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150 years: Great Western Primary School

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

Key information

45-49 Stephenson Street, Great Western, 3374
5 August 1867
School type:
School number:
Other names:
Great Western Common School, Great Western State School

The history of Great Western Primary School

  • 1867

    Great Western opened as a common school in 1867.

    The first head teacher was John Graham.

    The number of students enrolled was 45.

    The schoolhouse was a single room made of bricks. 

  • 1870s

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

    There were around 85 students in 1878 and the school was crowded. 

  • 1881

    A new and larger schoolhouse opened. It was a single room made of timber. 

  • 1923

    An infant room for younger children was added to the existing building in 1923. 

  • 1967

    An event was held to recognise that the school had been open for 100 years. A feature wall, pond, and obelisk were built to mark the school's centenary. 

  • 1970

    The school was renamed Great Western Primary School in 1970. 

  • 1983

    Black and white photograph of the Great Western school building
    Original common school building at Great Western Primary School in 1983. Source: John T. Collins and the State Library of Victoria
  • 2022

    Great Western 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.