Scoil Sheosaimh Naofa Progressive Increase in Enrolment.
Built in 1949 (a two teacher school)
Year 1990 – 78 on roll – 3 teachers
Year 1999 – 105 on roll – 4 teachers (prefab erected)
Year 2002 – 131 on roll – 5 teachers (prefab erected)
Year 2005 – 164 on roll – 7 teachers (prefab erected)
Year 2009 – 186 on roll – 10 teachers (prefab erected)
Approval for New School Timeline.
Plans had been drawn for the erection of new school in Ballinagar during the late 1980s, but due to the financial circumstances in the country at the time, these plans were shelved.
A refurbishment and extension to the old school proceeded instead, and this was completed in 1992.
However, over the following years school enrolment began to increase significantly and the need for a new school became very obvious. Thus, the process was set in motion, ending in March 2012, when the pupils moved into the new school. The main milestones in the project were as follows:-
2001- New school applied for (May 2001)
2001 – DES architect visited school
2003 – A further application was made for a new school
2005 – The Minister for Education at the time, Mary Hanafin, visited the school and
met with pupils, teachers, parents and the Board of Management
2006 – On 29th November the Board of Management received a letter from Minister
for Education (Mary Hanafin), with permission to proceed to
tender/construction within 12-15 months. Ballinagar was 1 of 54 major new
primary school building projects to be announced.
2009 – On November 12th a briefing session was held in the Department of Education
and Science in Tullamore. Schools were invited to attend that had received
permission to begin construction. The meeting’s aim was to brief the
school’s design team on how to progress the building project.
Monsignor Coonan and the School Principal attended.
2010 – On the 24th November contract documents were signed. The parties involved
were the appointed contractors for the project, Glenman Corporation and the
Board of Management of the school.
24th November 2010 The official ‘turning of the sod’ took place after the
signing of the contracts.
2011 – Work began on the building project.
2012 – Pupils transferred to new school on 13th March.
Scoil Sheosaimh Naofa – The New School 2011
Work began on the ‘new school’ project in January 2011. This work was completed later than expected due to factors such as inclement weather and issues relating to problems that arose during construction. Eventually, on March 13th 2012 the move was made to the new school. This naturally led to great excitement both in the school and in the locality. It seemed like a different world. We now had plenty of space, both inside and outside. We also had a GP (general purposes) Room for physical education and assemblies. Interactive white boards were installed in all classrooms as well as a rainwater harvesting system. All this fitted in very nicely with our ‘Green School’ status.
During the summer of 2012 three polycarbonate shelters were erected in the school grounds, thermo-plastic playground markings were applied in the school yard, the playing field to the south of the school building was prepared and seeded and the playing area to the north of the school extended by concreting a green area.
We now have a school that provides the necessary infrastructure for implementing the present primary school curriculum – plenty of space, IT equipment, learning support and resource rooms, bright, warm and spacious classrooms, ancillary rooms, internet access and a full sized GP Room. It is a Generic Repeat Design (GRD) purpose built school. This template is now being used throughout the country in eight, sixteen and thirty two classroom models. This modern design is very energy efficient and makes best use of the natural environment.
The Board of Management takes this opportunity to thank all those who have helped to get us to this position over the years, especially previous Boards of Management, teachers and parents. The Board of Management also thanks public representatives who have made representations for the school.