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'Binge watching Netflix' leads Clonmel Leaving Cert student to an incredible eight H1 grades

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Tipperary's Rockwell College was celebrating a 'first' with the release of the Leaving Certificate results on Tuesday.

Among the students celebrating their results was Clonmel's Bill Fitzgerald, who was one of only five candidates from across Ireland to achieve eight H1 grades in honours papers.  

"Hard work achieves results, but everyone knows that," Bill said.

He noted the need to "switch off and spend time with your friends". Bill also employed some methods to unwind from the stress of exam preparation, including "binge watching Netflix to relax".

Reflecting on his time at Rockwell College, Bill said: "In first year, a 13-year-old me felt overwhelmed by Christmas tests. My Ddd told me to look at the exams as individual bricks as opposed to a whole wall. So I suppose my attitude to the exams and study was to break bricks."

Bill was quick to share the credit for his success, noting that Rockwell College gave him "a healthy school environment, encouraging teachers, great friends". His parents and family were singled out in particular for their support, and even the family dog kept his spirits up. 

Aside from Bill's remarkable achievement, over 33% of the Rockwell College candidates achieved over 500 points in comparison to around 13% nationally, with 8% achieving over 600 points. 

“I am delighted to see that the hard work and dedication of our pupils has been rewarded. They have been a particularly diligent, hard working group with a strong sense of purpose," said principal Audrey O’Byrne.

There were strong grades achieved across all subjects, with grades in Maths, Applied Maths, Biology, Accounting, Geography and Chemistry at Rockwell College well in excess of the national averages.