In February 1983 a group of parents banded together to try and get Christian schooling for their children and now 40 years later Dubbo Christian School is stronger than ever.
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Going from 44 students in 1983 to 665 in 2023, the demand for the school was made loud and clear by Dubbo residents.
To celebrate the milestone the school will be hosting a twilight fete from 4.30 to 8.30pm with rides, food, history displays and fireworks on Saturday, February 11.
On Sunday, February 12 the school will be hosting a combined church service with Dubbo churches in the school hall at 10am before a picnic on the grounds. School tours will be available for those that are interested.
The school will then hold a special school assembly on Monday, February 13 to mark the special occasion.
Dubbo Christian School registrar Sharon Simons has been involved with the school in one way or another since its conception in 1983.
She recalls receiving a knock on her door from one of the founding families asking if she would support the school if it got off the ground.
"I started working at the school in 2000, so 23 years ago, but my eldest child started attending here in 1988...I now have three little grandsons here so it's hard to leave," she said.
When the school first opened in what was the former St Mary's Primary School in MacLeay Street in North Dubbo, they had 44 students and two staff members.
With just one principal and one teacher, they worked hard and by the end of the year 100 students had been enrolled into the kindergarten to year six school.
In 1984 they added a year seven and by 1989 they had their first year 12 students graduate.
In November 1986 the school made the move to its current site on Sheraton Road.
The school which has been operating a preschool since 2008 out of its classrooms has now expanded so the preschool will have its own purpose built centre with 80 students enrolled.
The preschool will be celebrating its opening on Saturday, February 11 at 2pm.
Ms Simons said one of the key takeaways from school is that they've only had three principals in 40 years.
"We only just started our fourth principal at the beginning of our 40th year so it's a very steady leadership in that way," she said.
"We have great parents who have supported getting the school started. It was all hands on deck to get the school going and then building beautiful new facilities over the years.
"I think our families and our students are the key thing that standout over the years, they've been very committed to our school but now we look around and we've got amazing buildings going up."
The building of the school hall in 1995 was another big moment for the school, because all prior assemblies had to be held in the school library.
"That was a little crowded, so this new hall seats 800 people and it's been used for all our musical productions since '95 and lots of celebrations and academic graduations, so it's been a wonderful addition," she said.
Ms Simons said it had been great looking back at where the school started and where it is today.
"We are hoping that lots of our former families and students are able to make it back for the celebration. To be able to mark this 40th anniversary together would be wonderful," she said.
"Everyone has a story and different things trigger different stories and it would be great to hear everyone's memories of their time at the school."
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