Grahamvale Primary School (School No. 3696)
(formerly Shepparton Estate)
This school, earlier known as Shepparton Estate, opened on 1st May 1911 with Elinor Oliver as head teacher and an enrolment of 54 pupils. The subdivision of land for closer settlement to the north-west of Shepparton caused the Chairman of the Local Board of Advice, Welshman, in October 1910 to draw the attention of the department to the need for additional school accommodation that would arise. Two recommendations for sites about 2 miles from the nearest school, 1469 Shepparton were made. That advised by the Closer Settlement Board – 2 acres on the south-east of block 27 Shepparton Estate – was chosen, and supported by public meeting in November 1910. A 24 feet by 16 feet portable from closed School No. 1733 Shepparton Central was moved to the site, but was already too small for the task. Miss Oliver reported that “at present there are desks for 26, low forms for 20, seated closely, and the remainder sit on boxes”. In 1911, T.J. Ray became Correspondent of the School Committee and provided a staunch, capable and persistent advocate for the welfare of the school in its early years. Over 130 trees were planted at a working bee held in 1911, and later that year the name of the school changed to Grahamvale to honour the local MLA. In November 1911 ₤500 was authorised to be spent on filling, fencing, a bridge over the irrigation channel, and to provide additional accommodation. 2 acres of land additional to the original 2 acres were purchased in 1912, and in the same year a 6-room residence was erected. An energetic committee had laid the basis for a flourishing school in a thriving irrigation and orchard area.