On 11th November 1966, Dr CE Lysaght submitted a report on Industrial Schools and Reformatories to the Minister for Education, Mr Donagh O’Malley. Commissioned by Mr George Colley, the previous Minister for Education. Dr Lysaght outlined that: his personal instruction by word of mouth was not to confine myself to the purely medical and physical condition of the children but to go into and report on their environmental conditions which have a direct or indirect effect on their well-being and health, physical and mental.
On 5th January 1967, Mr John Hurley wrote to the Minister for Education, Mr Donagh O’Malley about the consequences of institutional life on a named young person. He also enclosed two documents, both written by Fr Kenneth McCabe, one on juvenile delinquency, which was based on McCabe’s studies of various institutions in the country, the second a descriptive account of St Patrick’s Training School in Belfast. The first report argued that: Our reformatory and industrial school system as it stands, is at best, only punitive. Reformatory and industrial schools are absolutely inadequately endowed. No institution could run on £3-10-0 per boy per week (This may not be an exact sum). The result is as one would expect. The food is bad. Boys are disgracefully dressed. In Daingean when I was there (Summer 1964) boys were not supplied with handkerchiefs. Spitting was a common habit. The boys got one shower per month (this at the height of summer). The school had only seven showers. Too much time, far too much, is spent in the school square; a large yard where the boys just hang around for hours at a time. There is no segregation of new boys from the rest. A relatively good boy is thrown in with the rest and, within a month, he is as bad as all the others.