The history of our School is as old as the history of Scone itself.
In November 1838, the first sale of town allotments in Scone occurred. The land was located in Kingdon Street, between Hill and Wingen Streets. It was planned that Kingdon Street would be the main street of the new village of Scone. The Bishop of Australia, William Grant Broughton, successfully bid for three lots on the comer of Hill and Kingdon Streets on which to build the school.
The building of St Luke's Church was completed in October 1840, and it was furnished over the next two years. The decision to erect the school was made on October 24, 1844.
A meeting was held on March 20, 1845. So keen was the village to have a school that William Dumaresq offered his cottage in Liverpool Street for use as a schoolhouse. His enthusiasm was such that he paid for the foundations to be laid and for the construction of brick works up to window level.
When the first appointed schoolmaster failed to take up his duties, Mr William Jones was selected for the position. Mr Jones also agreed to act as the church clerk and sexton. His salary was thirty pounds ($60) per year. His moving expenses to Scone were also reimbursed. The School fees were 1/- (10 cents) per week for each pupil. The Board of Denominational Schools paid a small supplement, and Jones was expected to run the school on this combined amount.
St Luke's Church was consecrated on October 5, 1845. William Jones commenced the first class of St Luke's School on December 4, 1845. As only the foundations of the schoolhouse had been laid, the school commenced in William Dumaresq's cottage, located between the existing Public Primary School and Campbell's Garage in Liverpool Street.
Work continued on St Luke's School and, although it was not finished, the Jones family moved into their four-room residence on October 23, 1846. Classes commenced in the classroom, which was 25 foot long. William Jones also commenced teaching Sunday school at Luke's first Sunday School.
A bell, given to the school by Mr John Bingle, was set up in the churchyard. The Schoolhouse and residence were completed in 1847. The building cost exceeded the estimates and an unsuccessful application was made to the diocese for assistance. Mr James Smith, who also acted as lay reader at St Luke's Church, became Headmaster when Mr Jones left at the end of October 1847. Even in the very early days, principals had to be versatile. Mr Smith also took on duties of preacher when the Rector resigned due to ill health. The new rector, Reverend Canon Coles Child, arrived in Scone in March 1853.
It was about this time that St Luke's school was fitted with proper desks and forms. One wonders what they did before then!
In 1853 Scone officially became one village, taking in Redbank and St Aubins. The only church and school to cater for the 180 residents was now St Luke's. An assistant master, Mr Thomas Creamer, was employed, but he died suddenly on May 27, not long after Mr Smith had resigned (to become Clerk of Petty Sessions). Canon Child had no hesitation in appointing Mrs Creamer as headmistress of the school. It was at this time (around 1855) that Canon Child, encouraged by the success of St Luke's school, tried to establish church schools at Aberdeen, Blandford and Thornthwaite.
The local church society gave the school 1 pound, ($2) to purchase a prize for the most proficient girl and boy in Geography and Maths. The 1st recorded prizewinners were Henry Fredericks and Mary Ann Evans.
In 1857 a School/Church and residence were built at Blandford. Mrs Creamer retired from St Luke's school. Mr David Scott replaced her while inquiries were made for teachers in England. This resulted in English couple, Thomas and Mrs Ledger, coming to Scone.
In September 1861, at a time when proposals were being considered to build another room onto the school, the schoolmaster, Mr Ledger, died. Mrs Ledger carried on with the assistance of a pupil teacher, John Cole.
In 1862, Canon Child started a School Savings Bank at St Luke's School. Early in 1863 a new classroom was opened. It was slightly larger than the original room and had a veranda along the south side.
A National School with 23 pupils was opened in the Presbyterian Church on November 23, 1863. At the same time, St Luke's School had 70 pupils spread over six classes. The following year, the Aberdeen Church School closed when a state school was established.
1868 saw the establishment of Mrs Coombes' Girls' School. It was to continue for 15 years on the corner of Guernsey and Kingdon Streets. By 1870, Scone's population had reached 500. The three schools (with St Luke's being the largest) continued to cater for the towns' children. Mrs Ledger returned to England in 1870 and was replaced by Mr E B Cragg.
On the 31 October, 1872, after nine years the National School closed, leaving St Luke's and Mrs Coombes' School for Girls, the only schools in town.