BOOTERSTOWN AREA OF DUBLIN
I was unaware of Grotto Place until I was in the Booterstown area today and was also unaware of St. Mary’s Boys National School.
St. Mary’s was built in 1852 funded by a Board of Education Grant and local subscriptions. The granite building is still in use for educational purposes, currently housing a Montessori school and a Youth Club.
The first roll book of the school is dated 1861. The old school originally consisted of one room of 13 m. x 10 m x 7m in which children whose ages ranged from three to fourteen years were taught. Another room 4m x 4m x 2m was added later. It is interesting to note that in 1918 the average number of boys on the roll was 60.7, approximately one-fifth of the number at present attending now.
The present school building was opened in 1968 and continued to have an enrolment of approximately 300 pupils until the middle of the 1980s when it declined to 50 pupils. Since 1987, enrolment numbers have gradually risen back up to approximately 300.