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St. Oliver Plunkett's, Balrothery National School, Balrothery, Co. Dublin

School History

Officially named Scoil Oilibheir Beaunaithe in 1949 when the new school building was erected. School records go back to 1865. In 1842 when the parish church was built in Balbriggan the school occupied the old church which had been built in 1722 in penal times in a very secluded spot well off - the beaten track.
It was a one room building with a partition cutting off about one third of the space where the seniors fifth and sixth classes did their school work with the Principal. The remaining two - thirds had desks in one third and forms in the other - the two classes alternated their seating to enable them to write at the desks and do oral work when sitting on the forms. In 1949 a new three - roomed school was built on a new site, fronting the then main Dublin - Belfast road.
Mr. Madden

 

The school acquired a very good reputation under the Principalship of Joe Madden, whose pupils excelled in the competition for County Council Scholarship, much sought after as Post Primary education was not free in the fifties and early sixties. In 1951, the school achieved five scholarships, a remarkable achievement in a class of eight pupils and a school of less than 100 pupils.

 

When Mr. Madden retired in 1975, the role of Principal of Balrothery National School was taken on by Stephanie O'Connor. Stephanie had been a teacher in the school at the time, having already dedicated almost fifteen years of her then career to serving the needs of the children of Balrothery and its surrounds. Under Mrs. O'Connor's stewardship, she created an all-inclusive place of learning where all children are valued equally and all talents are encouraged and developed. She made a lasting impression on all who came into contact with her. Stephanie retired in 2006 and since then has been working as a Counsellor, taking time off every so often to travel to far off places while continuously helping in raising much needed funds for her special charity of choice in Varanasi, India. When Stephanie retired in 2006, the ethos of the school has been carried on through the dedicated hard work of Mr. P.J. Keary. His keen interest in sport kept the great spirit of Balrothery alive. Mr Keary spent 37 years in total at the school and retired on the 15th of February 2012. In February 2012, Mairéad Murphy became principal of Balrothery NS. 

 

Over the years the school has grown from four rooms initially to five, then seven and now there are twelve classrooms, plus four special education rooms. There are strong links with the community which creates a warm welcoming environment for all.

The same high academic standard is upheld by a great team of teachers and excellence has also been achieved in sports - football, Basketball, athletics - and in quizzes and many varied Art activities.

The village of Balrothery has grown over the years and the school endeavours to accommodate all those who apply to this school. Our Admissions policy outlines the process by which you can apply. This is available on our school website. 

 

Memory Lane

A few of our past pupils have kindly shared some of their memories of Balrothery N.S. during different eras. Check out their memories by clicking on their names below. If anyone else would like to share any memories feel free to email them to the school office.

Many teachers have come and gone over the years in Balrothery. Here are some photos from a few years ago. Most have since left, but you may recognise some familiar faces.

Past Pupils

John O' Leary

John O' Leary (Dublin Goal Keeper and Captain) pictured above with our previous principal Mrs. O' Connor and the Sam Maguire Cup which Dublin won in 1995.

John O'Leary is most famous as the last man to captain Dublin footballers to All Ireland Glory in 1995. That day he helped the Dub's to overcome the challenge of Tyrone by one point- this despite the fact that Dublin were reduced to 14 men for the latter part of the match.

 

Patrick Mc Mahon

Patrick R. McMahon is a past pupil of ours. He received his legal education at Santa Clara University, School of Law. He has practiced personal injury law in San Jose since 1969. For years he has served as a Judge Pro Tempore for the Santa Clara Superior Court. He has tried jury cases in all Bay Area Counties and has lectured on Personal Injury law and practice by invitation on many occasions. He currently serves as a Member of the Board at Santa Clara University School of Law. In addition to his law career, Mr. McMahon has been an active member and leader of the Irish Community and a booster of the Centre for Literary Arts at San Jose State University.

"Patsy" as he is known to us has been very generous in his donations to the school over the years. In fact the first Multimedia computer purchased by the school was purchased with funds kindly donated by Patsy. With further donations from Patsy and grants from the state and fundraising from the parents committee we know have 15 multimedia computers at least one in every classroom.