Students sent an  email to Andy Moran, former Mayo Senior Football Captain, sharing their story and seeking advice from him.  We appreciate Andy taking time out from his busy schedule to reply and share this really sound advice for our young students.  We hope you don’t mind Andy but we think this is valuable advice for all young people and therefore worthwhile publishing and sharing.

Here’s his reply:-

Hi to all the students and thank you for the lovely letter,

I am delighted to hear that you girls and guys are doing so much work to help produce a healthy mind and body.  I am particularly happy that you all recognise the difference exercise makes to your energy levels.  I always think that exercise is very similar to putting fuel into a car.  Exercise fuels your body and your mind to make you fitter and stronger individuals.

How do you continue to stay interested and enthusiastic when you have had to walk away from Sam so many times?
In todays world people are afraid to fail because what other people think about them.  However, failing is the way we learn, the way we grow and the way we get better as individuals.  I truly believe that the real failing is to never try.  When I was younger in primary school my dream was to play for Mayo.  Each day I am now living that dream.  To me it has been my biggest honour representing Mayo football so losing is hard but it would be much harder to never have tried.
Do you ever get angry? 
Yes.  Anger is an emotion.  We all get angry but this anger doesn’t last, it passes.  the most important thing is that we recognise that anger is just a passing emotion.  Like the handpads you use I have ways of coping with emotions like anger. 
Were you sad when you got injured and couldn’t play for your team? 
Yes.  I was really sad and it was hard to deal with.  I couldn’t play with my team mates for 9 months.  During those 9 months I got married to my wife Jennifer so I also had different things to occupy me.
What kind of diet have you got?
My diet is different than other players on the team.  The key thing for me is to try and stay away from sugar.  I try to avoid soft drinks, crisps, lucozade sport, sweets and biscuits as much as possible.  
We would also like you to share your ideas on how to keep enthusiastic and stay focused even when things get really difficult and we fail.  
If I was going to give advise to young people who love sport it would be “be the hardest worker and have the most fun”.  When young people do this they will grow to love the game.  I always believe that fun is the number 1 reason that you should play sport.  For me it is still the number 1 reason why I play Gaelic football.  Will there be obstacles to this such as losing, injury etc of course.  But if you always remember that football is your pastime I believe you will always love the game.
Thanks again for your lovely letter and keep up the good work.  If I am passing the school some day I will pop in to say hi


A letter from Andy Moran…


Lehinch Primary & Lehinch Little Learners, Lissatava, Hollymount, Co.Mayo Phone: 0949540444 /Mobile: 087 4345065 Email:





Dear Families, Past Pupils and all with an affiliation to Lehinch N.S & Little Learners Pre-School,

I hope this letter finds you in good health and happiness.

On behalf of the Board of Management and Parents of Lehinch National School, I would like to invite you to the official opening of the recently refurbished school at 5 pm on Sunday, 16th April 2017.

Lehinch N.S, built in 1843 is one of the oldest schools in the county. It is with a sense of pride we can congregate to reopen the school after a period of renovations following extensive damage from a fire in September 2015. We have added a small extension to the school to incorporate pre-school, improved toilet facilities along with a complete upgrade of the teaching technology in the school. Steeped in history, we hope the occasion will be a time to reflect on the school’s 174 years of standing, memories to share from times when the schoolyard was filled with over 100 children in the 1940’s to overcoming the potential amalgamation of the school in the 1970’s. Along with 40 circa national schools in the country, present day, Lehinch N.S. is a one-teacher school and student numbers while stable are low.

A local national school is at the heart of any community, we are striving to build a child-centred inclusive educational-space where our children can really flourish.

  • We are working to increase student numbers through enrolment in our pre-school, we currently have six children enrolled in this government funded two-year program.
  • The school is now engaged and linked with Trinity College in a 21st Century Teaching and Learning Programme – this involves exploring modern teaching and learning methods to make learning fun, active and team based allowing students to present and reflect on their work to an audience.  Provisions are made for learning spaces in our classrooms which allow for students to listen to the wise one and be the wise one; to interact with peers and reflect and be alone.
  • We are building an application for a 21st Century School of Distinction Award – an award that recognises the hard work that schools are making to transform their schools and promote innovative approaches to teaching and learning, with a particular focus in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM).

School fundraising activities


Whilst we are very proud of the current school, and believe it will grow from strength to strength over the next number of years, we are currently in a situation where we have a shortfall in funding from the costs of the renovations and the amount we have received in funding and insurance compensation. To assist in bridging that funding gap, and show the funding bodies that we have support from the local communities we will be running a number of fundraising activities over the coming months. We appreciate that in current time, it is difficult to donate to every cause you are asked, but at the same time we would appreciate any donation given towards the renovations.


We hope when you get a chance to walk around the school, talk to the current pupils you will see the progress we have made and the happy, healthy and fun learning environment, and if you do feel you are in a position to make a donation – for which we would be very grateful below are the school’s bank details where you can make a bank transfer. Alternatively, if you would prefer to make a cash/cheque donation please contact a member of the school’s board of management – all contributions will be recorded and acknowledged and a receipt will be issued for all amounts received.


Program of the evening

  • Official Opening of the School (Dr.Aoibhinn Ní Shúilleabháin, UCD and RTÉ)
  • Blessing of the school (Fr. Concannon)
  • Refreshments & live music.
  • Tour of the newly renovated school and pre-school.
  • A tribute will be paid to Mrs. Catherine Owens and Mr. Ger McHugh for their contributions and commitment over their years of service to Lehinch N.S.
  • A presentation will be made to retired caretaker, Noreen Heneghan for her work at the school over the past 25+ years.
  • A planting of a tree will take place in memory of all past pupils who have passed away, families of the deceased are invited to be part of the tree planting – allowing their memory to grow on in the school.
  • All the names of people who sign our visitor’s book on the day will be buried in a time capsule in the school garden.
  • An Easter egg hunt.
  • Please join us in Seán Óg’s Bar, Hollymount after the official opening.

If you are unable to attend and wish to have a message read on the day, please send your message to the above email address. We look forward to welcoming you on Easter Sunday to an evening of memories, fun and celebrations.

Yours Faithfully,

Sheila Jennings (Principal)

On behalf of The Board of Management and Parents of Lehinch N.S

School Bank Details:- Swift Code:BOFIIE2D, IBAN: IE29BOFI90376043782815

Board of Management Members:-

Chairperson – Mr.Michael Bell (087-2493224)

Principal – Ms.Sheila Jennings (See School Contact Details above)

Treasurer – Ms.Teresa Slattery (089-4625429)

Community Rep.- Mr.Padraic Conroy (086-0717934)

Invitation to – Official Opening of the Newly Refurbished School on Easter Sunday 2017