St. Bernadette’s first opened in 1982. There were few facilities in the area. Over the next few years an intensive building programme was undertaken. The new estates of Harelawn, Greenfort and Shancastle were built. With the new houses came pupils and the school grew at a phenomenal rate.
Mrs. Anderson, the first principal of the school, had started the story of St. Bernadette’s in 1981 in rooms rented from the recently opened St. Mary’s school in Rowlagh. The building in Quarryvale opened in 1982 and by 1987 there were over 650 pupils in the school. In 1995 Ms Breeda Bonner took over as Principal.
The area has matured since then and our numbers have fallen to a more manageable level. Nowadays there are around 300 pupils in our school with another sixty in Early Start. Quarryvale has become a vibrant community. Those teachers who are here since the early days now share the experience of seeing our past pupils coming back to enrol their own children in St. Bernadette’s.
In 2007 we undertook a major building project which brought us right into the 21st century. In St Bernadette’s JNS we aim to create a caring and loving community in the school where the children can be happy and secure and where their gifts and talents can be fostered. We look forward to playing our part in writing a new chapter in the history of Quarryvale.
Ms Bonner retired after 35 years in St Bernadette’s JNS in August 2017. She was replaced by Mr Donal Ward as Principal of our school.