Ten students who missed out on their school-based graduation because of Covid-19 restrictions have received their senior-cycle certificates at a drive-in theatre themed ceremony instead.

Last night's event was held for students from Our Lady of Good Counsel School in Ballincollig, Co Cork.

As schools go, Our Lady of Good Counsel has always looked for novel ways to celebrate its graduates.

So staff and teachers had to be extra creative when it came to organising a graduation ceremony in a time of social distancing.

The ten graduating students and their families gathered at Ballincollig GAA Club for a drive-in movie in which they were the stars - their lives over more than a decade projected and celebrated in slide shows and picture montages.

One of those being celebrated was 18-year-old Laura Cremin from Innishannon in County Cork. Laura has been a pupil at Our Lady of Good Counsel since she was four.

"I love gardening, horticulture and cooking, my lovely teacher Ray and my two SNAs," Laura said.

And, on her graduation ceremony, she added: "It's brilliant, because my family are here and all my friends."

Laura was celebrating at the ceremony with her parents, Angela and Tom, and her younger brother Paul.

Laura Cremin

Angela said the graduation marked the culmination of everything they had done with Laura.

"We have seen Laura reach her potential at Our Lady of Good Counsel," Angela said.

"And we hope she is going to go on very soon on the next leg of her journey. We have been surrounded by people who have loved her, literally, as we love her ourselves, and the support has been terrific."

Fortune West, whose son David (below) graduated, said all thanks went to the teachers and staff at Our Lady of Good Counsel: "I am happy today to see my little boy becoming a graduate. It's a big milestone for me and for the whole family."

David West

Linda O'Flaherty's daughter Cora also graduated.

"We are with a brilliant school," Linda said. "We are so privileged to be with Our Lady of Good Counsel. Tonight is a great night to honour the teachers and honour our beautiful children, who we are so proud of."

Teachers and staff said the students deserved a standout ceremony. Teacher Ray Murphy organised last night's event.

Ray Murphy

"Our Lady of Good Counsel has been a huge part of their lives and they have been a huge part of ours - we will miss them all hugely," said Mr Murphy.

Having completed their senior cycle, after last night the 10 graduates will now go on to the next stage of their lives with a spring in their step.

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