‘Among School Children’ and the Education of the Irish Spirit
One monday morning in February 1926, a present member of the Convent of Mercy, Waterford, at that time a thirteen-year-old student, watched from a window as Senator W. B. Yeats, in soft hat and with magisterial presence, took his distinguished way up the driveway of St. Otteran’s School. His famed turkey strut — a gait combining short, jerky steps with body erect, head thrown back and hands clasped behind his back — was unforgettable. He had already visited the school, often known as the Phillip Street National Schools, the previous day with his wife. They had been regaled with the kind of overflowing dinner that Ireland does so well and spent the afternoon visiting the empty classrooms prior to an equally extraordinary tea. The visit had been private and unheralded, but St. Otteran’s as a model school was important to Yeats, for he was on a government committee pledged to investigate the conditions of schools in Ireland.
KeywordsSchool Child Monday Morning Chestnut Tree Model School Happy Child
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.