Bundarra Central School has 115 students from K-12 at the moment, and – according to a rough estimate – 2,000 students have passed through its doors since it first opened 150 years ago.
The school’s sesquicentennial celebrations cast the focus on the school’s rich history and drew graduates from as far back as the Forties. They were seated in chronological groups on Saturday in a stroll through the decades. It was Marlene Fox and Frances Layton, graduates from the Forties, that were left to claim the spot of the oldest attendees to the event that payed homage to a school that influenced so many young and impressionable lives.
These days, students have scattered to all corners of the globe, and definitely around Australia. But other families have a tradition of sending children to the school, such as the school’s patron, Arlene Beard, whose great great grandfather from six generations ago signed up the first members of her family to the school. In 2003, the first Year 12s attended the school, whereas 2004 was the first time that two year 12 students graduated after having attended the school from K-12. These days there are 8-10 final-year students who benefit greatly from the intimacy that the school fosters. The event was a special occasion, attended by MP Adam Marshall, Armidale mayor Simon Murray, Uralla mayor Michael Pearce and Inverell Shire Councillor Stewart Berryman.
The festivities combined Easter celebrations of love and renewal with the celebration of a special school.