The History of Campbells Bay School
Campbells Bay Primary 2001
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hand:   Professor Baylis

Pupil Number Four - Enrolled in 1925

Baylis 1925:              Prof Baylis:

Personal life

In 1925 when the school opened I was eleven years old.

My fathers name was Gerald, he was a very kind man.  My mothers name was Daisy and she was very kind too.  My sister was older than I and we were very happy together which was a good thing because there were no near neighbours for us to play with. Geraldine was my sisters name and she liked showing off to her young brother.  One day she showed me how you shinned up a cabbage tree and half way up she met a rat which showed her how to shin down

School life

When the school began, it was just one room with a little passage at the side where we hung our coats and of course just one teacher.  The teacher was Mrs Hockin and she had about 20 children in her class.  We began with seven kids including my sister and I.

We took on the job of sweeping the school out at the end of the day.  How do you think we hid the keys?  We hoisted them up the flagpole.

The school was quite successful.  At the end of its second year it had three pupils ready to sit Proficiency which was the exam in those days which ended your primary education.  To sit Proficiency we had to go back to Takapuna School again, we all passed which was credit to the school.

 When the section was bought for the Campbells Bay School, the local men offered to clear it.  They cleared the scrub at a working bee.  In those days the men didnt have leisure clothes, they came to the working bee in their second best suit complete with waistcoat and often a collar and tie.

There was no such thing as bottled milk in those days.  My mother took two big billies of milk and carted them around our customers, with a dipper, and a measure.  People would leave a jug on their doorstep for the milk

Q. What did you think about Campbells Bay School when you were there?

R.  It was a very happly little school and we were well taught.  We had three teachers in quick succession.  The first was Mr Flavell who was a retired techer who came along for two or three weeks to get the school started.

Then there was Mrs Smith.  She came from Kaitaia.  Shed taken the job just for a few weeks to buy some wallpaper for their house.

Then there was Mrs Hockin who lived locally and stayed for a few years.  She was very much liked.  Her husband was very kind.  They had a car and if it was a very wet day he would bring the car and drive us home so we got home dry.  So it was a nice kind friendly school. 

Q.  How was Campbells Bay School different to how it is today? 

 R.  Well it was tiny with just one room.  The ground was ploughed up, leaving a whole lot of clods.  We threw clods at each other.

Q.  Did you bicycle to school?

R.  I don't think anyone rode a bike to school.  You see the roads were very bad and bicycling on a bad road is not very comfortable.

Q.  Did you have cushions on those wooden seats, or just wood?

R.  Just wood.. you know you move about a bit and keep comfortable.  I don't hink anyone would ever bring a cushion to school... They probably would have been laughed at.

Q.  What equipment did you have?

R.  Nothing but a blackboard, a pointer and some chalk.  There wasn't a projector to show us pictures.  That was all the equipment we had.

Q.  Did you have a school motto?

R.  Yes, we had a school motto from very early on. "Not self but service" which is a good motto.  Try and live up to it.  It will make you happy.  It is very nice helping people.

Q.  Did you write with one of those feathery pens?

R.  No it wasn't quite as antique as that! We wrote with a steel nib and dipped them into the ink pot.  There was a hole in the desk to hold the ink pot.

Q.  Did you have a sick bay?

A.      No, we didnt have enough children to have a sick bay

Q.  What games did you play after school hours?

A.      I think we all went home.  You see there was no tennis court and no where to play.

Q.  What happened to all the lost property?

A.      Well, I dont think we lost much because there werent many of us and we were all very poor so we looked after what wed got  so I cant remember that we had any lost property?

Q. What sort of punishment did they have when you were at Campbells Bay School?

A.      Well they did have a strap and you might have to hold out your hand and get a whack.  You might be made to stand in the corner.

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Last update: Friday, November 2, 2001 at 10:57:00 AM.