The Congregation supplied extra material between March 2007 and June 2008, pursuant to a decision to waive legal privilege that would, if it was applicable to the documents, have protected them from disclosure. Two reports on Glin gave information on the management and structure, and they have been used in compiling this report, particularly with respect to historical data and statistics. Mr Bernard Dunleavy BL was asked to report on the archival material on Glin that was in the Provincial House, Cluain Mhuire, and he asked Brothers who had been in Glin to write memoirs of their experiences there. Following this report, Br John McCormack also researched the documentation and spoke to Brothers who were in Glin when it operated as an industrial school. The McCormack report was made available to the Committee in March 2007, and the Dunleavy report in June 2008.
In his report on Glin, Br McCormack stated that from the mid-1960s the grant paid by the State was insufficient to meet the needs of the Institution. He concluded: That this was the state of the School’s finances in the last two years of its existence speaks volumes for the inadequacy of Government funding over the years.
By contrast, Br Gaston,4 when interviewed by Br McCormack for his report, stated, ‘There was no written code of discipline, but all were familiar with the rules laid down in the Acts of Chapter and the injunctions of the Directory concerning punishment of pupils’.
He was discharged, despite being still only 15. In 1946, the Resident Manager was transferred to Salthill, again as Resident Manager. Br McCormack’s research paper noted: However it is also open to the interpretation that, following the publicity of October 1946, during Fr Flanagan’s visit to Ireland, the Provincial was using the first available opportunity to remove Br Delaine7 from Glin. This would have been at the New Year, a time when changes were common and would not attract gossip.
In his report on Salthill, which was commissioned by the Congregation in March 2002, Br John McCormack cfc interviewed a past pupil who was there in the 1960s. This ex-resident acknowledged that ‘we had happy times as well as the sad times’ and recalled with pride participating in the band and the medal he won for hurling. He also asserted that he had received a good education in Salthill, as had most of the boys who were there with him. He arrived at the age of seven, and was fortunate to have an older brother there who could watch out for him. He mentioned one Brother, Br Michel,2 as being very humane but had no such praise for any of the other Brothers there: I was not terribly gone on the rest of the Brothers in St Joseph’s in my time. They were strict and always made you toe the line. Some of them never smiled that I remember, but they must have ... Even though the Brothers were strict, there was none of them vicious or cruel. They must have had a tough time too.
During Br Jules’s tenure as Superior of Glin in the 1950s, the visiting Brothers consistently complimented him on his management and dedication to the boys, and Brothers who were interviewed by Br McCormack for his report confirmed that a kinder regime was introduced following his appointment.
Br Coyan, in an interview with Br McCormack, recalled that Br Jules did punish absconders by giving them a ‘baldy haircut and the kids didn’t give a damn or they might be deprived of some privilege or other for a week or so’.
Some figures for home leave from Glin between 1942 and 1966 were compiled by Br McCormack in his report. These are available primarily from the Christian Brother Annals and are set out below:26 1942: In July about 80 of the boys spent three weeks with their parents or friends (Annals). 1944: 75 boys went on home leave (Annals). 1945: 110 boys went home for a three weeks holiday in July (Annals). 1953: In August all but three of the boys returned from holidays in their homes. One of these had been taken to England by his mother, but after negotiation he was returned to the school (Annals). 1955: About 50 boys went home on holidays (Annals). 1958: About 50 boys went home on holidays (Annals). 1961: About 40 of the boys got a fortnights holiday with families who offered to take them (VR 19.4). 1962: In July, 36 boys went home for a months holidays (Annals). 1965: In July some boys went home for their holidays. In August, 36 boys went to Carne, Co. Wexford for 3 weeks holiday. Transport was provided by the Limerick Lions Club (Annals). 1966: In July, 20 boys went home on holiday and 30 went to Knockadoon. All returned on 1 August (Annals).