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Adelaide Teachers College
The Adelaide Teachers College was founded in 1876 and maintained a long unbroken history in the training of teachers in South Australia through to 1973. Whilst the College underwent several name changes and was housed at a variety of locations over the years, it ultimately settled at Kintore Avenue on the campus of the University of Adelaide. Adelaide Teachers College’s existence is closely intertwined with the history of the University of Adelaide.
Early years 1876 - 1921
Upon approval for a plan to establishing a Training School in South Australia (submitted November 1874 by Mr. E.J. Woods to the Central Board of Education), the very first Training School opened on Grote Street in Adelaide on 8 June 1876. Mr Lewis George Madley was the School’s first Principal. The School building comprised a large lecture hall, a library, reading room, museum of the latest educational appliances, and an apparatus room. The length of study for a Teacher’s Certificate was 6 months, and student teachers could practice in a schoolroom that held 75 children in the adjacent Model School. In the first year of its operation the Training School had 30 students: 12 males and 14 females. In 1877 the length of study was extended to 12 months, as the workload had proved to be too much to undertake in a short span of 6 months. Subjects covered the basics of literacy, arithmetic, history and geography, as well as teaching method. A small allowance was offered to male applicants with the hope of increasing their number in the School. From 1878 a select group of students were allowed to attend lectures in Science at the University of Adelaide in addition to the classes held at Grote Street. Male students were required to undergo a course of military drill and attend weekly classes held by staff sergeants of the Local Military Force.
In 1879 the Training School became known as the Training College, distinguishing it from the various Model Schools in the city. Female students were permitted to do a course in kindergarten teaching under the instruction of Miss Gray at the Model School in Flinders Street. With Principal L.G. Madley at the helm, Mr Andrew Scott was appointed Assistant Master in 1880. The Grote Street building later became the ground floor of the central building of the old Adelaide High School. In 1896 Mr Madley resigned to take the role of Commissioner of Police, and Mr Scott was promoted to Principal of the Training College. Mr Scott proposed the teaching course should be lengthened to two years rather than one, and that student teachers should receive training in First Aid from St. John Ambulance, given their future positions of responsibility with children in their care.
From 1900 to 1913 the name changed to University Training College. The Council of the University of Adelaide had offered to take over the training of teachers from the Education Department, and although the Department decided to maintain its administrative responsibility, the College did move to the University of Adelaide campus on North Terrace. On 22 January 1900 the first students assembled within the walls of the University: of the 37 students, 7 were male and 30 were female. Students had the option to take the course over one or two years. Attention was focused on bringing student teachers’ knowledge of Latin and Mathematics up to University standard. From 1900-1902 the College was located in the basement of the Elder Conservatorium of Music. Principal Scott lamented the lack of male students, proposing that incentives for men to join the Education Department needed to be stronger. After two years of “inspiring yet distracting” vocal and instrumental music in the Conservatorium basement, the College then moved to one, and later two, rooms of the main University building (Mitchell Building). Principal Andrew Scott passed away suddenly on 8 October 1907, and Dr. Adolf John Schulz became Principal of the College in 1909 at the age of 25. In 1907 the College had 61 students (28 men and 33 women). Classes included Science and History of Education, Psychology, Hygiene and Drawing, along with practical training and criticism lessons.
In 1913 the name changed to Teachers Training College, ensuring distinction between the College and the University. For some time students had been focusing more on their University subjects and attaining a degree, rather than committing fully to their teacher training. Dr. Schulz reiterated that although the College was intimately connected with the University, it was never actually under the control of the University Council. From 1917 onwards, Dr. Schulz advocated for relocation of the College to a separate site.
Adelaide Teachers College 1921 - 1973
1921 was a pivotal year in the history of the College. It became Adelaide Teachers College, bringing the naming convention in line with the other Interstate teachers colleges which had been established. The College relocated from the University to the old Police Barracks building behind the South Australian Museum. With growing student numbers and insufficient space at the University, Adelaide Teachers College needed the additional (but temporary) accommodation the old Police Barracks provided. A new policy stated that students should undertake two years of training before being appointed to take charge of any classes (in Model Schools or actual schools). As well as avoidance of inexpert instruction, the change safeguarded the wellbeing of those pupils being “practised on”.
In 1922 Adelaide students toured to Melbourne to participate for the first time in the Intercollegiate Contests of sports and convivial activities. Adelaide staff and students were impressed by the magnificent Melbourne Teachers College buildings, facilities and sports grounds, and dismayed by the comparison to the “relative poverty” of their own College back home. The Police Barracks site was very crowded and poorly equipped, and Dr. Schulz advocated strongly for Adelaide Teachers College to receive permanent accommodation in a fit-for-purpose building. His appeals were successful, and the foundation stone for a new College building was laid on the Kintore Avenue site on 4 December 1925, with an official ceremony marking the significant event.
In 1927 construction of the new Spanish-Mission style building on Kintore Avenue was completed. An official opening ceremony was held on 21 March 1927. It became known as the Hartley Building in dedication to John Anderson Hartley who was appointed to the Central Board of Education in colonial South Australia in 1871, and was a founder of the University of Adelaide (later serving as vice-chancellor in 1893-1896). The new building was planned to accommodate 400 students. The total number of students who attended the College at all during 1927 was actually 432 (170 men and 262 women). Students undertaking the D Course to become high school teachers devoted three years to a Bachelor of Arts or Science, then one year of professional teacher training. Students undertaking the B Course to become primary school teachers completed one full year of university studies and one year of professional training. The same applied to students undertaking the C Course to become infant school teachers. The short A Course gave students “equipment value” for future teaching work, covering subjects such as Grammar, Arithmetic, Geography, History and Nature Study. Upon settling into the new premises on Kintore Avenue, the Secretary of the Adelaide Teachers’ College Students’ Council remarked in the 1928 annual report, “We are now well on the road to a prosperous future, our corporate life being well organised and our college spirit remarkably fine.” This hopeful spirit was captured in the College motto Fove Lumen, which translates to “warm light”.
The Depression of the early 1930s impacted the College, with hardships translating to fewer students, fewer lecturers and fewer courses. In 1932 no new students were admitted, apart from six private students. The total number who attended the college in this year was 134 (59 women and 75 men). During the War Years several students from Adelaide Teachers College were enlisted in the armed forces. From 1949 students were levied two shillings per ear to support the purchase of a collection of artworks. The paintings were installed in the College assembly hall on 18 May 1951 as a War Memorial to the ex-service men and women who served in World War II 1939-1945.
After Dr. Schulz’s retirement in 1948, Dr. Hubert Harry Penny was appointed Principal of Adelaide Teachers College. In 1950 a large two-storied building called Miethke House, located on Dequetteville Terrace in Kent Town, was purchased with funds from the State Government at the Schools Patriotic Fund. This provided accommodation for fifty young women from the country whilst they trained in the city to be teachers – a facility which had been sought after since Lewis Madley was Principal.
College Corporate and Social Life
Adelaide Teachers College had a vibrant campus life, with a series of well-received annual concerts, theatre productions and social events. High value was placed on musical knowledge, singing and enunciation as crucial skills for developing young teachers to become well-rounded individuals, build confidence and “…develop the aesthetic and spiritual aspects of life.” The College also had a Literary and Debating society, with debating teams competing against interstate teachers college teams at the Intercollegiate Contests.
Students also manifested a physical expression of the College spirit through a large number of sporting events – hockey, tennis, basketball, football, badminton, cricket, athletics, swimming. Sporting teams engaged in friendly competition with the interstate teachers colleges. The American influence in college sports was reflected in the naming of the college houses – Fresher, Alpha, School, and Varsity.
Students were encouraged to actively participate in a variety of interests, whether they be intellectual, sporting, religious, cultural or social, as a way of becoming well-rounded people and developing esprit de corps.  The College founded its own student publication, the S.A. Teachers’ College Magazine, which later became known as The Torch. Students contributed college news, photographs, poems, essays, cartoons and society reports to the magazine from 1921 through to 1970. The Teachers College Student Union had its own magazine Flambeau, which was published from 1961-1978.
Expansion of the College 1960s
Adelaide Teachers College significantly grew in size in the 1960s. During his tenure as Principal, Dr. Penny worked to establish Adelaide Teachers College’s ongoing relationship the University of Adelaide, whilst still maintaining its separate identity and independence. Dr. Penny was the driving force for expansion of College facilities. He identified that the Hartley Building was becoming overcrowded and needing modification to suit modern teaching methods and student activities. To meet community demand for the teaching courses and to expand its capacity to 1,200 students, the College replaced six temporary structures with new buildings in 1964. These were the high-rise Schulz Building, Madley Gymnasium and Scott Theatre.
Additional campuses were established around the suburbs of Adelaide. Wattle Park Teachers College had already opened in 1957. Western Teachers College was established in 1962. Bedford Park Teachers College was established in 1966, and by the end of 1967 was located in its own building adjacent Flinders University. Salisbury Teachers College was founded on Smith Road, Salisbury East in 1968.
Dr. Penny was succeeded by Mr. Eric Norman Pfitzner who became Principal of the College from 1967 to 1971. In 1970 the course of history for Adelaide Teachers College was set to change again. Based on the recommendations of the Karmel Committee on Education, the Department of Education announced that Adelaide Teachers College was to become independent, and to operate as an autonomous institution with its own Governing Council. The Adelaide Teachers College Union was also established, replacing the former Student Association, with the aim of improving the status of students and bringing students and staff into a single community. In 1970 there were a total of 1,269 students enrolled, with more than 50% of the student population female students (an increase from less than 40% female students in 1965).
College of Advanced Education 1973 - 1991
In 1973, Adelaide Teachers College transitioned to the Adelaide College of Advanced Education. It had become independent of the Education Department, although its primary task continued to be the preparation of teachers. Several other courses related to community needs were introduced, including School Librarianship and Modern Greek and Italian language studies. Kevin Gilding was the Director from 1973 to 1978.
In 1979, the Adelaide College of Advanced Education merged with the Torrens College of Advanced Education to form the Adelaide College of the Arts and Education. Following this in 1982, the Adelaide College of the Arts and Education, Hartley College of Advanced Education, Sturt College of Advanced Education and Salisbury College of Advanced Education all merged to become the South Australian College of Advanced Education.
A close physical relationship was maintained with the University of Adelaide, being accommodated in the Hartley, Madley, and Schulz Buildings, as well as the Scott Theatre, bordering the Western side of the University campus on Kintore Avenue. Administrative arrangements such as the Joint Advisory Committee of the University of Adelaide and the South Australia College of Advanced Education ensured ongoing cooperation between the University and the Advanced Education Colleges throughout the 1970s and 1980s.
In 1991 the South Australia College of Advanced Education merged with the South Australian Institute of Technology to become the University of South Australia.
Adelaide College of Advanced Education. The Adelaide Teachers College/Adelaide College of Advanced Education proudly presents to you a curriculum vitae of the college since its inception in the year 1876. Adelaide, South Australia, 1982.
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1876. Adelaide, South Australia, 1876. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1877. Adelaide, South Australia, 1877. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1878. Adelaide, South Australia, 1878. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1879. Adelaide, South Australia, 1879. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1898. Adelaide, South Australia, 1898. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1900. Adelaide, South Australia, 1900. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1902. Adelaide, South Australia, 1902. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1909. Adelaide, South Australia, 1909. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1902. Adelaide, South Australia, 1913. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1921. Adelaide, South Australia, 1921. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1922. Adelaide, South Australia, 1922. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1927. Adelaide, South Australia, 1927. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1932. Adelaide, South Australia, 1932. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1956. Adelaide, South Australia, 1956. (Series 831).
Adelaide Teachers College. Annual Report 1970. Adelaide, South Australia, 1970. (Series 831).
Elix, Elizabeth Mary. A Remarkable Group: A Collective Memoir. Adelaide, South Australia, 2009.
Saunders, G. E. “Hartley, John Anderson (1844-1896).” Australian Dictionary of Biography. Accessed November 17, 2020. http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/hartley-john-anderson-3731.
Schulz, Adolf John. “Introduction.” S.A. Teachers’ College Magazine. 1, No. 1. June 1921. (Series 849).
Trove. “Adelaide Teachers College”. The Advertiser. June 25, 1927. Accessed November 9, 2020. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article74315405.
Trove. “Adelaide Teachers' College.” The Advertiser. March 7, 1928. Accessed November 9, 2020. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article73692870.
Trove. “The Place of Music In Education.” Border Watch. January 6, 1945. Accessed November 17, 2020. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article78092726.
University of Adelaide. “Provenance Adelaide Teachers College - 1876 – 1973.” University Archives. Accessed November 9, 2020. https://archives.adelaide.edu.au/#details=ecatalogue.320.
University of Adelaide. “SA College of Advanced Education”. Related Institutions. Accessed November 9, 2020. https://www.adelaide.edu.au/records/university-archives/related-institutions/sa-college-of-advanced-education.
University of South Australia. “1876: Training School to Adelaide Teachers College, 1921.” Antecedent History. Accessed November 9, 2020. https://www.unisa.edu.au/connect/Alumni-network/Antecedent-History/.
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 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1876, 4.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1877, 6-7.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1878, 10.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1879, 13.
 Adelaide College of Advanced Education, The Adelaide Teachers College/Adelaide College of Advanced Education proudly presents to you a curriculum vitae of the college since its inception in the year 1876 (Adelaide, South Australia, 1982), 17.
 Adelaide College of Advanced Education, The ATC Proudly Presents, 23.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1898, 46.
 Adelaide College of Advanced Education, The ATC Proudly Presents, 17.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1900, 49.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1902, 55.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1909, 75-76.
 Adelaide College of Advanced Education, The ATC Proudly Presents, 23.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1913, 85.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1921, 110.
 Annual Report 1921, 110.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1922, 114.
 G.E. Saunders, “Hartley, John Anderson (1844-1896),” Australian Dictionary of Biography, accessed November 17, 2020, http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/hartley-john-anderson-3731.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1927, 128.
 Annual Report 1927, 129-130.
 “Adelaide Teachers' College,” The Advertiser, March 7, 1928, 13, accessed November 9, 2020, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article73692870.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1932, 7.
 Elizabeth Elix, A Remarkable Group: A Collective Memoir (Adelaide, South Australia, 2009), 75.
 A Remarkable Group, 76.
 “The Place of Music in Education,” Border Watch, January 6, 1945, 5, accessed November 17, 2020, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article78092726.
 “Adelaide Teachers College,” The Advertiser, June 25, 1927, 10, accessed November 9, 2020. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article74315405.
 Adolf John Schulz, “Introduction,” S.A. Teachers’ College Magazine, 1, No. 1 (June 1921): 1.
 A Remarkable Group, 73.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1956, 154.
 “Provenance Adelaide Teachers College - 1876 – 1973,” University Archives, accessed November 9, 2020, https://archives.adelaide.edu.au/#details=ecatalogue.320.
 Adelaide Teachers College, Annual Report 1970, 1.
 Annual Report 1970, 12-14.
 “SA College of Advanced Education”, Related Institutions, accessed November 9, 2020, https://www.adelaide.edu.au/records/university-archives/related-institutions/sa-college-of-advanced-education.
 “SA College of Advanced Education”.
Prepared by Danielle Hernen (2020)
Andrew Scott - Training College - Rudolph O Nadebaum left College and did not attend Evening Lectures in Part 1 Physics
Andrew Scott - Training College - Stating that Messrs Hassler and Wittner shall attend Chemistry and Botany
Lewis George Madley - Principal - Training College - Adelaide - 7 students will attend Physics lectures
M M Maughan - The University - Asking number of marks gained by Training College Students who failed at BA Examinations
L W Stanton - Education Department - Concerning leave of absence granted Mr A Scott Superintendent of Students
L W Stanton - Chairman Board of Inspectors of Schools - Permission to Call Training Institution The University Training College
Andrew Scott - The University - List of furniture required for room used by Education Department Students
L W Stanton - Chairman Board of Inspector of Schools - Subjects Training College Students will take up during 1900
Lewis George Madley - Principal - Training College - Training College Students Attending University Lectures
C J Jenner and others - Training College Students - Asking Half Fee for Higher Public Examination may be Returned
Lewis George Madley - Principal of the Training College - Adelaide - List of Students Attending Lectures for the First Term
Lewis George Madley - Principal of the Training College - Number of Entries for Sir T Elder's Physiology Prize