St. Mary’s Central School is a primary school located in the twin villages of Ballineen and Enniskeane, West Cork. Our picturesque villages are built on the bank of the beautiful River Bandon and are surrounded by a lush rural countryside.

St. Mary’s Central School is a co-educational Primary School under the patronage of the bishop of Cork and Ross. Our pupils are drawn from the wide hinterland all around the villages and we currently have an enrolment of 212 pupils.

The ‘Central School’ part of our school name was derived from the fact that prior to the foundation of St. Mary’s, a number of smaller schools in the surrounding area closed paving the way for one school to be built in a central location in 1978. Hence the name St. Mary’s Central School!

The predominant colours on our crest (yellow and green) are a link with both the past and present as these are the colours which our sports teams have worn with pride for many years and will continue to do so in the future.

Teaching Staff

Our staff is comprised of our Principal plus 11 teachers. This includes 4 Special Education teachers, two of whom are with us part time. We also have two fulltime SNA’s, a secretary and a cleaner here at St. Mary’s Central School.

Class Teacher
Principal Mr. Diarmuid Duggan
Junior Infants Ms. Sarah Jane Cronin
Senior Infants Ms. Colette Barrett
1st Class Mrs. Helen Jennings
2nd Class Mr. Vincent Collins
3rd Class Mrs. Deirdre McCarthy (Deputy Principal)
4th Class Mrs. Trish McCoy
5th Class Ms. Charlene Walsh
6th Class Mrs. Zeta Daly
Special Education Teacher (SET) Mrs. Anna Hurley
Special Education Teacher (SET) Mrs. Elaine Myles
Special Education Teacher (SET) Mr. Brian O’Riordáin & Mr. Seamus Healy (Shared Teachers)
Special Needs Assistant (SNA) Noreen O’Sullivan
Special Needs Assistant (SNA) Anne O’Sullivan* (Angela Cremin is currently on leave)
Secretary Denise Everard
Cleaners Sandra O’Donovan

Our School Day

School Gate: Open: 9.05am

School Times: 9.25am – 2.05pm Junior & Senior Infant Classes

School Times: 9.25am – 3.05pm All other Classes

Our school is open at 9.05am each morning and formal classes begin at 9.25am.

School Crest

Our School crest was designed in early 2020 and our pupils were involved in the design process right from the beginning. Margaret O’Donovan (Chairperson of the local Tidy Towns Committee and a former secondary school principal) was invited to speak to our pupils about our locality; specifically the rich history and mythology of the area, the topography of the area as well as the foundation of St. Mary’s Central School in 1978. We also explored why schools and organisations use crests or logos which led us to the conclusion that besides providing a unique identification of a school, a crest is also a representation of the school’s history, culture, and tradition. It also describes the values a school upholds as well as the origins of these values.

Together, we then looked at numerous examples of crests belonging to other schools. We look at their shapes and designs, their images and colours and we subsequently challenged our pupils to design a crest for St. Mary’s Central School which they felt would best embody our school’s history, culture, traditions and values.

Our final crest design was a combination or amalgamation of several impressive designs from our pupils.

The crest is divided into four quadrants, each one representing either the history, traditions, culture or values of our school.

  1. Teaching and Learning: An image of a book and globe symbolizes teaching and learning at St. Mary’s, a place where our skilled and dedicated teachers and Special Needs Assistants equip our pupils with the skills and knowledge to become lifelong learners.

  2. Diversity & Inclusion: An image of four hands uniting (each of different skin colour) is representative of our embracement of diversity at our school be it race, ethnicity, religion or other. Inclusion and integration are values we hold dear at St. Mary’s.

  3. Music & Sport: The image of a music sheet and a hurley reflects the significant value we place on music, sport and culture in our school. We aim to provide a full, stimulating, creative and holistic education that will enhance and fulfill the lives of all our pupils.

  4. School name & Catholic Ethos: The image of a Church on our crest has multiple symbolism. Arguably the most impressive landmark in the Ballineen/Enniskeane area, the Church of the Immaculate Conception is situated directly next to our school building and the name of our school St. Mary’s has a close association with its name. The church building, built in 1871 has been a constant in the locality amidst unimaginable change over its 150 years to date, yet it’s also a symbol of continuity in the lives of generations of people from Ballineen, Enniskeane and its environs. Finally the image of the church is also representative of our Catholic ethos at St. Mary’s Central School.