Ursuline Secondary School

Life in the Boarding School

The Boarding School has been an integral part of the Ursuline Secondary School for over two hundred years and has attracted students from every county in Ireland and indeed from further afield. Obviously, there have been many changes over the years to cater for the changing needs of our students. However, we have never lost sight of the strong tradition of training our students to be their “best selves”. We are also very conscious of our role as being in “loco parentis”.

We have always been blessed with a friendly and open spirit in the Boarding School. This spirit has enabled us to create:

  • An atmosphere that is pleasant, homely and happy
  • An environment that is conducive to work
  • A place where students can develop all aspects of their personalities.

To achieve this “home from home” situation, we aim to treat each student individually with the utmost respect and courtesy and to encourage them to treat others with that same respect and courtesy.

Since September 1999, we have changed to a five-day Boarding School. Although this necessarily lessens the time they spend in the Boarding School, we still continue to place a big emphasis on their spiritual, emotional, cultural and academic development.


Ours is a Catholic Boarding School and as such embodies the Christian values of love, honesty, truth and justice. We place great value on all aspects of religious practice and encourage our students to take an active part in the Liturgy at every opportunity. Throughout the year we celebrate certain feasts and we expect our students to attend Mass on these occasions. These include House Feast Days – St Ursula’s Day, St Angela’s Day, Church Holy days – Immaculate Conception, St Patrick’s Day etc. and special Church Feast Days. Their regular attendance at the Sacraments is also expected: confessions are available to them at regular intervals during the year. We start each day with Morning Prayer in the Convent Chapel and students are also encouraged to pay a visit there in their own time for quiet prayer and reflection.


We endeavour to approach all students in an individual way, recognising the uniqueness of each child. There are supervisors in charge of all Boarders and they cater for their day to day needs. There are three study halls: First and Second Years are grouped together, Junior Certs and Fifth Years are grouped together and Sixth Years have their own study hall.

On the day of arrival in September, parents of each student will be allotted a time when they can meet with the Headmistress of the Boarding School and discuss anything that may be of importance to the welfare of their daughter. Regular communication between the parents and the Headmistress is very important. She meets with the students on a one to one basis and also in class groups at regular intervals. Parents will receive a written report on their daughter’s progress and personal development twice yearly along with their academic report.


It is essential in these competitive times that our students take every opportunity to develop their gifts and talents outside the classroom in order that they may use their leisure time constructively. A wide range of extra-curricular activities is available to them and we recommend strongly that they partake of them.

  • Musical Instrument Tuition
  • Speech & Drama – Debating / Public Speaking
  • Tennis Coaching
  • Sports: Lunch Time and 4.00 – 5.00 p.m. each day and 6.30 – 7.30 (Juniors)
  • Cultural Activities: attending Dramas, Shows, Concerts
  • Participation in annual School Musical



  • 7.30 a.m. Rise
  • 7.50 a.m. Morning Prayers
  • 8.00 a.m. Breakfast
  • 8.50 a.m. Classes begin
  • 1.05 p.m. Lunch/Recreation
  • 2.00 p.m. Classes Resume
  • 4.00 p.m. Sport/Recreation
  • 5.10 p.m. Study Begins
  • 6.15 p.m. Supper
  • 7.00 p.m. Recreation
  • 7.30 p.m. Study Resumes
  • 9.30 p.m. Bedtime
  • 10.15 p.m. Lights out


  • 7.30 a.m. Rise
  • 7.50 a.m. Morning Prayer
  • 8.00 a.m. Breakfast
  • 8.50 a.m. Classes begin
  • 1.05 p.m. Lunch/Recreation
  • 2.00 p.m. Classes Resume
  • 4.00 p.m. Sport/Recreation
  • 5.10 p.m. Study Begins
  • 6.30 p.m. Supper
  • 7.00 p.m Recreation
  • 7.30 p.m. Study Resumes
  • 10.00 p.m. Bedtime
  • 10.45 p.m. Lights out
  • Students are expected to be punctual at all times in order to make the best use of their time
  • Sixth Year students are given the option to return to study at 10.15
  • Each student is allotted a half – hour period each day for her music practice
  • Students must return from their weekends on time for 7.30 p.m. study each Sunday (See Travel)
  • We ask parents to note that students will have a lot of study to do at the weekends. It is most important that they spend time at it and have their work properly completed for classes on Monday morning.
  • Mobile phones should not be brought into the study area
  • The phones of the First & Second Years are collected each night before lights out


Great care is taken to ensure that our students keep well and healthy during the year. Involvement in sport, regular exercise and a sensible diet are essential in this respect. We are very fortunate to have the services of trained nurses who are available to students at appointed times each day.


We expect our students to be well motivated and well disposed towards their studies. Competition for third level places is on the increase each year. We provide supervised study each day for each of the three study halls so that our students will have the opportunity to work consistently and have a balanced approach to their studies.


  • Tuck Shop
  • Stationary, Toiletries, Phone Cards available in Boarding School Office
  • Washing Machine, Tumble Dryer for emergencies
  • Iron available
  • Boiler for hot drinks after study
  • Infirmary for students who may be ill


  • Classes will finish each Friday evening at 3.30 p.m. unless otherwise stated on the School Calendar issued each June.
  • Those students who are using the public transport must observe this time and make their arrangements in accordance with the school finishing time.
  • Students are expected to return for 7.30 study on Sunday evening. In the case of those using public transport, train/bus times will be accepted.
  • Students using public transport have their weekend baggage brought to the railway station every Friday evening.
  • Students are collected at Thurles Railway Station each Sunday evening.
  • Bus/Train tickets may be purchased through the Boarding School office each week.


In addition to the Code of Behaviour in the school, some additional points apply to the students in the Boarding School. We ask our students to:

  • Always notify the Sister in charge if they are not able to return after a weekend or holidays due to illness etc.
  • Show respect and courtesy at all times to all those in authority: Study Supervisors, Dining Room Staff, Ancillary Staff
  • Keep their cubicles in the dormitory neat and tidy at all times
  • Observe all rules of the Dining Room
  • Never do anything that may disrupt or disturb the study area
  • Observe carefully the lights out time in the dormitories
  • Remember that they are representing the school when they use public transport or attend any public function.
  • Never leave the school premises without the permission of the Sister in charge.
May 22
Sixth Year Child of Mary Mass
May 27
House Exams for 1st, 2nd & 5th Year
Jun 14
Incoming First Years Induction
Aug 21
School Opens - Staff Meetings
Templemore Road,
Eircode: E41ET35.
0504 22147
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