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150 years: Echuca Primary School

Learn about the history of Echuca Primary School, one of Victoria's oldest public schools.

Key information

413-431 High Street, Echuca, 3564
4 October 1858
School type:
School number:
Other names:
Echuca School, Echuca Common School, Echuca State School

The history of Echuca Primary School

  • 1858

    Echuca opened in 1858. There were 40 students enrolled when the school opened. Classes were held in a tent. 

  • 1860

    The tent was destroyed. 

  • 1861

    A new schoolhouse was built. It was big enough for 430 students. However the number of students enrolled was 999. 

  • 1862

    The school became a common school in 1862.

  • 1863

    There were 39 students enrolled at the school (23 boys and 16 girls). 

  • 1870s

    The school became a state school at some stage between 1873 and 1878.

    A new school was opened in October 1874. 

    More classrooms were added to the school in 1877. It was now big enough for 632 students. However, the number of students enrolled was 1,339.

    There was one head teacher, 6 assistant teachers and 6 pupil teachers. Pupil teachers were older students who helped to teach the younger students. 

  • 1890

    A large part of the school building was destroyed by fire on 27 February 1890. Eight classrooms, the bell-tower and the head teacher's office were destroyed. 

  • 1920

    Photograph of the Echuca Primary School building
    Echuca Primary School building ca. 1920 to 1954 when it was Echuca State School. Source: State Library of Victoria
  • 1921

    In 1921 a home was obtained for the head teacher. This house became very run down and was demolished. 

  • 1945

    Around this time, another house was built by soldiers who had returned from the second world war. The house was part of the training they were doing at the local Technical College.

  • 1951

    The number of students at the school had increased. A new 2-room block was built opposite the main school. It was called 'The Annexe'. 

  • 1958

    An event was held to recognise that the school had been open for 100 years. 

  • 1964

    Two more classrooms were added to ‘The Annexe'. 

  • 1969

    There were 555 students now enrolled at the school. 

  • 1970

    The school was renamed Echuca Primary School in 1970.

  • 2022

    Echuca Primary School is still in operation.

Find more interesting facts about this school

The Public Records Office (PROV) is the archive of Victoria's State and local government. They look after some of our oldest school records, and we can use these records to help us understand what school life used to be like.

Now it is your turn to do some detective work. Take a look to see what information they have on this school.