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St. John's National School, Ballisodare, Co. Sligo

School History

The construction of St John’s N.S. was completed in 1954, on its current site, which was donated to the parish by the Polloxfen family, who operated the Mill in the village. The new co-educational school replaced a boy’s school and a girl’s school which were located opposite Carty’s yard at the entrance to Woodbrook Heights.

The original building consisted of three classrooms, toilets and cloakrooms for boys and girls and one staff toilet. The largest classroom was in the middle, with a smaller one either side of it. Mr. John Mc Gettrick who was principal of the boy’s school, became the first principal of our school. His two assistants were Mrs. Kivlehan and Mrs Brenann. A third assistant joined the staff in the early 1970’s and in the mid 1980’s St. John’s N.S. became a five teacher school. These new teachers were accommodated in prefab classrooms. The prefabs were replaced by permanent classrooms in 1995.

Pupil enrolments were increasing steadily in the 1990’s, as more houses were built in the village. Two more classrooms and the General Purpose room were built in 1998. During this phase of construction the original building was totally refurbished, getting a complete new roof and the existing fireplaces and chimneys were removed. One of the smaller rooms was divided, to provide a learning support room and a staffroom.

The position of principal became an administrative one in September 2006 when our seventh assistant teacher was appointed. An extension consisting of one classroom and two support rooms was completed in the summer of 2007. Another extension was completed in time for September 2011 to accommodate an eight assistant teacher, with a further classroom being built for September 2013.

Currently, the school employs 14 teachers, three special needs assistants, a secretary and a cleaner.