Retiring principal with 48 years’ service nominated to be Teacher of the Year

AN INISHOWEN principal who is set to retire after 48 years of service has been nominated in a national Teacher of the Year competition.

Gerard O’Kane from Craigtown National School was nominated for the award by numerous parents whose children attend, or attended the school.

Katie Crossan, whose daughter Letitia, 21, attended Craigtown National School said that Mr O’Kane’s dedication is second to none.


“Master O’Kane, or Sir as we all call him, is such a special principal and is always ahead of the game.

“He is at school an hour before it starts, is there late in the evening facilitating activities for the children and is also a referee in his own time.

“Even though Master O’Kane is no nonsense, he’s also very caring.

“After they’ve left Craigtown National School, the students still go back to visit Master O’Kane and he still cares about how they’re doing.

“Five years after Letitia left Craigtown, we had an email from him seeing how she got on with her exams.

“How many teachers would do that? When Letitia said she was interested in PE teaching, he told her to come back and that he’d help her with a placement, which he has.

“His students always come first, he listens to them and encourages them to do their best.


“If you don’t listen attentively to Sir though, he’ll have you going around the pitch doing laps!

“As a person, Master O’Kane is very bubbly.

“If you join the school as a new student, he’ll always have a wee story about what your aunty or uncle did when they were at school.

“Master O’Kane will be badly missed when he retires, it will be a very sad day. As parents, we thoroughly believe Master O’Kane deserves this award,” Katie concluded.

If you wish to nominate someone for Teacher of the Year you can do so via Teacher of the Year.

All types of teachers are eligible including primary and secondary school teachers, higher education teachers, early year’s teachers and special educational needs teachers in Ireland.

The Teacher of the Year competition runs until August 31, 2024 and the winning teacher will be announced in September 2024.

The teacher who receives the most votes will be crowned as Teacher of the Year in the national competition.

The Teacher of the Year, and their school, will each win a €500 Town & City Gift Card, such as the Carndonagh Gift Card.

One person who nominated the Teacher of the Year will also win a €250 local gift card.

Other Inishowen schools and pre-schools with teachers nominated in the Teacher of the Year competition include Carndonagh Community School, St. Patrick’s Girls’ National School, St. Patrick’s Boys’ National School, Little Acorns Montessori Playschool, Donagh National School, St. Brigid’s and Bright Beginnings Preschool.

Nominate a teacher in the Teacher of the Year competition at

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