BACK IN TIME: Maclean Public School principal Sandra Armstrong looks over memorabilia at the Maclean Public School celebrations on Sunday
BACK IN TIME: Maclean Public School principal Sandra Armstrong looks over memorabilia at the Maclean Public School celebrations on Sunday Debrah Novak

Maclean Public rings in 150 years

MACLEAN Public School administration manager Beth Sonter could hear the old school bell ringing in the background as she spoke to me.

"It was taken down about 20 years ago," said

School bells became collectable in that period so it was lucky the school still had it.

"We pulled it out and restored it," Mrs Sonter said.

"People have been ringing it all day. It's going to remain a permanent fixture."

Mrs Sonter has worked at Maclean Public School for about 26 years.

"It was great seeing the kids who went through come back, and not only the ones who I saw," she said.

Former students of all ages attended and reminisced over old photos and objects.

Mrs Sonter's husband Stuart was a former Maclean Public School student.

He said even though he left in third class, it was a very special occasion.

"It was really good seeing the old mates and relations that I went to school with," Mr Sonter said.

"Everybody was yapping and taking photos of all the different things that brought back nostalgia."

Mr Sonter has also been in charge of the school's maintenance for about 40 years and felt privileged to be part of the school's history.

Mrs Sonter said she went to Palmers Island Public School, which will celebrate its 150 year anniversary next year.

After seeing yesterday's celebration she said was looking forward to celebrating at the school she went to as a student.

"You need to be here to get the feel of the occasion," Mrs Sonter said.



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