the church school

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The first mention of The Church School occurs in the Visitation Returns of 1754, when the schoolmaster was George Ross. The subjects taught were Holy Scripture, English, Writing and Arithmetic. The school was built by the Parish and kept in repair out of the proceeds of the church cess. The Schoolmaster was probably paid partly by the Vicar and partly by the parents of the children. There is no record of school attendance before 1821, but most children received little education, if any, and they went to work at a very early age.

The Census Returns for 1821 give the following list of estalished schools in the Parish:

A national system of elementary education was established in 1833 with the power to aid in the building of schools and to make grants to teachers. The Church School then became Carnmoney No.1 National School.

The School in those days consisted of one large room 25 feet x 16 feet, the rear extended into the Churchyard. the parents of the pupils paid 3d per week. The Schoolmaster's salary was £16 - £20 per annum. It is possible that the school was rebuilt when the present Church was built in 1856. In 1928 the school was transferred to the Board of Education.

The last Headmistress of Carnmoney School was Miss Robinson who was appointed in 1900 and retired in December 1934, just before the school closed. Miss Robinson was a devoted Church member and Sunday School teacher.

After closing as a school, the building was used by many of the church organisations, including the CLB, the Dramatic Society and the Table Tennis Club. It eventually was rented by John Robinson & Sons, monumental sculptors and then Robert Hart.

In 1980 The Old School and the old Sextons house opposite the church were demolished to accommodate the building of road, The Prince Charles Way. Canon McCappin and the Principal of Glengormley Primary School, Mr Millar Martin, thought that some part of the old school should be preserved. The arch and the trefoil window of the old school was erected in the central corridor of Glengormley Primary school.

Church cess - The money which the churchwardens spent on behalf of the parish was raised largely from the parish cess, a local tax on householders, and from a lesser extent from the sale of seats in the parish church. The applotment, or assessment, of the parish cess, which appears periodically in the churchwardens’ account books or the vestry minute books, is a valuable record of the local community. Following the abolition of the penal laws, membership of the general vestry was open to all householders in the parish irrespective of their religion although its proceedings were effectively controlled by the Protestant minority since all officers had to be members of the Church of Ireland.

Information for this section from the book The Carnmoney Connection - A History of Carnmoney Parish from 1796 - 1985 by Ernest V. Scott
Image kindly supplied by Sheila Harper
Thank you Jan Ferguson for sending me the photograph of the Old Church School Arch in Glengormley Primary School

Canon William McCappin and Glengormley PS Principal Mr Millar Martin with past students of Carnmoney No.1 National School and students from Glengormley Primary School.  

Front Row: Glengormley Primary School Pupils: Gillian McLaughlin, Katrina Murphy, Jan Ferguson and Joanne McLaughlin.  

Second row: ????, ????, ????, Ella Morrow, Mabel Lechy, Stella McMillan, Millar Martin. 

Back Row: ????, Canon William MCCappin, ????, Harry Morrow, and ????.  

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