150 years: Wickliffe Primary School

Learn about the history of Wickliffe Primary School, one of Victoria’s oldest public schools.

Key information

Wickliffe, 3379
26 September 1870
1 January 1987
School type:
School number:
Other names:
Wickliffe Common School, Wickliffe State School

The history of Wickliffe Primary School

  • 1870

    Wickliffe opened as a common school, west of Lake Bolac. 

    JB Jones was the first head teacher. 

    The original school building was made from bluestone (a type of rock also called basalt). 

    It had a single room with no internal ceiling and a shingle roof. The architect, G Harriot, may also have taught at the school for a short time. 

    When the school first opened there were 33 students enrolled. 

    The average number of students who went to school was 24. 


  • 1876

    During the 1870s there were often too many students. In 1876 the head teacher reported: "When the three boys who are picking up wool come back to school, I shall not be able to find seats for them". 

  • 1891

    The teacher's house was built. Before this the head teacher, Jones, lived in a house he had built for himself. 

  • 1950s

    The school was renovated many times; including the building of new shelter sheds.

  • 1958

    An infant room was added to the old bluestone school room. 

  • 1970

    The name of the school changed to Wickliffe Primary School in 1970.

  • 1987

    The school closed in 1987. 

Find more interesting facts about this school

The Public Record Office Victoria (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.

Click one of the links below to do some detective work and see what info PROV have on this school.