Mr McLoughlin pictured with a parent and Depty Lord Mayor Tim McClelland alongside Vice Principal Heather Evans and representatitives from the BAA

Banbridge Academy Association (BAA) is a group of former pupils and parents supported by the teaching and ancillary staff within school.

BAA’s focus is supporting school, being a welcoming face at Open Night and other school activities. We also fundraise to provide some extra financial support for the little extras the school budget may not meet. We also have the pleasure of providing refreshments at school and sporting events. Our biggest aim is to foster the network between school, community and home. It is an enjoyable and rewarding experience for all involved.

Over the past year the Association has been involved in a range of events including

  • Organising bespoke Christmas Cards with the support of the Art Department for Year 8 pupils who relish the challenge of taking part in this activity, with one entry being selected each year as the school’s Christmas Card.
  • Outreach and support for our school and local area during the Covid Pandemic by collecting food and household items, which were donated to the ‘J29’ project for distribution to families throughout the community.
  • BAA were successful in applying for a grant from Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Council. With the grant we were able to purchase several Chromebooks which were distributed to pupils to support their learning and exam preparation at home.
  • With the easing of restrictions on a sunny Saturday BAA held a car wash. This was a great way to regroup and catch up with each other in person, as opposed to our usual zoom meetings. Members provided traybakes, power washers, technical expertise and washed cars.
  • What began as an end of year ‘Swap and Sale’ in 2020 has now mushroomed into a tremendously successful regular event. The aim of this initiative is to provide a facility where pre-loved, quality uniform and sports equipment can be swapped for a different size or purchased for a small fee. It is also great to help reduce waste and promote sustainability in the current climate. The shop has a permanent home in school and opens on a monthly basis. We have extended our hours following feedback from parents and are now open on some Saturday mornings. We were also able to open on Results days in August and it was wonderful to be able support pupils and parents as they prepared for a new school term.

The Association puts a lot of time and effort into organising events and we would call on all to help support and sustain our efforts for the good of all the pupils within the school. Everyone is warmly invited to attend our meetings and will be made most welcome. Even if you can volunteer at any of the events, we would love to see you there. A little help goes a long way.