The Model Rural School


  • Tony Brady Queensland University of Technology



history, agricultural education schemes, rural school concept


This paper examines the Rural Schools of Queensland. Starting with Nambour in 1917, the scheme incorporated thirty schools, and operated for over forty years. The rhetoric of the day was that boys and girls from the senior classes of primary school would be provided with elementary instruction of a practical character. In reality, the subjects taught were specifically tailored to provide farm skills to children in rural centres engaged in farming, dairying or fruit growing. Linked to each Rural School was a number of smaller surrounding schools, students from which travelled to the Rural School for special agricultural or domestic instruction. Through this action, the Queensland Department of Public Instruction left no doubt it intended to provide educational support for agrarian change and development within the state; in effect, they had set in motion the creation of a Queensland yeoman class. The Department’s intention was to arrest or reverse the trend toward urbanisation — whilst increasing agricultural productivity — through the making of a farmer born of the land and accepting of the new scientific advances in agriculture.




How to Cite

Brady, T. (2012). Nambour: The Model Rural School. Australian and International Journal of Rural Education, 22(3), 87–99.