Goorambat Primary School
In June 1886, the station master (A. Cook) applied for the erection of a school in the vicinity of the railway station, but the number of children in the locality did not justify the establishment at that time. A second application by William Hall in 1891 claimed that the number of children had increased to 22, and suggested that the Mechanics Institute might be leased as a schoolhouse. This went ahead, and the school (No. 3123 Goorambat Township), opened on 8th July 1891 with Ada Bell as head teacher, at the rent of £10 per year.
The new school was built on a 3 acre site purchased by the Department from Hall Brothers for £15 per acre in 1906, and the building was finished in late 1907. The school opened on 28th January 1908, with the parents providing the labour for the erection of fencing and a shelter shed, and tiered seating was erected later that year. The number of pupils was now 38, and by 1914 when the pupil number had reached 42 there was an extension built.
On 16th June 1930, fire completely destroyed the school, after which a new building was erected and opened on 9th June 1931.
The word ‘Township’ was dropped from the school name in 1941, when the school became known as ‘Goorambat State School’.
In 1950 the Department purchased a house for the teachers residence from Jack Saunders – formerly his residence – and placed it on the school site. Some years later this was demolished.
A new office administration facility was officially opened in May 1997, with the ceremony attended by many past and present students, with much of the labour having been provided by volunteers from the township.
Goorambat State School finally closed in 2010 when the numbers had dwindled to single figures, and sadly the school and grounds were put up for sale in 2019. The new owners have turned the site into a Veterans Retreat, and are keen to work with the local community to preserve the history of the school.
The school registers from the original Goorambat State School (No. 1974) which opened in 1876 and closed in 1931, are now held at the Benalla Family History Centre, and can be viewed by anyone who requests to see them.
The school registers from Goorambat State School (No. 3123) which opened in 1891, up until 2000 are held at the Benalla Family History Centre to be viewed upon request. The attendance rolls from 1973 until school closure are also available to be viewed there.
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