul Fahy.
Sport has played a pivotal role in the development of self esteem. On my arrival in Tallaght I discovered that many of my students lacked self belief. The honing of sporting skills developed their self confidence and gave me a chance to praise them and tell them how good they were. I am convinced that this in turn enabled them to maximise their academic prowess. In my early years in the school we had great success in Gaelic, Hurling and Football. A wider catchment area that embraced St Anne's Bohernabreena, St Mary's Saggart and Ballyboden St Endas proved a fertile breeding ground for raw natural talent. But unfortunately the opening of Firhouse C.C. and Rathcoole C.S. reduced player supply. Gerry O' Leary was a tower of strength in organising the Gaelic which produced three All Ireland medal winners, Joe McNally St Annes, Ciaran Maher Ballyboden St Endas, and of course the great Paul Curran Thomas Davis, son of a great Meath man. I wish to thank Paul Kelly, Thomas Davis, for all his work for the school and the club during his time in school. Thanks Paul.
Our Success in hurling was limited but enjoyable. I am deeply grateful to David Kinsella, David "Crocker " Kinsella, Johnny Benton, Barry Holbrook and Colm " Sparrow" Barrett.
During My last years in Tallaght we enjoyed huge success at soccer thanks in the main to Mr. Seamus Whoriskey and Jimmy Wynne who did Trojan work with our footballers. Our perseverance and patience paid dividends in 1994 when we won the Leinster 18A-soccer trophy. The following deserve a special mention - Damien Bolger, Andrew Meleady, Speedy Mc Grath, who scored an equaliser against Synge St School in the final, Andrew Flynn and Paul Connor. Thanks lads for all the happy memories. Speaking of memories, Lar and Francis Price, Alan Holbrook gave us such pleasure on our trips to Falcarragh, Donegal, arranged by year Head Mr Whoriskey.
Not forgetting the great work done by Mrs Margaret Ann Mc Loughlin and Dave Fitzsimons with our gallant cross-country teams. They brought great honours to our school, year after year. Thank you for the great memories and the cheering in the Phoenix Park.
I must mention our Artist, Alan Davis, who won a Road Safety Poster Competition in the Royal Hotel, O' Connell St, thank you Alan and of course his teacher Mr Cormac Fitzpatrick. Thanks Cormac.
I must not forget Fiona Peggs and Cormac Norton, who with other young friends said the Rosary every evening in the Oratory. I was delighted with it and I am sure it brought many graces and blessings to our school.
A great joy to me in my retirement is meeting former pupils and parents and the great welcome that they have for me.
I cannot end without acknowledging the hard work and dedication of the staff, both teaching and non-teaching. Tommy Deane is one man to whom I owe a huge debt of gratitude. He was a true friend - Heavens gain is our loss. Mrs Annie Kelly sustained me with a varied diet of bread and butter, flavoured with portions of theological debate - Fr Joe Cullen added the salt and pepper.