Identity area

Reference code

AU WA S859




  • 1973-07-01 - 1977-12-31 (Creation)
  • 1964-01-01 - 1986-12-31 (Accumulation)

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Name of creator

AU WA A12 - EDUCATION DEPARTMENT (1893-10-13 - 1988-07-01)

Administrative history

The Education Department held responsibility for all primary, secondary and technical schools, teachers' training colleges, universities.

By amendment to the Elementary Education Act in 1893, the Central Board of Education was abolished and a Minister of Education was appointed, having all the powers and duties previously vested in the Central Board. Under the 1893 Act, the Minister was empowered to appoint and dismiss teachers; schools were classified; teachers were graded; teachers positions were defined, and a salary scale for teachers implemented.

The overall management of the Education Department was vested in the Inspector-General of Schools, an office created in 1897 and first occupied by Cyril Jackson. Two years later, the schools system was revised substantially by the Public Education Act of 1899. The Act abolished school fees, provided for co-educational schools, and made attendance compulsory for children between the ages of six and fourteen years. The Act also established a new curriculum which included manual training and household management.

The administrative structure of the Education Department was altered by the Education Act of 1928. This statute re-affirmed the centralized character of the state's public school system by redefining the Minister's powers with regard to the establishment of schools, the training of teachers, the attendance of children, and the organization of Parents' and Citizens' Associations. Following the 1928 Act, responsibility for the operations of the Education Department was vested in the office of the Director-General; he was empowered to promulgate Administrative Instructions which amplified the statutory regulations attending the Act. The Education Department was divided into five divisions (Primary Education, Secondary Education, Technical Education, Teacher Education, and Special Services), each controlled by a Director.

The department was reorganized again in 1987 and today operates as the Department of Education and Training.

Name of creator


Administrative history

The Western Australian Pre-School Education Board was established under the Pre-School Education Act (No. 18 of 1973) which provided for the dissolution of the Kindergarten Association of Western Australia (Inc), and for the discharging of the former functions of that Association: to make provision for the maintenance and extension of pre-school education facilities, to regulate the conduct of pre-school education centres and for incidental and other purposes.

The Kindergarten Association of Western Australia (Inc) (selected records of which are held by the Battye Library of Western Australian History, Private Archives Collection, Manuscript Note 797) was preceded by the Kindergarten Union of Western Australia (Inc) (see also Manuscript Note 525 in the Battye Library).

The Board established advisory committees on matters of educational policy, finance and staffing, registration and standards, Aboriginal pre-school education and the Child Care Certificates Course conducted by the Board.

Twenty six advisory staff were employed by the Board upon formation. These staff assisted in the supervision and administration of pre-school centres. Regional advisory staff were based in Albany, Bunbury, Corrigin, Geraldton, Gnowangerup, Kalgoorlie, Merredin, Moora, Northam, Port Hedland and Ravensthorpe.

Upon the Board's formation, there were a total of 124 pre-school centres catering for 4882 children.

The Western Australian Pre-School Education Board ceased operation on 31 December 1977 when it became absorbed by the Education Department.

(Agency description sourced from "Western Australian Pre-School Education Board Annual Report 1973/74").

Archival history

Content and structure area

Scope and content

This series includes individual pre-school centre files (containing correspondence on various matters pertaining to running of Kindergartens and Pre-School Centres), Regional Advisory Group files (containing correspondence concerning general and specific matters), administrative files and other general files.

Correspondence can include letters addressed to the Kindergarten Union of Western Australia and the Kindergarten Association of Western Australia. A few files have had correspondence added by the Education Department.

The Battye Library of Western Australian History also holds a collection of records from the Kindergarten Union and the Kindergarten Association (reference: Private Archives MN 525 and MN 797).


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Dates of relationship

1973-07-01 -

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Archivist's note

AN Cross Reference = 45/24
Range Control Symbol = 284/2/4 - 766/1/8

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