Presentation De La Salle College

History of the School

History of the School

In 1883 the Presentation sisters came to Bagenalstown and set up a school which not only educated the students, but even fed and clothed them especially during the famine years. The school continued as Presentation Secondary School until June of 1983. St Joseph’s Academy for boys was built in 1893, run by the De La Salle order of brothers and had lay teachers from the beginning with Classic Masters Professor McSwiney and later Terence Flood. The current Presentation De La Salle College is a 1983 amalgamation of the Presentation Convent and St Joseph’s Academy, which occurred on the 1st of September 1983 for both boys and girls.

The last Principal of the Boy’s Academy, Brother Damien Kellegher, was the first Principal of the new college. He had been closely involved with the planning and the building of the new college, enjoying a unique relationship with the architect. His was the steady hand on the helm during the early years which ensured a smooth integration of the staff of the two old schools, and it was he who helped greatly to set the standards for the college and to encourage the attainment of high levels of achievement.

Brother Damien was succeeded as Principal in 1988 by Brother Norbert Devine, under whose leadership two pre-fab classrooms were added (an extra Science Room and a Business Studies Room). Brother Norbert left us in 1992 and was replaced by Brother Philbert Cronin. Br. Philbert added two new general purpose classrooms and a new Woodwork room. He retired in 1995 and Mrs. Anne Keating was appointed as the College’s first lay Principal. Mrs. Keating led the expansion of IT into the classroom with the upgrading of Technical Drawing to DCG. She was followed by Mr Gerry Watchorn in 2007. Under Mr Watchorn’s watch, the school expanded in numbers dramatically from 450 to just under 700 in a short time. With that came some dramatic changes such as the addition of “An Grianan” a unit to cater for ASD students. There were upgrades made to the school building including 2 computer rooms and a number of prefabs for general and practical subjects. The current Principal Mr John Keane was appointed in 2017 and has continued to oversee the schools expansion, securing a starting date of 2022 for the schools sports hall and much needed extensions.

Empowering the most vulnerable in society was always a strong value encouraged by the College. Enabling young people to become catalysts for social transformation in our communities. This is still very much a core mission of the College today under the trusteeship of CEIST and a commitment to teaching through gospel values is still very much evident. We are rooted in Christian teaching and tradition with a perceptible emphasis on relationships within the college community. Something that makes Presentation De La Salle College quite special. Our mission to "be a caring community dedicated to the development of the whole person in an atmosphere of mutual respect."

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Presentation De La Salle College,
Co. Carlow,

059 9721860

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