Wednesday 13 December 2017

Well-known boarding school to remain open after significant funds raised

Cistercian College Roscrea. Picture: Sean Curtin
Cistercian College Roscrea. Picture: Sean Curtin
Amy Molloy

Amy Molloy

A U-turn has been made on the decision to close the Cistercian Colege in Roscrea after an action group raised significant funds to help keep the school open.

The famous boarding school, whose past pupils include Brian Cowen and Willie Mullins, had announced in February that it was to close its doors after 112 years.

However, an action group set up shortly after the announcement has secured a €1 million investment and a new board of management is set to be appointed.

Students will now be able to apply for day boarding and five-day boarding, as well as the traditional week-long boarding.

The reaction was one of heartbreak when the news broke of its impending closure back in February, with parents rallying together to explore all possible avenues to prevent it.

The school was founded in 1905 and it currently has 167 pupils enrolled from around Ireland and abroad.

Falling student numbers was cited as the reason behind the decision, however the new plans for alternative boarding options aims to increase demand.

Action group Chairman Ronnie Culliton said students, parents and teachers are thrilled that the school will now remain open.

"We are looking to the future with great enthusiasm now. This is a wonderful place for young men to be educated, play sport, develop musical talents, and grow friendships that will last a lifetime.

"We are delighted that we can now offer this fantastic opportunity to a greater number of families”.

Notable former students:

Brian Cowen – Former Taoiseach

Conor Brady – Former Editor of The Irish Times

Cormac Bourke - Editor of the Sunday Independent

Dick Spring – Former international rugby player and Tánaiste

David Andrews – Former Minister for Foreign Affairs

Jim Glennon – Former international rugby player and former TD.

Barry Cowen - Fianna Fáil TD

Mr Justice Vivian Lavan (RIP) – former High Court judge

Willie Mullins – Racehorse trainer and former jockey

Séamus Hennessy – All-Ireland medallist with Tipperary (Hurling)

Gavin Duffy – International rugby player

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