HISTORY OF NORTH BEACH PRIMARY SCHOOL
The earliest record of a school operating in North Beach shows that a school was opened here on the 11th June 1923 under the guidance of Elva Pyke. The following year Susan Groat was the teacher who remained here until the 29th August when the school closed down because of an insufficient number of pupils.
This situation remained until 2nd July 1934 when Mr J A Wood opened a school at George St in a room of Mrs Elliott’s home with some 28 pupils in attendance. Plans for the erection of a new school were drawn up and on the 26th January the following year a tender was let for the erection of a 30’ x 20’ standard classroom at a cost of $357.00. The builder was Mr C. Maguire of Fremantle.
The new school was occupied on the 8th April 1935 under a new Head Teacher, Mr William S White, and it was situated on the present school site until it was burnt down in 1980, when it was being used as a canteen.
The name North Beach Primary School was changed to “Hamersley” in 1946 but to avoid confusion was reverted to North Beach in 1970 when a new school was built in the new suburb of Hamersley.
As enrolments grew the Education department was forced to rent premises in church halls and in Waterman’s Bay etc. until finally two new brick classrooms were built and occupied in 1948. At this time the number of children in attendance was 138. As North Beach area grew so did school numbers with additional rooms being built every few years until it’s biggest attendances were registered in 1973 when 660 children were present.
Since then there has been a gradual decline, with an enrolment of 360 at the time of the 50th Anniversary (1984) and then a further decline in the nineties. The Education Support Centre was open on site in 1987 and was shut in 2007.
In 2010 the school was back around 360 and a new library and new Arts Block was built.
By 2014 the school numbers had increased to 430 students and we prepare for the Year 7 cohort leaving the Primary program in 2015.
Image reproduced from Stirling Scene Community Magazine. Photographs shown are from the Stirling History Collection.