|Type of organisation:||Government|
|Also known as:||Mallala Public School|
|Town or locality:||Mallala|
|Established by:||State Government|
|Business or purpose:||Education|
The Mallala Public School was completed in May 1877 and a residence for the headteacher was situated adjacent to the school on Owen Road.
The cost of £936 was partly contributed by the residents and the first teacher appointed was Mr Jas Phillips and the first name on the school register was Annie Eliza Harris.
At this time the Central Board of Education was in operation and its inspectors were authorised to keep a tight rein on teachers and pupils alike.
On two dreaded occasions per year schools were visited and standards were checked, children were examined, and the percentages of passes would affect the teacher's salary.
In those days fees of 4 pence to 6 pence a week were collected, with exception being made for the very poor.
During the term of the appointment of Mr David H. Adams as headmaster the Dublin Board of Advice came into being. It comprised of Messrs John Forbes, William Temby, George Marshman and Samuel Gray. However, according to a letter to the Minister of Education dated 31 January 1883' the chairman and only one other member appeared to be attending meetings and inspecting schools regularly.
The system of using young monitors seemed very popular in the early days with some being paid by the department, some by the head teacher, while some worked just for the honour.
By 1892 the Mallala school district was gazetted and this incorporated surrounding schools.
Mr T. Nevin, an obviously progressive headmaster, gained a holiday for his pupils on 29 July 1908 to celebrate the opening of the People's Park.
This project and many other innovations about the town are credited to his enterprise.
He is remembered for his donation of the turret and spire on the Methodist church and, oddly, for his seemingly unending supply of white peppermints.
Many former students of the Mallala Primary School enlisted during World War 1 to fight for King and country. An Honor Roll naming these men hung in the school for many years but is now a treasured exhibit at the Mallala Museum.
The attendances at the school greatly increased during the time the RAAF station was in operation and classes were seriously overcrowded.
In 1966 the Education Department began closing small schools and the first students to be transported by bus to Mallala were from Korunye and Reeves Plains schools.
Then followed the closures of Grace Plains, Windsor, Dublin and finally Long Plains schools.
The sundial is installed at the Mallala School in recognition of the closure of the schools and the transfer of pupils to Mallala.The engravings on the sundial name each of the schools and provide the date of closure while depicting the direction and the distance each school was in relation to the Mallala School.
With more enrolments and a substantial Commonwealth grant, many amenities were added, including more classrooms, a turfed oval, and a greatly upgraded library.
|Head Teacher||Year Commenced||Year departed|
|Mr Jas Phillips||1878||1879|
|David H. Adams||1880||1883|
|John H. Snell||1884||1892|
|John T. Johnson||1893||1898|
|Alfred V. Gent||1929||1938|
|Leslie A. Williams||1939||1958|
|Arthur O. Wright||1959||1964|
|G. A. Loffler||1967||1972|
|David S. Arthur||1975||1997|
|Di Jamieson (Jones)||1998||2006|
- Mallala Museum research notes - schools folders
- Life around the Light: A history of the Mallala District Council area - compiled by Two Wells
- Mallala and District History Book Committee
- Community Development Board of the Council District of Mallala (Mallala. S. Aust.) 1985
Memories of Mallala School
While I, Margaret Field, was teaching at Mallala a classroom was added and it extended the lone transportable building into a two classrooms structure with an enclosed porch on the north side of both rooms. It was luxury now as in particular the doors to the rooms and the racks holding the belongings of the children were not exposed to the elements. Ena Rander and myself used the building to teach the years one,two and three classes.Mr Arthur and Mrs Mavis Wright taught in the stone building.It seemed that just as we relished this space the R A A F personnel were transferred and 40 children from the RAAF Base now were not in attendance.The Education Department decided to reduce the staff to three teachers and remove the newly installed transportable.For me it seemed I was always on a building site competing with all the associated noises and keeping children safe from all the activity of the tradesmen. The years I taught at Mallala were 1958,1959 and 1960 and these three years, for me, fulfilled the bond obligation of country service. Margaret Tiller