Colaiste Ailigh dress


 February 27, 2014

Colaiste Ailigh dressIT’S that time of the year again – when students turn every day pieces of rubbish into incredible clothes.

And this incredible entry into Junk Kouture from three students at Coáliste Ailigh in Letterkenny is already winning hundreds of online votes.

The dress is the work of Kirsty Nic Giolla Bháin, Jessica Ní Ghallachóir and Aoibhinn Ní Mhuimhne.

There’s no finer gúna around.

So don’t just sit there – get voting for Calypso

Here’s the link





 February 22, 2014

photoSCHOOL trips were never like this in our day.

Snowboarding hadn’t been invented – and the nearest slippery slope was negotiated with a bin lid (note to children, this was before wheelie bins!)

These days it is very different.

This pic shows a group of Coláiste Ailigh students and staff who spent their midterm break skiing and snowboarding in Borovets, Bulgaria.




Team leaders from all the schools that participated in Beofast with Charlotte Dryden from the Oh Yeah centre and Mo and Kris from More Than Conquerors. Photo by Carrie Davenport, Kerrang magazine


 January 31, 2014
Team leaders from all the schools that participated in Beofast with Charlotte Dryden from the Oh Yeah centre and Mo and Kris from More Than Conquerors. Photo by Carrie Davenport, Kerrang magazine
Team leaders from all the schools that participated in Beofast with Charlotte Dryden from the Oh Yeah Centre and Mo and Kris from More Than Conquerors. Photo by Carrie Davenport, Kerrang magazine

Donegal students rocked at a historic ‘Beo’ concert in Belfast last week.

The concert was the first time that Transition Year students from five Donegal schools joined up with Belfast students for a series of talks in the Oh Yeah Centre of Belfast – a recording and performance venue co-founded by Snow Patrol singer Gary Lightbody.

Last Friday, January 17, students from Colaiste Ailigh, St. Eunan’s College, Loreto Convent, Deele College and Pobalscoil Ghaoth Dobhair heard talks from Charlotte Dryden and Linda Ervine about the Oh Yeah Centre and the Irish language in Northern Ireland, most interestingly among the Protestant community.

 Linda Ervine speaking to the students in the Oh Yeah Centre, Belfast. Photo by Carrie Davenport, Kerrang magazine
Linda Ervine speaking to the students in the Oh Yeah Centre, Belfast. Photo by Carrie Davenport, Kerrang magazine

Students saw on the day how the strength of the Irish language can bring a divided community together. Through Beo music sessions, the Irish language is promoted to teenagers from both sides of the border.

Friday’s adventure was brought to a close with a show in the Oh Yeah Centre featuring Letterkenny indie band ‘Apollo Six’, singer Callum Stewart and local Belfast band ‘More Than Conquerors’.

Apollo Six, comprised of students from St. Eunan’s College and Loreto Convent, got a great reaction from the enthusiastic Donegal crowd.

Students are already looking forward to the next Beo gig and the six other Beo concerts held last Friday, including those in Stranorlar and Dungloe, show that the project is rocking the socks off Transition Year’s all over Ireland.

by Rachel McLaughlin




 January 15, 2014

Beo2Le Mattiú O Duffaigh: MORE THAN 100 students from County Donegal will travel to Belfast this Friday – to stage a gig promoting the Irish language and cross-community involvement in it.

Beo was founded by the secondary schools of Letterkenny to promote Irish through music and music promotion, with Coláiste Ailigh, St Eunan’s College, Loreto Secondary School and Errigal College all involved.

Now Beo will be hosting another gig, this time in the Oh Yeah Centre in Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter.

And among those who will be there will be Irish language enthusiast Linda Ervine, whose later brother-in-law David went from loyalist paramilitary to one of the founders of the peace process in the PUP.

Friday’s festival aims to promote the Irish language, helps young Irish bands hoping to develop, but most importantly, to spark interest in the minds of the younger generation. The students organise the event, from booking tickets, to filming the concert. Beo’s popularity continues to grow around the country with each passing year.

Bands such as Disconnect 4, Not Squares, The Gandhis, Jamaican Vampires and many others have contributed their musical efforts to these events.

On this particular occasion, the bands “Apollo 6”,”Paper Boy” and “More Than Conquerors” will be playing in the Oh Yeah Centre in Belfast.

These bands have been praised for their “good personalities” and for their “fresh new alternative rock sound” by fans.

Multiple schools have agreed to partake in this event, including Pobalscoil Ghaoth Dobhair, Deele College and the schools that founded Beo listed above. From the Belfast area, St Malachy’s College and Gaelcholáiste Feirste are confirmed to be attending the concert.

Linda Ervine has set up Irish classes in east Belfast.

”I did actually attempt to learn Irish, but couldn’t find anywhere I could go to, so it was in my mind for a very long time, but it wasn’t an option,” she said.

Gordon McCoy of Ultach, will also make an appearance. He is known also for his work in promoting the Irish language in Unionist areas and for writing books and academic articles based on the Irish language.

What? Beo Live:

Where? Oh Yeah Centre, Gordon Street, Belfast (beside St Anne’s Cathedral)

When? 7pm Friday

How Much? Admission £4

Details? Strictly Under-18s and Alcohol Free

Any other info…More details are available by emailing



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 January 12, 2014

rnag1A new generation of talented young traditional musicians and singers from around the county can be heard on Raidió na Gaeltachta today.

The musicians were recorded before Christmas in Letterkenny as part of the Mol an Óige series presented by Neansaí Ní Choisdealbha.

Students from Comhaltas Leitir Ceanainn, Ceol na Coille music school, Coláiste Ailigh and Gaelscoil Adhamhnáin all took part in the recording session.

The first of the programmes will be broadcast today.

Mol an Óige, Raidió na Gaeltachta, 18.30 -19.00.

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 January 10, 2014



DDTV: There’s loads of brains in the McGeehin family – brothers Ronan (13) and his brother Eóin (14), are students at Coláiste Ailigh in Letterkenny.

And they wanted to develop an early warning system to tell motorists when the road surface becomes icy.

With in-car gauges not always accurate, the boys have come up with an incredible prototype which could save lives on our roads.

Watch this video to see their incredible idea on show at the BT Young Scientist of the Year exhibition in Dublin.




 December 13, 2013



DDTV: You’ve seen the documentary; you may even have seen the show live. Now watch Riverdance – Coláiste Ailigh style. The Letterkenny students were performing at their Christmas show at An Grianan on December 12, 2013. The girls are flawless (in fact they’re superb). But the boys need to go to a few more lessons.

Click Play to Watch







DDTV: PUPILS FROM COLAISTE Ailigh in Letterkenny held their Christmas show this week – and brought the house down with a brilliant variety performance.

Click Play to watch a scene from the West End hit Les Miserables.

It’s superb.




 November 13, 2013

PatsPizzaFrontageA PIZZA takeaway said ‘Arrivederci’ to children at a town school on their last day.

Pupils from Coláiste Ailigh in Letterkenny have been regular customers of Pat’s Pizza on Main Street for many years.

But the students move tomorrow and Friday to their brand new school – too far away for lunchtime trade.

So Pat’s Pizza gave away free pizzas to pupils on Wednesday as well as free bars of chocolate.

The pupils however returned the favour.

Many of them left tips for the staff.

The new school on a 8.5-acre Carnamuggagh site includes a library, outdoor teaching areas, an art room, rooms for woodwork and technical graphics, a music and drama room, science rooms, a special needs room, a computer suite, kitchenette, fitness centre, GAA and soccer pitches, basketball and tennis courts and a gymnasium that can also be used for school events.

Pupils missing Mac’s Mace opposite the old location at a cramped Sprackburn House needn’t worry.

Mac’s has won the catering contract for the new school which now has 245 pupils.

The new school has room for 100 more pupils as it continues to expand.

Micheál Ó Giobúin, school principal, said: “The new school is no more than the children and staff deserve.”




 September 29, 2013

Students in Letterkenny will be full of hot air next Tuesday but it’s all in a good cause.

Students are hoping to fill the sky around Letterkenny with balloons.
Students are hoping to fill the sky around Letterkenny with balloons.

Students at Colaiste Ailigh will be releasing hundreds of balloons in aid of the Simon Community who help fight homelessness.

Each balloon will cost €1 and will be sold around the area.

The balloons will then be released at 3pm from the car park of the school on the High Road and will hopefully fill the skies over the town.





 April 12, 2013

It was another historic day in Coláiste Ailigh’s short history when the transition year students won the All-Ireland School’s Competition for Irish Clubs run by Glór na nGael, with a prize of €2,000.Colaiste Ailigh

The main aim of Ailigh G was to promote Irish amongst the school community, as well as throughout the local community.

Transition Year students visited local primary schools, Gaelscoil Adhamhnáin for a Halloween party, and Educate Together, where they taught the Haka in Irish to the students.

Throughout Seachtain na Gaeilge the club opened an Irish centre in the school to award those who inspired others to speak Irish.

Ailigh G showed great interest in helping charities throughout the year. This was evident when they the club presented Autism Ireland with a cheque of €150.




 January 22, 2013
All-Ireland Champs! Colaiste Ailigh celebrate. Maith sibh!
All-Ireland Champs! Colaiste Ailigh celebrate. Maith sibh!

Colaiste Ailigh of Letterkenny are celebrating after they won the school’s first All-Ireland title today.

The school’s Under 16 basketball team beat off stiff opposition from PSN Baldoyle to win the national title at the National Basketball Arena in Dublin this afternoon by 39-34.

Manager and teacher Seosamh McKelvey said he was very proud of his team and the school who travelled to the game in huge numbers.

“We always knew we had it in us to win it and thankfully we performed on the day. It’s a great occasion and I’m very proud of the team and of the entire school.

“We had greats support and there’s going to be great celebrations as a result,” h said.

Although McKelvey said it was very much a team effort, a number of players had tremendous games.

They include captain Oisin Cleary who scored no less than 15 points and John McIntyre who bagged 9 points.

The school is having a huge homecoming for the team at the school this evening.




 January 11, 2013

Colaiste Ailigh

Today saw a new page written in the short history of Colaiste Ailigh as their Under 16 basketball team reached their first ever All-Ireland final.

The end of a hectic week saw the Letterkenny school outscore St Marys, Balasadare by 40 to 32 in a frantic All Ireland semi final in The Abbey Gym in Donegal Town.

Colaiste Ailigh had tried all week to change today fixture to earlier in the week as half their players were in Dublin participating in The BT Young Scientist. Their appeals fell on deaf ears and four of the six travelled home for this historic fixture.

A combination of nerves and jet lag saw the Letterkenny school make the worst of starts and were 12-0 down with all scores coming from the best player on display Tobias Brockman after 6 mins. This was compounded with Col Ailigh player Maitis Mac Ceallabhuí being withdrawn with an ankle injury and Sean Mac A tSaoir picking up two early fouls pushing him back to the bench.

In the 7th min Colaiste Ailigh captain Oisín O Cleirigh hit Colaiste Ailigh’s first points quickly followed by 3 pts from the games busiest player Jeaic Mac Ceallabhuí but Colaiste still struggled with Brockman who brought his tally to 17 pts to Col Ailigh’s 6 pts after the first quarter.

The short break gave Colaiste Ailigh the time needed to get a strategy together to deal with the threat of Brockman.

Colaiste charged into the quarter and got their shooting boots going with Evin Breathnach, Sean Mac and O Cleirigh all scoring while Jeaic Mac Ceallabhuí with help from Odhran Mac Fhionghaile managed to keep Brockman and St Mary’s to another to 2 pts. Halftime Colaiste Ailigh 17 St Mary’s 19 with all the momentum in the Donegal outfits corner.

Halftime was what St Marys needed and came out in the 3rd quarter getting scoring help for Brockman from Kladius Bak(5) and Ross Farrell(2) pulling St Marys in control. Colaiste Struggled to shake the nerves but kept plugging away with scores from O Cleirigh and Mac A tSaoir. End of a tence 3rd quarter. Colaiste Ailigh 26 St Mary’s 28.

The final Quarter saw the Colaiste captain catch fire and push Colaiste 4 pts to the good with 4 mins to go. St Marys returned to the reliable Brockman who pulled Marys back level with 4 pts following some missed opertunities by Jeaic Mac, Odhran and Pearse Gallagher who a this point was having it all his own way under the boards. 2 mins left and it was all square.

Sean Mac took a great pass from Mac Fhionngaile to push Colaiste back in front and another quick basket from O Cléirigh put Colaiste right in the driving seat.

St Marys threw caution to the wind but the tenacious Mac Ceallabhuí refused Brockman the space to get his team back in the game and Oisin O Cleirigh added to St Marys misery with another 4 late points.

Colaiste Ailigh 40 St Marys 32

Colaiste Ailigh coach Mac Ceallabhuí was delighted with the result after the long week and a number of his players missing.

“We can’t wait for the final in two weeks and I hope Niall, Pearse, Odhran and Caoimhín can bring some silverware back from BT Young Scientist after sprinting back to Dublin for the presentation ceremony.

At the final whistle the largest cheer of the day was to be heard in Rang a 6 in Gaelscoil Adhmanain where Muinteoir Meabh was following the game on Twitter.

Colaiste Ailigh

Niall Ó Hannaigain, Adam Ó Cnaimhsí, Jeaic Mac Ceallabhuí (3), Caoimhín Mac Lochlainn, Evin Breathnach (4), Sean Mac a tSaoir (9), Maitis Mac Ceallabhuí, Oisín Ó Cléirigh (24) Odhran Mac Fhionghaile, agus Piarais Ó Gallachoir.

St Mary’s

Kladius Bak (5), Ross Farrell (2), Patrick O Connor, Tobias Brockman (26), Aaron Boles, Artemius Serikovo, Philip Kilcullen.




 November 12, 2012

One of Letterkenny’s most eagerly awaited school construction projects is to begin in the coming weeks – after the Government got a loan!

The Minister for Education and Skills warmly welcomed the start of construction of eight schools which are being delivered under the Public Private Partnership (PPP) model.

One of these schools is the new Colasite Ailigh building on the outskirts of the town.

Construction on the 350 pupil school is to begin shortly and is expected to be complete before the end of 2014.

A loan of €50 million has been secured through the European Investment Bank (EIB) which has meant these new schools can now proceed to construction. The total value of the construction costs is estimated to be approximately €100 million.

The move has been welcomed by local Labour Senator Jimmy Harte who said the move now guarantees a start-date for Colaiste Ailigh, which is currently located on the High Road.

These are the first public sector projects to be funded under the PPP model since June 2010.

They are part of the five year school building programme already announced by Minister Ruairí Quinn T.D. earlier this year.

Minister Quinn said, “This is very good news for the communities in counties stretching from Donegal to Waterford who have been waiting for their school building projects to be given the green light.”

“I am particularly pleased that the EIB has again decided to support the Department’s schools capital investment programme with a loan of €50 million which will assist in funding this investment. It is a further signal of the bank’s renewed confidence in the Irish State and our recovery programme.”





 May 12, 2012

More than 300 people including pupils from schools across Ireland gathered in Letterkenny last night for the final of music competition BEO.

The competition, arranged by Colaiste Ailigh, saw schools compete for a first prize of €5,000.

Schools were tasked with the challenge of organising their own BEO concert while speaking a cupla focal Gaeilge.

The schools who made the final included Gaelcholáiste Chill Dara, Pobalscoil Ghaoth Dobhair, Grennan College, Pobalscoil na Rosann, Bridgetown Vocational College and St Columba’s College.

Held in the RCC the final proved a night of musical mayhem as a number of bands including Storyfold, More Than Conquerors and Jamaican Vampires rocked it out.

But the real interest was who was going to walk away with the inaugural BEO trophy ….and €5,000!

The announcement was made by the man many credit with discovering U2 – Hot Press writer Jackie Hayden.

Making the announcement, Jackie said “If the wealth of talent here tonight is anything to go by then there is no recession in the Irish music business.”

There was a huge reaction when Bridgetown Vocational School pipped one other school at the post.

But the real winner on the night were the teachers and pupils of Colaiste Ailigh, Loreto Convent and St Eunan’s College for organising an amazing night.




 December 19, 2011

Three long-awaited school projects in Letterkenny are to begin construction in the New Year, has learned.

Gaelscoil Adhmanain in Glencar will begin while work on the Irish-speaking secondary school Colaiste Ailigh will start at its location in Carnamuggagh.

It has also been confirmed that work on the extension to St.Patrick’s National School in Lurgybrack, on the outskirts of Letterkenny, will also begin in the New Year.

The news of a definite construction start date for all three projects has been welcomed by Deputy Joe McHugh.

Deputy McHugh said he hoped the work was just the beginning of many such projects across Co Donegal.

“These new state-of-the-art school buildings will facilitate the delivery of first-class education to many pupils in the local area in the years ahead.

“I met with Minister for Education Ruairi Quinn TD in Government Buildings last week, and was given an assurance by him that this Government will work to secure the futures of smaller schools including two-teacher schools in rural communities.

“High-quality education is critically important for our country’s future and for Donegal’s future. These new school buildings will be very valuable resources for our communities when construction work is completed.

“The new Coláiste Ailigh post-primary school will be built through public-private partnership, one of only 10 such projects in Ireland,” he said.

Welcoming the news, Cllr. Jimmy Kavanagh said “This is excellent news for Letterkenny – these new buildings will be high quality resources for education in Letterkenny. I will work with the Boards of Management of each of these schools throughout the construction processes.”








 December 16, 2011

BY MOLLIE MacGINTY: BEO, which was set up in 2009 by three neighbouring schools in Letterkenny, Colaiste Ailigh, Loreto Convent and St Eunan’s, organises and promotes live music events for teenagers is getting ready for a special gig tonight – to launch their own website.

For the past few months the BEO committee have been putting together a website. This website is to help other schools run their own BEO project.

It contains sections for Students, Teachers and Bands showing what BEO has to offer. It even includes a week by week guide to running your own BEO.

The event  will take place in the Regional Cultural Centre in Letterkenny this evening, Friday, at 6:30pm. The official launch will take place at 6:45.

Bands playing on the night are:

Not Squares: A trio from Belfast who describe their music as ‘Disco Beard’. They have played at BEO before and are loved by many of the BEO Network.

Hogan : A pop rock band from Tullamore, Co. Offaly, consisting of Mark Hogan (vocals, guitar), Wayne Brereton (guitar), Jonathan Westman (bass), and Ronan Nolan (drums)..

Don’t Lean Back : A four piece, all-girl rock band from Buncrana (pictured). The drummer in the band Rachel Nelson is a student of Coláiste Ailigh and was in the first TY Group to run a BEO event.

The launch is sure to be a great night of ceol agus craic. Bígí linn chun oíche speisialta, féiltiúla a bheith again.

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 December 4, 2011

BY MOLLIE McGINTY, COLÁISTE AILIGH: It was a long day for the 40 Letterkenny students and teachers who left for Dublin at 5am on Friday.

The Design For Learning Final took place in the Science Gallery in Dublin. BEO, which was set up in 2009 by three neighbouring schools in Letterkenny, Colaiste Ailigh, Loreto Convent and St Eunan’s, organises and promotes live music events for teenagers. This project was competing in the final of the competition on Friday.

BEO’s four competitors were:
Linking Learning, a website service and mobile app which aims to help parents gain a deeper understanding and awareness of the all specific learning objectives that their child is encountering weekly.

Ourchaeology, a website aiming to link schools and students to archaeologists and information about digs.

Learning Hunt, a mobile content platform and authoring tool, which allows organisations like art galleries and zoos, to  develop and deploy mobile learning experiences., an initiative focused at enabling the public to better understand science and its benefit to society by participating in current scientific research.

The day began with photos with the Minister for  Education, Ruairí Quinn and the Provost of Trinity College, Patrick Prendergast.

There were talks and speeches by the Minister, the Provost, Michael John Gorman, Director of Science Gallery, Ben Hurley, CEO, NDRC and Mike Saunders, Director of Digital Media, Kew, Royal Botanic Gardens.

The presentations began at 11 and the winners announced at 14:45 after panel conversations with Hedge School, NCAD; Lynn Scarff, Programme Manager, Science Gallery Dublin; Keimpe de Heer, Director, Creative Learning Lab, Waag Society, The Netherlands; Sean Love, Fighting Words, Dublin.

We were delighted to hear that BEO – the only entrant from students – received a Special Mention in this Final.

Beo’s first event outside of Donegal took place at six o’ clock in at Block T in Smithfield. Bands performing were; Epik, a 3 piece band hailing from Tallaght who’s name describes  them as best as any adjective. The Wonder Villains from Derry, a favourite of the Beo Networks and last but not least The Dirty 9s who even covered an Arcade Fire song in Irish especially for BEO. By the end of the night those attending a BEO for the first time left determined to be a part of the project and we returned to Donegal an exhausted but elated group.

Maith Sibh!

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 November 26, 2011

Oíche den scoth ag An Grianán a bhí ann aréir ag an Seó leis na scoláirí o Choláiste Ailigh, Leitir Ceanainn.

Bhí an amharclann lán go doras agus bhain gach duine an-sult as na ceoltóirí, dráma, amhrán, filíocht agus damhsa.

Ceolchoirm go hiontach ar fad!

Click to play an hilarious take on Riverdance!