Main Statutory Records
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Each national school was required to keep statutory records, in the form of up to date information on each pupil in particular and the school administration in general. This was written up by the teacher in charge (usually the principal), in the school Registers, Roll Book(s) and Day Report Book(s). All were expected to be accurately stored and maintained, while being kept on site in each school, subject to inspection by the district inspector, with reprimand for any lapse.
To date, the ANSEO! pilot project has photographed over 280,000 images, of the records as they have survived for each participating school. No single school possesses all their records, with many schools only holding a selection of their main statutory books.
These are the principal index records of boys and girls (almost always in separate register books) who attended each school. They contain the following information for every pupil: School name & Parish, Pupil name, Year of birth, Year of registration, Age, Religious denomination, Home address, and Occupation of parent or guardian.
The records can also contain further information:
· Name of previous school (if any), Number of days attendance, Classes enrolled into, with comments on performance of pupil.
· Results of examinations in various subjects including reading, writing, arithmetic, spelling, grammar, needlework and drawing.
· Date pupil left the school and was readmitted (if applicable).
Day Report Books
This is the daily numerical tally of the school attendance, broken down into classes and gender. This tally corresponds to the daily roll. The pupil attendance roll was taken at set times in the morning and failure to adequately record the correct details, was taken as a serious breach of school regulations by the Department inspector.
These are the daily-recorded attendances of each pupil, corresponding to their entry in the main school register. As each pupil’s name was read out by the teacher, in the obligatory morning roll-call, the pupil’s reply of “ANSEO!” (this is the Irish translation of “HERE!” used in earlier decades) signified their presence.