The Sunday Times Best Schools Guide
Hill Coláiste FCJ, Limerick, where 93.7% of the girls progress to
university, is the top secondary school in Ireland for the fourth
successive year in The Sunday Times Best Schools Guide
published on August 27. The annual Sunday Times survey is the
definitive guide to the country’s top 400 secondary schools. It measures
the progression of all second-level students over a three-year period –
from 2014 to 2016 – to universities and institutes of technology.
In 2014, Laurel Hill Coláiste FCJ was the first Gaelcholáiste (Irish-language school) to become top of The Sunday Times Best Schools Guide since the paper’s annual Parent Power survey began in 2003. Laurel Hill Coláiste FCJ is also the only non-fee-paying school to top the Sunday
Times league table over the past 12 years. The 422-pupil girls’
Gaelcholáiste has been the top school in Munster (excluding Cork) for
seven out of the past 14 years.
Second overall in this year’s Sunday
Times Irish Parent Power survey, up three places from fifth in 2016, is
Scoil Mhuire, Sidney Place, Cork, which is Ireland’s top fee-paying
school. Scoil Mhuire has sent an average of 89.6% of its students to
university between 2014 and 2016.
Ranked 14th overall, Coláiste na Coiribe, Galway, is the only mixed school among Ireland's 20 top schools in today's Sunday
Times guide. With more than 450 students, the Galway Gaelcholáiste sent
an average of 79% to university between 2014 and 2016. It has been the
top school in Connacht for four of the past five years.
There are two mixed schools in the top 25, both in Galway, Coláiste na Coiribe and
Coláiste Iognaid SJ, Sea Rd, Galway – ranked 22nd which offers teaching
in the Irish medium and where 76.5% of the students go to university.
fourth overall, The Teresian School, in Donnybrook, is the top girls'
school in Dublin. The fee-paying school saw 85.9% of its pupils gaining
university places. Fifth overall, Coláiste Íosagáin, the girls' school
in Booterstown, is the top Gaelcholáiste in Dublin, where 85.1% of its
pupils won university places over the past three years. Girls’ schools occupy six out of the top 10 and 13 of the top 25 places in the latest Sunday Times survey of second-level education.
Castleknock College, which was 93rd in 2010, is in 12th position
overall this year, making it the top school in North Dublin for the
fourth time, ahead of Belvedere College. Castleknock, the boys’
fee-paying school in the north Dublin suburb, sent 80.8% of students to
university between 2014 and 2016. Ranked 15th, up from 23rd last year, Belvedere College saw 78.7% of its students progress to university.
THE SUNDAY TIMES SCHOOLS GUIDE 2017
TOP 25 SCHOOLS IN IRELAND
schools in bold; Gaelcholáistí in italics; *English-speaking school
with Gaelcholáistí streams or units; (G) Irish-medium Gaeltacht school;
(B) Boarding provided
National rank, with 2016 in brackets % at university
Type of school
1 (1) Laurel Hill Coláiste FCJ, Sth Circular Rd, Limerick Girls 93.7%
2 (5) Scoil Mhuire, Sidney Place, Cork Girls 89.6%
3 (8) Salerno Jesus and Mary Secondary School, Salthill, Galway Girls 87.1%
4 (6) The Teresian School, Donnybrook, Dublin 4 Girls 85.9%
5 (7) Coláiste Íosagáin, Booterstown, Co Dublin Girls 85.1%
6 (13) Glenstal Abbey School, Murroe, Co Limerick (B) Boys 84.6%
7 (3) Presentation Brothers College, Mardyke, Cork Boys 83.5%
8= (14) Christian Brothers College, Sidney Hill, Cork Boys 83.4%
8= (2) Gonzaga College, Ranelagh, Dublin 6 Boys 83.4%
10 (12) Loreto College, St Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2 Girls 82.7%
11 (11) Coláiste Íde, Dingle, Co Kerry (G) (B) Girls 82.6%
12 (10) Castleknock College, Castleknock, Dublin 15 Boys 80.8%
13 (9) Mount Anville Secondary School, Goatstown, Dublin 14 Girls 80.3%
14 (15) Coláiste na Coiribe, Knocknacarra, Galway Mixed 79.0%
15 (23) Belvedere College, Great Denmark St, Dublin 1 Boys 78.7%
16 (4) Alexandra College, Milltown, Dublin 6 (B) Girls 77.7%
17 (16) Cistercian College, Roscrea, Co Tipperary (B) Boys 77.3%
18 (18) Coláiste Eoin, Booterstown, Co Dublin Boys 77.1%
19 (31) Mount Sackville Secondary School, Chapelizod, Dublin 20 Girls 76.9%
20 (21) Mount Mercy College, Model Farm Rd, Cork Girls 76.8%
21 (26) Blackrock College, Blackrock, Co Dublin (B) Boys 76.5%
22 (20) *Coláiste Iognaid SJ, Sea Rd, Galway Mixed 76.5%
23 (19) Loreto High School, Rathfarnham, Dublin 14 Girls 76.0%
24 (36) Ardscoil Rís, Nth Circular Rd, Limerick Boys 74.7%
25 (52) Ursuline Secondary School, Thurles, Co Tipperary (B) Girls 74.5%
The Sunday Times Schools Guide 2017 ranks the top 400 secondary schools in Ireland by the average proportion of pupils gaining places in autumn 2014, 2015 and 2016 at one of the nine universities on the island of Ireland, main teacher training colleges, Royal College of Surgeons or National College of Art and Design. Where schools are tied, the proportion of students gaining places at all non-private, third-level colleges is taken into account. Schools offering only senior cycle are excluded. The guide is compiled by Kate Butler.
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