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Posted on 17th April 2020 | News

The St. Mary’s community has been greatly saddened by the death of our esteemed colleague Mrs Sonya Monaghan (RIP) who passed away on 10 April 2020. Requiem Mass for Mrs Monaghan was celebrated in Holy Trinity Church, Cookstown on Sunday 12 April 2020. 

Mrs Monaghan joined the staff of St. Mary’s in 2013 as Head of Mathematics and in 2015, she was appointed to the school’s Senior Leadership Team. The Mathematics Department flourished under Mrs Monaghan’s tenure. In her Senior Leadership role, she had primary responsibility for the academic progression of pupils at Key Stage 5. Mrs Monaghan was innovative and forward-looking in her approach to education and was pivotal in bringing about curricular reforms at both Key Stage 4 and Key Stage 5.

At Mrs Monaghan’s Requiem Mass, Miss McCloskey (Senior Teacher) reflected: “Sonya was an incredibly dedicated and inspiring teacher who went above and beyond to ensure every student in her care fulfilled their potential.  She led by example and she never asked anyone to do anything that she wasn’t doing already herself. By returning to St. Mary’s in 2013 she fulfilled one of her career ambitions to teach in the school that she was a proud past pupil of.”

Mrs Monaghan was generous with both her time and her expertise. She gave willingly of herself for the best of the St. Mary’s community and through this embodied the words of the famous quotation; “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”

Paying tribute to Mrs Monaghan, Mr Dunlop (Acting Principal) said: “Sonya was both an inspirational teacher and a highly valued member of our Senior Leadership Team. Her approach to this role was characterised by enthusiasm, energy and indeed more often than not a sense of fun. She will be sadly missed by everyone in St. Mary’s”.

On behalf of the Board of Governors, staff, pupils and parents of the school, we wish to express how deeply we regret the passing of Sonya and extend our sincere sympathy to her husband, Barry, daughter, Megan and the wider family circle on the loss of a remarkable and exceptional colleague and friend.