Wardell Public School students Tanesha Nugent and Sean Wilcox with the plaque that was unveiled during the school's 150th anniversary celebrations.
Wardell Public School students Tanesha Nugent and Sean Wilcox with the plaque that was unveiled during the school's 150th anniversary celebrations. Kate O'Neil

PHOTOS: Wardell Public School 150th celebrations

IN 1933, a 12-year-old boy named Ralph Undery was given one stroke of the cane for 'throwing manure on the roof' at Wardell Public School.

Ralph's misdemeanour and and subsequent punishment - along with those of many other students - was recorded in the school's 'Punishment Book' - a neatly written record kept by the teacher at the time.

The book was just one of many fascinating historical items on display at Wardell Public School's 150th anniversary celebrations on Saturday, attended by hundreds of current and former students as well as past principals and teachers, who came from as far away as Western Australia.

Those at the celebrations heard that parents in the area got together in 1867 and used their own money to build the school in order to create a better life for their children.

It's always been a small school - throughout the years student numbers have fluctuated between about 15 and 100, but the community spirit and support has been constant.

"It's always been a close knit school,” said former principal Brian Mooney, who was principal from 1992-2007.

There were plenty of fond memories shared between old friends and fellow students at the celebrations, such as those of former student Harry Law, who attended the school in the 1940s.

He said he used to walk the three miles to school in bare feet, and remembers having a great teacher named Mr Bongers, who lived at the school and taught all 44 students in the one classroom.

"Most of us did pretty well,” he said,

"He was very strict and thorough. A really good teacher.”

Saturday's celebrations also included the creation of a time capsule containing objects such as pens, a USB stick and the current school uniform.



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