This publication presents the schools of the Ballina Inspectorate at this time - Education Week, 1959 - and their origins.


The first school established at Iluka, a Provisional School, on non-vested land, was opened in September, 1879. William Graham was the first teacher and at the end of the year the school had an enrolment of 35 pupils, with an average attendance of 27.4. The enrolment rose steadily, so that in 1880 Iluka was raised to Public School status with an enrolment of 44.

The position of this early school is uncertain. However, a vested school site of two acres was obtained by Government grant dated 29th June, 1887, not far from the ocean beach, on the northern bank of the Clarence River. By 1893 drifting sand from the beach sand dunes had encroached to such an extent that it became necessary to move the school. Another two acre site about one mile inland was obtained by resumption and the school was removed to the new position. During the period 1893-1905 the enrolment seems to have ranged from 30 to 40.


By 1905 the continued encroachment of the sand hills had caused many families to move farther upstream, and as the school was in danger, a new site, about a mile front the old one, was acquired by Government grant in February, 1905. The old school building was transferred to the new site in 1906.

Although there appears to be no special reason, the enrolment over the next few years, 1906-1910, increased, varying from 40 to 57.

In 1915 a new school room (the present one) was erected on the same site as the old building, which was demolished.

A block of half an acre with a cottage on it was acquired from Mr. W. D. Paddon as a teacher's residence in 1920.

In 1936 a P. and C. Association was inaugurated, and during the following years much good work has been done. Early in 1948 a weather shed for the pupils was erected by the P. and C. Association - the Department supplying the materials.


When the present Port Development and Harbour Works were commenced in 1950 the Department considered it wise to increase the size of the present school site in preparation for possible future increase in enrolment. Therefore, an additional acre was obtained in 1954, partly by resumption and partly by purchase.

From 1915 to the present time Iluka has gradually developed as a fishing and seaside resort and the school enrolment has fluctuated between 30 and 45 to correspond with the floating population, many of whom are visitors for short periods only.

The present school functions as a normal small school, being the chief cultural centre of the community, with a strong and very helpful P. and C. Association, whose members are always prepared and willing to do anything possible for the improvement of the school and its surroundings, or for the welfare of the children.

The following teachers have been in charge of Iluka School since it was opened in 1879: W. Graham, Miss M. Stuart, Miss C. Flintoff, W. W. Lawler, J. S. Clark, J. Burgess, L. T. Latter (relieving), S. E. Lyon, D. G. MacRae, B. M.Reilly, J. P. Russell, A. Fraser-Cassin, W. G. Lockrey (present teacher-in-charge).

North Coast School Histories

North Coast School Histories: as transcribed by Kathy Pearson and posted to NorCo List. STATUS QUO MCMLIX This publication presents the schools of the Ballina Inspectorate at this time - Education Week, 1959 - and their origins.