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Junior Schools celebrate 25 years of evolving learning

The joy of childhood surely finds its purest expression in play, so it’s quite fitting that this special 25th anniversary year has been marked with the opening of exemplary new play spaces on each campus. Our campuses at St Kilda Road and Glen Waverley have been awarded the highest rating of ‘Exceeding’ the National Quality Standard by the Australian Children’s Education and Care Quality Authority, which says something about the depth and quality of our program.

1996 was a significant year at Wesley, with both of our St Kilda Road and Glen Waverley campuses opening brand new learning centres for our youngest students. Then Governor of Victoria Richard Garvie AC officially opened St Kilda Road’s Junior School campus on 24 March, and six weeks later it was Glen Waverley’s turn, with philanthropist Dame Phyllis Frost opening the Early Childhood Learning Centre (ECLC) on 3 May. A third ECLC, at the Elsternwick Campus would follow shortly after.

‘Over the last 25 years, the school has grown in student numbers and has naturally been influenced by how the world has changed around us,’ said St Kilda Road Head of Junior School Sabeena DeBono. ‘Our gorgeous Junior School has remained a beautiful place for our young people to begin their educational journey at Wesley College.’

Like Sabeena, Glen Waverley Head of Junior School Ben Dooley is keenly aware of Wesley as an evolving place of learning. ‘Our ECLC of today reflects the many years of professional contributions made by so many amazing staff, who gave of themselves to create the positive learning culture and environment that we have today, where the joy of childhood is celebrated in all we do,’ he said.

5-year-old Aryan Zacharopoulos from Glen Waverley clearly keeps himself busy with all the new playground offerings. ‘I like the swings because they can go more further than the old playground swings could.  I like the slides too. You can go really fast and it is like an adventure. You can climb up the stairs and down the slide,’ he said. ‘Like there are more running places. The logs and the stones are really good because we can hop on the logs and build rock towers at the back where the stones are,’ he added.