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An extra special Christmas at Holy Child Primary School

A Derry school has made an extra special effort this festive season, creating a “Fortnight of Christmas Cheer” for pupils and parents.

An extra special Christmas at Holy Child Primary School

Pat Concannon, Vice-principal and Nicola Cullen, Principal, pictured with Holy Family Nursery School children who help with a collection for the Foyle Foodbank, at the recent breakfast with Santa.

A Derry school has made an extra special effort this festive season, creating a “Fortnight of Christmas Cheer” for pupils and parents.
Holy Child Primary School on Central Drive in Derry, which has 260 pupils and 12 teachers, raised an impressive £5,700 through Downtown Radio's Cash for Kids School Challenge and used the money to run a variety of special events.
School principal, Nicola Cullen, said the money was donated by parents and local businesses and boosted by a £1,000 from Downtown.
"It's a fabulous amount, especially from such a small school.
"We always make a big effort at Christmas but we decided to use it to make this year even better with a 'Fortnight of Christmas Cheer'."
The school ran three “Big Bedtime Read” events, a Christmas Movie Night, five nativities and a Santa Breakfast event for every child.
"Parents give so much to the school, so it's important for us to give something back," said Mrs Cullen.
"Going to see Santa can cost up to £10 and if you have three or four children it just gets too expensive, so parents have told us the Santa Breakfast has really helped.
Of course, putting on so many Christmas events takes a big effort from staff.
"Each and every teacher and classroom assistant has given hours and hours of their free time to make this all happen," said Mrs Cullen.
"Everyone from the secretary to the caretaker has helped and of course our vice principal too."
Holy Child PS also makes sure it gives back to the local community at this time of year.
"Our P2 children performed their nativity at the Creggan Day Care Centre which was so special for everyone," said Mrs Cullen.
"And our choir has also performed at Foyleside and Rathmor. And we visited all the local shops and businesses on Central Drive with gifts to say thank you for everything they have done for us. It's great for the children's confidence to go out into the community and we always get people phoning us to praise their great behaviour."
The school also raised £1,200 for St Vincent de Paul through the school raffle, which will help local families in need.
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