FOUNDERS: Jenny Crichton, Helen Shannon, Shirley Armstrong, SDE principal Jenny Swadling and Tony Foran at the unveiling of a plaque.
FOUNDERS: Jenny Crichton, Helen Shannon, Shirley Armstrong, SDE principal Jenny Swadling and Tony Foran at the unveiling of a plaque.

Special honour for Charleville Distance Education teachers

HOME tutors past and present reflected on the history and digital future of Charleville School of Distance Education last Tuesday.

A plaque, funded by the Foran and Armstrong families honouring the efforts of SDE's founding teachers in charge was unveiled.

For Shirley Armstrong, who home tutored her seven children on the Langlo property Ravenscourt from 1957-1979, the plaque brings back memories of a bygone era.

Teachers would visit properties on their weekends forming close bonds with the families they taught.

At last year's SDE jubilee, Mrs Armstrong said she "felt stung that there was no recognition of these wonderful teachers who were in charge.”

"They were supportive and never overstepped their role as educators. I had to do something about it.,” she said.

She met with former teacher in charge Tracey Foran's brothers, Tony and Barney Foran, and together put away enough money to pay for the plaque.

SDE's last teacher in charge Helen Shannon, who served distance learners for 14 years through the 70s and 80s, said she feels proud of the recognition because "there was a hole in the history of SDE”.

Looking to the future Ms Shannon said the school has moved with the times, incorporating technology into the classroom.

She said all those years spent making sure all students had access to radio frequency are still be realised despite the advent of new online technologies.

As for Charleville, Ms Shannon said paying a visit "is like coming home, I always enjoy it”.


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