A month into her new role as principal of St. Tierney’s Primary School, Rosslea, Elaine Murray says that her first few weeks have been “very busy” but “very rewarding”.

“We’ve been off to a great start. There’s no easing in period, the children come in on the first or second day of September and it’s all go,” shared Elaine, who added: “I’ve been very busy but it’s been very fulfilling, very rewarding.”

Elaine, who has worked in education for almost 20 years, took on the role as principal of St. Tierney’s this year after working as a teacher at the primary school for the last two years. “This is my third year in the school now, I joined the school in 2017 as a class teacher and then I was working as the special needs co-ordinator in the school,” she explained.

Originally from the outskirts of Dungannon, Elaine moved to Fermanagh after she got married.

“I moved this direction and then the job came up in Rosslea and I’m just delighted, it’s a lovely school, lovely people and a really supportive community. It’s been a great opportunity for me,” she said.

When asked what she will bring to the position of school principal, Elaine said: “I think I’m a very hard worker, I’m a very ambitious person and I want to see the school promoted and nurtured as a central part of the Rosslea community.”

“Just driving the school forward and delivering excellence for the children in all areas of school life, promoting extracurricular activities, promoting home, school and community links and just making sure our children have the opportunities they deserve across all areas of the curriculum,” she added.

To help promote these links between home life and school life, Elaine has introduced ‘open assemblies,’ where parents are invited to come and see their children showcase their talents at the school.

“The assemblies have been going on here for years and there’s a real tradition of excellent music and singing and in the school, so the assemblies have been going on, it’s just a new idea to open it up to parents to come in, just to showcase the talents and the opportunities the children are getting and to let them know our whole approach is to foster the voice of the child.”

The first open assembly of the school year took place on Tuesday, September 24 and was led by the P5/6 class.

“Throughout the year every class will have an opportunity to do one but this first one of the year was P5/6 and they based it all on their hopes and dreams and it fitted in well with the beginning of the new school year,” said Elaine.

During the open assembly, the new school councils were introduced including the eco council, which was first established the previous school year.

Explaining the aims of the eco council, Elaine said: “Their whole drive last year was on recycling and reducing waste within the school and this year they are working towards achieving their green flag for that. They’ve introduced the recycling bins and they’re monitoring lights and electricity in the classroom. It’s really great.”