Teachers marathon bid to raise cash for school

Many of them have never even jogged for fun — but now a group of teachers from a rural West Cork primary school are lacing up their running shoes to help pay for new classrooms.

Nine teachers and a speech and language therapist from Barryroe National School will take part in the Cork City Marathon next Monday to raise thousands of euro to help pay for a €385,000 extension. The work is currently under construction.

Although much of the cost of the extension, comprising two classrooms, two resource rooms, and a new school hall, is covered by a government grant and school funds, there is a €50,000 shortfall.

The deficit has since been whittled down to €30,000 through a local collection campaign.

Principal Denise Foley said the decision by nine staff members to enter the marathon was taken in January, despite the fact that “a lot of the teachers are complete beginners”.

However, Ms Foley said staff have been training hard and have received help from Liam O’Reilly, who trains champion race-walker Robert Heffernan.

“I came back from maternity leave after my third baby and I’d never jogged before either — but I’m much fitter now and I find I’ve a lot more energy both at home and at school,” Ms Foley said.

The Barryroe community has also thrown its full support behind the campaign. Ms Foley said five local mothers from the Parents Association, members of the local GAA club, and several locals have also all been training to run.

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