14TH MAY 2005


          300 Pupils exhibited 15 projects on the theme of Co-operation is Cool in Laois Education Centre on Saturday 14th May.  Entries were received from Primary and Post Primary schools in Laois and Offaly.


5th and 6th Classes in primary schools and Transition year and LCVP students in post primary schools took part.  Students took ownership of their school project and form mini co-operatives to progress their work. 


This is the second year of this major initiative which is a partnership between Glanbia, Laois Leader and Laois Education Centre.


The aim of the initiative is to promote awareness of co-operation and how it works around us in the 21st Century aided by modern technology.  The idea was born out of the celebration of Donaghmore Co-operative Society’s 75th anniversary of the commemorative book A Triumph Over Adversity by Teddy Fennelly which tells the story of the formation of the co-operative movement in Donaghmore.


Liam Hyland who presented the prizes welcomed the partnership between the world of education, Laois Leader and industry.  He complemented the students on the quality of their work, the creativity and teamwork that was so obvious in their projects.   He emphasised the importance of the initiative and said it would also enhance pupils’ understanding and knowledge of their own place and their sense of belonging to a particular community.  The challenges faced with such commitment and co-operation by Donaghmore in the 1920’s and subsequent years are in many ways similar to the challenges we face today both locally and internationally.


Paddy Bates thanked the staff of Glanbia plc for their support and encouragement and Laois Leader for being great partners as always and thanked the judges Dominic Mac Evoy N.C.T.E , Martin Varley I.C.O.S., and Ann Goodwin Laois L.E.A.D.E.R., for their commitment and time.


The Chairperson, Sean Hearn thanked all involved and complimented the steering committee on their work and dedication to the project and stated because of the success of the project it would be extended and expanded next year.