9th September 1999
The Noticeboard


Ringaskiddy National School was built in 1898 as a two-classroom two-teacher school. Servicing up to 100 pupils. The school was divided in 2, one half for boys and one half for girls, as was the playground also. The school became co-ed in 1938. However numbers fell at the turn of the century to a low of less than 50 in the 60’s. This reduction in children going to the school paralleled the movement of people from the land to the cities during these years. During the late 80’s and 90’s with the growth in industry in the area, numbers have increased in the school again to 80 pupils and the school is now a 4 teacher school and looks forward to many years of continued success and growth.
In 1996 the one teacher school in Haulbowline Naval Base closed when Mrs. Crowley retired, the 9 pupils from there joined Ringaskiddy school and in recognition of the amalgamation the name of the school was change to Ringaskiddy Lower National School. Over the last 100 years Ringaskiddy National School has had an enviable reputation for excellence in the academic and social development of the student who pass through its doors. Many fine teachers have taught at the school over these years and this tradition of excellence has continued through the current teachers of Mary McAleese (Principal), Ann Goggin, John Herlihy, and CoIm Breen. No history of Ringaskiddy National School could be discussed without reference to Donal O’Connor locally known as the ‘Master’ to generations of pupils. He was principal from l952 to 1991. His vision and drive and pursuit of excellence ensured that Ringaskiddy National School survived during those difficult years when many country schools closed down. Mary McAleese was a teacher under Donal during some of these and his tradition of excellence has been carried on through her visionary leadership of the school into the next millennium.
In 1998 the centenary of the school was celebrated with the return of many past pupils including one who went back to the class of 1905. Jim Russell who is able and fit regaled the current school goers with stories of taking sods of turf to school for fires in the classroom, and ink wells and nib pens. He provided a link from the earliest days to the present day. The president Mary McAleese attended the celebrations and was entertained by the children and her namesake our principal and she also planted a tree in the peace garden at the school.
Michael Martin the minister for education attended these celebrations and the seeds were sown as to how best to continue the great tradition of teaching and social development of the children into the next millennium. Plans were subsequently submitted to him for a major renovation to the school, to reflect the needs of the growing numbers and the facilities required for education into the next century. Plans are under way to commence construction in the first month of the new millennium 100 years after the corner stone for the original building was laid. The extension to the existing building will be carried out in a manner which will the reflect the style and heritage of the original 100 years old building with internal facilities which will accommodate the needs of the current school going children. Construction will be completed so that this extension will be officially open after the children return from their summer holidays in Sept. next year. Whilst the department of education cover the majority of the costs of these renovations the itself needs to raise funds to contribute to the overall cost of the development. To this end the Board of Management has established a fundraising committee and they have a plan of activities they will run over the next 18 months. Race nights, table quiz, and poker tournaments to name a few. Funding will commence with table quiz starting in Sept in the local pubs and then on Wed. 29th,Sept at 8p.m. In the Carrigaline Court Hotel there will be a gala fashion show. The proceeds of which will go to the building fund. We have hired Clare Cullinaiw to be our co-ordinator. The shops taking part are: Sheena, Designer Fusion, L’Equipe, Vignoles, Tony’s, Mischief-Makers, Gabrielle, Unit 2, Cahill’s Casuals. We will also have Karen’s hat hire. In addition to these fundraising activities the local industry who have always been a main stay of support to the school and it’s activities since the 1970’s.


When we contacted the Spanish Authorities we were informed that they didn’t see any point in our inquiry and that they were really too busy to talk to us. With a little perseverance we learned that the Spanish Government do not have a child-care policy as such. There are eight regions in Spain all under control of their own local governments and each local government has it’s own child care policy. Only by contacting each region could we hope to find out what these policies were. We declined to do this but we did learn in general throughout Spain local authorities do have provisions for child care facilities, but only for underprivileged children, such as the children of the poor or the unemployed. Everyday child-care facilities are provided by religious institutions and privately owned day care centre’s. Only those with the proper qualifications are allowed work in or operate a day care centre. This applies until the child reaches the age of six, these services are paid for by the parent(s). Compulsory state education begins when the child reaches six years of age and meals are provided in the schools.
We could find no evidence of any after school care centres. Obviously the Spanish government lags a long ways behind some other EU countries, such as Denmark and Sweden, in providing child-care for it’s citizens. To make matters worse they don’t seem to care. So maybe the Irish governments attitude is not as pathetic as it seems at first glance.


Our First Mass for the re-opening will be the Vigil Mass at 6.00 pm Sat. September 18th. Masses on Sunday morning September 19th at St. Columba's will be 8.30 am; 10.00 am; 11.00 am. and 12.15pm. Times of Masses in St. Patrick's will be 6.30pm (Vigil); 11.00 am; and 12.30 pm.


SATURDAY, 11th SEPT, ‘99
The 1st Cork Company of the Boys Brigade is holding a sposored cycle from Cork to Youghal, in aid of the Boy’s Brigade ‘Millennium Lifeboat Appeal’, which is a Brigade Project to supply four lifeboats on the coastal waters of the British Isles, one of which will be stationed in Youghal. Support for the project would be greatly appreciated.

6th SEPT - 11th SEPT. ‘99
The Cork Arts Theatre presents a Phoenix Theatre Company Production of Willy Russell’s ‘Shirley Valentine’, staring the inimitable Dolores Mannion.
Shows starts at 8pm nightly and tickets are 6 and 5.
Box Office: Tel: (021) 508398


Bull McCabes are hosting a night for the Turkey Earthquake Fund on Thurs. next, 9th Sept. Music will be by Black Rose and there will be lots of spot prizes and plenty of complimentary bar food. There is no cover charge but donations are welcome. Please support this very worthy cause.


The Cork Shakespearean Company - “The Loft” - are celebrating this year, the 75th anniversary of its founding by Rev. Fr. Seamus O’Flynn P.P.
In order to mark this most important event in the field of Theatre and the Dramatic Art in the city an Exhibition will be held at the Cork Vision Centre for the month of September. The Exhibition will comprise of film, photographs, articles, wntings and memorabilia of both Fr. O’Flynn and of “Loft” productions over the years. Primarily the Exhibition will highlight the genius of Fr. O’Flynn and his contribution to the Theatre and literature in Cork, which has been widely acclaimed at home, and abroad.


The genus Saxifraga contains 370 species of so many different shapes and sizes that it has been divided into 16 quite distinct sections. Together they comprise one of the most beautiful and
varied groups of plants suitable for any garden particularly if you have a rock garden or a raised bed and especially where you need ground coverage. To beat weeds the mossy group are
probably the best. These form 1-2ft wide hummocks of a handsome emerald green. They are mostly vigrous plants whose solid evergreen carpet quickly covers the area around them providing the perfect foil for the copious amounts of small, saucer-shaped flowers in colours ranging from white to blood red, 4 - 6 inches tall. Plant Saxifraga’s in autumn or spring, in ordinary, well-drained but moisture-retentive soil, about 12-15 inches apart. Saxifrages do best in light shade.

If any of our readers have any other novel ideas, or gardening tips or inquiries, we would love to hear from you.