Knockea National School
Knockea is a place of great historical importance in the educational field. There is evidence that a Hedge School was conducted in Glen, near Ballyneety village. A School master named James Lacey taught there. Not far from Knockea, in a place called Tubberquinn there was another Hedge School. Here Laurence McNamara taught thirty-four boys and twenty girls. In 1821 there were two private schools attached to the parish of Cahernorry. Knockea Hill is said to have been the site of a Hedge school. This was a perfect location as a lookout could be kept quite easily.
In 1851 Knockea National School was erected. This was a long two-roomed building, over 75 feet in length. By the time it was replaced in 1965 it had long outlived its usefulness, having been on the list for replacement as far back as 1932. At present the school is being replaced by a modern building. Work is due to start during the summer holidays.
The pupils who attend Knockea come from a wide area. Ballyneety, Ballinagarde, Tubberquin, Cahernorry, Carrigmartin, and Drombanna are the principal areas. For the most part the parents of the pupils have attended Knockea School themselves. There is quite a traditional feel to the school. Long established friendships exist, the parents having been school mates themselves.
The ethos of the school is one of friendship and co-operation. The parents work closely with the teachers to attain common goals. In common with all schools the child's welfare always comes first. We are very fortunate that a great spirit exists. This is reflected in the willingness of the parents to support the aims and aspirations of the teaching body.
At present there are 121 pupils in the school. There are four mainsteam teachers, a German teacher, a resource teacher, a learning support teacher, a special needs assistant and a secretary.
Martha O' Malley,
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