A Note From An Old Friend

As I sit here to pen a few lines for the Scoil Chriost Ri yearbook it has dawned on me that it is forty years this coming July since the school officially opened and was given its own identity. Roll 19931E. That roll number is still there and will be for as long as the school exists.

For a few years before 1972, Sr. Brigid and her staff looked after some of the boys. What a great friend to work with was Sr. Brigid – capable, practical and always willing to offer advice and a helping hand. I owe her much and much more.

In those forty years we have moved from pocket calculators to mobile phones, iPads, laptops, computers and interactive whiteboards etc. I’m lucky to be retired – all this new technology would have killed me anyway!

Football was introduced at an early age. Then a gentleman called Fr. Tom Carroll arrived on the scene. “I don’t see a hurley here,” said he. “We’ll have to do something about that!” That he did, and we all followed. Teachers gave hours of their free time and as a result the school is now the proud owner of 12 Olo Cups and many more trophies.

We did all this because we enjoyed it and knew that school life wouldn’t be the same without it. I musn’t forget another man who joined us as a caretaker in the early years and was worth his weight in gold – the one and only Bill Delaney.

We started with seven teachers – Seamus Treacy, Fr. Browne, Joan O’ Riordan, Miriam Grimes (now Mrs. O’ Kelly), Susan McGrath (now Mrs. Keyes), Miss Dileen and mé féin. We had four classrooms in pre-fabs, two in the girls’ school. (Again, thanks to Sr. Brigid and her staff) and two in the new Boys’ School which was still under construction.

So the past 40 years have seen many changes. What are the next 40 going to bring? Your guess is better than mine – you are younger! All I can do is wish Scoil Chrisot Ri, its pupils, parents and teachers success, health and happiness and long may the good work continue!

Pádraig O’ Cathalláin

Padraig and his daughter Grainne in Scoil Chriost Ri, 2006