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Grange National School and Teachers ARTICLES IN THE GRANGE BOOK (4)

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These Grange Book articles are about Grange National School, its pupils, associated activities and the marvellous national school teachers who taught there over a one hundred year period.

Grange National School opened its doors to pupils in 1867 and shut its doors to pupils for the last time on 3rd July 1967. That fateful day was Paul Ryan's (Rahin) first day at school. The final teacher appointment to the school was Sheila Fitzgerald (Sheila Dillon at the time of her appointment in 1965). She was one of two teachers at Grange on the final day, and she went on to teach in Bruff until her retirement.

Thomas Lynch was the principal teacher on that final day, when he retired from teaching after a long and illustrious career.

Many teachers imparted their knowledge and wisdom to pupils over that one hundred year period, preparing them for life ahead. Several illustrious persons received that grounding at Grange. These teachers included Mr Coffey, Mrs Coffey, Mr James Connolly, Miss Nora Meade, Miss Annie Meade, Miss Alice Conway (Mrs Power), Mrs Rita O'Donnell, Miss Cahill, Miss Smyth, Miss Moloney, Mr O'Reilly, Mr Jones, Mr Leahy, Mr Thomas Lynch and Mrs Sheila Fitzgerald (nee Dillon). The article was written by Miriam Gallagher.

Over one hundred years, many pupils were enrolled at the school, and while not all of the pupil registers for this period were available, Helen Clancy managed to chart the enrollments of almost 900 pupils over several decades from the available records.

In 1937, Grange National School participated in a revolutionary national scheme initiated by the Irish Folklore Commission, in collaboration with the Department of Education and the Irish Teachers' Organisation. Schoolchildren were encouraged to collect and document folklore and local history. The original contributions (in school copy books) of the pupils of Grange NS who participated are kept and preserved in a collection known as the Schools' Manuscript Collection at University College Dublin. The article was written by Dan Conway.

Thomas Lynch NT was a renowned folklorist, and his achievements are charted by Sheila Fitzgerald, and in her book titled "Sean, nua agus síoraíocht - Feilscríbhinn in ómós do Dhaithi Ó hÓgáin" by Bairbre Ní Fhloinn, Lecturer in Irish Folklore at University College Dublin.