The building of St. Finian's National School was completed in 1913. From research undertaken at the National Archives in Dublin, we believe the school officially opened in January 1915. At this time, there were both Boy's and Girl's Schools in Spunkane as well as a Junior School called St. Joseph's in Lower Waterville. These three schools amalgamated to form the present St. Finian's National School. The remains of the old schools are still in existence on John O'Connell's land in Spunkane and we believe that St. Joseph's school was where Eddie Quinlan's house is now.
In 1911, there was an alternative site proposed for this new school by a number of parents. A lot of children attending the existing schools in Spunkane came from townlands on the other side of the parish and many parents felt that the new site at Spunkane would be adding a further two miles onto what was already a long journey on foot for the children. This proposed site is where St. Finian's Church stands today.
St. Finian's N.S. marked its centenary on Saturday, 14th March, 2015 with a big celebration at the school. A book was launched documenting the school's history. There was a photographic display, along with roll books and other pieces of interest. And then afterwards, there was a chance in the Waterville Inn for past pupils to catch up on old times. Mass was celebrated on St. Finian's day (16th March).
We will continue to gather information, stories, documents, old photographs etc. relevant to the school, to add to our collection. Please contact the school if you have any such information, we would be most grateful.
Book for sale €20 @ the school.