Transition Year (TY) is an optional one-year programme available to students on completion of Junior Cycle.

The mission of Transition Year is to promote the personal, social, educational and vocational development of students and to prepare them for their role as autonomous, participative and responsible members of society.

The overall aims of Transition Year are:

  1. Education for maturity with the emphasis on personal development including social awareness and increased social competence.
  2. The promotion of general, technical and academic skills with an emphasis on interdisciplinary and self-directed learning.
  3. Education through experience of adult and working life as a basis for personal development and maturity.

In Our Lady’s Bower, our programme aims to promote the holistic development of our students and to prepare them for their role as responsible members of society.  It is designed to provide students with the opportunity to discover their talents, aptitudes and abilities while developing skills and competencies within an academic structure.  It requires that students accept responsibility for their own learning and evaluate their progress.

We offer students the space to learn, mature and develop while enjoying a broad variety of learning experiences inside and outside the classroom.  By opting for Transition Year and committing to it, the students develop independent work habits, become more skilled at dealing with people, develop their character and personality, and are inspired to give some of their time and energy to the wider community.

Our programme also assists young people to connect with adult and working life through the provision of work experience and career guidance modules. Each student completes three weeks work placement during the academic year. We encourage our students to explore and avail of opportunities for work experience in areas of interest to them for future study post Leaving Certificate.



The students have a regular class timetable which includes: Irish, English, Maths, Religion, French, German, Spanish, PE, Communications, Health Education, Political Education, Cultural Activities and Computers as well as modules in subjects such Film and Drama Studies, History, Geography, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Agricultural Science, Music, Home Economics, Art, Enterprise Education, Business, Accounting, Economics, Journalism, Japanese and Design in Graphics

We offer a taster programme in all Leaving Cert subjects. Students have opportunities throughout the year to participate in other activities some of which include:

  • TY musical in collaboration with students from Marist College
  • Drama classes and drama competitions
  • Killary Adventure Centre Outdoor Pursuits Trip
  • Visits to the National Gallery, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Botanic Gardens, Irish Aid Centre, Luan Gallery, Lough Key
  • Mock Trials competition
  • BT Young Scientist competition
  • Junk Kouture competition
  • Gaisce, The President’s Award
  • Young Environmentalist
  • Scifest
  • Public speaking competitions
  • Mini-company/Enterprise competition
  • First Aid course
  • Craolachán radió
  • Ceardlanna Gaeilge
  • Formula 1
  • CanSat
  • Skydome mobile planetarium
  • Rotary young leader, young writer
  • Young chef competitions
  • Basketball coaching in Primary school
  • La Sainte Union Missions support
  • Soroptimist Competition
  • International Day of Languages/Think Languages
  • John Paul II Awards
  • Cycle on Greenway
  • Royal College of Surgeons Mini – Med Programme
  • Ceile
  • First Year Talent Show
  • Look into Law
  • Ericsson Coding Programme
  • Workshops on haircare, drumming and film making, leadership and confidence building, drug and alcohol misuse, Forensic Science, Disability Awareness, GAA Coaching and refereeing, Coding, Web design, Yoga, Self-defence and Fast Fashion

Some students use time during Transition Year to spend a period of time improving their language skills abroad or in the Gaeltacht.

Students are encouraged to give of their time to the community e.g. in activities with St Hilda’s clients, the Gateway project, visiting the elderly, fundraising for local charities etc.


Assessment & Certification

In addition to traditional style homework, TY students are also asked to undertake self-directed learning experiences through projects, assignments, interviews and research.

Students receive bi annual school reports, at Christmas and in the Summer.

Students results of their continual assessment combined with results of their summative assessments determines the grade achieved at the end of the year which is recorded on their Transition Year Certificate.

External certification also exists for students who participate in First Aid, Communication exams etc.

At the end of the year, parents of Transition Year students are invited to join us in recognition and celebration of student’s participation and achievements at an event in the school.



The Transition Year programme has been running in our school for over thirty years and it is annually evaluated and updated to meet the current needs of our students.