Our School's History

Canterbury Girls' High School, in the inner west of Sydney has had a long Front of Schooland impressive history. As an educational institution of girls at a post-primary level, it dates back to 1890.

Before 1879, children attended a church school in a building next to St. Paul’s Church but after 1879, the first public school was opened to cater for 161 pupils. The original sandstone building still stands in the playground of Canterbury Public School.

The 1880 Public Instruction Act provided for the establishment of high schools for boys and girls and Superior Public Schools. Canterbury Public became a Superior Public School in 1890 when two years of education were added to the primary course. This marks the beginning of secondary education for girls in Canterbury.

In 1900 a building was constructed for the girls who received an education of a domestic nature and in 1913 Canterbury Domestic Science School was established with 18 pupils. The school badge was School Crestdesigned in 1917 and the first school magazine, the "Cantabrian" was published in 1928.

The subjects taught included English, Geography, Household Accounts, Cookery, Laundry, Simple Dressmaking, Home Management, Hygiene, Botany, the Care of Infants and Gardening. By 1929 there were 600 girls in the Domestic Science classes and the school was the largest girls' school in Sydney.

In 1932 the present main building was completed and included 18 classrooms including 2 science rooms, 2 large kitchens, a laundry, a change room, 3 sewing rooms, type-writing room, art room, library, gymnasium and a complete "home unit" of a dining room, bedroom, kitchen and bathroom! Also in 1932 a fourth year of education was added to the three Domestic Science Schools in Sydney - Canterbury, Chatswood, and Burwood.

In 1933 the first fifth year completed their Leaving Certificate which, prior to the 1959, was equivalent to the HSC. Canterbury's reputation continued to grow and more and more girls chose the vocational training courses at Canterbury as their secondary education. The house system which exists today, of Canberra, Darwin, Brisbane and Adelaide were established in 1944.

In 1959 Canterbury Girls' High School became a comprehensive High School. School Crest

In 1967 the new extensions were planned to accommodate the increasing population, including a new library, science laboratories, art room, senior study , canteen and new kitchens. In the late 1970's the population of the school reached 1000. The library and kitchens were opened and a geodesic dome was constructed in 1975. Later the multi-purpose hall was built.

Canterbury Girls' High School continues to change and evolve, and to provide excellence in education for girls.


Page last updated 3/16/21 2:56 PM