Saint Michael’s N.S. enrolled its first pupils in November, 1882 and became part of the National School system in January 1885. At this early stage the school was comprised of a two-roomed building with 34 girls and 43 boys on roll. Many of these pupils had never been to a national school before, having been educated at home or at private schools. Others came from The Model School or Saint Munchin’s School.
The school fees in 1885 were 6 shillings and this increased to 8 shillings the following year. Subjects taught were Reading, Writing, Spelling, Grammar, Geography, Book-keeping, Geometry and Mensuration. Girls attended Needlework Classes, while the boys were taught Agriculture.
The school was located on the present site at 11, Barrington Street and was extended in 1953, 1964 and 1968. Later in 1968, Villiers Primary School amalgamated with Saint Michael’s N.S. Numbers of pupils increased over several years, and by 1971, it was a five-teacher school. In 1976, it reverted to being a four-teacher school. The present classrooms were added in 1984, giving the school four classrooms, a resource room, a gymnasium/hall, library, staff room, office and storage rooms. The numbers have risen steadily during the last decade, and there have been five mainstream class teachers since September, 2008. Since 2000, the Department of Education & Skills (DES) has invested in teaching and ancillary staff for Special Educational Needs (SEN) and English as an Additional Language (EAL) pupils.
A Hop, Skip and Jump
The History of St. Michael’s National School
In 2002 Karen Long Eacrett embarked on a fundraising mission in an effort to assist in the refurbishment of the school building. She began by reviewing old roll books as she had planned to contact past pupils of the school for support. It became clear to her very early on that the historical value of the information in the roll books was immense and she felt that it would be a shame not to record it. A committee was formed with Karen taking on the role as Chairperson and they set about to develop a the living history of Saint Michael’s N.S.
One committee member in particular, Barbara Bingham author of the book, did trojan work. She complied the history using primary source material , published works and a lot of anecdotal content. The printing of the book was generously sponsored by Shaws Brand and Dairygold Consumer Foods.
The book is now available to buy from the school directly. 100% of the profits will go to the school which will be used to fund field trips for various classes throughout the school. Please contact the school office if you wish to purchase a copy.