150 years: Wodonga Primary School

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

Key information

Address:
Corner Brockley Street and Mitchell Street, Wodonga, 3690
Opened:
1 November 1857
School type:
Primary
School number:
37
Other names:
Belvoir National School, Belvoir Common School, Belvoir State School, Wodonga State School

The history of Wodonga Primary School

  • 1857

    The school opened as a national school in 1857. It was called Belvoir National School when it opened.

    The first head teacher was John Lee and 21 students attended the school. Lee was in the area as the Murray had flooded and he was stuck on this way from Sydney to Melbourne. He lived in a tent.

    Classes were held in a bark hut at the rear of Jackson's Hotel.

  • 1858

    John Hughes took over as head teacher and his sister became work mistress.

  • 1862

    Belvoir became a common school in 1862. Alfred Nicholls became head teacher at this time.

  • 1873

    The school became a state school in 1873. The number of students was increasing and the head teacher, Edwin Davis, had to use two rooms of the teacher's residence for classes.

  • 1875

    The name of the school changed to Wodonga State School in 1875.

  • 1877

    The population of the town continued to grow and by 1877, 382 students were enrolled.

  • 1890

    A new brick teacher's residence was added in 1890.

  • 1910

    A new room was added and a corridor built to connect all the buildings under one roof.

  • 1920s

    Black and white photograph of the Wodonga school building. The building is brick and has ivy growing up the side. The front fence has a hedge. Wodonga Primary School building in 1920 when it was Wodonga State School. Source: State Library of Victoria

    Wodonga became a Central School in 1923. This meant it held classes for the first two years of the secondary classes.

    Three more rooms were added at this time including a junior science room.

  • 1938

    Wodonga became a full Higher Elementary School in 1938. Four new classrooms, an office for the head teacher and staff rooms were built.

    Enrolment at this time was 290, with 200 primary and 90 secondary students.

  • 1954

    The school moved to a new site on Ariel Street in 1954. The old school building was used as temporary accommodation for the new Wodonga High School.

  • 1957

    The school commemorated its 100th anniversary in 1957. It was attended by The Minister of Education, John Bloomfield.

  • 1970

    The school was renamed Wodonga Primary School in 1970.

  • 2022

    Wodonga 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.

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