Teaching

A total of 19 past pupils entered the teaching profession. The list includes three nuns: Sr Susan Teresa Hehir, Sr Sheila Normyle and Sr Rita Cunningham. There is a span of 100 years between the registration of the first and last pupils to enter the teaching profession.

The following teachers warrant special mention:

Michael Hehir, Lack

Michael Hehir from Lack, grand uncle of Micheal O’Hehir, our famous sports commentator, was the first pupil from Lack School to qualify as a school teacher. He registered at Lack School in 1873. He first taught at Coney Island school. Later he moved to Killerk National School, located at the foot of Benn Hill near Darragh where he taught with his wife, also a school teacher. When the school was burned down during the War of Independence they were transferred to Ballyea. On retirement, his daughter and her husband assumed the teaching positions at the school.


Nancy Hehir from Glencanane registered at Lack School in 1938. On completing the Leaving Certificate examination she entered the civil service and was assigned to the Department of Finance. Later, she resigned from the civil service and attended Maynooth College, where she graduated with a BA degree. She obtained her H Dip. together with a diploma in Catechitics at UCD. She taught Irish and history at Coláiste Éanna, Ballyroan, County Dublin until her retirement in 1996. She holds the distinction of being the first of four past pupils who served as secondary teachers.

Patricia Gavin, Ardnagla

Patricia Gavin from Ardnagla registered at Lack School in 1948. On completing her primary education at Lack she emigrated to England, as was the norm at that time. As her children grew up, she returned to full-time education and qualified as a teacher. She continued to teach at primary level until retirement age.


Thomas McCarthy, Lisnafaha

Thomas McCarthy from Lisnafaha registered at Lack School in 1949. On completing his primary education, he attended St Flannan’s College, Ennis, where he sat the Leaving Certificate examination. He appears to have been the first male pupil from Lack School to sit the Leaving Certificate examination. This was about 18 years after the first female sat the exam. He holds the distinction of completing his second level education in four years rather than five years, which was the norm. He was listed among the top achievers that year, presented with a gold medal for religion by the bishop and offered a university scholarship.

He proceeded to qualify as a primary teacher and taught at Dromakeenan National School, Roscrea, County Tipperary. He retired in 2004, having held the position of principal for 25 years. On retirement, he studied law in the University of Limerick and graduated with an LLB degree in 2009.

PJ Garry, Clonfurish

P. J. Garry from Clonfurish registered at Lack school in 1953. He was educated at Lack school, St. Flannan’s College, UCC and UCD where he graduated with a B Ag. Sc. Degree in 1971. On completion of the H Dip. at NUI Maynooth, in September 1973, he took up a teaching post in St Flannan’s College where he continues teaching. He is one of the early students from Lack school to proceed to university immediately on completion of the leaving certificate examination. He is probably the second secondary school teacher from the school


The following is a list of the twenty one former pupils and persons from the area who entered the teaching profession:

Year of RegistrationNameAddress
1873Michael HehirLack
1875James McNamaraLeimnaleha
1891Daniel HonanLack
1906Bridget O'DeaCrahera
1934Sr. Susan Teresa HehirLack
1938Nancy HehirGlencanane
1939Kathleen CunninghamLeimnaleha
1941Sr. Sheila NormoyleBurren
1942Maire McNamaraLeimnaleha
1943Sr. Marguerita (Rita Cunningham)Leimnaleha
1948Patricia Lyons/GavinArdnagla
1949Thomas McCarthyLisnafaha
1953Mary HehirLack
1953P. J. GarryClonfurish
1954Nora O'DeaLisnafaha
1959Bridget (Della) HonanCoolsippeen
1960Kathleen ClohessyArdnagla
1966Jane KellyLack
1969Margaret ConveyLeimnaleha
1971Claire ConveyLeimnaleha