1925 and onwards

How It All Began

 

In the year 1925, two ladies, namely Mrs. Downey and Mrs. Hugh Murray took the initiative in starting a movement for a new school in the West of Dandenong. At that time there was an organisation known as the Dandenong Improvement Association, with Mr. E.C. Butler as President and Mr. A Branston as Secretary and another well-known member was Mr. W.F. Roulston, prop. of 'Dandenong Journal' all of whom gave their support in preparing a case to put to the then Minister of Public Instruction, Sir Alexander Peacock.

 

The Site Purchased

 

A portion of the present site, consisting of over 2 acres was purchased for £910 and eventually a contract was let to Jas. C. Brockey & Sons, of Black Rock, for the sum of £8,900 to erect an eight classroom brick school to accomodate 420 pupils.  It is on record that the school was completed 10 weeks ahead of time.

 

School Opens in 1925

 

The article in a September issue of the 'Dandenong Journal' in 1925 tells of the official opening of the school on Wednesday, August 26th, 1925. It was a gala occasion - a public half holiday was declared within the Shire of Dandenong and the records show that it was the largest crowd seen in Dandenong (excepting Dandenong Show day).  What a fun day for the youngsters - Punch and Judy show, Merry go round, Ocean Wave, children's sports and the big marquee where a band of 24 ladies were preparing a luncheon from 9am for an expected 1,000 visitors.

 

First Head Teacher

 

The first Head Teacher was Mr. James Hillard who was promoted from the position of Head Teacher of Noble Park. 

 

1950's

 

Towards the end of 1954, Mr. Ron Macdonald was appointed Head Master.  He came to a school with 569 students in 12 classrooms.  In spite of the transfer of 71 students in 1956 school numbers continued to rise.  In 1957 their were 609 students with classes being run in the local St Luke's Hall and within the corridors.  The attendance continued to rise with a peak of 771 in 1968 and a total of 23 classrooms.

 

Training School Status

 

Dandenong West was proclaimed a training school for students of Frankston Teacher's College in 1962 and in the same year received the highest classification for a Primary School in the Victorian Education Department, as a special class training school.

"ONLY THE BEST"

Our school motto, "ONLY THE BEST", has been applied to all facets of school life. The school through the staff, has developed a tradition for all to live up to.

The staff, from the day the school opened, up to the present day, has endeavoured to teach not only the classroom subjects, but initiative, competition, honesty, integrity and loyalty.  The results are shown over the passing years by the many varied and often important position ex-students have achieved.  We see many of our ex-students too, assisting in Community Service Organisations.

School Upgrade

2012 saw a major upgrade to the school.  In line with BER - National School Pride funding from the Federal Government, Dandenong West was allocated funding for a facility upgrade.  This saw the demolition of the  old Block A building with a brand new open plan learning space for our junior school classes.

© 2019 by Dandenong West Primary School