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National Trust of South Australia

 

Public School Site Aldinga Road

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Fast Facts
Also known as: Former Willunga Public School
Town or Locality: Willunga
Year constructed: 1877
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The plaque marks the site of the first Public School in Willunga opened here in October 1877 by the Governor, Sir William Jervois. It was a substantial stone building with a slate roof.

The plaque was erected by the Willunga National Trust in 1977, the centenary year of the opening of the school.

The Public School became a Higher Primary School in 1947, to cope with increasing numbers. But it was re-designated as a Primary School in 1963 as a result of the opening of the High School in May 1960.

The Primary School moved north to its present site on Station Road in 1961.

The old school building was used for a few years by the Scouts until it was demolished in the late 1960s, supposedly for safety reasons. The site continued to be used by the Scouts and Guides for a while.

The netball and tennis courts were opened in March 2003.

Sources

  • R Baxendale & F Lush Willunga Walks Willunga National Trust Willunga 2010 (1989)
Willunga Public School, c 1913.
Willunga Public School, c 1913.
Willunga Public School 1926
Willunga Public School 1926
Upper Primary school at Willunga, c 1940s
Upper Primary school at Willunga, c 1940s


Memories of Public School Site Aldinga Road

There were complaints that the children were seeking shelter and sunshine around the waterclosets because of the bad design of the Public School. A wall to separate the yard into girl's and boy's sections had not been built. One letter to the editor speculated: 'The only wonder is that the parents of any allow them to attend.' SA Register 22 July 1878 p6

1944: After the Headmaster reported in 1941 that the air raid shelters, dug to protect staff and students during World War 2, had collapsed in places, it was finally decided to fill these trenches in.

Thos. Noye reported that the father of one of the boys in attendance at his school had kicked down the door of the school house, and had forcibly abducted his boy, who was detained at the school at lessons by order of the master. SA Register 18 Dec 1877 p5

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