Public Education Day is celebrated at historic school

Janine Kitson

Janine Kitson uses the occasion to campaign for Gonski

The old Gordon Public School’s song, “Let our voices ring with pride singing praise ... Honoured school we pledge to thee loyalty ...” reverberated with pride when a small group of teachers celebrated Public Education Day at the Headmaster’s Office Museum within the old Gordon Public School.

The Headmaster’s Office Museum commemorates the students, teachers and parents and citizens associated with the Old Gordon Public School, the first public school on the North Shore of Sydney. The school was closed by the Greiner government in 1989.

The old school is a beautifully designed Gothic sandstone building established as early as 1871, pre-dating the 1880 Public Education Act that enshrined the principles of free, compulsory and secular education for all.

The Greiner government had wanted to sell off the school but the community fought hard to retain it as a community facility with the help of the Labor Council of NSW which placed a green ban on the site. The Ku-ring-gai Historical Society established the Headmaster’s Office Museum, which is a collection of school memorabilia that dates back to the 19th century. Access is through the Old Gordon Public School entrance which is now the Gordon Library, at 799 Pacific Highway, Gordon, at the corner of Pacific Highway and Park Avenue, Gordon. It can be booked for school visits through the Ku-ring-gai Historical Society by email or by calling (02) 9499 4588.