Curtlestown NS: Request for salary of evening teacher 1861 – ED1/95 (Archive Month #19)

ED1/95 No 108 Curtlestown Roll #1119 Co. Wicklow, District 40

Request for aid by Thomas O’Dwyer towards the salary of an assistant teacher for Curtlestown Evening School

States that the average evening attendance has been 23, since opening as a night school. The average age is 19, and they are employed in various occupations in the immediate neighbourhood. They are taught spelling, reading, writing, arithmetic, grammar and geography.  The school is open Mon – Friday, from 6 – 9 o’clock.

Pupils pay 4d per week. Only male pupils attend. Evening school was established Sept 1861. The name of the teacher is Michael Cunningham.

Report on application:

States that school is in operation from 1st Sept to 1 March and 1 May to 1 July. The nature of employment of the pupils: 12 are turf-cutters the others are farm labourers or farmer’s sons.

The report states that Michael Cunningham (age 19?) competent in his literary acquirements, and shows good promise in this regard. His character is good, and his method of conducting the school is attentive and wholly efficient. He is the master of the day school.

The report concludes: “The education of young men in the locality has been much neglected owing to the the demand for field labour, and the disposition for improvement which the — shown deserves to be encouraged. This disposition deems to have sprung up with a sudden impulse but the lesson of this apparently precipitate and unusual desire for instructions seems to be that a fair teacher has only recently got charge of this school. Whether these young men will persevere or not is uncertain but the experiment of giving a grant to aid them seems worth trying.