10 October, 2013 - Ministers Quinn and O’Dowd launch ‘Decade of Centenaries’ All-island Schools History Competition

The Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairí Quinn T.D., and the Minister for Education in Northern Ireland, John O’Dowd M.LA., today jointly launched the ‘Decade of Centenaries’ all-island schools history competition.

The competition invites primary and post primary students from schools across Ireland to submit a project that identifies a particular event or person from the decade 1912 – 1922. It should examine the impact of that event or person on their local area. The project can be submitted by a class, a group of students, or an individual student.

The projects will be assessed by a three person panel chaired by Professor Mary Daly of University College, Dublin. There will be three winning projects from each province, with at least one prize in each province reserved for primary pupils. All winning projects will receive book tokens and will be published online on www.scoilnet.ie.

The overall winning entry will also receive a year’s subscription to History Ireland. An edited version of the overall winning project, or a selection of extracts from the winning entries, will also be considered for publication in History Ireland.

This joint cross-border initiative forms part of the ‘Decade of Centenaries’ commemorations which are being organised to mark the centenary of the many important historical events that occurred in the period 1912-1922.

In launching the event, Minister Quinn highlighted the importance of the ‘Decade of Centenaries’.

He said, “The legacy of the events of that period, including the 1913 lockout, 1916 rising, the War of Independence, the Government of Ireland Act, and the signing of the Treaty, were pivotal in the formation of the political landscape as we know it today.

“It is appropriate that these events are commemorated and that this is done in as inclusive a way as possible so that their impact on the different traditions on this island can be understood and respected.”

Minister O’Dowd pointed to the benefits of the all-island schools history competition for students.

“By assessing the impact of an event or person from that decade on their local area, it will enrich students’ understanding of how historical events can impact on the everyday lives of ordinary people,” said Minister O’Dowd.

“This is something that cannot be overlooked if we are to fully appreciate how events in the past have influenced, and often continue to influence, the development of modern political, cultural and social life across this island.” 

The deadline for receipt of completed projects is 4th April 2014. Further details on the competition are available at Decade of Centenaries