CHANGING fashions and developments in technology have all had their day during the long career of a Kingsisland teacher, yet the sheer dedication shown by Mrs Angela Quinn to the generations of children who have started their life journey under her care, is something which has stood the test of time.
Teachers, staff, pupils and parents joined together in St Colmcille’s Church for a special Mass to mark the retirement of Mrs Quinn, who has stepped down as P4 teacher and Vice Principal of St John’s Primary School after 37 years.
Those present at the service, which was celebrated by Clonoe Parish Priest, Fr Benny Fee, with assistance from Fr Kieran McKeone, heard St John’s Principal, Philip O’Neill, describe Mrs Quinn as “an amazing teacher, colleague and friend”.
Gifts were presented from pupils from every class in the school, as symbols of the energy and commitment given by the much loved Mrs Quinn, including a statue engraved with the words of her favourite Psalm, The Lord Is My Shepherd, and a newly published book given to her on behalf of the Parish of Clonoe.
To the delight of the congregation, Mr O’Neill recounted how his colleague refused to allow even the relentless pace of digital technology to get the better of her during her long teaching career.
“At Friday assembly Mrs Quinn would teach the children about the Sunday Gospel”, explained Mr O’Neill.
“She was never content with just reading the Gospel, however. No way! Mrs Quinn would research the internet every Thursday night without fail, in order to get a suitable cartoon or video from Youtube that would explain the gospel in a child friendly way.
“She mastered the technology that allowed her to download appropriate software that would in turn allow her to convert the Youtube clips to a format suitable to be played in the school computers through the interactive whiteboards.
“Never let it be said that she did not keep up to speed with modern technology and how to use it to enhance her teaching.”
Mrs Quinn’s family and friends were also in attendance at the celebration, which was followed by a buffet and party for the children and parents in the school.
Mr O’Neill closed with a heartfelt tribute to Mrs Quinn’s “support, sincerity and stimulating company”, adding: “Thank you for being such an important part of our school.”