Moorlough Primary School


Moorlough Primary School

The oldest Register available is dated 1902, but a report issued by a school inspector Mr. W.W Dunlop in 1924 gives the date of the building as 1833 Records dating back to Register in 1902 read as follows:

Patrick Foster, Hugh James Gilleece, Mary Ann McCormick, Hugh Patrick Collins, John James Agnew, Kate Mowen, Willie Thomas Bryans, Francis Boyle, Maggie Collins, Edward ÓHara, Edward Brady, Bridget Neeison, Mary Jane Davis, Agnes Hughes, Louise Bryans, Lizzie Boyle, William Gilleece, Mary McCabe, Elizabeth Shiels, Eliza Jane Foster, Lizzie McCabe,

The original school was owned by a Mr.McRoe who lived next door in a single-storey house. He was the master, and often assisted by his daughter Kate. After Mr.McRoe, Miss Ellen McCluskey was appointed. Her appointment took place sometime at the end of the 19th Century. She was a niece of the then P.P. in Newtownbutler, Canon O’Connor. Mrs. Susan McHugh was appointed Junior Assistant Mistress (J.A.M) in 1916. She was the first wife of the late Edward McHugh of Kilturk and was known as an excellent teacher, kind and gentle with the children, and dedicated to her work.

Mrs. Isabella ÓHanlon (nee Maguire) was appointed Principal in 1924 and taught there until her retirement in 1966 After the death of Mrs. Mc Hugh there were several locums appointed all untrained until 1953 when Margaret Kelly (nee McCusker) was appointed as assistant.

At one time the old school had over 80 pupils in one room, and the juniors were moved to the sacristy in the church until year 1955 when the late Father ÓHanlon had the Church renovated. In the renovation, the altar was moved from the West to the East gable.

The New St Joseph’s was built in 1959 and opened in 1960. In 1966 Mr. Peter Morgan was appointed Principal. In 1970 Drumlone school closed and the children with their principal Mr. Eugene Guidera were transferred to Donagh. 1972 saw the closure of Wattlebridge Primary School and the transfer of the assistant teacher Bernadette McCaffrey. The number of pupils had now increased to over 145 (due mainly to the new building of the new Housing Estate), and two mobile classrooms required.

In yet another re-organisation, Ballagh school; was closed and a new central School was erected on the main Lisnaskea – Roslea Road. The new St. Joseph’s Central School opened 2nd 1978 with the transfer of pupils from Ballagh with their Principal Mr. Pat ÓNeill and assistant Mr. Pat ÓNeill,- Principal.

Tragically, in February 1983, staff and pupils mourned the death of their Vice Principal after a short illness. Mr. ÓNeill known to all as ‘Master Pat’ was a highly respected member of the staff and a well-loved member of the community. At the present the number of staff has been reduced to six and the number of pupils is 140.   Interesting quotes from the Inspector’s Report

1907 The school should try to get rid of slates – paper is cleaner and better.

26/03/1908 The room is dusty; there are cobwebs on the walls; the floor looks ill-kept; windows need cleaning; the scent of paraffin oil prevails; one wall is soiled. The Principal says that the deterioration in the tidiness of the place is due to an evening class in rearing of poultry being held in it!

16/01/1913 The Clock is about 15 minutes slow!! The school floor needs washing The clock has stopped

  Written by Margaret Kelly