School History

St Patrick’s College opened in 1966 due to demand from the local community, in particular, the farming community. Representations were made to Mayo V.E.C. to set up a school and the land was very kindly donated by a local man, Mr. James Massey. Up to the mid nineteen seventies, until the old hall was built, the school consisted of six rooms and one general classroom. In 1993 a major extension was added consisting of new classrooms. In 2008, what is now the current school building opened with fabulous new facilities and up to date modern classrooms and technology suites.

The curriculum expanded quickly from Group Certificate when the school initially opened its doors and in 1973, the Leaving Certificate was offered for the first time to local students. Subject choice expanded with a variety of choice on offer, particularly in the sciences. Enrolment also increased, in line with the development of the school.


The school is situated approximately four miles from Killala and five miles from Ballycastle at the meeting point of four parishes, Killala, Ballycastle, Lacken and Kilfian. The beautiful rural setting provides an excellent environment that is very conducive to learning with no external distractions.


The school attracts a student body of up to fifteen-mile radius of the school. The school is stand alone, co-educational and ETB. run. Stand-alone schools are unique in character as they have to cater for all ability, levels and backgrounds and St. Patrick’s College is no different. Our students go to University, take up apprenticeships, go directly into employment and into their family businesses after finishing at our college.

As an educational establishment the school caters for the academic and technical when is essential for a standalone rural school. St. Patrick’s College is a co-educational school which caters for boys and girls from first year to Leaving Certificate. We aim to create and maintain an atmosphere within the school in which each student can fulfil their potential. As education should be for the whole person, we are concerned not only with academic success, but also with the social, physical and moral development of the individual.

The College has its state-of-the-art facilities; new classrooms, a physical education facility, canteen, as well as specialist teaching spaces for many subjects including Art, Science, Technology and Computers. Feel free to contact us if you would like to visit our take a virtual tour here.