Sunday, May 26, 2024


The popular local woman, who this week is embarking on a life away from St Michael’s Primary School in Finnis, near Leitrim, has said the gifts she received during a special presentation last week will be forever cherished.

Having spent 30 years at the school, with a one-year post at St Mary’s Girls’ Primary School in Newcastle before that, Angela said her time in education has been a privilege. Ms McCartan, who up until last week taught a composite class made up of children from P4 and P5, and who over the years taught a number of age ranges, acknowledged that St Michael’s “has been a huge part of my life”. She added that she “loved every minute spent there”. “I have been truly blessed to have worked in such a beautiful school environment,” she explained. “My journeys to and from work were always so stress-free, and have given me time to enjoy the amazing scenery that surrounds the Finnis area.”

Looking back on her three decades at St Michael’s, she said that once she settled in at the school “I had no desire to leave” – adding that this “was always down to the great support” she received from parents, teachers and ancillary staff as well as the wider community in which the rural school plays such a central role. Sending a special message to all the children she taught down through the years, the newly retired teacher said: “I have enjoyed being part of your journey through life. I have such lovely memories of my time spent with you.” Noting the specially made artwork, featuring her most recent pupils’ names, as well as the memory book which is filled with messages and artwork from the children, she said last Wednesday’s presentation is a day she will never forget. “I appreciate very much all the kind words and gifts I have received,” she continued, before thanking everyone who attended. Thanking all the parents, she extended “a big ‘thank you’ from the bottom of my heart, for your great support down through the years; it certainly made my work life so very enjoyable.”

Equally, she thanked her colleagues, past and present, “for the great laughs we had together” before admitting that she will miss them, and the children. Angela also put on record her appreciation to the school principals she worked with during her time in Finnis, most recently Mr Brian McGale who was appointed at the start of 2023, in addition to Mr Donal McCaul and Mr Colm McAlarney, whom she worked alongside for nine years and 20 years respectively. She concluded: “St Michael’s has been a huge part of my life and I have loved every minute spent there. “I have enjoyed my teaching career, but I feel it’s time for a change. I’ll take a break, recharge my batteries and see what the next chapter holds.”

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