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History

Our School has a long and illustrious history. Our first Woodridge School was Provisional School No. 704. It was setup in the Woodridge Progress Association Hall in Railway Parade, and opened on 21st May, 1924 with Miss Dorothy Tuke as the first Head Teacher. 21 Students were in the first roll call. Miss Annie Lloyd was Principal from 1925-1932. 

Woodridge State School, at out present Site on the Corner of Wembley Road and Railway Parade has been operational since it first opened in the little school building designed to accommodate 40 pupils. The first Head Teacher, Mr Frederick Perret took up duty on 29 April, 1932.

We asked some past pupils what school was like in their day:

"We only had one room for the whole school of 30 to 44 pupils. It was 21 feet long, and 18 feet wide. It had 8 desks and stools. Each desk would seat 5 children. There were ink wells set in the desk for each child, and slots to put our slates in. We had a clock on the wall. Also a couple of pictures, a big blackboard in front of us and a big bell our teacher would ring to get us back into school.

We had windows on each side, also a front and back veranda. One end of the front veranda was closed in and used for our library. It was only a big cupboard with a couple of shelves full of story books. We studied reading, writing, arithmetic, history and geography. The lower grades had copy books to learn to write neatly and all grades up to 4th grade had a slate and slate pencil to do their sums on. We always had homework, and most of us would have to do it by candle or kerosene light. We also drew maps and wrote compositions" (Mr W. Grose, pupil from 1936-1942).

Mr Grose also commented that 'most children walked up to 1 1/2 miles to school, nearly all were bare-footed. All the roads were dirt, there were no street lights. There were only about 50 houses in Woodridge and only 5 or 6 cars. And until 1974 there was only one shop in Woodridge. Most of the families had small dairy farms, poultry farms or small crops. Some men were able to get jobs at the Kingston Butter Factory or the Kingston gold mine or working on the roads.'

"Discipline was very strict, use of the cane was common. Not many children wore shoes or hats. Hygiene was very important. The games we used to play were bedlam, marbles, tiggy, puss in the corner, London bridge, maypole dancing, hide and seek, cowboys and Indians, soccer, cricket, and swimming." (Mr H Gawronski, pupil from 1956-1962).

"There was little grass in the school grounds, so we always got dirty at lunch time. Part of the playground had big jumping ants and bull ants. There was a big long swing that held 6-8 students, and a steel rocker. Later there were tennis courts, basketball courts and a cricket pitch. We had students from a number of different cultural backgrounds. We all knew each other and most families were friends. As for shopping, groceries were delivered from a shop at Kuraby, a baker delivered bread to our door and a fruiterer came weekly. Cars were scarce, not many people owned one. Horses, bikes or steam train were our main form of transport." (Mrs M. Gawronski nee Wain, pupil).