A south Roscommon community is considering the future status of its local national school due to falling student numbers. St John’s National School, which is located in Lecarrow, opened its doors in September 1959 and there are fears that it may now close.
Parents and past pupils met on Monday night to discuss the options available for the two teacher school. These include amalgamating with another local school, becoming a Gaelscoil, or becoming an Educate Together school. “Closure of the much-loved school is also an option but not desired by anyone in the community, “Principal Evelyn Kilcline told the Roscommon Herald
“We have 12 students at the moment but are losing four in June as they are going to secondary school. If we don’t have 15 students in September we’ll be down to one teacher,” she said.
She added that the school was energetic, fun and that its past pupils had reached the highest levels academically.
“We look after the entire needs of the child here, both academically and emotionally,” she said, adding that she was one of the first teachers in the west to introduce mindfulness into a school.
“As a staff we strongly believe in the importance of nurturing each child so they will reach their full potential and become the best that they can be,” she said.
“We have a preschool and after-school service on the grounds, where students are looked after until six o’clock. They are fed, there’s a homework club, and they can play outside too,” she said. She added that the possibility of extending the age group to take younger children at the state of the art preschool is being looked into.
“Our school is the hub of the St John’s Community. We really need everyone to see how wonderful we are and what broad an education the children receive,” she said. She added that she would welcome the input of the community on this issue.