Mundoo State School’s 126th anniversary celebrations

Mundoo State School Principal Kristina Haigh, with Year 6 students in 2017.

THE Mundoo State School community will celebrate 126 years of delivering quality education in 2021, with of a full day of events this Saturday, October 23, starting at 9.00am, followed by the annual fete.

Historical records indicate the first request for establishment of a Provisional School occurred at the end of September 1894, with a formal application lodged on November 13, 1894.

After approval for Mundoo Provisional School and the purchase of land, the building reached completion by May 8, 1895.

The school opened on August 5, 1895, with Ms Margaret O’Drane as the first teacher and twenty-four students enrolled, which increased to thirty-three by December.

Due to geographical issues, the purchase of a central site took place and, in 1899, the school building relocated 1.6kms further east to a point on the present Mundoo aerodrome, which was more ideal with five mango trees to provide shade.

The school suffered severe damage in the 1906 and 1918 cyclones and needed rebuilding.

In 1910, the school received official State School status.

On August 12, 1951, the newly extended aerodrome opened, which meant planes were even closer to the school grounds.

There was another move to a new site for the school in 1955, complete with two bright and airy classrooms.

The school’s enrolments had increased to 105 in June 1955, and by 1961 numbers had reached 201, however it was not until 1962 that B block was constructed.

The school has seen many other changes, including the introduction of the telephone, cars, decimal currency, television, electricity, septic toilet systems, computers, and school uniforms.

Popular school highlights included fancy dress balls, break up days, sports days, school camps, and fetes.

Over 10 decades, the school community has experienced challenges such as The Great Depression, World War II, cyclones, floods, and, more recently, COVID-19. 

In the late 1960s, construction of the tuckshop was a major project, partially funded by the annual spring function, which included a car parade, fashions, and a dance.

Australian Prime Minister Paul Keating visited the school in 1992, and three years later Mundoo State School celebrated its centenary.

Since the 1990s, the election of school and house captains and the Student Council takes place each year, there are annual academic awards presentations, and students and choirs compete at the Innisfail Young Performers competition.

Additions in the 1990s, included the construction of a modular building, which provided classrooms for Years 2, 3, and 4, an undercover games area, adventure playground, a ‘clothes hoist inspired’ shade cover, and the establishment of the Don Russell Memorial Garden.

One thing that has not changed at Mundoo State School since it opened in 1895, is the emphasis on strong family values, as well as community involvement with parents, students, and teachers.

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