Coláiste Mhuire, Mullingar
|This article relies on references to primary sources. (September 2010)|
|Mullingar, County Westmeath
Republic of Ireland
|Principal||Mr. Joe O'Meara|
|Number of students||684 (2013)|
Coláiste Mhuire is a secondary school located in Mullingar, County Westmeath, Ireland. Mullingar's oldest post primary school, it first opened its doors to students in 1856. It is a voluntary Catholic Secondary School based in the Hevey Institute. It is primarily a boys' school, however, the repeat Leaving Certificate class is co-educational.
The foundation of Colaiste Mhuire in 1856 was largely due to the philanthropy of a local retired brewer and landowner, James Hevey. Hevey’s last will and testament of 1835 contained the following bequest: “all my right and interest in the town and in the lands of Bryanstown for the support, maintenance and education of poor children of the parish of Mullingar”. A site for the school was obtained from Lord Granard at an annual rent of £15 and building was completed, in 1856, at a cost of £5000. The school was popular from its inception: in the 1860’s there were already 400 pupils attending and a contemporary document tells us that “Several of the Boys have come from different counties, and some from South America”. These South Americans were, perhaps, Argentineans of Irish descent who were intended for Maynooth and the priesthood. The popularity of the General school greatly outstripped that of the Classical so that by 1889 there were 471 boys in the General with only 93 in the Classical. Eventually, the Classical gave way and the General school took control of both wings of the Hevey Institute.
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