St Columbanus' College

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Coordinates: 54°39′40″N 5°38′02″W / 54.661°N 5.634°W / 54.661; -5.634

St Columbanus'College
Coláiste Naomh Columbán
Established 1960[1]
Closed July - August, Christmas & Easter Holidays
Type 11- 18 All Ability school
Religion Roman Catholic
Headteacher Mr Liam Perry
Chair Mr Pat McCartan
Founder Bishop Daniel Mageean
Location Ballymaconnell Road
County Down
BT20 5PU
Northern Ireland
Local authority Education Authority South East
Staff 68
Students 600
Gender Co-educational
Ages 13–18
Website St Columbanus' College

St. Columbanus' College (Irish: Coláiste Naomh Columbán) is a Roman Catholic secondary school situated on the Ballymaconnell Road, Bangor, County Down, Northern Ireland. Its main education board of choice is CCEA, but the school also uses AQA, Edexcel and OCR for certain subjects.


The school's motto is "Lex Dei in Corde Meo" which is Latin for "The Law of God in my Heart". This motto mirrors the importance of faith to St. Columbanus College, alongside its encouragement of every pupil to respect others and themselves, to do what is right and not what is easy, and to do nothing which may cause hurt to other people.


The foundation stone for St Columbanus' Secondary Intermediate School, as it was then known, was laid by Bishop Daniel Mageean on the Feast of the Assumption, 15 August 1959. The school was built to serve the parishes of Bangor, Holywood and Newtownards and opened within a week of the feast of St Columbanus on 29 November 1960.

A wide curriculum was offered with an emphasis on the teaching of vocational and technical skills. Many pupils left at the age of fifteen to take up employment while a small GCE class remained to study for external examinations. The late 1960s and early 1970s saw a significant growth in enrolment which required a major extension to the original building. The school has grown significantly, focusing on both academic and vocational skills.

In 2001, the college established a Sixth Form, allowing post-GCSE pupils to remain and study at St. Columbanus. Numbers of students completing A Levels at the college are still on the rise, showing an approximate 4-fold increase in the past 3 years.


The school offers a range of subjects including; Art & Design, Home Economics, English, Drama, French, Spanish, Geography, History, Mathematics, Science, Technology & Design, Music, Religion, Learning for Life and Work, ICT and P.E. Such subjects are compulsory to study at Key Stage 3 Level.

At Key Stage 4, the college offers further study in the above subjects, as well as:

  • Moving Image Arts
  • Business Studies
  • Biology
  • Double Award Science
  • Construction
  • English Literature
  • Home Economics Child Development
  • Home Economics Food
  • Single Award Science
  • Music

The school has partnered with the South Eastern Regional College in Bangor to give students the opportunity to study more Vocational and Practical subjects at the equivalent of GCSE level.

At A Level, Sixth Form students have the opportunity to study:

  • Religious Studies
  • Geography
  • Applied Information and Communication Technology
  • Health and Social Care
  • Business Studies
  • Applied Single Award Science
  • Sociology
  • Art
  • Moving Image Arts
  • Mathematics
  • English Literature
  • Public Service
  • Biology

Sixth Form students also have the opportunity to study other A Levels at neighbouring schools through the North Down and Ards Learning Community. Schools who have taken part in this partnership are: Glenlola Collegiate, Bangor Grammar, Glastry College, Priory College and Bangor Academy. Many A Level subjects offered to St. Columbanus students include,Chemistry, Drama, Psychology, Music Technology.


St. Columbanus houses multiple, well-equipped ICT suites, a sports hall and assembly hall, a sports and athletic pitch, technology and design suites and science suites. The school's entrances are also fully accessible.


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