A free exhibition exploring the history of education in Victoria has opened at the Old Treasury Building Museum.
Featuring photos, videos, text books and memorabilia of Victorian schools from the late 1800s to present, School Days looks at school life before and after the 1872 Education Act.
The Act made education free, secular and compulsory which was a first in the world and a first of its kind. More than 600 schools were built across Victoria within five years of the implementation of the Act.
The exhibition also looks at the role of Aboriginal schools, migrant education, women in education, teaching in the bush and the contribution schools made to World War I.
A total of 753 teachers enlisted in World War I and 146 died. Victorian Director of Education Frank Tate established the War Relief Fund which raised 410,000 pounds to comfort soldiers, nurses, and support widows and orphans.
Students raised the money through various activities including selling rabbit skins, selling leeches to hospitals, and growing and selling vegetables.(This was a popular pastime at Glen Park )
Curator Kate Luciano believes the exhibition will capture the attention of Victorians of all ages.
‘What is exciting about the exhibit is the opportunity for nostalgia. A chance for the older generations to remember the past and for the younger generation to learn about how life used to be,' Ms Luciano said.
To celebrate the rich history of Victorian schools, The Department’s Twitter account will be featuring images of schools from the past every Thursday, using the hashtag ‘#ThrowbackThursday’.
The exhibition runs from March until September 2015.