Castleton College

Founded 1932, Arkaringa Crescent, Black Rock

17 December 1932: CASTLETON COLLEGE — Successful First Year

The first annual speech night of Castleton College, Black Rock, was held in the Memorial Hall, Sandringham, on Thursday night. Dr Denton Fethers presided, and Mrs Vivian presented the competitive cup. Senior boys gave a very creditable presentation of the three-act play "Cricket in the Hearth". Gratification was expressed at the success of the college in its first year.

The principal, (Mr W H Brierley) reported:— The school's first year has been eventful and most successful. I opened the school with seven boys on February 9, and at the close of the year the attendance exceed my remotest expectation. Therefore, my aims and objects being firmly and successfully established, it will conclusively prove that a school such as I have endeavoured to be the founder of was most urgently needed. To carry on a school of this type one of the first and foremost essentials is the moulding of the character of the child, and fitting it morally, physically, and educationally to take his or her place in the great battle of life. Particularly now is the careful training required. It will be my earnest desire to see that all pupils are carefully fitted to take their place in everyday life, and are given the fullest opportunities in competition, responsibility, and leadership. Especially do I realise that education in a junior school is a matter of physical activity, and perfect continuity from form to form should be aimed at. It is very important for us to realise that the mental life of the child is an orderly development, and our ultimate success lies in the direction of modifying the child's natural tendencies. It is also very essential that he should receive careful instruction in grounding of fundamentals to meet the special needs of the preparatory department, which will eventually become the senior school. I have added to my staff a carefully trained master. The junior department of the school is making rapid progress. All subjects as required by the Council of Public Education are taught, including Latin and French. Physical training, morals, and Scripture are taught, and form a very valuable part of the boys' training. A short service of prayers, hymns, and a Scripture reading opens the daily curriculum. I am endeavouring to inculcate the love of good reading throughout the school. The study of poetry, in particular, forms a valuable part of literary training.

Keen rivalry and competitive spirit manifests itself throughout the school because I have introduced a school challenge cup system. A very handsome silver cup has been very generously subscribed for by the parents. Cricket, tennis, boxing, and swimming are systematically taught throughout the year. Owing to the increase in numbers, an up-to-date and well-equipped formroom has been added. During term III, and additional formroom for senior students has been built, and this will greatly facilitate organisation of classes. A shower and dressing room have also been provided for the boys.

The girls' department will be continued should the numbers warrant it, and they will be trained and taught under a mistress, quite apart from the boys' department. I also intend to register Castleton as a secondary school, so that in future pupils will be taken up to the intermediate and leaving standards if so required.

During the year several boarders were in residence, and were under the capable care of Mrs Brierley, who has rendered to the school inestimable service regarding the health of the boys. To all parents who contemplate enrolling their boys as boarders, I have no hesitancy in stating that they will receive only the most careful attention of myself and Mrs Brierley and staff.

It is not the least pleasure that I have in welcoming and introducing such a loyal friend as Dr Denton Fethers, who has so generously come to my assistance. I tender my grateful thanks to Mrs Vivian, who has so graciously come along to assist in the distribution of the prizes tonight. To my president, Mr Vivian, I am deeply grateful for his loyal support and co-operation during the year, also to the members of my committee. Further, I should just like to convince all the parents that I am fully aware of the responsibility they have entrusted to me in giving me the education and welfare of their children. Finally, I feel that I could not close without wishing those boys who are about to leave us a very successful and happy career. I do sincerely hope that the parents will fully realise their obligations and responsibilities, particularly during this period, as boys cannot hope for advancement without the intermediate or leaving certificate as a basis.
The Argus

24 September 1934: OBITUARY — After a short illness in a private hospital Dr. P. D. Fethers, of Black Rock, died on Saturday aged 73 years. Dr Fethers was the son of James Fethers, one of Victoria's earliest settlers. He was educated at South Yarra College and took his medical degrees at the Melbourne University. He practiced at Castlemaine, Brighton, and Black Rock. He is survived by a daughter, Mrs A Dumaresq of Sydney, and three brothers Messrs William, James Fethers, and the Rev E. D. Fethers. One son, Val, was killed in the Great War.
The Argus


Advertisement in The Argus, 27 January 1934.


"What are the most important things in modern education as practiced at the present time?" This was the question that Mr W H Brierley, head master of Castleton College, Black Rock, set out to answer when delivering his report at the third speech night, held on Thursday evening, at the Sandringham Memorial Hall. Going back to the time when he founded the college in 1932, Mr Brierley briefly set out the aims and ideals he had in mind. He stated that mere learning and educating for the sake of gaining academic distinctions was practically valueless unless it was indissolubly connected with right and careful training in morals and in character. The educator must go a little further than mere scholarship and give careful thought to the results of his teaching on the child's future actions. In all their dealings with the boys of this school, the masters had tried to instil into them principles of right conduct — right conduct toward their fellows, right conduct toward their school work, and right conduct in their hours of relaxation from work.

"Our desire," he continued, "is to see the young people of this generation grow to manhood and womanhood with a clean outlook on life. How can we be sure of attaining this end? My opinion is through a proper directing and satisfying of the instinct of curiosity. Every parent realises that the child wants to know the explanation of many things he sees and hears, but there is one thing about which he is naturally more curious than others, that is about his body and the origin of life. The questions which he asks in innocence should be answered when they are asked. I must at this juncture thank the Parents' Association for the untiring efforts which have been put forth during the year to swell the funds which go toward the cost of speech night and the sporting activities of the boys.

"Castleton has been in existence only three years, and for the first time in the history of the college we have three boys sitting for the intermediate examination. If, as I feel confident will be the case, these boys each obtain a pass, this alone will speak volumes for the standard of work attained in all branches of the school. The successes in all the work done this year is largely due to the untiring efforts of the staff and prefects. I feel sure that the present staff is one which will place the school on a high standard if I can retain the support of the parents, which in the past has played so large a part in the life of the college".

The sports master's report showed that the college had played a leading part in the activities of the associated schools' competitions. Although it was their first year in open competition the boys showed a true fighting spirit and were confident that they would prove themselves a force to be reckoned with in all branches of sport.

The mayor of Sandringham, in presenting the prizes, said that he had never seen such a spirit of comradeship as existed among the boys of Castleton. He felt sure that in a few years the college would be perhaps the most prominent of the public schools in this State. He had been given the opportunity of viewing the college during the past week, and had never seen such rapid growth as had taken place in so short a time. To show his appreciation of the work being done by Castleton, he wished to make two presentations for 1935, a book prize for scholastic attainments, and a trophy for sporting activities.

The mayoress (Mrs Simpson) presented the trophies won in sport during the year.
The Argus

21 November 1935: Castleton's Display. The fourth annual display of work done by boys attending Castleton College, Black Rock, was held in the school last Saturday. Dr Garnet Leary, who opened the display, praised the high standard of the work which he said, compared favourably with that shown by Geelong Grammar School in its excellent at arrangement and originality of ideas. The headmaster of Dandenong school (Mr A V G James), who is well-known as the author of the intermediate geography text book selected the best room display, and also chose the best individual work in writing and map drawing in each form. The junior room was given first award for its display of charts illustrating almost every phase of work in the geography syllabus pastel studies, and book work. In the middle school there were some very fine pencil and water-colour drawings. Illustrative work in science was the keynote of the intermediate form entry. The kindergarten room received second place for its exhibit of handwork. In the sand tray there was a model depicting the building of the Ark, and matchbox waggons were shown hauling timber (matches) from a forest on Mount Ararat.
The Argus

9 April 1936: Estate Notice in The Argus for Wilfred Holt Brierley, school teacher at Castleton College.

16 May 1936: A GOOD setting goes a long way in the establishment of a school. The boys of Castleton College, Black Bock (V.), are fortunate to this respect, for their district is not only beautiful but full of romance and tradition. I wonder how many of these boys know the history of Black Rock House, the old home of Mr. Ebden, or have heard of the famous prize fight between Jack Thompson and J. M. Christie at Red Bluff. They must have heard of Donald Macdonald, who wrote so much of Quiet Corner. He loved every inch of the "tea-tree" and the heath land, and wrote of them with such appreciation. What a fine idea it would be to establish a Donald Macdonald prize for nature study at Castleton! Mr. D. C. J. Hill, the head master, is to be congratulated on having taken over the school, and I will look forward to hearing of its success.
The Australasian (Melbourne)

11 August 1937: The Principal of Castleton College, Dr D C J Hill, has obtained permission from the Health Department to continue class work by correspondence and by individual tuition where necessary while the school is closed due to the infantile paralysis epidemic.

31 January 1938: Castleton College reopens 8 February after the infantile paralysis epidemic.
Castleton College is in an Association with Essendon Grammar, Box Hill Grammar, Mentone Grammar, and Huntingtower.

21 December 1940: Mr D C J Hill, principal of Castleton College, Black Rock, said in his report at the college speech day that the development of Castleton was unusual as he had specialised in individual tuition. Results were excellent, and without exception progress made had been very satisfactory. The spirit of determination of all students to give only their best in school and sports was very marked.
Cr W A Sandford, Mayor of Sandringham, presented prizes, and Mrs Sandford (Mayoress) sports prizes.
The Argus

2 April 1946: DEATHS HILL.-On April 1, at Castleton College, Black Rock, Elizabeth Louise, beloved wife of Clarence, and loving mother of Roy, Kathleen, and Phyllis (Mrs. Church) and grandmother of Ian, John, and Kay. -Peace, perfect peace.
The Australasian (Melbourne)