'No pupils' school will re-open in September
A small rural Catholic school in Co Kerry that had no pupils this year is to re-open in September as a multi-denominational community national school.
Two Mile/Cahooreigh national school, two miles outside Killarney, is the first school to transfer patronage under the revitalised process to create a more diverse primary school system.
Community national schools operate under the patronage of local education and training boards (ETBs) and offer teaching of all religious beliefs to their pupils.
The Co Kerry school has struggled with enrolments in recent years and, while technically it remained open this year, it had no pupils.
The school has been operating under the patronage of the Bishop of Kerry, Ray Browne, who was considering its future viability.
Announcing the move, Education Minister Richard Bruton stated Bishop Browne's decision to lease the property to Kerry ETB was made in consultation with the local community.
A meeting organised by the Two Mile Community Group, held in March, was attended by more than 70 locals, following which a vote was held and the group formally requested that it become a community national school.
Welcoming the move, Education and Training Boards Ireland (ETBI) general secretary Michael Moriarty said it was highly significant as it is the first such patronage change under Mr Bruton's reconfiguration initiative.