In 1879 a portable school building was brought up from Melbourne, along with teacher’s quarters attached, and the school opened in February 1880. Mr J W Cooper was Head Teacher, and remained until 1907.
Initially 20 pupils were expected, but this was far exceeded by the initial enrolment of 64, however there was only an average attendance of 30. But by 1883 there were more than 60 children being taught in the one room and a decision was made to erect a new school building. Classes were moved to the Mechanics Institute for the last term of 1883, and the new school building opened on 14th January 1884.
By 1905 the attenence was 103, with new classrooms being added on in 190, 1995 and 1907 as well as two shelter sheds. In 1913 half an acre of land was donated as a playground space.
In the mid-1960’s a new site was purchased in Tower Street, and in 1971 the new brick veneer school opened and the old weatherboard one closed. Since then, additions have been a 25-metre swimming pool, sports oval, tennis court and playground equipment, as well as computers giving internet access, TV sets and other modern items.
With the more recent closure of the schools at St James, Katamatite East and Burramine South, the attendance numbers rocketed again and a room was moved from the closed Burramine South school to supplement the building.
In 1978, Mr and Mrs H P Cooper purchased the original school site and built their new home on the land. Mr Cooper is a grandson of the first Head Teacher and retained one of the old shelter sheds on the property as an item of historical interest. (taken from “Just About Tungamah, 1875-2002”, published by the Tungamah Historical Society)