Limerick school saved after transfer of patronage confirmed

Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board confirmed Fedamore National School in County Limerick is set to embark on a new chapter as a Community National School (CNS) under the ETB’s patronage. Photo: Brian Arthur

THE FATE of a national school in County Limerick has this week been secured after fears it would be forced to close due to low enrolment numbers for this coming September.

There were fears that Fedamore National School would have to close its doors before the new school year due to only seven students having enrolled.

However, the school’s future has now been secured by Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board (ETB), who announced that they will take over the patronage and running of the school for the coming academic year.

Under the new ETB management, the school will change from a Catholic patronage to a multi-denominational co-ed school, open to both boys and girls.

The transfer of patronage comes following consultation with the Diocese of Limerick, Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board, the Department of Education, and the school community.

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Welcoming the decision, chief executive of Limerick and Clare ETB George O’Callaghan said that “this decision marks a new chapter for Fedamore National School, one that emphasises inclusivity and caters to the diverse needs of our community”.

“We believe this transition will create a vibrant learning environment where all students can thrive.”

The new community national school will be inspired by the the principles of Steiner and Forest School education, while also delivering the primary school curriculum as set out by the Department of Education.

As part of the takeover, it is also expected that pupils currently enrolled in the independent Croí na Coille primary school on Buttercup Farm in Croom will transfer to the new community national school in Fedamore.

Bishop of Limerick Brendan Leahy said that the transfer will ensure that Fedamore “will continue to have a school serving the community, as it has done for many long years. I wish the ETB well as it becomes the patron body and I know the Catholic community will look forward to exploring ways of co-operation and collaboration in the years to come.”

Donncha Ó Treasaigh, ETB Director of Schools, said that “the ETB is committed to supporting Fedamore in this exciting new phase”.

“We look forward to collaborating with the school community to develop its unique ethos and to contribute to a flourishing network of inclusive schools across Ireland.”

Limerick Minister Niall Collins also welcomed the announcement saying that his “priority has been to secure the presence of this school in the heart of Fedamore and avoid any closure of the school”.