About Us


History of Scoil Náisiúnta Muire Gan Smál

Ardara had originally two separate schools; one for girls and one for boys.

Ardara Male or Ardara No. 1 as it was so called made its application to connect to the Board of Education in 1834 and was successful in 1838. It was a development of the Tredennick Estate School. The Tredennicks were the local landlords based at Woodhill. Like most schools, it educated Catholics and Protestants. It was vested in the Robertson Board in 1915 under the joint management of The Church of Ireland and Methodist clergymen. The original building is now a private residence.

Ardara Female (Ardara No. 2) became a national school in 1840. Adrara No. 3 came into connection with the Board of Education in 1861. All three schoold had protestant managers and would later amalgamate into the current Wood School. The current unified Protestant school was erected on a site near Hillhead in the late nineteen-ninties.

Work on building the first Catholic School in the town of Ardara commenced in 1879. The school opened for pupils on October 1, 1881, connected with the Board of Education on November 1, 1881 and received the roll number 12242. It was located below the chapel t the turn for Loughros Point and its area consisted of one rood. Situated a quarter mile from the post office, it had three classrooms. Its condition deteriorated significantly in later years and a decision was made in the fifties to build a new school at Hillhead. The school was demolished and a private house now sits on the site. The boundary wall is all that remains.

The first sod of the new school site was turned on March 10, 1956, with John McGill the contractor.

The blessing was carried out by Canon Charles Boyce and Fr. McGroarty.The eventual building consisted of three classrooms and a shelter at the back.


A Calvary sculpture was erected in a semi-circle at the front of the school, but was later relocated to the church.

Náisiúnta Muire Gan Smál or St. Mary’s N.S. opened on June 17 1957 with 150 pupils and the roll number 18131O. The school is south-facing so gets a lot of sun in the summer months. A further classroom was later added in the 1970s. The first staff included Mrs. Brennan, Master Cassidy and Mrs Logue.




Meet the Staff


School Uniform

The uniform consists of a blue polo shirt, navy jumper with navy trousers and dark runners or dark shoes.

For P.E., the children must wear their usual polo shirt and jumper, but with navy tracksuit bottoms instead of trousers, and runners. It does not matter what colour their runners are.

The school crest costs €5, and is available to buy in the school. The crest must be sewn onto the uniform jumper, and can subsequently be transferred onto new jumpers each time the child outgrows their old jumper.

We appreciate your contribution towards ensuring that your child is wearing the correct uniform.