Courcelette Public School is celebrating a century of education in the community this month.
The school will be hosting a centennial party for graduates, former staff and community members on May 26 at the school from 1 to 4 p.m. The event will feature the opening of the time capsule from the 75th anniversary, as well as the sealing up of four new time capsules, to be opened in 25-year increments over the next century. Students will be making presentations highlighting changes since 1911. There will be commemorative photos taken, refreshments and entertainment, and tours of the current school building. The opening ceremony gets underway at 2 p.m.
There are plans for a landscaping project at the school to celebrate the centennial. ‘Legacy’ bricks, benches and plaques can be purchased to help fund the project. Century clothing is also available.
Courcelette was originally known as S.S. 13, or Chester Avenue School, and opened in 1911. Miss Mary Pepper was the first teacher, and the building had no running water or indoor toilets. Six years later Chester Avenue was renamed Courcelette Road, to honour the First World War battle of the same name. This mirroreda long-standing tradition of honouring and keeping close ties with area veterans. Second World War veterans began a reading program at the school in 1995.
In 1958 the original building was dismantled, and a new school built on the same location. A year later ‘Road’ was dropped from the school’s name.
In 1982, students competed with Blantyre Public School in a tug-of-war, after a trophy dating back to the 1930s was found. The cup’s current location is unknown.
In 2002 the school community began a five-year fundraising program to build new outdoor classrooms, gardens, a new play structure, running track, trees, picnic tables and a mural painted by students.
For more information on the school’s centennial celebrations and related projects, visit courcelette100.com.