Headmaster's Logbook, April-June 1945


Headmaster’s Logbook, April-June 1945

April 1945

Headmaster – Dr William Barry

April 10th

‘This school reopened today after Easter holidays. All teachers were present. Prior to reopening at 9.30am all pupils attended Holy Mass in Church.’


April 11th

Mr Walker, Pr. Teacher of Mathematics, is absent today and will also be absent on Thursday & Friday attending meeting of Panel on Mathematics in connection with the Senior Leaving Certificate Examination held here last month. Reminded pupils in secondary division of Term Tests to be held in May. Headmaster absent from school from 10am to 1pm at meeting of the Managers of Springboig and Mauchline Approved Schools.’


[A newspaper cutting is attached to the logbook, dated April 11th. It contains a transcript of part of a letter received by the school from Rev. Fr. Michael Walsh, a former pupil of St Ninian’s who was serving as a chaplain to British forces in Burma. In it, he tells of his long journey to get to Burma, and something of his life there.]


April 16th

‘Mr. Edmond, Supervisor of Music, here. Gave “Simplex” Intelligence Tests to all pupils in Rooms 14 and 15. Mr. Monaghan supervised Room 15.’


April 17th

‘The Property Committee visited here today – Provost Low, Mr. Gibson, Mr. Keachie, Mr. Gibb etc. Gave Dictation test to all pupils of 12 or 12 .’


April 20th

‘Headmaster was absent in the afternoon attending meeting of the County Joint Council regarding proposed arrangements for the ingathering of the potato harvest in October.’


April 23rd

'Miss Byrne was absent today attending English Panel. Miss Boyce is still absent owing to injury sustained by falling from bicycle. Last week’s attendance showed improvement due to exceptionally fine weather: Secondary Division 88%: Primary 88.5%. Roll: Secondary 290: Primary 647.’


May 2nd

‘Mr. Miller H.M.I. was here all forenoon until 1pm inspecting Art. Owing to Bus strike locally, some teachers had difficulty in being here on time today. Dismissed school at 3.30pm to enable them to catch train.’


May 8th, 9th

‘Last evening it was officially announced over the radio that today was VE (Victory in Europe) Day and both days Tuesday and Wednesday were to be official holidays. Teachers and pupils had been warned in advance to be prepared for such an occurrence. Choir of boys took part in Festival on 9th.’


May 10th

‘Ascension Day. Church Holy Day – School closed.’


May 11th

‘School closed. Education Committee authorised three school days as holidays in celebration of the end of the War in Europe and the complete victory of the Allies.’


May 21st

On Monday, 14th May, the Janitor reported to me that the cleaners, eight in all, had not reported for work from Monday, 7th May. He understood that they were entitled to three days’ holidays, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, 8th, 9th and 10th May respectively, but they should have been at their work on 11th and 12th May. Rang up Mr. Gibb and later Mr. Thorburn on the matter. Reported this business to Mr Gibb on 29/5.’


May 22nd

‘Mr. Richardson, Managing Director of M.C. Switchgear addressed pupils due to leave at June & December on types of work available.’


May 29th

‘Five girls due to leave school at midsummer were taken to Lennox Castle this afternoon by Miss McGregor, Secretary of the local Juvenile Advisory Committee. Miss Shields, who has been absent ill for some years, resumed this morning in Primary Department.’


June 4th

‘Received word that Mr. Lorkin, teacher of physical education, was seriously ill.’


June 11th

‘Dr Munro H.M.I.(Senior) visited this school today at 11.30am and inspected classes taking French – VI & V, III and IIb. Recommended that an extra period, if at all possible, be given certain classes next session.’


June 12th

Party of 18 girls with Miss Childs and headmaster and Miss McGregor visited Mr. Findlay’s Farm, Glasgow Bridge, this afternoon at 2.30pm and remained until 4.15pm. They were shown over farm and had instructive talk, in addition, given them by Mr. Findlay on the animals – mainly pigs and cows, rotation of crops, types of fertilizer, machinery etc. Later they were entertained to tea by Mr. Findlay in his canteen. As a follow-up these girls were required to write an account of their visit and their individual reactions to all that they saw and were told. Mr. Findlay offered to donate prizes for the best two.’


June 15th

‘Mr Monaghan was absent today by permission to attend a wedding. Headmaster submitted an appeal for award of a Senior L.C. to a candidate who had been presented for a Group: 2 Hrs and 4 Lowers and had come down slightly in one subject.’


June 18th

‘Mr Lorkin, teacher of physical education died on 16th June in W. Infirmary (R.I.P).


June 19th

‘Headmaster, Staff and Pupils attended Requiem for repose of soul of late Mr Lorkin. R.I.P. Headmaster and eight pupils from Secondary classes attended funeral from O.H.R. Church, Clydebank.’


June 22nd

‘Mr Maclean, H.M.I., inspected Latin classes in secondary division today, and left here at 1.30pm.’


June 25th

‘Miss McGregor, Secretary of the Juvenile Advisory Committee of the Employment Exchange, interviewed “leavers” today at School. Rehearsal of School Concert for pupils’ benefit in afternoon.’


June 26th

‘School Concert in aid of local “Welcome Home Fund” was given this evening in the Assembly Hall, and was well attended by parents and representative townspeople, including Provost Fletcher. Mr Monaghan was in charge.’


June 27th

‘Cheque for £120 was sent to Supt. Smart as School’s donation to “Welcome Home Fund”. More than £40 was raised by sec. girls and boys during the luncheon intervals on three occasions. Miss Findlay had charge of all the singing, Miss Doyle of the verse-speaking, Miss Kerr of dancing, and items from Infants were in hands of Mrs McNaughton, while Miss Shearer had little French scenes.’


June 28th

‘The School closed today for midsummer holidays. Previous to closing, prizes were presented by Rev. Dr. Tennant. The Dux of the School was Margaret Carlin Va, who was also awarded the “K.G.V. Honour Trophy” by votes of the teachers, monitors, monitresses and prefects. Six candidates were awarded Senior Leaving Certificates. The “proxime accesit” was William Carlin. The Junior Secy. Dux was James J. Docherty IIIa. The dux of Primary was Elizabeth McGaughrin. Prize of £2-2/- from Rev. J. Waters was added to prize fund, as was also special prize from Mr Findlay, Easter Cadder for essays on visit to his farm.

Av. Roll for year was 955.5 of which 329 were in Secondary Division of school. Highest number of dinners consumed on any one day was 561. All Primary Classes were changed on Thursday forenoon and teachers allocated to their respective classes for the new session. Sports Champion: Patrick Hagan, IIa.’