A Brief History
of Scottsville Primary School (1915-2013).
Government School, as it was originally known, was founded on its present site
in 1915. The school started the year with 43 pupils. The first principal was
School closed in
November 1919 due to Spanish Influenza and re-opened on 3 February 1920
Heavy rains in March
of 1925 prevented 62 of the 146 pupils at Scottsville from attending school.
In 1928 the girls
travelled to Longmarket Girls’ School for Cookery lessons, whilst the boys
travelled to Merchiston Prep School for Woodwork lessons. Both Cookery and
Woodwork were new subjects introduced into the syllabus.
Scottsville was placed under quarantine on 20 April, due to the number of reported
cases of Diptheria
29 November 1935
Affair of the Dynamite.
Violence in schools and pupil activism, it is popularly
believed, is a modern development blamed on overcrowding and various other
environmental and social problems.
But to Scottsville Primary school this type of stuff is
all old hat. They had to learn to face
and deal with these problems as far back as 1935.
That was the year the “Affair of the Dynamite” took place
– on November 29 to be precise. Although
the whole incident probably doesn’t rank with the notorious Siege of Sydney
Street In London (there is no evidence of the Prime Minister having been called
in or having taken a personal interest) it was still a traumatic experience for
the then staff and pupils of the school.
Although the exact details of the whole dangerous affair
have been lost in antiquity, it appears, from the scant evidence still
available, that a 12-year-old pupil arrived at the school and was “found to
have for sticks of dynamite, two candles and fuses in his satchel”. As far as the record shows the pupil was
never proved to have any direct or even indirect, association with the IRA but
he did eventually appear before a local magistrate and was “bound over for two
No mention was ever made of his motives but it could have
been something to do with long hair or corporal punishment.
On 30 March, 1942 a pupil, Eric Clayton,
died of Meningitis and the school was then closed by the Inspector of Schools.
The School re-opened a month later.
school re-opened for the second term on 24 April 1957 with the pupil roll
exceeding 500 for the first time.
this stage, Scottsville School had run out of space for the number of pupils. A
marquee tent was erected in the quad (Gr 4 & 5) to house some of the
April 1965, the new prefabricated classrooms were opened at the school as a
temporary measure. Today, forty years later, these ‘temporary’ classrooms are
still in use.
toilet block was handed over to the Principal.
Junior Primary classrooms, the Administrative Block and the Hall were completed
and opened by the MEC of Education, Mr Frank Martin.
September 1973 five houses that had been purchased by the Natal Education
Department, were demolished to clear the way for new playing and sports
The school roll rose
The Senior Primary
swimming pool was completed.
Principal, Mr. Paddy Kelly retired on 31 December, 1979. At the final farewell
function Mr John Dean from the NED mentioned that he had been reading through
Mr Kelly’s file and came upon a letter written by a parent whilst he was
principal of Bulwer Primary School. The parent was complaining that Mr Kelly
was using the cane too freely. The Inspector at the time wrote to Mr Kelly
enquiring why this was the case. Mr Kelly replied: “In the Bible it says, ‘Thy rod and thy staff shall comfort thee.’ Well
I have not had any comfort from my staff so I have turned to the rod!”
The longest serving
principal, Mr George Snyman (present today), was appointed. He served
Scottsville from 1980 to 1993 (14 years)
The pupil roll had escalated and opened
with 745 pupils on roll.
was introduced as a subject in Grades 6 & 7 to become a part of our school
tennis court and tiered seating at the Junior Swimming Pool were completed.
Aftercare Centre started at Scottsville. This was started in order to meet the
changing needs of working parents.
pupil roll broke 800.
became a multiracial school.
of the school was declared a National Monument.
Mr Nefdt was
appointed principal. He is Scottsville’s 16th principal in the
school’s 90 year history. He was appointed to Scottsville as an educator in
1977, serving under the previous three principals, Mr Paddy Kelly (1972 -
1979), Mr George Snyman (1980-1993) and Mr Digby Rhodes (present today:
1994-1996). Mr Rhodes is the father of the famous SA cricketer, Jonty Rhodes.
Scottsville Primary School
acquired a new property in Rutland Rd. Scottsville Gardens Pre-Primary School,
formerly The Garden Pre-Primary, relocated to Scottsville Primary School
premises. The school began to market itself as ‘Three Schools in One.’
Education was offered from Gr RR to Gr 7 – 10 years in one school.
Education (OBE) was introduced in Grades R-3 in
SA schools, amidst much criticism from education pundits.
OBE was introduced
New computers were
purchased for the Computer Room.
comprising of new change-rooms for Gr 6 & 7 pupils, a storeroom,
change-rooms for male and female staff, three garages for school vehicles was
officially opened on ** May by the MEC Education – Mrs Ina Cronje.
A roof over “the
Deck” and “the Mini-Deck” was erected. This will allow pupils to be protected
from the sun and rain whilst they wait for their parents.
The Tuck Shop was
relocated to the ‘Mini-Deck’ and the old Tuck Shop converted into a classroom.
The Sports Coordinator’s Office was relocated to the SP Pool area.
Nduduzo (Sne) Qulo, a Grade 5 pupil died tragically this year on
30 August 2009.
The Grade 4 & 5
Change-rooms were upgraded, an artificial turf was laid at the P-P school, the
Computer Centre was upgraded to include 17 more computers.
Our pupil roll
exceeds 1 000 pupils.Thabiso Sibiya and Tashveer Sitharpasad represented SA at
the World Sport Stacking Championships in the USA. The parking area in front of
the school was tarred.
Scottsville took a giant step into the technology age: Whiteboards
were installed into each classroom; a Wireless network was installed throughout
the school allowing teachers access to all the computer programs in the
Computer Centre as well as to the Internet; Data projectors were installed in
each classroom; Mimeo Boards were installed into each classroom thus making the
white boards interactive “Smart boards,” and each teacher was given a
‘Notebook’ for their use in the classroom
Two new buses were
purchased for the school: a 23 seater VW Crafter and a 16 seater Toyota
School continues to provide a holistic education to its learners in a changing
and challenging world.
Over the last few
years an average of 8-10 Grade 7 pupils at Scottsville have been awarded
scholarships at local state and independent schools.
always been renowned for its standard of sport over the years. This has not
The girls have always
excelled at swimming, netball, squash and hockey. The girls won the PMB and
District Swimming Shield for 21 consecutive years (1978 to 1999).
The boys have
excelled at chess, soccer, cricket, basketball and hockey.