Brannoxtown primary school near Naas closes

Education

Paul O'Meara

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Paul O'Meara

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paul@leinsterleader.ie

Brannoxtown primary school near Naas closes

Brannoxtown national school

The archdiocese of Dublin has confirmed the closure of the primary school in Brannoxtown.

The school effectively closed for the first time in over 133 years some four months ago, after the last remaining three pupils left six months ago. It’s located in Brannockstown village, near Two Mile House.

A local group Save Our School Brannoxtown had highlighted the decline in pupil numbers - which it said fell from 87 in 2011 to none by last December.

“This level of decline is phenomenal and disconcerting. The decline cannot be blamed on demographics. Between 2011 and 2016 the population of children aged 5-12 in the Newbridge/Kildare/Kilcullen area, which includes Brannockstown, grew at 154% of the State’s population growth rate of 3.78%. Indeed Brannoxtown School had been heavily supported by the attendance of children from outside the village,” the group said in December.

They added that generations of of local residents have been educated there and the school has been at the centre of village life for well over a century.

Most of the pupils who left the school transferred to schools in Halverstown, Kilcullen and Two Mile House.

Annette O’Donnell, a representative of the archdiocese said there were no applications for places in Brannoxtown NS for the school year 2018 -2019.

“I understand children from Brannoxtown area who had siblings in St. Brigid’s Kilcullen and Halverstown and who applied for places in these schools for infant class 2018/19 have got places,” she said.

Ms. O’Donnell added: “As there were no applications for Brannoxtown school the Archbishop has agreed to close and divest the school.