On the morning of Thursday 14th September 2017, a bus taking students to Deele College, Raphoe and the Royal and Prior Comprehensive was involved in a road accident with another vehicle in the St Johnston area of Co Donegal. The emergency services were contacted and attended the scene of the accident. There were 16 students from Deele College on board the bus at the time of the accident. Following the accident, 8 of the students were ferried to Letterkenny University Hospital for attention and in some cases precautionary observations. A number of the remaining students proceeded to Deele College, while others travelled home with their parents.
On news reaching the school of the accident, the Critical Incident Plan of Deele College was enacted and a special room set up to for students and families. The Student Support Team, the Critical Incident Team and the management and staff of Deele College spoke with students and parents during the course of the morning, while other staff members travelled to the hospital to be with the students. The Donegal ETB Senior Educational Psychologist, Mr Martin Gallen, offered advice and guidance to ensure the wellbeing of students and families was attended to. Mr Joe Boyle, Principal, attended the scene while Mr Danny McFadden, Deputy Principal, helped co-ordinate the response. All students have now been discharged from Letterkenny University Hospital.
Dr Martin Gormley, Director of Schools, Donegal ETB, stated’ “We are relieved to hear that there were no major injuries to the students of Deele College or the Royal and Prior Comprehensive, Raphoe. The priority for the management and staff was the wellbeing and welfare of the students and their families at this worrying time. Donegal ETB wish to compliment the emergency services and the school staff on their response to the critical incident. We are keeping the school community of Deele College updated and we now wish the students a speedy recovery following the accident. We also extend our best wishes to both drivers in their recovery period.”
Dr Gormley also advised that should students or families have particular concerns to contact the school immediately.