The very first school at Corracrin was built in 1816. It was 70ft long and 36ft wide and could accommodate 200 pupils. For various reasons there were always more pupils attending during Summer than during the Winter. However just think of the Health and Safety aspect of getting almost 200 pupils into this space!!
In 1839/40 a new school was built close to the Church, beside the ‘wee gate’ on the Avenue to the Church. Many still alive can remember that building, which had two rooms divided by a wooden partition. It had one door which led to the Master’s Room from which you entered the infants part. I attended that school for one day even though I was an Edenmore pupil. Master Kelly was the Principal at the time with his high desk. Ms. Doherty was the other teacher.
A new two-teacher building was built in 1955 on the site of the present school and six new classrooms were built in 1988. Now in 2011 Scoil Naomh Pádraig will boast a state of the art school building to meet the needs and demands of the 21st century.
The current €1 million development is in the final stages of completion and will be fully available to pupils in September of this year. Prior to the start of the project there were six permanent classrooms, two prefabs and a very small G.P. room. Now, with the completion of our extension there will be eight permanent classrooms, four specialist rooms i.e. three special education and an E.A.L. room, an enlarged staffroom, a general office, a principal’s office, a unique 200 sq. metre sports hall/G.P. room, three teachers’ storerooms, a cleaner’s storeroom, a caretaker’s storeroom, a dedicated art room and a computer suite/library. In addition to this all of the six original classrooms have been rewired and replumbed with new sanitaryware, refloored and given new storage space, in order to bring them up to specification with the new part of the school.
So, as you can see, it’s a total transformation, which will also include a new football field, a full-sized outdoor basketball court and a scaled down indoor basketball court, to complete a state of the art facility.
To conclude, there is also a cutting edge security system installed, with a network of sixteen cameras indoor and outdoor, as well as magnetic door locks on front and back doors to compliment the excellent specification of the new school building.
This is all progress and when one hears of the huge increase in population in Ireland and the growing numbers of children we wonder will a further extension be necessary in a few years time? There are currently 213 pupils on rolls, made up of children from Emyvale and the surrounding parishes of Scotstown, Truagh, Tyholland, Monaghan and children from Lithuania, Latvia, Poland and Russia, all attending Scoil Naomh Pádraig. September 2011 will be the first time in over twenty years that there will be no child in a prefab. There will be single classes throughout the school which is a huge advantage for your child as they start their education at Corracrin.
We must compliment and pay tribute to the people who have worked tirelessly over the past 20 years to achieve this development and we wish Principal, Michael Boyce, and his staff every success in their new surroundings.
Thanks to the school website for most of the information printed here and you can read all about the school by going to http://corracrinns.scoilnet.ie Thanks also to Mr Boyce for allowing me to walk about taking the photos and for supplying me with the photo of former Principal, Seamus McCluskey, when he visited recently to view the new buildings and the art work supplied by Mark Kelly from Emy.