January 20 In the Press

Students at Markethill High School support Putting Pupils First Campaign

Record numbers attend Markethill High Open Night to gain insight into ‘Vision 2014’

By Eleanor McGillie

OVER 500 people attended this year’s annual Open Night at Markethill High School which is a success the principal has described as ‘phenomenal’.

James Maxwell, Principal, described the turnout as ‘a new record’ in terms of parents and pupils attending the school to hear the details of the school’s 2014 Vision.

Last week Mr Maxwell said he would be revealing a number of initiatives which the school has set in place  to deliver an education for children which is of high quality, taught by highly skilled teachers in a caring, creative and safe environment.

Speaking to a packed Assembly Hall Mr Maxwell spoke about the school’s new Accelerated Reader programme which will empower children to develop their literacy skills. He revealed the school will be introducing ‘discrete’ literacy lessons within all subjects and pupils will also be allocated off-timetable days to develop their speaking and listening skills.

He told parents the school will be introducing computer programming courses for STEM subjects which will fulfil demands of future employers and how there will be new courses and qualifications for pupils in Years 8-10. Furthermore, students will also have access to the prestigious BT Young Scientist of the Year competition.

Mr Maxwell said: “Our core purpose is to give your child access to the highest quality learning and teaching opportunities. We provide a learning environment which stretches and challenges your child in areas where they show ability and talent and equally in an environment which supports your child in all aspects of their learning.”

He also spoke about the school’s partnership with Microsoft to trial Surface portable technology, indicating that Markethill High School is one of the first schools in Northern Ireland to form such a partnership with an ICT industry leader. He told parents about the creation of audio and visual learning resources and said there will be new opportunities after school hours which includes new BTEC courses which equate to new extra GCSEs.

Furthermore, he introduced the new merit and reward system for pastoral care which promotes courtesy, respect among all, tolerance and hard work.

For senior pupils there will be new leadership pathways, the introduction of interview skills days for 16-year-olds and new careers classes for all Year 11s.

Mr Maxwell added: “These initiatives are part of our drive to enhance our school by driving it forwards from being one labelled by inspectors as ‘very good’ to one which is ‘outstanding’.”

Mr Maxwell said this year’s Open Night was a highly successful and informative evening and is delighted with the feedback from parents. A new online Prospectus and Newsletter are available for download on the school’s website.




Markethill High School is a co-educational 11-16 Comprehensive School situated on a spacious site adjacent to the town. Since 1959 the school has been educating pupils of all abilities drawn from a wide geographical area. The school’s ethos is ‘Believe To Achieve’.

  • Markethill High School is the Best School in Northern Ireland for Modern Languages
  • In September 2013, The Minister for Education John O’Dowd congratulates Markethill High School for being one of 11 schools in Northern Ireland which successfully bridges the gap between social disadvantage and educational attainment
  • In October 2013 the ETI report that Markethill High School is a school of ‘very good practice’ and commends all aspects of school life
  • In November 2013 Harper Adams University in Ireland announces a collaboration with Markethill High School to lead the way in education in Northern Ireland by encouraging pupils to take up careers in agriculture
  • For further information contact Eleanor McGillie of MGMPR Ltd on 028 3756 9659 | 07709805379| Education PR | Public Relations Northern Ireland | Public Relations UK | Brand Journalism Northern Ireland | Brand Journalism UK | Brand Journalism Experts

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