Looking Back - 2000
Scoil Tighearnáin Naofa National School was erected in 1937 but did not open as a school until 15th February 1938 replacing an old thatched school that stood there since the 19th century. At that time, two teachers taught up to 100 children and many of our parents and grandparents were educated here. In 1984 a prefabricated building was constructed and a third teacher was appointed.
At the beginning of this new millennium there are forty-one families with sixty-seven pupils on roll. Out of the forty one families only fourteen live on farms. None of these farms supply milk to the creamery. Of these 14 families, only 2 have hens, geese and ducks. This is a great change from their grandparents’ time. Mrs. Noreen Moore was appointed principal in May following the retirement of Mr. Pat Mangan. Mrs. Evelyne Judge and Mrs. Mary Tigue are the other staff members. We have three support teachers, Miss Deacy, Mrs. Reddington and Mr. Neary, our music teacher. We enjoy our music lessons every Wednesday. We play a variety of instruments and learn to read music.
Sport is an important part of school life. We are taken by bus to the swimming pool in Ballina every Monday, where the junior classes learn to swim and the senior children develop and improve their swimming skills. The senior boys and girls took part in Cumann na mBunscol competition this year and during the Spring they competed in a football tournament involving the other local schools. Many of our pupils keep fit by playing camogie and football with Ardagh GAA Club Other pupils are members of the local boxing and gymnastic clubs.
Information Technology has an important role to play in education. We can access information on the Internet for our projects and homework. Recently we visited a website on “Ballina” – a fishing town on the east of Australia! We use Microsoft Word to print our stories and poems on our six computers and printers. We frequently avail of the educational CD’s in the school. One of the pupils is managing a laptop computer and CVC reader very well. Computers are fun, they don’t feel like work and are very interesting. This year we took part in the Irish Independent “Building for the Future” programme. We collected tokens with the help of families and friends and completed a project on Rappa Castle, Ardagh, titled “Our Favourite Building.” As a result we received a tv/video combi unit with a Unison Internet box.
In our religion programme we learn about building a better world. We try to do this in a practical way in school by helping each other out, by co-operating and taking turns at play or in class. We help in the local community by serving at mass and singing in the choirs.
Our school has taken part in many fundraising activities, one of them being the “Happy Heart Skipathon” which took place this summer. Every Friday our fifth class pupils run a school raffle. This year £160 was collected for “Children Helping Children” charity.
The parents committed help and encourage us and have an important role in the school. Recently they have been busy fundraising for the new extension. Canon Lynn is a welcome visitor to our classrooms. He celebrates our school masses with us and helps prepare us for our First Holy Communion and Confirmation.
As we move into a new millennium, we are looking forward to the building of a new extension to the school, we meet the challenges and opportunities presented in the revised curriculum and we prepare to face a modern and high tech world.