Coláiste Chriost Ri is an evolving inclusive Christian community committed to Catholic education in the Presentation Brothers’ tradition; we pursue academic and sporting excellence within a unique Gaelic culture and tradition. Our Curriculum maintains a creative balance between preparation for the workplace and development of the person.
We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
T.S. Elliot: Little Gidding.
Coláiste Chríost Rí, founded in 1960, is an evolving Christian community committed to the ministry of Catholic education, encompassing especially academic and sporting excellence within a unique Gaelic culture and tradition. The generous support, often in hardship, of parents, students and staff in the formative years of the Coláiste, has given a strong sense of evolving tradition. The community served by the school witnessed the spirit of Edmund Rice through the hard work, sacrifices and total commitment of the Presentation Brothers to the Church and Coláiste Chríost Rí.
We acknowledge that we live in times of dynamic changes in education, in the Church and in society. The Coláiste Chríost Rí community is being challenged to respond in a positive and visible manner to these changes being thrust upon us. In his context, therefore, we value highly an ethos based on Gospel values, and we seek to promote full participation in all aspects of school life that contribute to the balanced development of each person.
This document, Fís, Fás agus Forbairt Choláiste Chríost Rí, acknowledges the traditions and values of our past, the perceptions and interests of our present situation, and using that framework, attempts to articulate a vision of the future. This vision and evolving story is viewed in terms of Christian and Gaelic identity, community, development and curriculum.
The challenge for the Coláiste Chríost Rí school community into the new millennium is that we are and continue to be an educative community which is respectful of the personal dignity of all. This challenge is best encapsulated in our motto, ‘Adveniat Regnum Tuum’, ‘Thy Kingdom come’, ‘Go dtaga Do Ríocht’, an acknowledgement of the need for God’s grace and power to be experienced as a strength both in our personal lives, and in the life we share with others. Coláiste Chríost Rí is a Christian community where every person is valued equally and given a sense of belonging.
The most important challenge facing us is to be a centre of educational endeavour committed to the all-round development of our students. Central to this challenge is our view that excellence in all aspects of education is a basic ingredient of the ethos of our school. We acknowledge the excellent achievement of our students in the past, and view it as a vital outcome for future success in enabling them to play a creative, positive and constructive role as responsible citizens in the society they enter.
A central question for both our quality education and school renewal is the curriculum. By curriculum we mean the aggregation of all the learning experiences in the school community. We see our curriculum as central in the process of socialising our students into the norms, values, belief-systems and way of life of Coláiste Chríost Rí. As the lived experience of the students, the curriculum embraces all aspects of their development – physical, spiritual, social, emotional, intellectual, moral, aesthetic and vocational – and contributes with other agencies towards their growth into integrated, wholesome people.
Coláiste Chríost Rí acknowledges the need to participate in an ongoing process of curriculum development with a view to responding to the changing needs of students. We adopt as a priority in our curriculum planning the maintenance of a creative balance between preparation for the workplace and the development of the person. The aim of our curriculum, therefore, is not merely the transmission of skills and information, but rather the engaging of our students in a process of critical thinking and holistic learning, leading to the transformation of the learner. Ours is the view that the mind is ‘ a fire to be kindled’ rather than ‘a vessel to be filled’.
The most distinctive feature of any school is its unique culture which gives it a special ethos or spirit. Such a school culture expresses the core beliefs, values, traditions and symbols which provide meaning to the school community and which help to shape the lives of students, teachers and parents. Culture in the daily life of a school provides stability, fosters certainty, encourages predictability and creates meaning. In short, culture is ‘the way we do things around here’.
Coláiste Chríost Rí, an open interactive social organisation with highly porous boundaries, like every school and every social group has its own unique culture or spirit. We, in the school community, acknowledge that many influences and diverse cultures have contributed to this. However, mindful of Patrick Kavanagh’s saying that ‘a man who knows his own half acre, knows the world’, we see the unique culture and spirit of Coláiste Chríost Rí, ‘the way we do things around here’, rooted in the local, in the particular, in native cultural traditions, and hence, in a Gaelic view of society in general and of education in particular. Our identification with a Gaelic tradition is inclusive not only of our long-standing and continued commitment to our native language – an Gaeilge, but also of all that is worthwhile in the whole area of Irish culture – music, sport, debate, drama, dance.
We in Coláiste Chríost Rí recognise our obligation to serve especially, but not exclusively, the Catholic community. With Christ as our model and inspired by Blessed Edmund Rice we hold a special concern for the socially and materially disadvantaged.
We acknowledge the decisive role of parents as partners, together with management and teachers, in all our educational endeavours. Hence, we seek to embrace a collegial and collaborative model of decision making and ‘exploration’ involving each new generation of students, together with their parents and teachers, in getting to ‘know the place for the first time’.