English is a core subject for all students from first to sixth year. At Junior Certificate level, students develop their literacy and oral skills. They are taught to read and analyse literary texts, to compose their own prose and poetry, and to write speeches to be delivered to their class.  At Leaving Certificate level, our teachers build on the knowledge students have learned for the Junior Certificate. Students are trained to become independent learners, who understand the power of words, who appreciate the aesthetic qualities of language and who can express themselves eloquently with both the spoken and the written word.

A well-stocked library supports the teaching of English in the school and provides students with extra reading materials, which may be taken out on loan, and reference books which may be consulted within the library. English students are encouraged to read in their free time and to take part in extra-curriculur activities like debating, as these activities greatly enhance their writing skills and improve their understanding of the language.

Debating is very strong in Tullamore College, and both our Junior and Senior teams have had much success in the L&H Debates and Concern Debates respectively. Our Transition Year group organises debates for junior students as part of the Gemini Ireland project, and our school competes in an interschools debating competition within this project too. Our English teachers train our students to structure arguments and to work as a team in persuading their audience.

The Thing-A-Majig school magazine is published annually by the Transition Year group, with the co-operation of the English and Art Departments. In 2009, the magazine won an Irish Times award.

In 2009, a group of students reformed the Writers’ Club and participated in after-school creative writing classes with Dr. Arthur Broomfield.

Older students may choose to participate in our Paired Reading programme, in which they assist Junior Cycle students to read a novel of their choice.

Teaching and Learning

  • Ms Josephine McArdle, Head of English and writer
  • Ms Renée Gallagher, Debating Teams Mentor
  • Ms Donna Feighery
  • Ms Mary O’Connor
  • Ms Myra Kennedy
  • Ms Karen Sheerin
  • Mr Paul Quirke