Swannanoa has a primary and intermediate level public school, with a role now exceeding 200 pupils. It is well resourced and plays a very pivotal role in the community, including many well known extracurricular activities such as the widely known annual Swannanoa Fair.
The school has it’s own website, at http://swannanoa.school.nz, but I have also gathered some historical info about the school here, mostly from a leaflet produced to commemorate the centenary of the school in 1971.
Situated on Tram Road opposite the domain, adjacent to the [[Church?]] and not far from the intersection of Tram Road with Two Chain Road, it has also become the geographical center of Swannanoa.
The remainder of this page is from the article by Mr C. M. Harman.
Before the school
Within the twenty square mile area which was later to be known as the Swannanoa District, the 1860’s were the years of closer settlement. Some twenty families settled in the area during this period, some taking up land and others accepting farm work until they felt more sure of themselves. These new settlers were mainly family men anxious to find in the new world the opportunities denied them in the old. Notable among these settlers were Joseph Elliott, Bransby White, William Patterson, George Burt, John Winter, Francis McHugh?, Robert Dailey, Thomas Burgin, Robinson Atkinson, William Power, William Hide, Thomas Hide, Frederick Hide, James Ward and others. All were married men except Thomas and Frederick Hide.
It was not an easy life for these new settlers, many of whom had young families to provide for but they were a happy lot, all hopeful that their new venture would be successful. They took such matters as education and religion seriously; many had had a very limited education before coming to New Zealand and it was because of this that steps were soon taken to proide a btter and more liberal education for their own children. Schools were established at East Eyreton and at Fernside during the middle 1860’s and some of the local children were sent there. Distance made attendance irregular as the only method of transport was on foot. In winter, flooding of the Eyre River cut off access to East Eyreton for weeks at a time so steps were taken in the late 1860’s to provide a centrally situated school for the district.
Strangely enough the prime mover in the project was the bachelor farmer, Thomas Hide.
The Government did not provide schools in those days so these early settlers had themselves to raise the required amount of money by public subscription to establish a school and a teacher’s residence in the district. The only outside assistance at that time was a small grant from the Provincial Government. The little group worked hard to raise the funds required to build a one-roomed school building and a teacher’s six-roomed residence. Forty four acres of land had been set aside and gazetted for educational purposes in earlier years by the Provincial Government. Fourteen acres of this land facing Tram Road was allocated for the new school and grounds for the teacher’s house, a playground and sufficient area for a horse and cow paddock. The remaining thirty acres was held in trust and leased as farming land, eventually being sold by the education Board. By the middle of 1871 the project was completed and the new school and house were ready for occupation. It was a wonderful achievement, not without sacrifice and it gave great satisfaction to those concerned. The school building was wooden, 18 feet by 30 feet with a hip roof and a large open fireplace at one end; it still remains as the rear part of the public hall. The cost of the school was £256.5s.0d. The teacher’s two-storied residence has six rooms and a verandah facing north and running the width of the house. Ouside the back door was a well fitted with a hand pump.
The opening of the school
The opening of the school took the form of a tea meeting followed by a public meeting on Wednesday June 28th 1871. About 120 persons attended the tea provided by the ladies of the district. The school was crowded for the public meeting when Mr. Thomas Hide as chairman, congratulated those in the district who had provided a school and a teacher’s residence both completely free of debt. Guest speakers were Rev. H. J. C. Gilbert, Mr. James Thompson, the newly appointed teacher, Mr. Joseph Thompson and Mr. CharlesHoward? of Loburn.
The Rev. Gilbert spoke of the progress which was everywhere being made. “Progress is the watchword of the day” he said. After referring to other topics such as the Franco-German Ware and the state of religion on the continent of Europe, the Reverend gentleman sat down amongst loud applause. He had spoken for forty minutes. Mr. James Thompson next addressed the meeting on the necessity for the parents to send their children to school regularly. In keeping children home, they not only injured the child, they damaged the character of the school as well as the master’s reputation. He sincerely hoped tha the school might be a blessing to the district. Mr. Joseph Thompson spoke next on school discipline and he was followed by Mr. Charles Howard who spoke at length on the advantages which the colonial youth had over those in older countries. Votes of thanks were accorded the speakers, the Chairman and the ladies and the meeting closed with the singing of the National Anthem.
The school was vested in trustees according to the provisions of the model deed and a school comittee was elected. It comprised Messrs. Thomas Hide (Chairman), John Winter, Robert Dailey, Bransby White and one other. A small allocation from the Provincial Government together with the feer of one shilling per week per child and any moneys raised locally, constituted the school’s income. The committee, which had wide powers, appointed Mr. James Thompson as teacher and Mr. and Mrs. Thompson took up residence in the school house.
The first roll showed a membership of 35 children - 20 boys and 15 girls. Names on that first roll were Rachel, George, Margaret, Richard, James and Robert Dailey; Alice, Ada and John White; William and Thomas Atkinson; William and David Shepherd; William and Charles Winter; John, Jane, Eliza, Eleanor, James and Margaret Major; Robert Elliott; Michael and Adela McHugh?; Annie and Arthur Burgin; Jane and Susannah Sellers; Domonick and William Grant; John and William Bailey; and Margaret Patterson. The ruling salary for a resident master at this time was £70 per annum and a free house. Mrs Thompson, who was a qualified teacher, assisted her husband at times without pay.
Mandeville Plains Primary School
Thus the school was established and was known as the Mandeville Plains District Primary School, progressing under the capable teaching of James Thompson who continued as the teacher for three years. In 1874, his brother Joseph accepted the appointment and he continued as school-master until 1878. Both Thompsons were greatly respected in the district. During Joseph Thompson’s term the school came under the direct control of the Education Department. The Provincial Governments were abolished in 1876 and the Education Act had been amended making the so called District Schools, State Schools. Education was now free, secular and compulsory. School committees continued to function as before but with somewhat restricted powers.
In 1873 a church known as the Swannanoa Wesleyan Church had been established in the district and with the coming of the railway in 1875, the district station was known as Swannanoa. A Post Office was established at this time also and the area became the Swannanoa Postal District. The School came under the control of the Canterbury Education Board and from 1909 was known as the Swannanoa Primary School.
The depression of the 1880's
Joseph Thompson was replaced as master in 1878 by James Brown who was followed the next year by William McClure? with Miss Jean Paterson as assistant teacher. The effects of the depression were widespread; grants to school committees were severely cut as were salaries to teachers. The next ten years in the life of the school were without any major incident. Mr. Thomas Hide continued as Chairman of the School Committee with a break in 1882 when he visited England; (Mr. Robert Dailey acted as Chairman in his absence). In all, Mr Hide served for fourteen years as Committee Chairman; he was a well read man with a kindly nature and a great affection for children.
In 1882 Mr. J. D. Harper was appionted as teacher and in 1886, Mr. J. S. Dalby; Mr. Francis Kelly replaced Mr. Hide as Chairman of the Committee in the same year. It is perhaps indicative of the uncertainties of the times that in 1888 there was another change in the staff and also in the leadership of the Committee; the appointment of Mr. H. Thompson as teacher and Mr. Robert Dailey as Chairman both lasted only one year. The appointment of Mr. G. Silvester as teacher in 1889 and Mr. John Winter as Chairman in the same year brought stability to both the teaching and the administration and steady progress in both fields. New settlers in the district at this time included William Paterson, William Hide, Lovedays, Marshall, Williamson, Bonnington, Rountree, Adams, Bloomfield, Fox and Head and the children of these families, together with the younger children of the earlier settlers made up the roll during this period.
The turn of the century and the early 1900's
The depression was over by 1890 and the brighter outlook was reflected in the school’s life. Alice Hide was enrolled in 1891 and as Mrs. Spiller she lives in Christchurch and is still hale and hearty [Ed: 1971 would have been 80 years after this and so Mrs. Spiller would have been 85 or close to it at the time of writing]. Mrs Spiller has vivid memories of her school days. She relates “we were a family of eight, living in a paddock opposite McHugh?’s at Mandeville. We walked the two and a half miles to school, wet or fine, summer and winter. We cut across paddocks and Mr. Burgin made a stile on the gorse fence where we came out on to the Tram Road. Mr Silverster was a wonderful teacher, respected and beloved by all the children and nicknamed “Silvertail” by them.”
The only decent holiday she had was when two of the family contracted scarlet fever. They were isolated for six weeks and nobody dared to come near and even the butcher and grocer would come no closer than the farm gate. Mrs. Spiller had all her schooling at Swannanoa, the last two years under Miss C. J. Ladbrook of whom she spoke highly.
With the population of Swannanoa at 101 according to the 1900 census new names appearing on the School Roll included Jeffery, Scott, Watson, Clist, Sloan, Buxton, Skevington, Richards, Wrights, Demouth, Lynskey, Isle, Johnston, merrin, Witte and Barker.
From this time until 1921 the school was staffed by many excellent women teachers. Miss Ladbrook was resident teacher for two years and was followed by Miss Wilkinson who stayed four years. She in turn was followed by Miss J. Brennan, Miss L.E. Bussell, (six years) Miss H. A. Horrell and Miss A. Harrison. Mr John Winter completed nineteen years as Chairman of the School Committee in 1906; this record of long and faithful service never being equalled.
The school building was now inadequate and in about 1903 a new school was built; it was a larger building of one classroom sufficient to accommodate sixty pupils. It had a large porch built on one end and the school itself was heated by an open fire-place placed in the centre of the south wall.
Eight years with Miss Craig
The selection and appointment of Miss S. Craig as Head Mistress in 1911 was a wise choice. She was devoted to teaching and was a strict disciplinarian. These were the years of the Proficiency Examination dreaded by many standard six pupils as failure meant another year in that class. The percentage of passes was high during Miss Craig’s term. She lived for the school and her pupils and on one occasion when she was indisposed and confined to bed, she would not close the school; she taught her pupils through the open bedroom window. Miss Craig was affectionately known by the children as “Aunt Sal”. As an animal lover she was proud of her two buggy horses, Dandy and Rangi; Dandy was a white horse and her favourite. She would often spend the weekend in Christchurch leaving after school on Friday and driving the buggy to the home of friends; Dandy would be paddocked in a section nearby. But there were times when Dandy preferred Swannanoa to Christchurch and he would break out of the section and make his way back to the country. Miss Craig would be left stranded and would have to engage a taxi to return on Monday morning. It was an odd sight to see the taxi slowly travelling up Tram Road with the buggy tied on behind. On these occasions Dandy would stand outside the school paddock gate waiting for somebody to let him in. the respect in which Miss Craig was held was acknowledged by the district on her retirement in 1919. New names on the roll at this time included Power, McIntosh?, Barker, Heseltine, Fidler, Henderson, Doidge, Begg and Kelly.
The School Paddock
It seems a suitable time to pause in our history and trace the story of the paddock itself. It was used in the early years as a grazing paddock; most teachers had a horse and kept a cow or two. The 12 acre area was also a pony paddock for the pupils. With the coming of the motor car the land was no longer required and it became covered in gorse and broom. Feeling some responsibility the School Committee had the paddock ploughed with a massive swamp plough drawn by Arthur Burgin’s steam engine. Eventually the ground was leased to neighbouring farmers and of later years it has been farmed for the benefit of school funds.
Changes in the School Committee and in the teaching staff
Mr John Winter who served nineteen years as Committee Chairman was succeeded by Mr Vince Wright in 1907. He held this position until 1912, supported by an excellent committee. Thus in the first forty years of the school’s existence there had been only four Committee Chairmen. Much credit must go to them and to the many Committee members who were proud to serve and must surely have felt it was an honour to have been elected. Mr Wright was succeeded by Mr W.B. Blackwell who in turn was followed in 1913 by Mr W. Kelly who served for most of the First World War years when the Committee supported the School in many patriotic projects. Mr George Begg was Chairman when the war ended and much was achieved by his committee. After four years of service he was succeeded by Mr Nat Fidler (one year), and Mr J.C. Paget (two years). Mr Kelly became Chairman again for another nine years making a total of twelve years altogether.
(Photographs are inserted here of:- The first school committee chairman, the first school, the second school, and the third school.)
Miss Craig was followed as teacher by Miss E.A. Hoffman and in 1920 Miss E.M. Reese was appointed. Mr T. Marlow was the first male teacher since Mr Silverster. He took up residence in 1921 and was highly qualified, taking a keen interest in the district. He was a lay preacher and often took a service at the local church. He was also interested in sport and joined the local clubs. He resigned to take a higher graded school and in 1923 Miss M. Sloan acted as temporary teacher until Miss E.D.H. Horrell was appointed to a permanent position. Miss Horrell was an excellent teacher and she was responsible for remarkable progress during her short stay of two years for teachers apparently needed to move on to better themselves. There was thus a continual change in the teaching staff. Mr R.W. Wealleans came in 1926 and he was followed by Miss H.M. Newton and then Miss M.E. Hughes.
The depression of the 1930's
The disastrous nature of this depression had its effect on the school and the School Committee. Teachers’ salaries were drastically cut and grants to the Committee were severely restricted. In 1930 the annual grant from the Education Board was reduced to ( )13 and from this the Committee paid ( )11 to the caretaker leaving only ( )2 to provide school heating and lighting and all the sundry things the Committee was expected to supply. To raise funds locally was impossible; it was difficult for the Committee to function and very difficult to recruit sufficient members to even keep it intact. All school firing was provided by free labour and the use of coal was discontinued. It was a time of frustration and those who served did a wonderful job; they gave their time willingly and at times had to pay from their own pockets to keep things going. Mr W. Kelly retired in 1932 and from then there was a quick succession of new members and Committee Chairmen. Mr W.T. Norris Snr. did a grand job as Chairman for one year as did Mr T. Skevington. Mr Len Kelly served for two years and was followed by Mr H.M. Burgin. Two more teachers, Miss R.D. Hay and Miss L.M. Webber followed Miss Hughes.
Planting has been carried out in the school grounds on several occasions and it was during the 1930’s that Mr Harvey Burgin decided to plant a shelter belt of fir trees at the rear of the school grounds and ornamental shrubs elsewhere. The planting was done in July after a week of severe frosts; the ground was frozen so hard that it was impossible to dig the holes with a spade or even a gorse grubber. They were eventually made with a crowbar and although this was a rather rough method of planting nearly all the trees grew. Many of the trees in the grounds today were planted on that occasion. A planting of mainly ornamental shrubs was held in 1965. The School Committee had prepared an area west of the school ground and local people were invited to donate a plant or a shrub. Mr James Stockley who had been caretaker of the school for many years planted a tulip tree in honour of his 80th birthday.
The experiment which failed
It was during the depression years that the Committee had the idea that they could save money on the school cleaning. An agent for an oil company had given a demonstration of a new product for the treatment of wooden floors. It was a special oil which, when applied, gave the wood a clean light stain. The Committee men were impressed by the demonstration but funds were low and the treatment rather expensive. They had an idea of their own - why not try using tractor oil instead? Sufficient of this oil was obtained and during one week-end the school floor was liberally painted with it. The effect looked good the following day when the oil had had time to soak in. Unfortunately there was a large amount of black sediment in that tractor oil. Although not noticeable when applied it lay on the surface of the floor. children’s clothes coming in contact were badly soiled; so much so that parents complained in no uncertain terms. To keep the peace the Committee had not option but to get rid of the oil. With hot water, caustic soda and stiff bristled stable brooms the boards were eventually scrubbed clean.
The consolidation issue
The depression was coming to an end and the Government was encouraging the consolidation of small country schools as an economy measure; the Committee had been requested to consider the matter. Mr H.M. Burgin was Chairman at the time when the Education Board suggested the Swannanoa School be closed and the pupils transported to Fernside by bus. The Committee discussed the proposal fully but were not impressed. Three members of the Education Board, including the Chairman Mr C.S. Thompson met the school committee at a later date, to discuss the matter further. They stressed the possible benefits such as team sports etc. to pupils by attending larger schools. With the aid of a survey map of the district, Mr Burgin showed that to transport the present pupils to Fernside would entail a route covering twenty five miles or fifty miles travelling per day. This, the Committee considered excessive, especially for the younger children. The Board representatives said they would like to consider the matter further with their full Board. Actually no more was heard. The Committee members realised that if the school was closed the community interest generated mainly from the school would be lost also.
Larger grants from Government sources and a return to economic stability brought a period of steady progress for the school. Mr Burgin was an energetic Chairman and during his term a school garden was established and the school surroundings were greatly improved. New entrance gates were erected and a driveway from the road gate to the school buildings was formed. The pupils themselves were not forgotten - they claimed they had the best school picnic for years. Mr Burgin continued in office until the end of 1939 being followed by Mr H. Petrie in 1940.
The school house by now was in need of repair; it was heavily infested with borer. The Committee drew the attention of the Education Board to its condition and asked members to inspect it. The result of this inspection was a condemnation of the house and agreement to replace it. Within months plans were prepared and Swannanoa was near top priority for a new school house. However, the next two teachers preferred to live in Rangiora and travel back and forth and because of this the new house was deferred and was not built until 1952-53. Regardless of its condition the old house was rented privately for some years. Early in the 1940’s strong representations were made to the Education Board for the replacement of the present school as the building was fast becoming inadequate.
(Photographs of the 1947 Jubilee are presented on the page before this last paragraph.)
An increasing roll
The school roll during the early 1930’s had dropped to eight but it slowly recovered over the next few years to round about thirty. There was another succession of teachers, Mr L.R. Irvine came from the Nelson district in 1936, he was followed by Mr J. M. Sherrard in 1938 and the following year Mrs E.G. Guilford. Mr V.A. Barclay stayed for the next three years. The roll increased still further and the school was now entitled to an assistant teacher. Miss H. Loy had been assistant teacher for some time and when she left Miss N. Low became assistant to Miss E.J. Milner who had been appointed head teacher in 1943. The roll increased during this period to a peak of 56 in 1946, school numbers being evenly balanced between infants and senior pupils. Both Miss Milner and Miss Low were diligent teachers and their five years together was an outstanding era in the school’s history. Perhaps one of the features of this partnership was the organising of the annual school concert. Tremendous effort was put into this to give the district people a first class entertainment and it was a great thrill for the children themselves. Such was the overcrowding in the school that strong measures were taken by the Committee to get a larger school for the district. In the latter part of 1945 it was found necessary to use the Public Hall as a classroom. This situation continued throughout the whole of 1946. Having the school divided was far from satisfactory to Miss Milner and the pupils. the Hall which the senior pupils used was cold and poorly lit in winter. By 1946 the efforts to have a new school built were successful and it was completed early 1947. It was up-to-date in every respect and consisted of one large classroom, staff room, cloak room etc.
Some family names now shown on the roll were Petrie, Sanders, Plaskett, Harman, Belcher, Ward, Larsen, O’Neil, O’Loughlin, Norris, Palmer, Higginson, Prattley, McHugh?, Taylor, Burt, Judson, Spencer-Bower, Frizzell, Beaton, Clifton-Mogg, Adams, Smith, Atkinson, Codyre, Davis and Stevenson.
Teaching methods had been changing over the years and the three R’s were now not the most important subjects taught. Schooling was easier and more enjoyable for both teacher and pupil and the cry “Children should be seen and not heard” was rapidly fading out of existence. It was now the aim to try and develop “self-expression” and one method of doing this was the introduction of morning talks. The selected child was encouraged to speak openly in class on some subject which was of personal interest. The whole talk was impromptu and completely without preparation.
The idea of these talks was a good one; it gave the child confidence and developed his imagination. It also had its effect on home life when it was realised by parents that some subjects were now taboo in front of the children. Children have receptive minds and what was discussed at the breakfast table could well be used as the subject of a morning talk. Some imaginative children no doubt could make a good story out of a small incident which would soon be common knowledge in the district. Teachers no doubt had many a laugh and parents many a shock when their child came home and reported the subject of his talk.
The School Jubilee
Perhaps the greatest social event in the history of the district was the School Jubilee celebrations held in March 1947. A Public Meeting was held in July of 1946 and from this a strong committee was selected to plan the programme. The Committee met regularly under the Chairmanship of Mr George Winter. Mrs M. Harman and Miss C. Winter acted as joint secretaries and Mr W. McHugh? as Treasurer. The celebrations were advertised throughout New Zealand and there was an excellent response from ex-pupils and ex-teachers wishing to attend. Tremendous work was done by the Committee to assure the success of the various functions.
The celebrations commenced on Saturday March 22nd with a general get-together. Mr Winter welcomed over two hundred former teachers, pupils and Committee men. After the roll call the ex-pupils (including 19 from the first decade) posed for group photographs and then afternoon tea was served. Opportunity was taken to inspect the many old school photographs and also the newly built school. In the evening 179 persons attended a banquet which was held in the Hall. The guest list included Mr W. Gillespie M.P., Mr McDougall? representing the Education Board, Rev. Ian Hopper, Mrs Manchester and Mrs Armstrong, the last two mentioned being the oldest ex-pupils. During the evening they cut the two tiered Jubilee cake. A lengthy toast list was honoured and items were given by Mr Reg Brown and Miss Melva Sanders. On Sunday a Combined Church Service was held in the Hall. Again there was a large attendance and the officiating ministers were Canon Acheson and the Rev. I. Hopper. Monday was Children’s Day but because of the unfavourable weather the sports were abandoned and the children entertained in the school. In the evening a Jubilee Ball was held and the Hall was crowded. During the evening items were given by Misses Shirley Cook, Margaret Evans and Shirley Plaskett.
The celebrations were a great success and at the final meeting of the Jubilee Committee the Chairman thanked all who had worked so hard to ensure their success.
The later years
Following the Jubilee celebrations, Mr N.H.C. Bell was appointed as head teacher and served in that capacity for the next four years. He resided in Rangiora, Travelling daily to Swannanoa. He was a popular teacher and his resignation in 1952 was received with regret. Mr C.E.F. Evans who had been head teacher at East Eyreton was appointed to the school.
Mr H. Petrie who had been Chairman of the Committee since 1938 did not seek re-election at the Householders’ Meeting in April 1948. Mr James Petrie Jnr. was appointed and he served until 1953. During his term of office, the Committee pressed strongly for a new school house and stressed the need for a swimming pool for the school. Mr James Petrie was succeeded by Mr R.D. Frizzell and in 1955 the new Committee elected Mr M. Spencer-Bower as Chairman. In his report given at the 1959 Householders’ Meeting Mr Spencer-Bower reported that the continual efforts of past and the present Committee had at last been successful and after many meetings and correspondence with the Education Board, a new school house had been built and was now occupied by Mr and Mrs C.J. Olivine. A full sized swimming pool and a learners pool had also been built on the school property during this period. Under the control of a separate Bath Committee the baths were a wonderful asset for the pupils and the district generally; in 1965 they were vested to the School Committee.
With the completion of these improvements the school property took on a new look which was most pleasing. Many new names appeared on the School Roll for the period 1949 to 1968 - Burts, Dodge, Burgin, Power, Wildman, Matthews, Bennett, Evans, Cherry, Olivine, Gilmore, Gilchrist.
Mr Olivine resigned at the end of the second term in 1961, Mr C.R. Smith taking up the appointment in October of that year. In 1964 bus transport became available to country schools and a petrol bus was allocated to Swannanoa in September of that year. The school roll had dropped to 20 in 1961 but by 1965 it had increased to 36 making another classroom and an additional teacher essential. By the beginning of 1967 the roll numbered 47.
Mr Spencer-Bower served as Chairman from 1955 to 1965 and it was at the Householders’ Meeting in the latter year that Mrs June Fear was elected to the School Committee, the first woman to be elected to office which she held for four years. During that time she gave valuable service. Following the 1965 election Mr Jack Winter was appointed Chairman and he proved to a most capable and energetic leader. During his term much work was done on the school and school grounds; the school frontage was improved and the road sealing was widened and safety zones formed. A storm water drain was piped the length of the school and the driveway was sealed and kerbed. Much of this work was done at cost by the Eyre County Council; the basketball court was prepared by the committee and later sealed by an outside contractor. Much credit must go to Mr Winter and his team; altogether four hundred voluntary man hours had been given by both Committee members and others interested.
A new Committee elected in 1967 and under the Chairmanship of Mr Walter Norris carried on the work and the school and grounds were well maintained. Mr Ron Smith’s term of excellent teaching finished in 1967 and the service of the family to the district was recognised on their departure. Mr Paul Donaldson took up the appointment in 1968; he proved to be a most capable teacher and the school continued to progress, the roll now 37 and the bus roll 21. Mr Norris reported at the Householders’ Meeting in 1969 that the previous two years had been most successful and finances were in a very sound position. It is notable that these meetings over the last ten years had been extremely well attended by between twenty and thirty persons.
Mr Bevin Bain was appointed as head teacher in 1970 and it was on June 4th of that year when fire completely destroyed the school and its contents. Although tenders have been called for its replacement, at present classes are being held in temporary accommodation. Mr Bain is the present head teacher, Mrs Farquhar is assistant and Mr Norris is Chairman of the School Committee.
It is inevitable in a short history that only brief mention can be made of some who gave valuable contributions to the growth of the school and many others are not mentioned individually at all. There were many assistant teachers who gave loyal service - some names only are known - Misses Haydon, Orange, Patterson, Clarke, Hickey, Sheppard, Loy, Kiddy, Low, Fowler, Armstrong, Marsh, McKechney?, Hansen, Shaw, Galbraith and Mrs Farquhar. Mention should also be made of the many Committee men and secretaries who served in no small way. And tribute should be paid to the people of the district for the part they have played.
A celebration such as this is inevitably a time of looking back and assessment but it is also a time for thoughts of the future. It seems ironical that one hundred years after the opening of a first school the district is again without a permanent structure. But so little of the Swannanoa School is the building itself; it has always been made up of people with a common aim; to teach and to learn. Methods of teaching have changed greatly in the last hundred years but the goal is always the same. To educate the children of Swannanoa so that they may grow up with a love for learning and a delight in working together. Such was surely the aim of those first dedicated settlers; those over the century have caught the vision and we see the school go into its second hundred years with the strength of a thriving district supporting it.
And that only gets us to 1971!