‘The quality of teaching and learning observed was consistently high and ranged from good to very good with a significant number of excellent lessons. School management and teachers have appropriately high expectations for student learning and in turn students responded through purposeful engagement and focus on their work. Student interest, motivation and focus was excellent. Whole-school Evaluation, Department of Education & Skills, 2014
In keeping with the Loreto Educational Philosophy, we ‘promote excellence appropriate to each student’. A culture of high expectations is identified by all international research as a key component of successful schools. Our academic achievements in the State Examinations provide further proof that this is the case. At Loreto, a culture of learning prevails in each class to the benefit of all students of all abilities. Each year, in the State Examinations, our results far surpass national averages in terms of the numbers of students taking examinations at Higher Level and the achievement of high grades in all subjects in all levels.
Our progression rates to third level are consistently among the very best. 96% of the class of 2020 progressed directly to further education, with 83% of the class commencing a degree-level course. 69% of our graduates progressed to study in one of the seven Universities or teacher training colleges. Our performance in this regard is consistently high, and we have been one of the top ten schools in Leinster for the past thirteen years (source Sunday Times). This is a remarkable achievement for a school with a non-selective enrolment policy, based in the South East (i.e. no local University). 19% of the class continued their education in one of the Institutes of Technology, again most at degree level.
Our 2020 Leaving Certificate results maintained our consistently high standards. 17% of the year group were awarded equal or greater than 550 C.A.O. points (three students achieved the maximum 625). A consistently high level of performance was achieved across all levels of ability with the following percentages achieving or exceeding the following points: 500 (28%), 450 (47%), 350 (78%). Our results in the Junior Cycle Profile of Achievement also far surpass national averages.
While our results surpass national averages, our enrolment of students reflects the national averages in terms of ability. Our successes can be put down to the fact that our teachers care about each student in her/his class. The Loreto culture of high expectations is a rising tide that lifts all boats. Our aim is always to help, support, guide and inspire each girl to reach her potential. Recent initiatives such as student target grades and our progress support team support these aims.
We also have an excellent learning support department that has strong structures in place to support the learning of those who have specific challenges to overcome.