In 1788 there were seven hedge schools in Killoughey. Protestants as well as catholics
attended in most cases. One of the hedge schools in the parish about this period was that at Killoughey Cross, which enjoyed a great reputation for imparting learning, so much so that pupils came to it from beyond the barony boundary. Thomas Rourke, the master of this school , could speak Irish, English,Latin and French; he had been a student for the priesthood, but finding he had no vocation he turned to teaching, in which profession he was an outstanding success.
The 1829 Catholic Emancipation Act was followed in 1831 with the establishment
of the National School System following a variety of commissioned reports calling
for state supported education in Ireland.
The first two schools to come under the auspices of the National School System in
Killoughey were both in Mount Bolus, located in the building now used by Mount Bolus Pipe Band for rehearsals.
Fr Walter P.P. applied in 1850 for the payment of salary and supply of books to
Michael Crosbie, the boys school teacher and Jane Hughes in the girls school.
In his application he provided details of the schools, saying that they were in
good condition, newly plastered with slated roofs.
The girls schools was without furniture but the boys schools had already been
equiped with 3 desks each about 8ft long, five forms unattached, a master desk
and a book press. Both teachers were only 19 years old at the time of application
and the enrolment figures while not specified were given as 'about 50' for each school.
School lasted from 10am to 4pm each day, religious instruction took place between
3.30pm and 4 o clock from Monday to Friday as well as each Saturday for a few hours.
In 1910, following the donation of land by Colonel Biddulph, Rathrobin House, the current school
was built but continued to operate as separate boys and girls schools.
In 1933, the boys and girls schools amalgamated.