School Community

The building history of Killara High School 1968-

  • KHS occupies a small site – approximately 8 and ¾ acres.


  • Tenders for construction of Killara High School closed 22nd July, 1968. The new school to consist of three blocks.
  • October – Site cleared


  • By June 1969, the upper floor of B Block was poured, the Canteen had a large slab finished, and brick work in Block A had commenced.
  • By August, the basketball court was started and Blocks A and B had roofs.
  • Assembly area between A and B Blocks had half the concrete poured. Clearing and leveling of grounds commenced.
  • In 1969, the sum of $1,999.00 was raised by the P&C Association, making the total assets for moving into the new school site, $2,389.00.
  • Towards the end of 1969, a canteen committee was formed, and arrangements were made for the commencement of canteen operations at the beginning of the First Term, 1970.


  • School commenced on site with 480 pupils in three forms.
  • August, agitation for the completion of the school building – Blocks D and E.
  • November, the formal presentation and opening of the Lion Library which was housed in A Block in what is now the staff common room.
  • Block D commenced.

[Source: Killara High School. The Green Years: Silver Jubilee edition, 1995.]

In 1970, some of the plans proposed for the year were:

  1. The walkway outside the library would be incorporated with the library and the gates forming the enclosure shall be called “The Lion Library” in recognition of the $25,000 worth of books which had been made available from the then closed North Sydney Technical High School.

2. An ornamental fountain was to be erected in the main foyer of the school.

3. After educational and sporting equipment, a swimming pool was to be the main project for fund raising.

4. The 2nd stage extensions to the school were required to cope with the increased numbers in 1971. Letters had to be written to appropriate authorities including the Minister of Education, requesting that early and urgent action be taken to ensure that children are not subjected to any further disruptions because of any delays with the construction of Block D.

Some early photos of Killara High School:


In February 1971, the construction of Block D was progressing well, despite recent rain. KHS was looking forward to conducting their 1971 School Certificate exams in the new building –  away from the playground.


In 1972, Block D was occupied.

In 1972, after the last P&C Annual General Meeting, an “Action Committee” was formed to look into ways and means of speeding up the building of Block E. By the time of issue of KHS News for April/May 1972, however, the committee found that Block E would not be under way in 1972. This was because there was no budget allowance in July 1971-June 1972 financial year; and also because the 1973 expected enrolment at KHS did not warrant the building of Block E, according to the North Sydney Area Director, whom the committee consulted with. By the Nov/Dec issue of Killara News in 1972, however it was reported that Stage 3 – Block “E” was “on its way!”. Funds had been made available and the school believed that tenders had been called. It was expected at this time that building would commence in 1973, and it was hoped, completed in 1974.


The Principal was hopeful that Block E would be ready for occupation by the end of term, noted The Killara News in July 1974

In 1974, a special-sub-committee formed at KHS to investigate the possibilities of constructing a pool or tennis courts at Killara High. It was found that combined admission fees to public swimming pools during the season was over $1500 – and that the same amount was spent in fares to and from pools.


The question of a pool at KHS was raised again in 1975, and a special fund called the Library and Sports Facilities Fund, with a suggested target of $20,000 a year was set up to investigate ways and means of raising the required funds.

In 1975, electricity had been restored to the house on the KHS site, and it began to be used for the following:

  • debates
  • weight-lifting classes
  • meetings by the Ladies’ Auxiliary
  • rehearsals for the production of ‘The importance of Being Ernest’

The house was also used to store the increasing amount of theatrical props which KHS was acquiring. There were still further renovations to be done at this time, which included: blinds, floor coverings, kitchen crockery, a refrigerator and furnishings such as chairs, stools and cushions. There had been offers of curtains no longer used by parents which KHS was happy to accept. There was an expectation that the North Sydney Area would assist, but a plea was also was sent out to parents for these items if they had any to donate.

In 1975, a Works Sub-Committee was formed under the P&C to investigate and report on implementation and estimates of various minor works that arose from time to time. These works included issues such as:

  • provision of additional water taps for garden and grounds
  • time switches for lights to avoid electrical wastage
  • plexi-glass or similar transparent wind breaks to prevent wintery blasts across the courtyards

Above image: Block A, 1976


In 1977, due to the increasing numbers of students in the junior school studying Home Economics, it was necessary to convert the change room into a demonstration kitchen to accommodate extra classes.


In 1978, a building research group visited KHS in May to examine the confined library space in E Block which was well below library standards for a high school of KHS size. A number of suggestions for expansion were considered. It did not appear that a new library building would be constructed in the foreseeable future. However, consideration was given to extending the present accommodation.  

By August 1978, KHS was having difficulty in accommodating classes, so the Department of Education made available at least one demountable classroom which was to be sited behind A Block.


As KHS was pressed for teaching space due to the improvement of the class size situation, the Principal applied for a 2nd demountable classroom.

In 1979, a number of improvements to the school buildings included a Music Store, an Art Store, enlargement of the Science staffroom, and completion of fencing from Koola Avenue to the House.


By January 1980, it was further proposed that:

  • path be built around the corner of A Block (Government funded, Public Works Department)
  • seats were to be purchased and located around the grounds
  • post and rail fences were to be built between C and D Blocks, near C Block in the bicycle area, and at the top end near the main gate.

A retaining wall along the path between C and D Block did not go ahead as planned originally, due to the electrical wires being too close to the surface. The timbers were to be sawn and drilled in the school workshop.

In 1980, the cottage on the KHS site was being considered for further improvements including: setting up a careers centre in the downstairs room; and locating the resource teacher, the Migrant English teacher and the teacher of hearing-impaired children in the various rooms upstairs. It was also a meeting place for such groups as the Ladies’ Auxiliary and for debating.

By July 1980, the P&C and the students of KHS were most concerned about the need for an adequate school library and for the provision of a school assembly hall. Consideration was being given to a submission to the Minister for Education


By November 1982, the courtyard work had commenced and the bike racks were moved to the front of A Block for a trial period.


On October 8, 1984, a Member of Parliament visited KHS. This visit came about by an active campaign by the KHS Prefects. The purpose of the visit was to look at providing KHS with a school hall and improved library facilities.  


In 1989, KHS parents were totally responsible for the upgrading, enlarging and re-surfacing of the school’s outside sporting complex, which now provided four courts – four of each of the following:

  • tennis
  • basketball
  • netball
  • volleyball

These courts were for use during and outside school hours. After seven years of work, the four court complex was ceremoniously opened at KHS in 1989.

The KHS Principal at this time and the Hall Committee, along with various members of staff spent time throughout 1989 researching which type of hall would be best for KHS. They inspected a number of halls throughout the Sydney Metropolitan areas as well as the Central Coast. The general consensus was that the hall currently being built at Erina as part of an entire High School complex under construction – was the best value for money. Designs and diagrams of this hall were to be circulated to all parents early in 1990.

In 1989, The Department of Education granted approval for KHS’s library to be extended. It was scheduled to be completed during the 1990/91 financial year. It would more than double the existing floor space. In 1989, KHS was waiting for the plans from the Government Architect.


1991 marked the commencement of the construction of the long dreamed of hall. It was a dual facility – a gymnasium and a performance space – linked by a foyer and an amenities block. (Please see separate subdivision for the history of a hall and the Kerrabee Centre)


In 1992, the KHS school community built the Kerrabee Centre, with its fully equipped sport hall and unique 250 seat theatre. The architect of the Centre was a KHS ex-student who completed year 12 in 1975. It was officially opened by the Minister for School Education on August 31, 1992. In the first three months of its opening, it had been used as an assembly hall, a meeting place, a sports centre, an art gallery, a theatre for music drama and dance; and a holiday camp for youngsters.

In 1992, the Minister for Education approved funds for the Department of School Education to commence work on the external extensions the KHS’s school library. These extensions were aimed at doubling the library’s existing floor space. It was estimated that the completion date for was mid 1993. (Please see the separate subdivision on the Lion Library for more information).


The external extension of the KHS library was completed mid 1993.

On August 20, 1993, the official opening of the new Lion Library was held. The crest, featuring a lion, on the doors of KHS’s newly open, extended and refurbished library was not that of KHS, but that of the former North Sydney Technical High School. The reason goes back to 1969 when NSTHS’s parents, students and teachers, on that school’s closure, agreed to donate its entire library collection of some 11,000 books and magazines to the then fledgling KHS. At the opening of the new Lion Library, a ribbon was cut by KHS’s captains in 1993. In doing so they re-enacted an event that took place in 1970 when KHS opened its original Lion Library.


In 1994, a third computer room was established in a small classroom with twelve 486 DX computers which were used in the TAS learning area.


In 2000, the relatively new Hospitality Operations course was made possible, primarily through the fully furnished kitchen in B Block.


In 2011, the P&C Association ensured that every classroom had interactive white boards. Almost all of the classrooms were rejuvenated in the Christmas holidays to make them a better learning environment. 


In 2012, the P&C Association were pleased to announce that through the continued lobbying of the KHS parent community, the State Government set funds aside in the 2012 budget for a new building [G Block] at KHS. The P&C also put a business plan together to add further funding where appropriate to deliver the best possible result for students.


In 2018, the Lion Library underwent a major refurbishment. The library is now complete with collaborative learning spaces, study spaces, flexible shelving and furniture and charging ports for student and staff. 


In 1971, two 1st form classes [year 7] wrote some plays. One class compiled separate compositions, while the other and their teacher dramatised a Chinese fairy tale. This work was performed before the 1st form [year 7], and in front of a drama lecturer from a Teacher’s College who was invited for the performance. So impressed was the lecturer that she asked that the students visit the Teacher’s College in Newtown to have their performances filmed. While at Newtown, the students were taken on a tour of Sydney University.


In 1973, a school dance was held in November for the first to fourth formers [years 7-10] at Chatswood High School Assembly Hall, from 8-11 pm. Tickets were 60 cents each. The P&C Association required fifteen fathers to help supervise this night, even for an hour or so. Students had to be collected by parents at the end of the evening.


In 1975, electricity had been restored to the house on the KHS site, and it began to be used for various activities, including rehearsals for the KHS production of ‘The importance of Being Ernest’. The house was also used to store the increasing amount of theatrical props which KHS was acquiring. 


In 1977, KHS production of Oh, what a lovely war was entered in the Arts Council of NSW Drama Competition and won the prize for the best design.

In 1977, a number of school excursions occurred including year 8 (120 pupils) attending a performance of Twelfth Night, and Year 9C attending a performance of The taming of the shrew. Other excursions included:

  • a visit to the Kabuki Theatre
  • excursions to Othello and The Taming of the Shrew
  • year 10 English to Macbeth
  • year 11 English to The Crucible and King Lear

In 1977, a wide range of term 4 activities were organised by the staff to operate between the 28th November until the 9th December. This included acting classes and jazz ballet.


In 1978, a junior school dance was held for years 7 and 8 KHS students, and was held in the canteen block in June.

In 1978, KHS held a small Japanese festival with the co-operation of the Japanese mothers and guests. In the weeks leading up to the event, students made origami and cards to sell on stalls, and prepared acts for the concert held in the stage room. Some students wore kimonos, and six Japanese exchange students from other schools joined KHS for the afternoon. This was KHS’s first Japanese Festival.


In 1979, a drama workshop for some junior KHS students operated each Tuesday morning. It was a combined effort by staff at KHS and lecturers from Ku-ring-gai College of Advanced Education.

In 1979, the following were examples of school excursions that occurred for KHS students:

  • year 10 English –  a screening of ‘Macbeth
  • year 11 French watched a French film

In 1979, KHS English students saw the following drama performances:

  • Years 8 & 9: Tangles, a drama ‘happening’ which visited KHS
  • Year 10:  Roman Polanski’s film, Macbeth
  • Year 12: a Romeo and Juliet performance and the films The chant of  Jimmy Blacksmith and Othello               


In 1981, highlights in the Physical Education Department (the first year this Department existed as a separate Department) for students and staff included ‘discorobics’, modern dance, and social and folk dance.

In May 1981, KHS celebrated Shakespeare’s birthday in the form of creating an Elizabethan fair at the school. There were presentations of scenes from some of Shakespeare’s plays; and many of the staff portrayed characters from his plays, culminating in a Tudor version of ‘Personality Squares’. A number of activities took place on the day including:

  • An Elizabethan costume competition
  • A group of ‘obnoxious performers’ carried out roles such as lepers, as well as jesters, executioners and also Merlin
  • Portable 1 had been transformed into an Elizabethan Inn by year 12 students who re-named the portable the Boar’s Head Tavern.
  • In the A Block quad, 12E1 presented the Falstaff-Prince Hall charade scene from King Henry IV, Part I; and 12E2 presented a hilarious western version of the same scene.

In 1981, due to the success of the KHS Language Festival over the last two years, it was decided to broaden the concept in order to involved as many students as possible, and to encourage all the subject departments in the school to include a segment on multicultural studies into their Term 2 program. Year 10 KHS language students once again acted as co-ordinators. Entertainment ranged from a program of films, a parade of national costumes, rickshaw rides, dances of various lands, origami, and calligraphy.

 In 1981 the ‘Sidetrack Theatre’ visited year 11 and 12 KHS English students to present their play, ‘The Poet’s Company.’


 In 1982, some of the KHS excursions were as follows:

  • year 10 elective music went to a performance of Chicago
  • year 11 drama went to a performance of The Caretaker
  • year 12 english saw Macbeth at the Roseville Cinema

In 1982, KHS held a ‘Dicken’s Day’. The school reverted into the Victorian era, with many activities related to Charles Dicken’s works. As part of the celebrations on the day, an Oxford-Cambridge boat race was staged on the main quad.

In July 1982, KHS held its ‘School Musicale’ at St Ives High School Hall. Activities included classical and jazz ballet dance items. 

In 1982, years 10 and 11 KHS students saw a production called ‘The history of theatre’ by the First Front Theatre Company.

In 1982, the M.A.D.S. – the Musical and Drama Society was created, to sponsor music and drama in the school and conduct a first lunch-time concert. This concert consisted of musical items, oration and dramatic acts. Another venture was to present two one-act playsBoots an’ All and I love you Helen Tinsdale.


In 1983, KHS held a Medieval Day. The day began at 11am on July 1, and activities included:  dancing, plays, musical performances, fortune telling, sports and re-enactments. Students were dressed in medieval attire, where there was also ‘shin-hacking’; tug-o-war; pudding and pie eating competitions; ‘dwile-flunking’ and minstrels. There was also a maypole on the day.


In 1989, KHS students performed a number of items in a night of performances and exhibitions. These included:

  • “Blue and Rose” – a production referring to the two periods in the life of Pablo Picasso. The items performed expressed a range of human experiences and concerns.
  • An Indian dance was performed by a KHS student.
  • Drama items were: “Move over Mrs Marcos” – a drama with political intent, to “Mothers Day” – a satirical light-hearted look at woman’s liberation.


In 1990, year 10 Work Experience placements for KHS students included costume design & stage direction at the Sydney Opera House.


1992 was a big year at KHS for Dance. With the new Kerrabee Centre now available, dance groups were enthusiastic to rehearse and practice. Some activities which involved KHS dance groups were:

  • the Performing Arts Camp
  • the Metropolitan North Dance Festival
  • the McDonalds Sydney Eisteddfod
  • the opening of the Kerrabee Centre
  • Open Day
  • the State Dance Festival;
  • the Sydney Kings basketball matches
  • Turramurra and friends’

Three KHS dance groups were chosen for the dance festival at the Glen St Theatre. A professional dancer was also employed to take the year 7 dance group.

In 1992, The Kerrabee Centre, was officially opened by the Minister for School Education on August 31, 1992. In the first three months of its opening, it has been used as an assembly hall, a meeting place, a sports centre, an art gallery, a theatre for music drama and dance; and a holiday camp for youngsters.

In 1992, one of KHS’s drama classes was a notable feature at the opening of the Kerrabee Performance Centre. The students put on ‘static’ displays in which they showed, in human sculpture, the wide variety of activities which take place in a theatre.


In 1993, KHS drama students performed at a range of venues and events.  These included:

  • the official opening of the new Lion Library
  • the Metropolitan North Regional Shakespeare Festival (hosted at the Kerrabee Centre)
  • the State Book Council Fair at the Mitchell Library
  • the first Darling Harbour Street Theatre Festival
  • the Australian College of Education “Celebration of Education” evening (also hosted by KHS)
  • the Regional and State Drama Festivals
  • The Schools Spectacular at the Sydney Entertainment Centre

In the Shakespeare Festival, the witches scene from Macbeth by year 7 KHS students – one of two entries – was highly commended by the judges.

At Darling Harbour, the KHS senior mime group was declared one of the four winners – and won $400.00.

In 1993, a selection of drama items were presented at the Kerrabee Theatre on Friday & Saturday 28th August 1993. These included those items entered for the Shakespeare Festival and the winning mime piece presented at the Darling Harbour Prom.


In 1994, one of KHS’s drama groups performed at the opening of the new Gordon Historical Centre.

In 1994, ‘fire’ was the theme of an original piece of work that the year 11 KHS drama class performed in the Kerrabee Theatre. This drama opened with an enchanting portrayal of the discovery of fire, according to aboriginal myth, and the group explored the effectiveness of mime, colour and texture. The group then presented a chilling re-enactment of Sydney’s bush fires.

In 1994, five KHS dance groups were accepted for the Metropolitan North Dance Festival, which was closely followed by the following events:

  • the Rock Eisteddfod
  • the Sydney Eisteddfod
  • the Opening Ceremony for the Australian Council for Health, Physical Education and Recreation Conference,
  • the National Netball Championships
  • Korobro
  • the Schools Spectacular

In 1994, two-year 12 female KHS students, one year 11 female KHS student, one year 10 KHS female student and one year 9 female KHS student were selected in the Metropolitan North Region Dance Ensemble. A year 8 male KHS student was invited to participate in a performance workshop video which was later presented to The International Conference – ‘Dance and the Child’.

In 1994, a drama performance involved two year 9 KHS female students and one year 10 KHS female student. Called Three old ladies’, the performance was about how these ladies reminisced about their school years. Every now and then one of the students would re-enact what they remembered. The play was performed at the new Gordon Historical Centre. This same drama group also performed at the State Library – reading from authors, Victor Kelleher and Patricia Wrightson.


In 1995, one hundred KHS students either performed or were backstage at the Hills Centre, Castle Hill for the Rock Eisteddfod. The theme was ‘Pirates’. KHS did not win the main prize, but the prizes that they were awarded were:

  • best soundtrack
  • friendliest school
  • best performance voted by the schools

After this event, KHS was ‘bombarded with faxes and phone calls congratulating them on their fine performance. A little later, radio station Triple M announced that KHS had won a Wild Card entry and would still be going to the finals at the Entertainment Centre. Only four schools were awarded a Wild Card.

In 1995, seven KHS dance groups danced their way through a variety of performances. These included:

  • dance festival
  • community fetes
  • Performing Arts Challenge
  • Open Day
  • State Dance Festival
  • Korobro
  • Schools Spectacular

In 1995, year 9 Textiles and Design class were involved in the designing of the costumes for the ‘Chicago’ musical.

In 1995, the LOTE Faculty’s year 8 German class performed “Schneewittchen” (Snow White) in the Kerrabee Centre.  The whole production was in German. KHS year 7  LOTE  performed a rendition of the song “Wie heibt das auf Deautsch’ .

In 1995, KHS Drama grew in scope and strength, with both junior and senior drama classes in Year 9-12. 

In 1995, the first HSC drama class performed a range of plays from Lovers and fools, poets and soldiers – a collection of Italian theatrical pieces in the ‘Commedia Dell ‘Arte style’. They also performed their original HSC group pieces and individual performances with some friends from Turramurra High School for parents and others.

Year 11 KHS drama performed Shakespeare’s ‘All the world’s a stage’, and To a Trainee Accountant.

Year 9 KHS drama created and performed And their ghosts may be heard – a stark tribute to the Australians and Turks who served at Gallipoli. This was presented to all students at KHS and at the Metropolitan North Regional Festival. Year 9 KHS drama also performed original monologues and dialogues


In 1996, a year 9 female KHS student was nominated by the KHS Principal, and selected to perform in the Olympic Closing Ceremony Team. A classical ballet dancer, the KHS student was one of twenty-six NSW High School students to represent the youth of Australia at the Olympic Stadium in Atlanta.


In 1997, drama activities included:

  • Drama students performed in the school musical, ‘Dazzle’.
  • Junior KHS students created performance about the work of Amnesty International. They used the history and aims of the movement to develop dramatic pieces involving up to ten students and incorporating music and movement to express the value of Amnesty International, as it touches the lives of political prisoners and victims of racial discrimination in the world.
  • Year 10 KHS drama students performed Thornton Wilder’s “Our Town”, and an adaptation of Charles Dicken’s “David Copperfield” in the Kerrabee Theatre.
  • Two KHS students attended a play-writing workshop at the Independent Theatre. Both students wrote plays for their HSC drama individual projects.


In 1999, the P&C Association’s major events was “Yules Fools” – a cabaret mime revue held over four nights. A parent’s prom night was also  organised by the Social Committee.

In 1999, as part of the Peer Support Programme, years 7 and 11 watched this year’s Motivational Media presentation ‘Be Excellent’. The program aimed to encourage  students to try their hardest in all areas. Issues included: problems relating to alcohol and substance abuse, and the long-term effects of decisions that are made. There were performances by many well-known celebrities such as Sandra Bullock, Jim Carrey, Everdeal, and songs by Green Day, Blink 182, Matchbox 20, VooDoo Dolls and more. The presentation was also the topic for discussion in the next few peer support sessions.

In 1999, a KHS year 11 female student won first prize in the Sydney Theatre Company’s ‘Young Playwright Award’. Her play was workshopped and performed by a professional cast, and by the artistic direction of the Sydney Theatre Company, Ms Robyn Nevin.

In 1999, year 9 KHS German Language students completed a special group presentation which formed part of their assessment for the year. The students transformed D14 into settings for picnics in the park, beer halls, fairyland and carnival time, which was supported by their own creative videos and musical back drops.

In 1999, two workshopsLeap into Language: French were held in the Kerrabee Theatre by Young Australia workshop for year 9 and 10 KHS students of French. This program gave student the opportunity to explore and practice their French using theatrical techniques.

In 1999, Musicale 99 was held in term 3, with students not only from within elective music classes but also students who simply wanted to be given an opportunity to perform in front of an audience.


In 2000, KHS celebrated the diverse culture which constitute the school’s population with a Multicultural Day. Displays of traditional Japanese, Korean, Chinese and Thai dances were held throughout the day, as well as martial arts displays. The school’s annual Art Show was held in conjunction with the festivities. Guest speakers on the day included:

  • a representative of the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation
  • the Local Member of Parliament
  • the Mayor of Ku-ring-gai

In 2000, KHS drama students performed Michael Gow’s play, ‘Away’ in the Kerrabee Theatre. The play is an Australian drama set in the 1960s.

In 2000, twenty-eight KHS students from years 8-11, danced with the youth of Sydney in the Pacific School Games Open Ceremony 2000. Hundreds of student competitors, performers and musicians were involved.During the sixteen days of the Sydney Olympics Games, a number of year 10 KHS students were  actively involved in supporting the Olympics as dancers, musicians and volunteers.

In 2000, KHS drama students from year 10-12 participated in ‘Legs on the Wall’ – a drama workshop based on movement and mime. The workshop was based in the Common Room and began with warm-ups and some basic yoga. Other activities included:

  • Following the warm-ups, the groups were exposed to counter-balance exercises
  • Learning basic aerobatics
  • Puppetry – where students became the puppets and puppeteers


In 2001, a number of activities occurred for students across drama classes. These included:

  • Year 12 KHS drama students went to see On Stage. The Summer of the Seventeenth Doll, and with other student drama and art students, a multi-media performance at Riverside Theatre called ‘Eat your Young’.
  • Year 9 KHS students were invited to a production of Hamlet at the Belvoir Theatre
  • Year 10 KHS drama class also supported welfare programs in the school
  • Year 7 KHS students were led once again by one of the English staff through an introduction to drama, which was aimed at inspiring them to participate in school musicals, drama competitions, and to possibly elect drama in their future ‘green years’.


In 2002, a group of KHS Drama students developed their own drama piece and performed it at Newcastle University in the “Odyssey of the Minds’ national competition, which they won. They were invited to represent Australia and in their International Finals in the United States but were unable to raise the money. The same students, plus others from their year 9 Drama class in 2001, entered a video they had made in term 4 of that year, and in the “Mockumentary” category of the ATOM awards – a national short film festival in Melbourne, and were selected as finalists.

In 2002, at the KHS 33rd Annual Presentation Night held for the 2001 school year, the occasional address speaker for the evening was delivered by a well-known playwright and an ex-student of KHS.

In 2002, KHS drama students attended the following excursions:

  • Belvoir Theatre
  • Cabaret at Her Majesty’s Theatre
  • The Club at Riverside Theatre

In 2002, all KHS French classes had a special treat with an excursion to the Imax Theatre in the city, to see French-Canadian Company Cirque du Soleil in 3D.


In 2004, year 7 and 8 KHS drama students were introduced to the history of theatre, stage craft and specific drama styles, while year 9 and 10 KHS drama students looked at play building, scriptwriting, improvisation, Greek and Australian theatre and political theatre.

In 2004, year 11 KHS drama students produced the play, Summer of the Aliens’.

In 2004, some of the KHS junior drama ensemble students spent time working on a production of ‘The terrible fate of Humpty Dumpty’, a play which explores bullying in high schools.

In 2004, the KHS Senior Drama ensemble spent the year working on a production of the play, ‘Dags’, by Debra Oswald, which examined the world of high school through the eyes of a 16-year-old girl.

In 2004, a Japanese ‘chindonya troupe’ gave a performance at KHS. Called ‘U-Stage’ the Chindonya are traditionally street performers who entertain townspeople with a variety show of music and dance. They are professional musicians, and their dances represent many aspects of Japanese folklore and mythology. Sponsored by the Japan Foundation to perform at the grand opening of the Japan Foundation’s new premises in Chifley Square in the city.

In 2004, an event called “The night of the notables’ took place – an evening where intriguing and historical talks were performed with costumes for various famous people, such as Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, Cleopatra and Mother Teresa.


In 2005, ‘Spurboard’ a play by Nick Enright, was the play of choice for the year 11 KHS Drama group. The play deals with family relationships, individual identity and social expectations in rural Australia. Three of the year 11 KHS drama students played two separate characters each.

In 2005, Ian Dickson, TV personality of Australian Idol and Dancing with the Stars visited KHS. Mr Dickson was part of the Communications Panel at KHS’s annual year 11 and 12 Careers Morning. He spoke to KHS students on the topic: ‘Careers in the music industry’.

In 2005 year 9 KHS Japanese students attended an excursion to the Metro Theatre to watch a play called ‘Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes’ (a Canute Production). After the play, students visited the Kinokuniya Bookshop – where a large section of the shop filled with Japanese books, magazines, anime and manga. Next they attended a Japanese restaurant, and ordered their food in Japanese. After lunch the students and staff walked to the NSW Art Gallery to see the Japanese exhibition, where there was a replica ‘chashitu’, known as the ‘Tea Room’. There were also a display of Samurai swords.


In 2006, approximately 75% of KHS students who sat the 2006 HSC obtained a university place. This included music performance.


In 2008, a KHS ex-student, who was the KHS school captain in 1998 produced a theatre production, which was selected as part of the prestigious B Sharp season of independent theatre productions performing downstairs at the Belvoir Street Theatre, Sydney. The production was a re-working of the classic play, Miss Julie by August Strindberg. It was directed by a Russian director from the Maly Theatre in St Petersburg, Russia. Special ticket offers were made for KHS students to attend the season, which ran in June, 2008.


In 2009, the two year 11 KHS Drama classes decided to perform Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Nights’ Dream’. All KHS students in the two drama classes were able to have a part in the play.


In 2010, the KHS Arts Council achieved success in a variety of areas in the KHS creative and performing arts community. This included: 

  • MAD Festival (an annual festival to showcase students musical and dramatic talents)
  • Year 11’s Midsummer Night’s Dream Production

In 2010, year 10 KHS drama learnt about the Russian director and actor, Constantine Stanislavski. The students learnt how to “become the character” and express their emotions in a genuine way. They were given the opportunity to write their own monologue or duologue, or alternatively to find one from a play, book or film.

In term 2, the students researched the Theatre of the Oppressed. Invisible theatre, image theatre and forum theatre were all explored. Students also studied Greek Tragedy and the conventions of the Greek chorus and masks, and looked at the heroes ‘tragic flaw’. For their assessment, the students chose a scene from the play to perform in a modern context, with consideration of costuming and set design.

In 2010, the year 11 KHS drama production was a compilation of short plays, each based around the question:  “What do you need?”. The wonderful collection included plays about bittersweet love, unrequited lost love, and destructive love. Both performances filled most of the Kerrabee Theatre.

In 2010, the KHS MAD Festival was a showcase of the creative, performing talent festival that featured every genre of music and drama performance, with both small and large casts. Some of the performances in 2010, included:

  • a year 12 KHS student performed ‘Angels in America’
  • year 7 and 8 KHS students: a junior dance ensemble and junior drama ensemble, as well as several independent musicians
  • a year 8 KHS group of students performed an original composition


In 2011, the number of students who wanted to join the KHS year 7 and 8 drama ensemble was so great that the ensemble had to run over two semesters. In semester one, KHS students created their own play based on the story of ‘Hansel and Gretel’ but set in a modern-day circus. Students took one the roles of comedians, clowns, acrobats, and even a bearded lady. The semester two group developed their own version of the TV program, ‘Beauty and the Geek’ mixed with ‘MasterChef’.

In 2011, the year 11 KHS drama production chosen was ‘Between the lines’ by Australian playwright Michael Butler. This play formed part of the year KHS drama course, where students not only had to perform in the play, but also had to undertake production roles.


In 2012, the year 12 KHS HSC Drama students attended the OnStage early in term 1, viewing and drawing inspiration from the best of the State’s HSC and Individual Group Performances. Some students also visited the Belvoir Theatre. Two year 12 KHS students became Griffin Theatre Ambassadors, which involved them attending performances and workshops at the Stables Theatre.

In 2012, the year 11 KHS drama class performed Debra Oswald’s ‘Stories in the Dark’ to the Kerrabee Theatre. The year 11 class designed, directed, cast, produced and performed this play themselves.

In 2012, as part of the year 10 KHS drama program, students attended a series of workshops on Realism, challenging them to approach scripts and monologues as actors. This practical experience extended into one of the highlights of the year 10 Drama program, namely the ‘Page-to-Stage’ production, where students cast their self-written short plays from a year 7 and 8 group and directed their performances, culminating in a performance for Killara PS in October.

In 2012, year 9 KHS drama students were involved in the following activities:

  • Learning to improvise performances
  • Workshops and lessons on puppetry, mask-work and Commedia dell’Arte
  • Studies of scripted drama, with a series of workshops and performances on Morris Gleitzman’s play, Boy Overboard

In 2012, a KHS student gained a place in the NSW Drama Ensemble.

In May 2012, as part of the second annual KHS MAD Festival, over twenty groups of KHS drama, music and dance students performed over two nights and one matinee in the Kerrabee theatre. The theme for the festival in 2012 was ‘Magic and Mystery’.

The performances included:

  • Two KHS year 12 students performed sections of their HSC monologues
  • Three KHS year 11 students performed absurdist script excerpts from The Bald Primadonna and The Zoo Story
  • KHS year 9 and 10 drama student performances
  • The junior dance ensemble performed their routine of ‘Hairspray’ from the musical of the same name
  • The KHS senior dance ensemble performed a new routine to the song ‘Titanium’.


In 2013, year 9 KHS students travelled to the Lyric Theatre to see the musical, Grease.

In 2013, at the Sydney Opera House, two separate performances involved KHS music students:

  • KHS Concert 1 Band performed an item as part of the state-wide choral concerts series, organised by the Performing Arts Unit of NSW.
  • The KHS Senior Dance group and Stage Band 1 successfully auditioned to perform as part of the Ryde Schools Spectacular. A KHS singer performed as a soloist in this event.


In 2014, the theme of the MADD Festival was ‘Movies and Musicals’. Organised by the Creative and Performing Arts Faculty, KHS students performed dramatic and musical excerpts. These included:

  • excerpts from the musicals Grease, Wicked and The Lion King.
  • monologues from Shakespeare’s plays
  • dance students performed contemporary dance items

In 2014, year 12 KHS drama students saw their HSC texts‘The Laramie Project’ and ‘Paramatta Girls’ come to life on stage.

In 2014, year 9 and 10 KHS drama students saw a play building workshop and professional production of ‘The Stones’, performed by Zeal Theatre.

In 2014, year 7 and 8 drama ensemble students were given the opportunity to explore the world of acting and drama, before doing so as an elective school subject in years 9-12.

In 2014, KHS held the annual ‘Korobro’ performance which included the KHS dance ensembles and soloists.  


In 2015, the KHS year 12 drama students, as part of their HSC, performed original HSC performances and individual projects. Their HSC Showcase evening, ‘No Nudity, Weapons or Naked Flames’ was performed in the Kerrabee Theatre.

In 2015, the KHS year 11 drama students devised, directed, produced and performed their production of ‘Dead End’ over two nights.

In 2015, the KHS year 10 drama students wrote, directed and produced a production called, The Great Pretender’.


In 2016, the KHS junior and senior dance ensembles performed in the Sydney North Dance Festival with their new KHS dance teacher. This was a two-week dance festival which included many primary and secondary schools in the region. Each dance group was given three performances at the event.

In 2016, the KHS junior dance ensemble was selected to participate in the Ryde Schools Spectacular.

In 2016, the year 12 KHS drama students, with a 2016 six play theatre subscription at the Belvoir Theatre, and were able to see the following theatrical performances:

  • Jasper Jones
  • The Blind Giant is Dancing
  • The Great Fire
  • The Events
  • Black at the Dojo
  • Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night

In 2016, year 7 and 8 KHS drama students went to the Capitol Theatre to see a production of ‘Aladdin – the Musical’.


In 2017, all KHS junior and senior dance ensembles performed in the Sydney North Dance Festival at the Glenn Street Theatre. The KHS senior dance ensemble also competed in the Ryde Eisteddfod.


In 2018, a year 10 KHS female music student was selected to participate in the reimagined ‘Romeo and Juliet’ by Prokfiev, a collaboration between music and dance. A KHS music teacher was also selected as an education advisor, mentor and project manager. The performance ended with a performance of the original composition written by participants held at the Verbugen Hall, Sydney Conservatorium of Music. A documentary was made and was aired on ‘ABCme.

In 2018, year 9 KHS drama students went to the Sydney Theatre Company to see actor, Hugo Weaving perform in ‘The irresistible rise of Arturo Ui’.

In 2018, many of the year 9 KHS male drama students assisted one of the KHS drama teachers in leading a lesson for year 4 boys from the KSP schools in KHS’s ‘Boys on Stage’ workshop.

In 2018, the ‘Matriark Theatre’ came to KHS for an incursion to introduce the theatrical style of Commedia Del ‘Arte to year 9 KHS drama students.

In 2018, year 9 KHS students went to the Sydney Theatre Company to see the Accidental Death of an Anarchist’.

In 2018, year 10 drama students wrote, directed and performed in their own version of ‘A midsummer night’s dream’ for the bi-annual MADD festival at KHS.

In 2018, year 11 KHS drama students devised, directed and performed their own production of ‘Le Grande Sosyal Medea Hotel’ over two nights in the Kerrabee Theatre. Rather than perform a selection of scenes, the students wrote and performed a complete play.

In 2018, six year 11 KHS drama students were selected to attend the NSW State Dance Camp. One of these students went on to be selected to perform at the State Drama Festival.

In 2018, two year 11 KHS drama students successfully auditioned and performed for professional theatre productions throughout the year.


In 2019, year 9 and 10 KHS Drama students saw a professional production of ‘Lord of the Flies’ at the Sydney Theatre Company.

In 2019, year 11 KHS Drama students devised, developed and performed a full-length production called ‘Guilty as Charged’ – a play that centred around the wrongful imprisonment of a man.

In 2019, year 12 Drama students engaged in a theatre subscription with the Sydney Theatre Company and saw four evening performances across the year.

In 2019, year 7 and 8 KHS English students dressed in costume, built props, used gesture and voice to turn their classrooms into mini Globe Theatres.

During the early years of KHS, the six sport houses, were all names of Aboriginal origin:

House Name:      Colour:                       Aboriginal meaning:

BAREGA                   Purple                           Wind

CARINGA                 Yellow                           Light

DOONGARA            Blue                               Lightning

KIMBA                      Red                                Fire

MUNDARA              Green                            Thunder

NARAWA                 Orange                          Water


In 1974, two KHS students, along with youth representatives from all states of Australia attended the Australian Red Cross Youth camp. The name of the gathering was called Gumbooya – an aboriginal word meaning ‘meeting place’. In 1974, this gathering was held in Tasmania. The theme of the meeting was “Young people in action – How? When? Why?’


In 1978, two KHS History teachers started a KHS History Club with participation by fifty students from years 7-10. At the first event, a guest speaker, spoke about Aborigines.

In 1978, the Art Department [now part of the Creative Arts Key Learning Area] held two excursions. Year 8 KHS Art students went on an outdoor sketching day at Echo Point Park. Year 9 KHS Art students went on a round of art galleries to see exhibitions of primitive art and were privileged to see some demonstrations of craft by Aboriginal Australians at the Blaxland Galleries.


In 1979, KHS year 12 English students saw the film ‘The chant of Jimmy Blacksmith’.


In 1981, KHS junior History students went on a film excursion to see ‘Manganinnie’. 


In 1985, year 7 KHS Science students visited West Head to observe, at first hand, the drowned river valley, adaptations of native river valley and aboriginal art.


In 1989, year 9 KHS Science students visited West Head to study plants. Following a track, the students visited various Aboriginal rock carvings.

Above image: 1990 KHS Open Day – part of history display


In 1991, as part of the Design and Technology course, in a joint venture with the Art department, the concept of ‘flight’ was explored as an integral part of ‘Vision 91’. Year 8 KHS Wood Technics students made boomerangs – a simple example of flight used by Aboriginals.


In 1992, a political forum for year 12 KHS students was held where representatives from several political parties visited KHS. This forum included the students being able to ask questions to the State representative from the Nationalist Party about Aboriginal Land Rights.

In 1992, The Kerrabee Centre, was officially opened by the Minister for School Education on August 31, 1992. In the first three months of its opening, it has been used as an assembly hall, a meeting place, a sports centre, an art gallery, a theatre for music drama and dance; and a holiday camp for youngsters. The word Kerrabee, means corroboree or festival site in the language of the Garigal people. Research into local aboriginal history revealed many words in the language of the Garigal Aborigines and the Guringai sub-tribe who once inhabited the Killara area.


In 1993, a group of year 8 KHS students spent a great deal of time and effort writing and illustrating storybooks based on animals and Indigenous people. There were exhibited at Taronga Zoo in October, 1993.

In 1993, to mark the 1993 International Year of Indigenous Peoples, a group of year 7 KHS drama students developed and improvised theatre games, monologues and plays.

In 1993, year 10 KHS history students as part of their study of Australia in the twentieth century examined the progress of Australia in relation to Mabo. (The Mabo Case was a significant legal case in Australia that recognised the land rights of the Meriam people, traditional owners of the Murray Islands (which include the islands of Mer, Dauer and Waier) in the Torres Strait. The case was named after the prime advocate, Eddie Mabo).


In 1994, ‘fire’ was the theme of an original piece of work that the year 11 KHS drama class performed in the Kerrabee Theatre. This drama opened with an enchanting portrayal of the discovery of fire, according to aboriginal myth, and the group explored the effectiveness of mime, colour and texture. The group then presented a chilling re-enactment of Sydney’s bush fires.

In 1994, at one stage, Blocks A,D,C,D,E were to be named after illustrious people, or native plants or aboriginal tribes.

In 1994, year 9 KHS History students examined the mistreatment of Aborigines when white men came to Australia. They also listened to a talk about the Myall Creek Massacre.


In 1995, 2Unit Legal Studies KHS students examined three specific areas of Australian law – one of which was a case study examining the disadvantages faced by indigenous Australians historically and at the present time. These students found that their understanding of the continued mistreatment of Aboriginal people increased through this case study approach of studying Indigenous Australians.

1995, year 7 KHS History students watched the performance called ‘Massacre at Myall Creek’ which examined this historical event. Held in the Kerrabee Centre, the play was performed by two actors who were dressed in costumes, with many questions at the end of the performance to the actors.


In 1996, year 7 KHS History students studied Australian Aborigines, convicts and the First Fleet. Once again, they also watched a play on the Myall Creek Massacre, which was performed by two actors.


In 1997, the year 7 History students covered a variety of topics, of which the first topic was ‘Heritage’. In this topic they students studied the different aspects of Australian heritage including natural heritage, Aboriginal heritage, British heritage and multicultural heritage. Their 2nd topic was Aboriginal History. This topic was brought to life by a dramatic performance from a guest performer. Using didjirdu (didgeridoo), language, body painting, dance, songs and artefacts, as well as Dreamtime and personal stories, the guest speaker raised the students’ awareness of the richness of Aboriginal culture and the diversity of traditional song and dance.

In 1997, once again, the performance of Massacre at Myall Creek examined the significant event of the Myall Creek Massacre. In class the students had numerous discussions about current Aboriginal issues and land right policies.

In 1997, year 12 KHS 2 Unit Legal Studies students looked at a case study on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, looking at their culture and present disadvantages.


In 1998, KHS 3 Unit Legal Studies examined Aboriginal Land Rights.

In 1998, KHS students in year 11 Legal Studies examined the following topics:

  • Pre 20th century law
  • Australia’s establishment of its legal systems – including the High Court and Parliament – and their powers as set out by the Constitution
  • The influence of Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander customary law on the current system of law
  • The age of criminal liability and the different types of punishment

In 1998, year 7 KHS History students looked at native Australians in the topic, Heritage. Their 2nd unit of work was Aboriginal History, where the watched a performance by a guest performer, who performed many dances, one of which was the ‘Kangaroo Dance’. He also told some stories from the Dreamtime. Year 7 KHS History students also watched the performance about the Myall Creek massacre, which examined the issue of Justice in the Treatment of Aborigines.’ They also studied Aboriginal Land Rights.


In 1999, on the 3rd and 7th September, year 9 KHS students participated in the Talking Tolerance to Teenagers program. Discussions were on the following topics:

  • tolerance of the opposite sex
  • tolerance of the disabled
  • racial tolerance
  • tolerance of others’ opinions

“Workshops, plays and guest speakers also were part of the program. A guest speaker,  also revisited KHS after being a favourite speaking in 1998. He shared the moving story about an Aboriginal teen who was literally bashed to death, simply because he was Aboriginal. He also spoke about the importance of respecting others.

In 1999, the 2 Unit HSC Legal Studies courses explored the legal system, more specifically in terms of gaining redress under family law, consumers and the law. Finally, the case study was on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.


In 2000, KHS celebrated the diverse culture which constitute the school’s population with a Multicultural Day. Displays of traditional Japanese, Korean, Chinese and Thai dances were held throughout the day, as well as martial arts displays. The school’s annual Art Show was held in conjunction with the festivities.

Guest speakers on the day included:

  • a speaker from the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation
  • the Local Member of Parliament
  • the Mayor of Ku-ring-gai


In 2001, the year 11 KHS Drama class staged a production of a recent Australian play called, Seven States of Grieving, which dramatized the indigenous peoples’ experience of the impact of government policies that removed aboriginal children from their tribes and families. This production was so effective that the year 11 KHS drama class performed it for KHS year 7 History and KHS year 11 English.

In 2001, year 10 KHS History students focused on the struggle of three main communities in Australia’s society in the 1960s-1990s. These groups were Aborigines, migrants and women.

Year 10 history became more and more challenging as the year went on

“Making sense of the information given to us and putting it into perspective in a world that is, at the moment, very uncertain pushed the boundaries of intellectual endeavour.

The main issues that were dealt with this year were the struggle of three main communities in Australia’s society in the 1960s to 1990s. These groups were Aborigines, migrants and women. With the upcoming election it is hard to see in some situations how things have changed. Aborigines have been hit with another wonder of modern Australian society, drugs and alcohol. The dispossession of Aborigines from their land has become apparent with the hindsight given to use, but what the society we live in today has not been able to comprehend is that we are dispossessing them of their lives and they have become to us, the urbanites, a forgotten community….”

….I think history this year has given us a choice whether we give more or less tolerance to the minorities in Australia’s society and the global community and whether in this new century we repeat the old mistakes of past generations or learn from them to make a new day.”

[Extract written by a year 10 KHS History student, The Green Years, 2001]

In 2001, year 11 KHS Legal Studies students examined a range of topics, including Parliament and the Legal System, sources of law, operation of the legal system and Aborigines and the law.


In 2005, the KHS SRC took it into their own hands to provide a powerful step for the Killara High community towards reconciliation.

The theme of Reconciliation Week, 2005 was: 

‘Reconciliation: Take the next step’

This theme evoked a response throughout the SRC which quickly spread throughout the whole school. Activities that emanated from this were:

  • A mufti day was organised to raise money for a flagpole to fly the Aboriginal flag.
  • KHS welcomed guest speaker, Chairperson for the Board of Aboriginal Housing
  • A ‘Sea of Hands’ day on Jubilee Oval

As commented on by many members of the Indigenous and Non-Indigenous community, ‘Sea of Hands’ is a respected action of acknowledgement.

The process of placing an individual hand in the ground to recognise Aboriginal history and state our intention of stepping towards a reconciled future is a form of cultural respect.

It is an action widely accepted and appreciated and as Killara High students we stand as one of the few educational bodies in this state taking action on this front.

On the 2nd June over a thousand hands representing the colours of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander Flags were placed in the ground.

It was a truly remarkable sight – on behalf of the school we hope that this is only one of many steps to be taken towards a positive future for all Australians”.

[written by a KHS year 11 student, The Green Years, 2005]

“We are being explicit about the values of fairness and responsibility in marking Reconciliation Week. The opportunity and success in life that students take for granted in this part of Australia are not there for Aboriginal students of the same age in other parts of NSW.”

[written by Dr M. Carter, Principal, 2005]


In 2006, a female KHS year 12 student came 1st in the State in both Visual Arts and Aboriginal Studies in the 2006 HSC exams – the only student in NSW to achieve this feat in an area other than languages. This was the first year that Aboriginal Studies had been offered at KHS, after a group of year 11 students at KHS, including this female student, lobbied KHS to have the course at KHS.


In 2007, a year 9 SRC representative attended the NSW State SRC Conference at Vision Valley. One hundred and thirty students from all around NSW came for the four days to listen to speakers participate in workshops and to hold the annual state forum.

Some of the topics presented were – setting personal goals, doing things that seem impossible and being good leaders. Students also split into groups to talk about their individual ideas, as well as  discussing each school’s SRC, and the events they had been holding. All students at the conference attended three workshops.

The KHS year 9 SRC representative attended the following workshops:

  • Anti-bullying
  • Indigenous culture
  • Motivating yourself and your SRC


In 2010, year 10 KHS Geography classes went to Cronulla on an expedition to see the wisdom of the local tribes and learn their ways of coastal management.


In 2011, twenty-six students from Menindee Central School (approximately two-thirds of the school’s population) came to Sydney, to exhibit their artwork at the the oldest Indigenous art gallery, the Coo-ee Aboriginal Art Gallery. This gallery showcased the work of fifteen students aged 10 to 17. The exhibition ran at the gallery for a week, and all proceeds from their work went to the school’s art program. One of the students, a year 7 male student, also spent a morning in a HSC class at KHS.


Principal’s message, 2012:

Written by Dr Mark Carter, Principal Killara High School. The Green Years, 2012. [Used with permission]

“Back in the year 2000, the Principal of Roseville PS took her year 6 students on an outback odyssey where they encountered life in small isolated communities. Many returned to Sydney with a rising interest in indigenous studies.

A number of these students were in KHS’s first Aboriginal Studies class for the HSC in 2006.

Most of those students performed so highly in this course that they were placed among the top ten students in the state in Aboriginal Studies and the subject contributed significantly to their ATARS [Australian Tertiary Admission Rank].

“One member of that class has subsequently completed an Honours thesis in copyright law pertaining to indigenous art and culture. Equipped with degrees in Arts and Law she now works in the Land Reform Branch of the Commonwealth Government’s Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs. [The Principal of Roseville PS] could not have predicted this. In the words of an indigenous song writer, ‘From little things, big things grow’.

Late last year, this school took the strategic decision to support Aboriginal Studies as viable curriculum choice for students regardless of class size. Music was afforded the same status back in 2002 when it struggled for numbers. Now it is integral to the school’s curriculum and culture.

This year students in year 9 are studying the Stage 5 Aboriginal Studies course in an accelerated format which will allow them to complete the HSC examination at the end of year 11. Year 9 students are being taught in the same class as students studying the HSC Aboriginal Studies course. They learn with and from each other.

In 2013, through some creative scheduling and teacher flexibility, Killara will have years 10, 11 and 12 students in Aboriginal Studies courses. Few schools have and could do this. Along the way we have partnered with Lindfield East PS in establishing stronger links with Menindee Central School – supporting students’ learning in both schools and professional exchanges for staff.

We will always focus on meeting the immediate needs of all our students progressing through years of secondary schooling. Killara’s Statement of Purpose anchors the values that guide this work. It also guides the imperative to look beyond the immediate horizon of need.

Herein is an answer to the question: why have we invested this in a single curriculum initiative, Aboriginal Studies?

It’s about diversity in curriculum in 2012 and 2013, but it’s also about a future Australia, in which our young people will inevitably become citizens and leaders. Such an investment now can lead to lasting change in the decades to come.

One of our students of Aboriginal Studies, who was awarded the 2012 Prime Minister’s Medal for her NAIDOC Week essay, expressed her optimism this way:

A future Australia see Aboriginal people as limitless instead of limited, progressive instead of static and Aboriginal culture will continue to challenge and Aboriginal culture will continue to provoke our notion of an Australian identity.” [Year 9 KHS student]

Foundations laid in a primary school more than a decade ago influenced the career of at least one individual and they will continue to influence students’ curriculum and learning in 2013 and beyond. This is the wonder and power of education.”

In 2012, a year 9 female KHS student, who was studying the accelerated Senior Aboriginal Studies course, entered the NAIDOC week writing competition in the Senior Student (for years 11 and 12) category, and won the Prime Minister’s Medal. Six thousand students across Australia entered this writing competition.

The CEO of NAIDOC Australia, presented the KHS year 9 student with her Medal on Thursday 6th September 2012.

Above: Year 9 KHS student – winner of the Prime Minister’s medal for her above NAIDOC essay, 2012 – Used with permission.

Below is an edited extract of the award winning essay, entitled:

‘Analysing the progress of Indigenous Australia, past present and future.’

“April 10, 1816, marks the lowest point from which all progress for Indigenous Australians can be measured. It was on this day that Governor Macquarie, the equivalent o the Prime Minister of the day, issued the most brutal orders, as recorded in his Diary:

‘The officers commanding the Military Parties have been authorized to fire on them to compel them to surrender; hanging up on Trees the Bodies of such Natives as may be killed on such occasions, in order to strike the greater terror into the Survivors.’ 10th April 1816.

The past reveals the direction of the future – our future. Aboriginal progress can be seen through an exploration of selected historical episodes which highlight how land is integral to Australia’s history and Aboriginal culture. The Proclamation and Diary of Governor Macquarie, ‘An Act for the Protection and Management of the Aboriginal Natives of Victoria’ highlights an ethnocentric perspective that was enshrined in law and blind to the existence of connection to Country. However, progress is evident in former events and individuals have been fundamental to a changing and progressive perspective, a view which is inclusive rather than alienating.

Such alienation was apparent when Governor Lachlan Macquarie revealed his plans of ‘clearing the Country’, hence dispossessing and cutting a sacred connection with land. Their colonial viewpoint made the dehumanisation of the Aboriginal people easier. It enabled them to justify their actions and ignore the fact that the Aboriginal people did have culture and connection to land that was dense and thriving. Macquarie’s diary is further historical evidence for the belief that Aboriginal people who opposed White settlement were expendable.

It is clear that the earliest non-Aboriginal Australians simply did no understand Aboriginal culture and the significance of land, but they had no desire to understand either because European parochial views created a belief in their own supremacy. Yet despite this, Aboriginal identity and culture has survived and not merely survived but progressed through an unassailable connection to Country and culture, supported be reconciliation policies.

Progress occurred in the development of governmental policies, particularly those which promoted self-determination and empowerment during the 1970s.

Keating’s Redfern speech further contributed to reconciliation when it was delivered 10th December 1992. The speech was a landmark, a watershed and a beacon for progress. As Prime Minister, Keating represented the government and the people of Australia, forging a fresh and positive vision.

Keating’s goal in delivering the speech was to encourage recognition and show Aboriginal people that there was recognition for White actions. Keating stated that, if we really do want to recognise our actions, there needs to be change. Keating’s speech was part of a general shift in the representation of Aboriginal people and contributed to a progressive view of land rights.

Clearly there remains a way to go before non-Aboriginal people fully appreciate Aboriginal culture and the diverse connection Aboriginal Australians have with the land. Nevertheless, it is also clear that positive change has taken place through a range of catalysts that in decades to come will continue to have repercussions, providing hope and inspiration for both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal communities. A future Australia has the potential to be a nation that, instead of positioning White culture as the epicentre, represents a range of cultures equally and respectfully. A future Australia will be a nation which see Aboriginal people as limitless instead of limited legitimate instead of primitive and progressive instead of static. There will be new turning points, new voices and Aboriginal culture will continue to challenge and provoke out notion of an Australian identity.”

Above image: 2012 ‘Sea of Hands’ at KHS.


“Menindee: Far west NSW, far from Killara but now a little close to home.

In November, eighteen students travelled to Menindee, Barkindji Country, as part of the yr 10 Service Learning and for the HSC Aboriginal Studies course.

Menindee is approximately 130 kilometres from Broken Hill, on the Darling River and home of the Barkindji Aboriginal People and students spent the week experiencing culture, going to school, travelling to sacred lands and hearing real stories from real people about life in a town thriving despite its remoteness….

…The revival of Aboriginal language is a hug step in the maintenance and success of Aboriginal heritage and we spent a little time learning the ‘mother tongue’, Paakantyi, in a Language Class for adult community members. We also travelled to Mungo National Park and experienced ‘Country’ through Aboriginal eyes, seeing the land for more than just dirt and trees and recognising the rich connection with this place which is so hard to explain.

This was a fantastic opportunity to speak with community leaders and learn alongside students from Menindee.

Menindee is such a tiny school, compared to Killara. We brought eighteen students, which is more than the entire year and 12 groups combined. But we discovered that we have just as much in common, despite all the obvious differences.

The ‘Service Learning’ from year 10 worked with Menindee students doing routine maintenance on the accommodation (a converted train carriage!) as well as spending time in the pre-school with the kids.

Hopefully this can become an annual event. We hope that in future Killara can become more and more involved in hosting Menindee students when they visit Sydney.

This was an amazing experience that we will all remember forever.”

[written by Head Teacher, HSIE Green, The Green Years, 2012 – used with permission]


In 2013, year 8 KHS students studied the Aboriginal and Indigenous People during contact and colonisation, focusing on Australia and comparing this to other indigenous groups, including the Aztecs and the Incas.


In 2014, for a second time, KHS teamed up with Lindfield East PS and Menindee Central School for the Biannual Visual Arts Competition, ‘Deli in the Park’.

In 2014, two students from the town of Menindee Central School came to KHS to share their stories and help KHS celebrate Aboriginal culture.

In 2014, NAIDOC celebration returned to KHS after a few years in hiatus. A group of KHS teachers from across faculties planned a day of activities for the celebration, several months in advance.

The day involved the following:

  • a formal assembly with an Aboriginal elder, who is a descendant of Bungaree and Custodian of the Guringai Nation
  • the participation of our visitors from Menindee Central School
  • activities workshop run by Koori Konnections
  • a smoking ceremony by an Aboriginal elder, who is a descendant of Bungaree, and Custodian of the Guringai Nation. The ceremony was witnessed by year 8 KHS students, followed by a series of activities, including dance, bush tucker and games

A highlight of the day was the two visiting students from Menindee Central School who shared their stories from the own families which related directly to the NAIDOC 2014 theme – Serving Country: Centenary and Beyond. Both students had family members who served Australia as Indigenous Servicemen. The two students share photos and stories of their experiences with KHS students during the assembly.

In 2014, a component of the year 12 KHS Community and Family Studies (CAFS) course involved examining various groups in the community and their needs. These included: the homeless, the disabled, Indigenous Australians, the aged, youth families in crisis, the gay and lesbian community, and sole parents.


In 2015, the KHS Arts Council visited the Maitland Art Gallery to see the artworks of students from Menindee School.

In 2015, the KHS Prefect Body (2014-2015), in partnership with Lindfield Rotary Club, raised funds at a ‘Bunnings Barbecue’ for the victims of the Vanuatu Cyclone, various charitable organisations in Vietnam and Cambodia, and to subsidise transport to Broken Hill for high school students of Menindee.

In 2015, as part of the KHS Service-Learning program organised by the Careers faculty, eighteen year 10 KHS students chose to visit Menindee, also enabling KHS’s growing grow links with this remote school.


In 2016, for the second year running, KHS teamed up with Lindfield East Public School and Menindee Central School for the bi-annual visual arts competition, Deli in the Park.

In 2016, KHS Aboriginal Studies students visited the Aboriginal Heritage Office and local carvings.

In 2016, NAIDOC Day, organised by a large team of teachers across all faculties, saw the extension of the ‘day’ across two weekdays. Activities included:

  • Guest speakers
  • Guringai language lessons
  • Guests from Menindee Central School
  • Art and dance activities

In 2016, for the first time, all year 8 KHS students visited the Aboriginal carvings at West Head and heard stories from local Aboriginal elders about Aboriginal culture and the significance of these carvings for all Australians.

In 2016, eight year 10 KHS students worked on a submission to the Director of the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. Their submission was that the Australian War Memorial should commemorate Australia’s Frontier Wars between Aboriginal nations and British forces from 1788-1830s. The students prepared letters, making constructed submissions based on reasoning and evidence. As a result, the students met with the Director for an hour appointment in Canberra.


In 2017, NAIDOC was celebrated again at KHS. The theme in 2017 was:

‘Our Languages Matter’

All year 8 KHS students visited Ku-ring-gai National Park, where students participated in a range of activities designed to educate them about Aboriginal culture and history.

Many activities and events took place including:

  • A smoking ceremony performed by an Aboriginal elder in order to cleanse the area. Students were also given clay from the local area to welcome them to the land.
  • Exploration of the carvings with the Aboriginal elder.
  • A walk to Red Hand with a local Indigenous man
  • Basket weaving activity with a female Aboriginal elder. Using local sources and natural materials, KHS students learnt how to weave patterns and baskets
  • Indigenous games and sports with a female Aboriginal elder
  • Year 10 Aboriginal Studies students prepared a lesson, teaching to many groups

The following day, an assembly was organised at KHS for years 7-10. As part of the assembly, the following occurred:

  • a special presentation from year 12 students from Menindee Central School, learning about the importance of language and how they had just completed at the first Stage 6 Aboriginal Language course in their local language.
  • Year 8 KHS students spoke about their excursion to Mungo
  • a video presentation of the excursion to Ku-ring-gai the previous day


In 2018, year 7 KHS music students created a soundscape through an online platform, Soundation. Using an Aboriginal Dreamtime story, the students developed knowledge of traditional notation, performing melodies on keyboards and glockenspiels, learning how to perform in small groups with  multiple parts.

In 2018, the year 9 KHS Food Technology students travelled to the Sydney Botanical Gardens to learn about Australia’s bush food. They also tasted the staples of the original indigenous diet.

In 2018, the KHS Aboriginal Studies classes visited the Muogamarra Nature Reserve and Menindee for a week in November.

In 2018, as part of NAIDOC Day, local Indigenous elders and guests from Menindee Central school participated in art activities, weaving, bush walking and sport at KHS.

In 2018, KHS organised a series of activities to celebrate NAIDOC week. The theme in 2018 was:

 ‘Because of Her We Can’

This theme looked at the participation of Aboriginal women in Aboriginal culture and society, but also emphasised through the teaching and visiting of both male and female sites and ‘traditional’ activities.

As part of NAIDOC week, all of year 8 KHS students went on an excursion to West Head to participate in a range of activities, including:

  • a traditional smoking ceremony performed by an Aboriginal elder
  • students received ochre (clay) to welcome them to country and to differentiate genders
  • a visit to the ‘punishment and learning’ carving sites
  • a walk to Red Hands Cave, the oldest marks of Aboriginal history recorded in the area, and learnt about the movements of Aboriginal people through the seasons
  • basket weaving
  • a discussion with a female Aboriginal elder about the history and significance of weaving in Aboriginal women’s lives, especially the role of woven nets played in capturing fish. The elder also talked about an art project that was taking place at the Sydney Art Gallery that involved large weaving art pieces

The KHS PDHPE staff organised activities that related to traditional hunting and gathering methods. The KHS year 10 Aboriginal Studies students organised an activity with KHS year 8 students where they ‘created’ an Aboriginal community.


In 2019, KHS celebrated NAIDOC week – a nation-wide event held in recognition of Australia’s indigenous peoples. The 2019 theme was:

‘Voice, Treaty, Truth’.

A number of activities/event were held during this week. They included:

  • Year 8 KHS students were introduced to the theme and the importance of NAIDOC through a series of workshops and presentations by year 9 and 10 KHS Aboriginal Studies students prior to an excursion – which had been postponed due to weather – but went ahead later.
  • The year 8 KHS excursion to West Head to learn about Aboriginal culture, traditions and history. This involved a welcome to ‘Country’ performed by a local Aboriginal elder, as well as a bushwalk to a scenic lookout, basket weaving and looking at carvings in order to understand about traditional indigenous law and lore.
  • A formal assembly for years 7-10 at KHS where students  from Menindee Central School spoke to the assembled students about the importance of culture and community.

There also were trips to Menindee and Mungo, where students were able to celebrate the significance of Aboriginal cultures and histories.

Above image: a book display in the Lion Library on Indigenous Literacy Day, 2019


In November 1974, fifty-five 2nd form (year 8) KHS students, together with 3rd form (year 9) students from Coffs Harbour HS and 5th form (year 11) students from Endeavour HS spent a week at Jindabyne.

The site at was an old construction camp owned by the Sports and Recreation Service of NSW for Lake Jindabyne. An old train, the Cooma Mail train, was the transport to Cooma, and from there it was a one-hour bus ride.

During their stay, students participated in a variety of activities, including:

On a farm near Cooma:

• skidooing on Lake Jindabyne
• horse riding
• asparagus picking
• rabbit chasing

Other activities included Geography and Science activities such as:
• seral progression
• fresh-water biology
• river studies
• general skills

The river study consisted mainly of walking across the Moonbah River, a tributary of the Snow River, which was full of melted snow.

The evening recreational activities included:

• several dances
• a Redex Trial (won by a group of KHS students)
• a skit night

While the dances were generally enjoyed, several students preferred to do a little star-gazing on the cloudless smog-free nights.

After a week in Jindabyne, KHS students and staff arrived back at Sydney at 6 am at Central Station.


In March 1979, along with students from two other high schools, Forest HS and Port Hacking HS, year 11 KHS students joined the Cooma Mail train at Central for a week-long excursion to Jindabyne.

From Cooma the students and teachers boarded coaches with drove them to the National Fitness Camp at Jindabyne.

Students were organised into groups with members from each school.

Activities included:

  • nature hikes
  • field studies
  • grass skiing
  • sailing
  • tennis
  • archery
  • volleyball
  • basketball


In April 1980, most year 11 KHS students (approximately one hundred and eighty students) and six Science teachers participated in a science excursion to Jindabyne National Fitness Camp, a facility run by the Department of Sport and Recreation and staffed by the Department of Education. Two other schools– Jesmond HS and J.J. Cahill Memorial HS – with their year 11 students, also attended.

Activities included:

  • jogging or calisthenics (at 6.30 am)
  • orienteering
  • horse riding
  • grass-skiing
  • sailing
  • an alpine walk
  • games
  • dances

Some of these activities were combined with a range of scientific and geographical tasks that included examining the following areas:

  • alpine vegetation
  • freshwater zoology
  • man and the local environment
  • local pastoral activity


In March 1982, one hundred and twelve KHS students went to the Jindabyne Sport and Recreation Camp to study a number of aspects of the environment that dealt with Biology, Geology, Geography, Physics and Chemistry. Students from three other schools also attended – Wade HS (Griffith, NSW), Canowindra HS and Hunters Hill HS. Students from all four schools were divided into six day groups in which various fields of the environment were examined.

Activities included:

  • canoeing
  • sailing
  • horse riding
  • grass skiing

Evening activities included:

  • a bush dance
  • a quiz night
  • a games night
  • a talent night (including a humorous ‘Miss Jindabyne Contest’)


In 1984, year 11 KHS students, along with students from Mt Druitt HS and Port Hacking HS went to Jindabyne. Students were organised into groups (comprising of a mix of students from each school), and with a timetable, they completed studies on landforms, vegetation, freshwater ecology and more.

Other activities included:

  • sailing
  • windsurfing
  • tennis
  • horse riding
  • an alpine walk
  • stunts and games night
  • a talent night (including a humorous ‘Miss Jindabyne Contest’)
  • a bush dance
  • a monster quiz
  • a dance night


In 1985, after a week at Jindabyne, the sport and recreation staff invited some KHS students back for a week of skiing in the August holidays. Two female KHS students, joined by thirty-two other ex-Jindabyne students from around the state attended. The students tried cross-country and downhill skiing.

After farewelling the staff and students from other schools, the KHS students boarded the Cooma Mail train to Central Station.


In 1986, year 11 KHS students, went to Jindabyne, along with students from Condell Park HS. Some of the activities included:

  • a 15km alpine walk
  • sailing on Lake Jindabyne
  • horse riding at twilight
  • picnics and barbecues
  • field studies
  • exploring nature
  • fishing for tadpoles
  • games, competitions
  • a bush dance
  • a disco
  • a talent night (including a humorous ‘Miss Jindabyne Contest’)

…The buses hadn’t pulled up yet in front of Killara High, and we had already started to miss the peaceful and remote surroundings we had left behind”, noted a  year 11 KHS student.

The Tuesday after the students returned, a ‘Jindy’ reunion was held, sharing photos and stories. Later, at the school barbecue, the students invited some of the Condell HS students they had made friends with for another semi-reunion.


In March, 1987, two hundred and fifty year 11 KHS students went to Jindabyne Sport and Recreation Centre.

Some of the activities included:

  • sailboarding
  • horse rising
  • visiting a sheep farm
  • climbing snow-capped mountains
  • orienteering
  • bus walking
  • a games night
  • a bush dance
  • a monster quiz
  • a concert (including a humorous ‘Miss Jindabyne Contest’)
  • a disco


On February 24th – March 2nd 1990, year 11 KHS students went to Jindabyne. Some of the activities included:

  • field studies
  • swimming
  • sailing
  • orienteering
  • horse riding
  • walking
  • games
  • a bush dance
  • a monster quiz
  • a variety night and disco (a talent night including a humorous ‘Cooma Covergirl Contest’)


In 1992, year 11 KHS went to Jindabyne for the annual week-long excursion. Some of the activities included:

  • abseiling
  • horse riding
  • orienteering
  • mountain walking
  • sailing
  • field studies
  • ‘The Miss Jindabyne Pageant’ (a humorous talent night)
  • games and quizzes
  • a variety night
  • a disco


In 1993, in week four of term 1, one hundred and eighty-seven year 11 KHS students as well as nine KHS teachers went to Jindabyne for the annual one-week excursion.

Some of the activities included:

  • abseiling
  • horse riding
  • a barbecue by the river
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In 1968, the KHS site was inspected by the Architect during the month of October when various matters concerning the development of the school grounds were discussed. The area forming the eastern corner of the site and facing Wentworth Avenue was marked on the site plan ‘to be left undisturbed’. It was felt that the dense undergrowth between the trees would present a fire hazard, harbour ticks and other undesirable fauna, and be generally hazardous for the pupils.

[Grounds Committee Report, The Killara High School News, November/December, 1968]


In 1970, proposed plans for the year were that the school grounds were to be developed with gardens, rockeries and shrubs, and an ornamental fountain was to be erected in the main foyer of the school.


In 1971, nine working bees were held at KHS. The activities included:

  • general cleaning up of grounds
  • grass cutting
  • top dressing
  • thirty trees planted and maintained 

Ku-ring-gai Council around this time were holding sixty trees until such time as it was possible to plant some of them.

In 1971, two ladies donated iris plants, and donations were asked of jasmine and wisteria to beautify the school. A lady also donated twenty six trees. A donation of a large quantity of black polythene was given for such purposes as laying under the river stones in the courtyards to keep the weeds from growing. A plea also went out for any spare pot plants for the proposed ‘fountain’ in the main lobby, and for the library.

Each class at KHS raised money to buy trees, and by mid 1971, the total was $44.77.

In 1971, a landscape gardener, who was a well-known conservationist, was asked to draw up a master plan for the school grounds. He also visited the school to assist with the KHS Ground Committee’s general plan of conservation on the school site.

In 1971, there was also a plan for a Japanese garden for A or B Block. The gentleman who assisted with this proposal was the landscape gardener commissioned by the NSW Government to plan and lay out 1½ acres of Japanese gardens in the Royal Botanical Gardens. The plan was due to be viewed by parents at the next P&C Annual General Meeting. In early 1972, there was concern that the Japanese Garden needed to eventuate as soon as possible, as the gentleman had to return to Japan very soon. There was a need for a workforce of about forty people for over two days.

In 1971, KHS became the owner of a 25 inch heavy duty 7 HP self propelled Rover mower purchased by the P&C Association. It was hoped that this would decrease the reliance on domestic mowers of working bee fathers.

The news of the arrival of a mower was greeted with much pleasure, and it was quoted in the 1971 August KHS Newsletter (by the P&C) that:

“I am sure all fathers are just waiting for the next working-bee to be among the first to use this magnificent piece of machinery.”

By November, 1971, acting on the advice from the landscape gardener and a representative from Ku-ring-gai Council Parks & Garden, a stage 1 Master Plan for the school grounds was prepared. Soil was ordered for the fifteen trees still awaiting planting at this time. These trees had been purchased by the students. Also, two staff members helped to water the grounds.


In 1972, the KHS Grounds Committee decided not to use pesticides because of the concern that they would prove fatal to the bird life in the area, which they had aimed to keep as natural as possible.

In 1972, in late March, a working bee was held, and fifteen fathers (an all-time record) planted another nineteen trees – including deciduous trees, pines and natives. These trees were donated by Ku-ring-gai Council.

In 1972, the George Washington Tree Felling Co. Pty Ltd were the successful as tenders for the dropping and removal of the dead scribbly gum in front of A Block. Two of the Company’s Senior Directors were on hand to direct operations.

In 1972, tenders were accepted for turfing the area behind the canteen.


In 1974, representatives from the P&C Association assisted the Killara Progress Association in the clearing around and fertilizing of Wentworth Avenue trees.


In 1975, weekend gardening bees involved lawn mowing, removal of privot and lantana, removal of rubbish, and any other work in the grounds as needed.


In 1977, the area between E Block and the house was cleaned up and mowed by a group of year 12 students to create a pleasant lawn area for senior students.


In 1978, during a school vacation, the General Assistants at KHS prepared and planted a rose garden along the northern wall outside of the Library in E Block. A number of azaleas were also placed in courtyards of A, B and E Blocks. Year 12 KHS students were considering the possibility of grounds improvements as their farewell gift to KHS.


The ‘1979 Master Plan’:

In early 1979, the idea of a major project was raised at P&C meetings and approval was given in principal to proceed with major landscaping of the school grounds. The KHS prefects conducted a grounds improvement survey amongst students, and from this, it was decided that eight possible projects be contemplated.

They were:

  • clean up of area 5 behind D Block
  • ‘flatten’ out sitting areas
  • handball areas
  • improvement of the ecology area
  • a level area for rugby practice
  • new seating
  • planting of large trees
  • a tennis practice area

After a call was put out to parents to volunteer professional assistance, KHS was helped by a professional landscaper and a horticulturalist, who were relatives of a KHS student. Both gentlemen were qualified to help with the plans. 

Many thanks to both, and we look forward to working on this project which we hope will have a beneficial effect on the grounds for the next 30 years,’ said the Grounds Convenor.

A plan was prepared and exhibited for interested adults and prefects. A letter was also written to the Ku-ring-gai Council and KHS representatives had a meeting with the Mayor. As a result, seventeen trees were delivered and planted. The total plan was to span two years. 

At a Committee meeting, the proposal was to prepare plans to incorporate these ideas as much as possible, as well as some additional thoughts to add to the ‘store of ideas.’ These ideas would then be presented to the Principal for approval. The plans were then to be presented to the students for inspection, comment and approval, and displayed for comment. After this, working groups would be set up to implement the plans.

For 1979, incoming volunteers (that were to be called for in March at the Annual General Meeting of the P&C) it was proposed that the following objectives be set:

  1. Level the rough areas with a short time hire of a bulldozer
  2. Build certain retaining walls so that slopes are sufficiently gentle to avoid washaways, and to allow greater use of the flat areas for the children and possibly also outdoor class instruction.
  3. Respond to suggestions as to a better use for the fenced off area called the ‘ecology area’.
  4. Introduce small scale, intensive development of some areas for specific purposes like games and recreation e.g. a practice wall for tennis for four students at once, hand ball areas, walled garden areas.

To this end, it was proposed that the prefects consider conducting a poll to establish views and discussion ideas.

In 1979, teams of parents helped each month with work in the grounds – mainly grass cutting, edges and pruning. This complemented the work done by the permanent staff in the broad areas. Parents felt this was not enough, and that their time could be better spent if a number of projects were undertaken. They were aware of how small KHS’s grounds were, and that the school was only allowed to be built on such an area due to the park opposite which could be used for sporting activities. Thus, they believed their efforts needed to be intensive rather than expensive. They also knew that a lot of areas were very rough due to ‘washaways’ from steep slopes, especially near the cottage where the ground had never been properly leveled. The so-called ‘ecology area’ seemed to be hardly ever used and there was a call for suggestions for how its use could be improved.

In 1979, it was also proposed to buy a motorised edge cutter to keep the extensive lengths of edges maintained, as staff could not cope with this, and parent’s attempts to use spades etc were inadequate.

By November 1979, the KHS’s P&C Associations’ major project – the landscape and beautification of the school grounds – was well under way. A tree planting day occurred in October, 1979, and turfing of the amphitheatre was to be completed by volunteer parents and students under the supervision of KHS’s landscaper by November 1979.


As at the beginning of 1980, the following had been achieved in regard to the major plan of landscaping the school:

  • Approximately four hundred trees had been planted, mainly along the Koola Avenue side, and around area 5
  • Areas from Koola Ave past the cottage and down beyond area 5 had been leveled
  • a small amphitheatre was built and was to be turfed, (six thousand square feet) which was to be completed later
  • a load of mulch was received, and further loads were to occur each six months
  • water piping was laid across area 5
  • Part 2 of the plan was created

It was further proposed that:

  • a path be built around the corner of A Block (Government funded, Public Works Department)
  • seats were to be purchased and located around the grounds
  • attractive post and rail fences were to be built between C and D Blocks, near C Block in the bicycle area, and at the top end near the main gate.

A retaining wall along the path between C and D Block did not go ahead as planned originally, due to the electrical wires being too close to the surface. (It had been planned that timbers were to be sawn and drilled in the school workshop.)

 The budget for this project in 1980 was $5,000 and the total for two years in $10,395.53. Taken together, these two stages were to provide most of the objectives that were first set. The flat area of the amphitheatre was to provide the rugby tackle pad as requested, as the students did not, on reflection, require the additional handball area. KHS already had a tennis practice wall, but the ecology area had to wait for ‘another day’. Also provided was a new hose and sprinkler.

Volunteers from the KHS parent community were asked for to assist in this landscaping project.


In February 1981, a call was put out to parents to assist voluntarily to help maintain the school grounds and implement improvements, especially in the following areas:

  • lawn mowing
  • weeding and mulching of young trees
  • completing a fencing project in front of Blocks B, C and D
  • tree planting to complete the 1979 master plan (and more if desired)
  • implementing the suggestions that were to be generated by a student survey conducted by Prefects as well as those ideas brought forward by parents.

In March 1981, KHS School Prefects were asked to provide their assessment of what could be worthwhile undertakings towards landscape beautification.

Those items mentioned were:

  • plant wind breaks to better shield the quadrangle
  • pave muddy areas or shade trees in the year 11 area
  • cricket nets, a practice wall, a fitness track or, perhaps an outdoor classroom.

There were two meetings planned in March 1981 in which to discuss these plans, and to hear the authors of the ‘1979 Master Plan’ for tree planting, explain the plan and the final stage to be undertaken. Objectives were also to be set for 1981.

In 1981, between $500 and $1,000 worth of advanced eucalypts were to be purchased by the P&C for planting in the 2nd term under two projects.

  • Project 1 – Plant One Tree: according to pre-planned instructions, and areas that were staked out. The procedure was that fifty trees will go to the first fifty people to register to help with these projects.
  • Project 2 – 7,8,9 and 10: in August 1981, a call was put out to parents particularly of years 7 and 8 to participate in the ‘Project 7, 8, 9, and 10’ tree planting, as it was to be their children who would benefit mostly from the results. The work involved ground preparation, and the planting of approximately four hundred and fifty small tube stock of native trees and shrubs from P&C funds.

During June and July 1981, fifty-four well established (eight feet high) eucalypts were planted by a similar number of parents. Each tree took from forty five to ninety minutes each to dig, mulch, water, stake and tie.

Species planted were: tallowood; swamp mahogany; Sydney blue gum and eucalyptus elata.

As well as one of the KHS parents who had horticultural experience assisted with the tree planting, so did KHS neighbours.

‘The greening of Killara was now underway!’, stated the Grounds Convenor, in the KHS newsletter in August, 1981.

In the September and October 1981 KHS newsletter, it was reported that two big steps had been taken in the beautification of the school grounds. The planting of eucalypts amongst the acacias that had been planted last year had begun, as well as in other parts of the grounds.

The Grounds Committee also had held working bees to plant native trees and shrubs along the northern fence and in clusters in the years 9 and 10 playground area behind A Block.

It was stated by the Principal, Mr Bradford in the KHS newsletter for September and October 1981, that,

‘this planting will give a magnificent cover for that area of the school in years to come and I am sure that the Grounds Committee will view the results of their work with satisfaction.’

In October 1981 on a wet Sunday, thirty five parents turned out to prepare the soil, plant and mulch around two hundred and eighty five native shrubs and trees.

With the completion of the year’s planting, approximately seven hundred and fifty specimens were now at ‘rest within Killara High’s’ soils’ said the Ground Convenor, in The KHS Newsletter October 1981.

These were surrounded by tree lopping mulch.  The money spent was $2,300 on plants, imported soil, rotary hoeing, stakes, fertilizers hoses, weed poison, lime and a three pound lump hammer. 

In November 1981, approximately twenty-eight parents helped plant fifty-eight trees and shrubs (mainly as replacements for losses), as well as spread mulch and weed around all the previous plantings. By means of an inspection and talking with prefects, teachers and parents, a plan with listed priorities was compiled. The list included the following:

  • a little maintenance
  • timber fence constructed
  • eight hundred and twenty four native trees and shrubs purchased and planted
  • dealing with forty tons of soil; six tons of compost
  • mulch; three hundred stakes; $180 worth of fertiliser, etc.
  • purchase of hoses and implements

Cost: $3115.44. 


In early 1982, assistance was sought for the continuing work on the school’s grounds. It was hoped that three committees would be set up to match the following budgeted items:

  • grounds improvements                       $3,000
  • sporting improvements                       $1,000
  • building improvements                       $2,000

Help was urgently needed in the new year to weed around all the new plantings.

In March 1982, the Grounds Convenor canvased parents to create a Volunteers list of about two hundred names that could be called upon two or three times during the year for help on maintenance of new projects.

In 1982, seventy casuarinas and a further one hundred and twelve mixed types of trees were planted. This saw the near completion of the major planting program that had been carried out over the last three to four years – somewhere in the vicinity of thirteen hundred trees and shrubs.

In a few years we should see a school well endowed with groves and banks of thick foliage, shade for the summer and protective boundaries around the numerous grassed areas’, said the Grounds Convenor, in the November edition of The KHS news in 1982.

In 1982, the KHS Prefects also cleared out the introduced plants from the Ecology area in the school. Before the school was built, the ecology area was a haven of native trees and shrubs. When houses were built, it became choked with introduced noxious weeds. Because 1982 was the Year of the Tree, KHS Prefects wanted to give the land back to the native trees. The seniors dug, cut and pulled out all invading plants.

For 1982, the year 12 prefects had as their project, ‘environmental improvement’. They also entered the State Pollution Control Competition for planned tree plantings in a school, and over thirty two KHS students helped in the program. With continued maintenance and new plantings by each new group of year 11 KHS students, it was expected that KHS would have a native plant study area for use by the school.

In 1982, levelling and paving of a new courtyard for use by seniors was completed over October and November by the Grounds Committee.


“Other areas of evidence for growth can be seen in the development of the school grounds… In 1984, $5,200 was devoted to School Grounds Improvement.”

[The Principal of KHS, Speech Night, 1984]


In 1985, estimates totaling $20,000 were approved for ground development.

The “greening of Killara” was proof positive of the success of the Ground Committee’s efforts to make KHS’s environment an amenity and an asset for the total community.


In 1989, a few loads of top soil were obtained for the oval, and a small group of parents spent a few hours on successive Sundays spreading it across the area close to the courts. A quotation was also obtained to extend a water pipeline to the oval and install at low cost, low maintenance watering system.

In 1989, after attending KHS’s annual political forum, the member for Gordon,  (also Environment Minister) participated in a Greening of the School tree planting program.


In 1990, a KHS Social Science teacher and a number of interested students from senior and junior years worked on a program of bush regeneration at the school.

New Ecology Area Announced

“On the last days of term 2 and 3, a group of environmentally concerned students began work on restoring the school’s ecology area using Bush Regeneration techniques. Bush regeneration is the rehabilitation of bush from a weed-infested or otherwise degraded plant community to a healthy community composed of Australian plants.

Our specific aim is to restore and maintain the area as an example of the original plant community, allowing native plays to regrow. Eventually, it is hoped, plants will be names and an outdoor classroom created where students will be able to take their inspiration from Nature.

[A mother of a year 10 female KHS student] provided invaluable direction to the students on the day. She also collected samples and identified plants found in the Ecology Area to help form the nucleus of an herbarium.

[Another lady] also gave students the benefits of her expertise by suggesting, before the day, the way to proceed in bush regeneration by working to a plan with short and long term goals.

To help with the achievement of one of the long-term goals, twenty native trees donated by Ku-ring-gai Council, have been planted immediately in front of the Ecology Area.They hopefully will soak up the nutrient-lade moisture flowing into the Area from higher ground.

A proper drain should be constructed, but this is not practical, given the fact that one of the possible sites for the Hall is immediately above the Ecology Area.

The tree-planting also helped mark the centenary of Arbor Day in NSW, and Wattle Day, 1990.”

[Written by Head Teacher Social Sciences, The Killara Chronicle, October, 1990]


In 1991, the Grounds Committee (of the P&C) planted many new trees and shrubs, added new outdoor seating, and tidied up ‘jungle areas’.


In 1992, the ecology area had a reprieve from the impact of human feet as the building of the Kerrabee Centre blocked off easy access. As a result of the earlier clearing of weeds, a number of plants had regenerated.


In 1998, KHS had planted a seedling descended from the Pinus HalepensisLone Pine – from the Australian War Memorial’s Lone Pine tree planted by the Duke of Gloucester in October 1934. KHS’s seedling is a direct descendant of one of only two brought from Galipolli in 1915. This seedling now grows in the schools Memorial Garden.


In 1971, Latin was withdrawn from elective courses for form 2 [year 8] due to lack of student requests. Japanese, French and German were maintained with good numbers.  An innovation in 1971 was the new approach to foreign language study in form 1 [year 7]. Students were introduced to Latin, French and German from the beginning of the year, in order to assist students in the choice of language electives for study in the years that followed.

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‘KHS was established in 1968 and occupied the Koola Avenue site in 1970. The school acknowledges and celebrates its heritage in public education through its links with the former North Sydney Technical High School from which came KHS’s founding principal, Mr T.E. Hornibrook and the first collection in the Lion Library.’

[Excerpt from KHS Information Booklet 2003]


In 1970, the KHS Ladies’ Auxiliary passed a motion that they meet the cost of one of two sets of gates going up for the Lion Library. The cost would be $350.00. The ladies felt this was a great pleasure to show their gratitude for the ‘tremendous’ donation of books given to KHS by North Sydney Technical High School. The President of the Ladies Auxiliary from NSTHS, accepted the KHS Ladies Auxiliary’s invitation to be a Life Member of KHS Ladies’ Auxiliary.

By August, 1970, the gates had been completed, and had been installed by two of the Manual Arts Department teachers.

By August, 1970, there was a working committee consisting of teachers and parents to finalise the organisation of the Official Presentation and Opening of the Lion Library.

In 1970, a walkway outside the library (which at that time was the staff common room) was incorporated with the library and its gates, forming the enclosure called “The Lion Library”. This was in recognition of the $25,000 worth of books which had been made available from the then closed North Sydney Technical High School.

In 1970, KHS had a presentation ceremony for the Lion Library. Ceremonial scissors were organised, official invitations sent out, a dais was set up, the gates were painted and the grounds attractively set out. One of the organised features was the transport of palms from Lord Howe Island. A Mr Ward gave KHS the palms, and a Captain Maundrell arranged for their transport from Lord Howe Island!


In 1978, during a school vacation, the General Assistants at KHS prepared and planted a rose garden along the northern wall outside of the Library in E Block.


In 1979, the KHS school library boasted of ‘exploding with new material, especially in the audio-visual field’! The school library had a colour TV cassette system, operating side by side with the library’s existing stock of over 500 black and white tapes.


By July 1980, the P&C and the students of KHS were most concerned about the need for an adequate school library and for the provision of a school assembly hall. Consideration was being given to a submission to the Minister for Education.


In 1989, the KHS Library Prefects had an excursion during Book Week.


In 1981, KHS Lion Library Audio Visual section of the library screened an average of sixteen videos per day. The average borrowing record was approximately one hundred items per day and ninety magazine subscriptions per month.


In 1982, the Channel 9 Television Network allocated NSW over $6,000 for grants in film and video making for school students of all ages. The KHS Teacher-Librarian, made the appeal to parents, and offered the assistance of a video camera and a ‘new’ Super-8 camera if they wished to apply for the grant.

In 1982, the theme for Book Week was in line with ‘The Year of the Tree’ and its slogan was ‘Branch out with books’.

In 1982, the library reported that the greatest success of all throughout the year has been the popularity of the colour video camera and portapak.


On October 8, 1984, the Honourable Member of Parliament, Mr Cavalier, visited KHS. This visit came about by an active campaign by the KHS Prefects. The purpose of Mr Cavalier’s visit was to look at providing KHS with a school hall and improved library facilities. He was given an extensive tour of the school, with special emphasis place on our inadequate overcrowded library. Before leaving Mr Cavalier, promised to look carefully into the possibility of considering providing KHS with a hall. In the meantime he gave the junior members of KHS a half day off on the afternoon of the year 12 Farewell!


In 1989, The Department of Education granted approval for KHS’s library to be extended. It was scheduled to be completed during the 1990/91 financial year. It would more than double the existing floor space. In 1989, KHS was waiting for the plans from the Government Architect.

In 1989, preparations were under way to computerise the library using the OASIS system which was recommended by the Department of Education. The card catalogue was to be phased out and replaced by visual display units. All books would have a barcode so that a ‘light pencil’ may be used to record borrowings and returns.


In 1991, The school administration system for NSW schools – Office Automation and School Information System (OASIS) was well and truly operational in 1991. KHS has scheduled the library management computer package to come into full operation in 1992.


In 1992, the Minister for Education approved funds for the Department of School Education to commence work on the external extensions the KHS’s school library. These extensions were aimed at doubling the library’s existing floor space. It was estimated that the completion date for was mid 1993.

In 1992, Public Works moved their construction site sheds onto the KHS site for the commencement of the library extension.

In 1992, the library introduced three new modules to the OASIS System – the enquiry module to search for item; the circulation module to borrow and return books; and the acquisitions module for the purchasing of new items for the library.

In 1992, computer usage was moving fast in the Lion Library at KHS. Six computer terminals were purchased for the OASIS library network, as well as one VHS video recorder for the AV room and two CD Rom computers.


On August 20, 1993, the official opening of the new Lion Library was held. The crest, featuring a lion, on the doors of KHS’s newly open, extended and refurbished library was not that of KHS, but that of the former North Sydney Technical High School. The reason goes back to 1969 when NSTHS’s parents, students and teachers, on that school’s closure, agreed to donate its entire library collection of some 11,000 books and magazines to the then fledgling KHS.

At the opening of the new Lion Library, a ribbon was cut by KHS’s captains in 1993. In doing so they re-enacted an event that took place in 1970 when KHS opened its original Lion Library.

The Member for Gordon representing the Minister for Education, unveiled a commemorative plaque on the occasion. The external extension cost $350,000.

A former NSTHS teacher fashioned the crests 24 years prior to 1993, and taught at KHS for 18 years. A former NSTHS student and secretary [as at 1993] of the ‘Old Lions Union’ [who also had been a parent of KHS for 13 yrs in 1993] were special guests at the new Lion Library’s reopening. “We are both delighted with Killara’s decision to continue the tradition.

KHS also held their annual open day/night event which allowed for current and future families to inspect the new library.

In 1993, KHS drama students performed at a range of venues and events. This included the official opening of the new Lion Library.


In 1999, as part of the range of topics for discussion at P&C meetings, the functions of the school library was discussed.



In 1970, a school orchestra was beginning to be formed. $322.00 worth of instruments had been obtained from the Education Department. However, there were shortages in the wind, string and percussion sections. Parents were asked if they could assist with supplying any of these instruments if they were able to.


In 1971, the words and music to the proposed KHS song was printed in the August issue of The Killara News. At this time, KHS students were learning the words and music, and it was hoped that there would shortly be a public presentation of KHS’s own school song.

In 1971, the school orchestra, choir and recorder group participated in the North Side Arts Festival during the lunch hour in the ‘Sunshine Room’ at Grace Bros., [Department Store] Chatswood.


In 1972, with the aim of giving students something to do and somewhere to go on Friday nights, Room 13 Club was formed. It was run by a committee of 4th [year 10] and 5th form [year 11] students. Students came to play tennis, listen to records, drink coffee and chat. Two music groups, The Spiked Python – led by a 5th Form [year 11] KHS student, and The Output performed at the first gathering. One hundred and twenty students turned up at one meeting. A silent Charlie Chaplin film was organised to be shown for one evening.


In 1974, there was a Madrigal Group at KHS who met every Friday afternoon in Music Room 1. There were about ten members. They formed the ‘backbone’ of the Choral Festival, the French Singing and the Opera. They sang mainly for their own pleasure such varied songs as Elizabethan Madrigals, Daniel Jazz, Bach chorales and in German, French and Latin as well as English.

In 1974, approximately seventy KHS students worked on the school’s second opera, Princess Ida, by Gilbert and Sullivan. It was produced on the 27th April and the 1st and 2nd May, 1974, at St Auburn’s Hall, at Lindfield.


In 1975, a previous KHS staff member (who had briefly been on staff) visited KHS once a week to train the orchestra.


In July 1976, the Music department at KHS planned to stage the musical, HMAS Pinafore at St Ives Hall.

In 1976, the KHS School Choir was invited to join with six other selected high school choirs in Sydney to sing at the American Bi-Centenary Concert at the Sydney Opera House. The same choir sang at the Commonwealth Day celebrations in the Sydney Town Hall on June 1976.


In 1977, KHS’s Music Department were involved in the Northside Music Festival, held in June. KHS’s Musical, Oh what a lovely war, was held at St Ives HS.

In 1977, KHS production of Oh, what a lovely war was entered in the Arts Council of NSW Drama Competition and won the prize for the best design.


In 1978, KHS excursions included two ABC concerts for music students.

In 1978, KHS held a small Japanese festival with the co-operation of the Japanese mothers and guests. It was aimed at giving students a taste of the Japanese festive spirit, and to motivate the students to use their Japanese language, as well as to sample Japanese food and music etc. In the weeks leading up to the event, students made origami and cards to sell on stalls, and prepared acts for the concert held in the stage room. A tea ceremony was performed by a group of Japanese ladies who attend the Tea Ceremony regularly at a tea-house in Epping. A young Australian guest played the ‘koto’, a traditional Japanese instrument at intervals.

In 1978, a KHS staff member resigned to begin a contract to sing with the Australian Opera.


In 1979, a year 11 KHS music student was chosen as a soloist in the concert when excerpts of “The Messiah” by Handel was performed. It was at the Secondary School Choral Concert, held at the Sydney Opera House. She sang, O thou tellest good tidings to Zion.

In 1979, a KHS music student who entered the ABC’s Young Composer’s Competition was highly commended and performed at a series of ABC Schools’ Orchestral Concerts in the Sydney Opera House.

In 1979, KHS elective music students attended an orchestral concert at the Opera House, while year 7 KHS students attended three concerts there.

In 1979, HSC 2 Unit A music students from KHS attended an all-day concert of jazz, rock, and classical music at The Entrance High School.

In 1979, KHS’s senior choir and orchestra participated in the North Shore Music Festival at Chatswood. It consisted of a 2-day workshop culminating in a concert at Willoughby Town Hall.

In 1979, the 2nd Annual Musicale was held with KHS’s major feeder primary school, joining KHS in presenting an item.


In 1980, a concert was held in the Stage Room in D Block by KHS students from years 7-12. The program included solo and group items, and it was the first opportunity KHS year 7 students had to participate as members of the school band. The band opened the program, and was followed by solo items which included bassoon, flute and saxophone solos. The year 10 music class performed a jazz improvisation, while there was also a viola and a French horn solo performed by two KHS female students respectively. The KHS year 12 Percussion Ensemble finished the evening by performing a ‘Mambo’ and a ‘Samba’.


In 1981, highlights in the Music Department for students and staff were in the following events:

  • the formation of the School Band, with its 1st public debut at the school barbecue in Term 1, as well as playing for the School Musical, the Art Show, and a ‘play-in’ at Forest HS
  • the School Musical held at St Ives HS
  • the Combined Secondary Schools Wind Ensemble
  • the Choral Concerts at the Opera House
  • North Sydney Regional Festival
  • Dept of Education’s Senior and Junior Music Camps at Narrabeen

In May 1981, KHS celebrated Shakespeare’s birthday in the form of creating an Elizabethan fair at the school. There were presentations of scenes from some of Shakespeare’s plays; and many of the staff portrayed characters from his plays, culminating in a Tudor version of ‘Personality Squares’. A number of competitions took place on the day including a musical composition competition.

In 1981years 10 and 12 KHS Music students went on an excursion to study the stage production of Evita​.

In 1981, highlights in the Music Department for students and staff were in the following:

  • the formation of the KHS School Band, with it’s first public debut at the school barbecue in Term 1
  • playing for the KHS School Musical (held at St Ives HS), the Art Show, and a ‘play-in’ at Forest HS
  • the Combined Secondary Schools Wind Ensemble
  • the choral concerts at the Opera House
  • the North Sydney Regional Festival
  • the Department of Education’s senior and junior music camps at Narrabeen


In 1982, two of the KHS excursions were:

  • Year 9 KHS Music : a visit to the Opera House
  • Yr 10 KHS Elective Music: travelled to see a performance of Chicago [Musical]

In 1982, the KHS School Band grew enormously to fifty members, ranging from yrs 7-11. With the aid of P&C funds, new instruments were purchased, i.e. piccolo, tuba, baritone and tenor saxophone.

In July 1982, KHS held its School Musicale at St Ives High School Hall. The school band performed very difficult Excerpts from Evita; the jazz combination performed the Theme from Ice Castles; year 7 KHS students sang a medley of Australian songs including I still call Australia home; and the rock band played One step beyond. Other items included classical and jazz ballet dance items and many other vocal and instrumental groups.

In October 1982, approximately 70 elective KHS music students and other interested children were entertained and enlightened about the different historical phases of jazz by the Sydney Jazz Quintet.

In 1982, the KHS School Band was involved in a combined youth concert at St John’s Church, Gordon. The concert featured various items from different schools in the area and were part of the celebrations to mark the consecration of the Church.

In May 1982, the ‘Smike’, the musical adaptation of Charles Dickens Nicholas Nickleby went to stage in the A Block court. 

In 1982, the M.A.D.S. – the Musical and Drama Society was created, to sponsor music and drama in the school and conduct a first lunch-time concert. This concert consisted of musical items, oration and dramatic acts. Another venture was to present two one-act plays – Boots an’ All and I love you Helen Tinsdale.​


In 1970, KHS’s athletics carnival was held at the Rotary Oval at Chatswood on Monday July 27.

In 1970, Gordon Rugby Union Football Club donated a set of football jumpers and socks for the school football team. Also, $650.00 worth of P.E. equipment was approved by the Department of Education. A further $200.00 was to be spent to cover a full P.E. program during the winter term.

In 1970, thirty 2nd and 3rd Form KHS girls [years 8-9] played hockey in the Inter-School competition. They practised every Wednesday for the Thursday games. KHS teams were at a disadvantage since the majority of the other school teams were 4th formers [year 10]. However, the KHS girls still managed one win and several drawn games.

In 1970, the relatively new five-a-side basketball game was becoming quite popular. The majority of KHS girls who played this sport had five wins and three losses.

In 1970, there were four KHS squash teams that entered in a B, C, D and E grade competition. The C Grade was undefeated at least until mid 1970, and all other teams enjoyed a majority of wins.

In 1970, the KHS boys’ tennis group were placed exceptionally high in the competition.

In 1970, in Rugby, KHS tasted their first success against Ku-ring-gai HS, and played well against Turramurra HS, while being defeated easily against Carlingford HS.

In 1970, a Judo Club commenced in July, which met after school on Mondays for about 1½ hrs. A Gymnastics Club was also started for First Form boys [year 7 boys] before school on Monday and Wednesday mornings.


In 1971, integrated sport was to be carried out in all forms [years]. Thursday afternoon was sport, and it was hoped that with careful planning some inter-school games could be played.

In 1971, a 12-year-old KHS female student created five records at the Ku-ring-Gai Zone swimming carnival. KHS also had two female age champions – this 12-yr-old, and a 13-yr-old student.


In 1972, a rowing team had been established, and fathers from KHS students were asked to assist in training the boys on Sunday mornings. There was also a plea to start a “Veteran’s team” of KHS fathers.

In 1972, grade sport at KHS meant that 3rd, 4th, and 5th Forms [years 9-11] had a sports afternoon. One long competition was held commencing after Easter until the end of 2nd Term.

In 1972, boys’ sports included: rowing; rugby union; soccer; hockey and basketball.

In 1972, girls’ sport included: swimming; tennis; squash and basketball.

In 1972, rowing was to commence on 20th February at 9.30 am at the old Roseville Bridge.

In 1972, the KHS swimming carnival was to be held on March 10, at West Pymble Pool.


In 1973, the annual carnivals were held at the following venues:

  • the swimming carnival – West Pymble Pool
  • the athletics carnival – Killara Park
  • the Zone carnival – Pennant Hills Oval


In 1974, a special-sub-committee formed at KHS to investigate the possibilities of constructing a pool or tennis courts at Killara High. It was found that combined admission fees to public swimming pools during the season was over $1500 – and that the same amount was spent in fares to and from pools.

In 1974, the zone swimming carnival was held at Hornsby Pool, where the KHS team came third. A KHS male student won the 12 years aged championship, and a KHS female student won the 13 years aged championship. Ten KHS female students, as a result of their efforts at the zone, were to compete at the State Swimming Carnival that same year.

In 1974, sport was conducted over three seasons – summer, winter and term 3. 1st and 2nd Form [Years 7 and 8] had a special sports period supervised and directed by the Physical Education Teachers. 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th Form students [Years 9-12] played house and grade sport.


In 1975, KHS came fourth at the Zone Swimming Carnival out of the seven schools that attended. Two KHS students – one female KHS student, and one male KHS student – won their respective age divisions.

In March 1975, there was a staff vs student touch football match.

In 1975, electricity had been restored to the house on the KHS site, and it began to be used for a number of activities including weight-lifting classes.

By 1975, several new sports were offered – water polo, diving, archery, badminton, and weight-training for boys. For girls there was archery, badminton, life-saving, synchronised swimming and rowing.

In 1975, KHS 1st XI cricket team were in the Davidson State Knock Out. KHS won their game over Narrabeen HS – 145 runs to 54 runs, all out.

In 1975, the question of a pool at Killara was raised again in 1975, and a special fund called the Library and Sports Facilities Fund, with a suggested target of $20,000 a year, was set up to investigate ways and means of raising the required funds.


In 1976, A KHS student was the backstroke title holder for New South Wales in the 13 years girl’s category.

In 1976, KHS excelled in sports, with KHS boys winning 5 out of 6 grand finals and the KHS girls having several wins to their credit.

In 1976, there was a plan to build a sports complex at KHS, which would include a swimming pool, squash courts, tennis courts etc. By early 1976, the fund had a total of $20,000 in hand, which was less than the estimated $50,000 needed to get this venture off the ground. Families were asked to deposit $100 more or less that would be retained by the school until the last of their children leave KHS, then returned free of interest. This money could be deposited in one lump sum or smaller amounts on a weekly basis. 


In 1977, KHS’s annual school cross country carnival was held in conjunction with a Run-a-Thon. The aim of the run-a-thon was to raise money for various charitable organisations. The charities included Stewart House, the Royal Blind Society, and other charities chosen by years 7-10 and years 11-12. Some of the money collected would also be used to improve sporting amenities at KHS. By April 1977, the total collected was $5,000, with a target of $7,000.

In 1977, grade sporting competitions were held over Term 1 and Term 3. Year 7 and 8 did not compete on a regular weekly grade basis. Once a term, four schools – Chatswood, Ku-ring-gai, St Ives and KHS – met and played a ‘Round Robin’ of matches in a wide variety of sports.

In 1977 the zone cross country was held at Galston HS in April. Nine KHS students won their way to the regional cross country at Wyong. One of these female KHS students came 4th in the regional cross country and was to compete at State level, with another male KHS student being the reserve.

In 1977, two schools from New Zealand were hosted by KHS for various sporting competitions that included rugby, soccer, volleyball, netball and hockey. This was after KHS’s team had toured New Zealand the year before. A touring Japanese Rugby schoolboy team also was to be hosted by KHS in the same year.

In 1977, a wide range of Term 4 activities were organised by the staff to operate between the 28th November until the 9th December.

These included:

  • scuba diving
  • adventure training
  • archery
  • cricket
  • chess
  • equestrian skills
  • fishing
  • golf
  • ice skating
  • jazz ballet
  • orienteering
  • rally riding
  • sailing
  • tennis
  • water polo
  • weights
  • yoga

In 1977, KHS came 3rd in the Zone swimming carnival. Three KHS students came first in their respective age groups, three KHS students came 2nd, while one KHS came 3rd. One female KHS student was the Age Area Champion. Five KHS students – 3 boys and 2 girls – gained selection in the team that would represent the Area at the State Swimming Carnival.


In 1978, the KHS Ladies Auxiliary were responsible for the provision of five honour boards that were installed in the foyer of A Block. The aim was to add to the traditions of KHS. The honour boards were to be presented at the 10th Anniversary Dinner held at Willoughby Town Hall. The honour boards were to record:

  • The names of Senior Prefects (Leadership)
  • The names of Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year (Sportsmanship)
  • The names of the most successful candidate each year in the HSC (Scholarship)
  • The name of the winning House for the Yearly House Competition
  • The names of the students awarded the Betty Bowen Memorial Prize annually

The Principal of KHS at the time, hoped that one day these honour boards would grace the walls of the KHS Assembly Hall (which was eventually built in 1991-1992).

KHS’s swimming carnival in 1978 was held at Hornsby pool.

In 1978, the KHS Sports Department [now PDHPE Faculty] held Gala Days for years 7 and 8 students, with games played across Chatswood, St Ives and Ku-ring-gai High Schools. There were also a number of Knockout Competitions in both boys’ and girls’ sports.

In 1978, KHS held a Run-a-thon where almost $4000.00 was raised. The money was devoted to supporting Stewart House and charities selected by the sport houses. A smaller amount was used to improve student amenities e.g. seating in the playground.

In 1978, a yoga class began for mothers of KHS students.


In 1979, various KHS student gained representation in the following sports at State level:

  • Athletics (State Representatives) (two male students and a female student)
  • Boys’ State 14 years athletics relay team
  • Cross country (two males and a female student)
  • Cross country and athletics – 4th in 800m State Final
  • Girls’ State Athletics Team
  • Hockey
  • Region Basketball
  • Region Hockey
  • Region Tennis
  • Softball (two female students)
  • Swimming (a male and three female students)

In 1979, basketball games between “Bradford’s Bombers” (made up from members of staff’) and the students from KHS’s first grade basketball teams were played. Seven hundred KHS students watched the game, and the game raised money to buy uniforms for school first grade basketball teams. In the men’s and women’s games, the student teams won. Financially it was a ‘dismal failure’, with students contributing at the rate of only 25 cents per head!

In 1979, KHS years 7-9 students (previously it was only years 7-8) participated in an organised program of lifesaving at Northbridge Pool.


KHS won the NSW Girls’ Softball Championship in 1980.


In 1981, highlights in the Physical Education Department (the first year this Department existed as a separate Department) for students and staff were in the following events:

  • Mixed girls and boys PE classes
  • Year 7 – Basic Skills Program
  • Year 7-8  Gala Days with other local high schools
  • Activities – Athletics
  • Cross-country running
  • ‘Disco’ robics
  • Educational, rhythmic & Olympic gymnastics
  • Major games e.g. rugby, cricket for boys, hockey & softball for girls, although girls ‘invaded’ the traditional sports of boys, notably soccer, basketball and cricket
  • Modern dance
  • Social and folk dance

In 1981, KHS had a new P.E. uniform for girls. This consisted of the gold Killara T-shirt; a green wrap skirt; and green and gold stripe sports pants. It was compulsory for year 7. Replacement uniforms for years 8-9 were to be in this new style. Years 10-12 could replace the pants without a skirt.

In 1981, the KHS girl’s softball team won the State-Knockout competition for the 2nd year in succession. The final was held at Moore Park over two days in June. In the final, KHS defeated James Meehan HS (Liverpool region), Mt Austin HS (Riverina region), Dapto HS (Illawarra region).


In early 1982, assistance was sought for the continuing work on the school’s grounds. It was hoped that three committees would be set up to match the following budgeted items:

  • Grounds improvements                    $3,000
  • Sporting improvements                     $1,000
  • Building improvements                      $2,000


In 1982, a sports afternoon was introduced for years 7 and 8. It encompassed recreational activities e.g. tennis, squash, ice skating, and softball, baseball, volleyball and cricket.

In 1982, several KHS students achieved outstanding success in Australian and State Sporting Championships. They were as follows:

  • a male KHS student – 3rd in 13 &14 years Australian Diving Championships
  • a male KHS student – 2nd in senior 10 km and junior 3 km walk, NSW State Athletic Championships
  • a male KHS student – 1st in 200m; 2nd in 400m; 2nd in high jump; 2nd in triple jump in the NSW State Age Championships (14 yrs)
  • a female KHS student 1st in 400m Hurdles – under 18 yrs; 1st in 800m – under 16 yrs; and 1st in 400m – under 16 yrs in the NSW Age Championships

In 1982, KHS girl’s softball team won the NSW High Schools Girls’ Softball Championships for a third successive year. The final rounds were held at Moore Park and the winning teams from all the Zones in the State attended. The KHS team, who had been Zone Champions for the past four years, met many of their old adversaries from previous years – Wagga Wagga, Mudgee, James Meehan and Dapto.

In third term 1982, KHS gained 2nd place in the overall point score at the Combined High Schools Athletics Carnival, held at Narrabeen Fitness Centre over three days in September. KHS earned $350.00 from their efforts, courtesy of the company Colgate Palmolive, the sponsors of the championships.

In 1982, KHS had finalists in the tennis, Under 15’s Rugby and the Girl’s ‘B’ soccer team. The one winner was the Under 15’s Rugby.


In 1983, KHS’s 1st XV Rugby team became Ku-Ring-Gai Zone Champions. The season involved playing Redwood College from San Francisco; Oakhill College; Pennant Hills HS, whom KHS played in the grand final. KHS won by 4 tries to 1, with a score of 19-7.


In 1984, KHS’s Girls’ B Grade Hockey and the Boys’ First Grade Rugby teams won their respective Zone competitions.

In 1984, KHS won The Royal Life Saving Society, NSW Branch’s ‘E.A. Fry’ trophy in the co-educational schools’ point score competition. The trophy was awarded to the school which gains the highest points for proficiency awards in lifesaving.


In 1985, KHS won the Zone Swimming Carnival and came 4th in the Zone Athletics Carnival.


In 1987, a KHS female student was selected to be part of the Australian Women’s Canoe Polo team which was to compete in Europe during August -September.

In 1987, one of KHS’s mothers was a Sail Training Inspector, who particularly like to teach other women to sail. Groups of eight were taught in a once weekly lesson for six weeks. The vessel used was a 40-foot Ketch rigged yacht.


In 1988, KHS won the Royal Lifesaving Society’s E.A. Fry trophy for the highest number of lifesaving award points by a co-educational high school. The same trophy was awarded to KHS in 1989 also.


In 1989, KHS parents were totally responsible for the upgrading, enlarging and re-surfacing of the school’s outside sporting complex, which now provided four tennis, basketball, netball and volleyball courts for use during and outside school hours. After seven years of work, the four-court complex was ceremoniously opened at KHS. 

In 1989, a KHS ex-student, was selected in the Australian Netball team and was to play in the Commonwealth Games in New Zealand in February 1990.

In 1989, due to wet weather, KHS’s cross country event was held on the roads around Killara and was called “the Koola Loop”.


In 1993, the P&C arranged for an outdoor chess board to be located in the school grounds. The first challenge – to complete the delayed 1992 competition – took place with an audience of well over fifty students and ten staff.

In 1993 the PEHPD and Sport Department wanted to recognise and encourage girls and boys of talent at KHS in sport. A new series of Sport Awards was created. The top awards were named after two ex-students who had gone on to represent Netball and Rugby in the current World Champion Teams. The awards recognised those of year 7 and 8 who combined the following qualities: skill in several sports; fitness; ability in refereeing; leadership; employment in participation; and attention to uniform.

In 1993, KHS was the State Champion Co-Ed School in Lifesaving.

1993 saw the first change to the KHS school sports uniform for many years. The school winter sports jumper was now a pattern of bottle green and gold. The sports shirt is collared and boys have a choice of long or short shorts.

In 1993 during the ski season, KHS entered ten KHS male students into the Interschool Race series in which nearly 4000 students compete. KHS’s senior snowboard team achieved the following:

  •  three year 11 students came 1st in the Northern Zone Event; 5th in the NSW/ACT competition held at Blue Cow; and 4th in the Australian Championships held at Falls Creek.
  • Two of these boys came 2nd and 3rd in the individual placing in the Northern Zone Races.


In 1994, KHS’s ‘A’ Basketball team won the school sport grand final. The team consisted of six KHS year 11 students and one year 10 KHS student. In the final they toppled the Knock-Out Champions, Carlingford.

In 1994, nine male KHS students participated in the Northern NSW Interschool Ski Races, which were held at Blue Cow Mountain during the July school holidays. There were 1800 competitors, including disabled skiers.

KHS’s snowboarding team of three year 12 students came 2nd in the year 11-12 competition, qualifying for the State Finals.

Two year 9 KHS students teamed with a year 7 KHS student in the year 9 and 10 downhill giant slalom. KHS’s team came 7th out of 50 teams. These two students formed the moguls team, coming 8th in a more competitive division.

Three year 12 KHS students skied the Division 1 Alpine Event but falls in the icy conditions prevented the team from scoring a complete team time. KHS came 10th in the overall point score of 32 boys’ secondary schools.

It was hoped in 1995 to have a girls’ team as well from KHS in any of the four disciplines of Alpine, Moguls, Cross-Country and Snowboarding.

In 1994, KHS was the champion school at the Zone swimming carnival.


In 1995, four KHS students competed in the Combined High Schools State Rowing Championships in Taree, NSW. They represented KHS in the Women’s Quad, a gruelling and tiring 2000m course.

In 1995, two year 10 KHS students and two year 8 KHS students combined their skills as KHS’s ski team for 1995. At the Giant Slalom Alpine Year 9/10 Northern Zone Race in July, the boys came fifth in the competition. They also came sixth in the State Interschool Championships and ninth in the Australian Interschools in September.

Three KHS students’ teams to took sixth place in the Moguls (jumps and bumps) competition out of twenty-four schools in the Northern NSW Zone Championships in July, with one of these students taking the ninth individual place.


In 1996, KHS’s HSC students in PD/Health/PE were placed 16% above the state average.

In 1996, more than thirty-six KHS students and staff participated in the 1996 City to Surf to help raise money for the Australian Kidney Foundation.

In 1996, the Killara Ski Team competed in the Northern NSW Interschool Championship in Skiing. They were placed 2nd in the Division 1 Teams Alpine and 6th in the Division 1 Freestyle.

In 1996, a year 9 female KHS student was nominated and selected by the then Principal, to perform in the Olympic Closing Ceremony Team. A classical ballet dancer, this KHS student was one of twenty-six NSW High School students to represent the youth of Australia at the Olympic Stadium in Atlanta.


In 1997, a task force was established at KHS made up of teachers and parents whose brief was to heighten the profile of sport in the school.

In 1997, the KHS Open Boys Rugby A Team and the Open Girls Netball B Team both won their respective competitions.

In 1997, KHS students lined up in front of the school to run the annual ‘infamous Koola Loop’ – in the cross-country event. The top ten students went on to run the even more gruelling event at the Pennant Hills track at the Zone Carnival. Several KHS students represented Ku-ring-gai at the Regional Cross-Country, held at Doyalson.


In 1998, a KHS student gained selection in the Australian Schoolboys’ Soccer team, which played international fixtures against New Zealand, Fiji, and Wales.


In 1999, Australian Rugby Union Wallaby, and a KHS ex-student, returned to KHS – bearing ‘Bill’, that is, the World Cup, the symbol of World Rugby Supremacy.

In 1999, the Sports Committee of the P&C Association held a barbecue with the showing of the Bledisloe Cup in the Kerrabee Centre.

In 1999, the P&C Association operated through various committees that parents could choose to join. This included a sports committee.

In 1999, a sports assembly was held for students who had represented KHS and excelled in sport over the past 12 months. A professional sail boarder and Olympic hopeful, addressed the school with a very important message:

 “participate in sport to have fun; that is success, not just winning.”

In 1999, the KHS Cross-Country was held in March. The race was approximately a three and a half kilometre run of the ‘Koola Loop’. The loop was run by all students in years 7-10 and was optional for senior students. From the race day, a school representative team was chosen.

In 1999, the KHS cross country team performed very well at the Zone Carnival with twelve runners progressing to the Sydney Met-North Regional Carnival. KHS representatives ran in their age group. Both boys and girls won the age group in the open category. Overall KHS came third on the day. Two KHS students qualified to run at the CHS cross-country.


In 2000, the newly inducted KHS prefects of 2000-2001 spent a day helping at Cromehurst Special School’s ‘Mini Olympics’. Cromehurst School was a school for students with both intellectual and learning disabilities. The ‘Mini Olympics’ commenced with a torch relay. The students took part in slightly modified but equally challenging events, ranging from tennis to high jump, javelin and gymnastics.

In 2000, the Annual Sports Assembly was held with 120 KHS students receiving awards on the day. The special guest was a member of the Australian Olympic women’s eight rowing crew. She gave an inspirational speech, encouraging all students to follow their dream, and to never give up until they had achieved that dream.

In 2000, the KHS Zone Swimming Carnival was held at the prestigious Olympic Aquatic Centre. Many KHS  students made the regional competition at  Warringah Aquatic Centre.

In 2000, at the Zone cross-country , four KHS students represented Sydney North at the NSW CHS cross-country at Eastern Creek.

In 2000, the annual swimming carnival was held at Hornsby Pool as was tradition at KHS.

In 2000, twelve KHS students participated in the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games Opening and Closing Ceremonies, as audience leaders.

In 2000, twenty-eight KHS students from years 8-11, danced with the youth of Sydney in the Pacific School Games Open Ceremony 2000.

In 2000, the KHS SRC sought to improve the diversity of sporting activities offered to years 9-11. There was also strong support for surfing to be introduced as a recreation sport.


In 2001, two KHS swimming carnivals went ahead – the night carnival was held at North Sydney pool, where fireworks were provided mid carnival for the entertainment of the KHS families. The evening carnival allowed busy/working parents to attend and watch their children swim. The day carnival also went ahead, with Kimba house coming first.

In 2001, tennis continued to maintain a prominent position at KHS. Some of the highlights included:

  • Forty-three KHS students and two KHS staff attended the Tennis Masters at the Superdome.
  • The KHS boys’ and girls’ grade tennis teams became premiers in Grade Tennis on the same afternoon. The finalists with KHS were Turramurra HS for the girls’ team and Pennant Hills HS for the boys’ team. For the boys’ team this was the third straight premiership.
  • KHS fielded a team of six boys and six girls in the Northern Suburbs Secondary School These matches were played under lights on a Saturday night in March, in a ’round robin’ format. In 2001, KHS was a Co-premiership team.
  • The KHS boys’ knockout team defeated Carlingford HS and St Ives HS, but lost to Davidson HS in the quarterfinals of the Sydney North Region.
  • On November 15, 2001, KHS was offered forty-five tickets to see a live tennis match between Gustavo Kuerten and Juan Carlos Ferrero.


In 2002, the Sports Committee, under the P&C Association, held a major fundraising Trivia Night to raise funds to upgrade the school’s oval.


In 2003, a KHS male 12-year-old student won every event he entered at the Zone Carnival. The KHS boys’ and girls’ relay teams also won their events.

In 2003, KHS basketball teams had successes amongst all age groups in grade and knockout competitions.

In 2003, the Sports Committee of the P&C Association organised a car raffle to raise funds to upgrade the oval.

In 2003, the annual year 7 camp took place at Vision Valley, and included the following activities:

  • raft building
  • archery
  • abseiling
  • canoeing
  • rock climbing
  • bushwalking
  • games
  • dancing

In 2003, year 7 KHS students participated in a Summer Gala Day. Four schools from the Ku-ring-gai area took part in four summer sports: basketball, ultimate frisbee, cricket and volleyball. The other three schools were Turramurra HS, St Ives HS and Chatswood HS.


In 2005, KHS dominated the relay events in the Ku-ring-gai Zone Swimming Carnival. While KHS came a close third behind Cherrybrook THS and Galston HS, the KHS relay teams finished first or second in thirteen of the seventeen events. As a result, KHS was able to send a squad of forty to the Sydney North Area Championships. A number of KHS students at this event received medals for finishing in the top three of their age divisions. Four KHS students received Gold, one KHS student received Silver, and three KHS students received Bronze.

In 2005, two KHS students became Zone Athletic Champions – one KHS female student (12 years girls) and one KHS male student (14 years’ boys). Also, one KHS male student (12 years’ boys) was place third.

In 2005, five KHS students achieved outstanding results at the Combined High Schools Athletics Carnival:

  1. 2nd place: KHS female student – 12 years’ girls high jump
  2. 1st place: KHS male student – 14 years’ boys high jump
  3. 5th place: KHS male student – 14 years’ boys 1500 metres
  4. 1st place: KHS male student – 14 years’ boys long jump
  5. 2nd place: KHS male student – 17 years’ boys 200 metres


In 2006, of the forty-six HSC courses on offer at KHS, student performance in thirty-five of these were above the state mean. In twenty-four courses, results were more than 5% above the state mean, while in seven courses results were more than 10% above the state mean. About 75% of KHS students who sat the 2006 HSC obtained a university place. These places included sports and exercise science.


In 2007, the KHS Prefects organised a number of fundraising events/activities, including a ‘Support your Sport’ mufti day, where students could don the garb of their favourite sporting teams, regardless of whether they played or just watched. A very long skipping rope was also popular, as well as screening of ‘The Ashes’ at lunchtimes throughout the term in the theatre. The major event was the ‘Bompo Comp’ which saw teachers compete against the students, and then year 12 vs the prefects.

In June, 2007, the Regional Cross-Country carnival was held at Gosford Racecourse. The KHS boys’ team was successful in achieving first place in the 12-year-old boys’ team event. They also competed as a team at the State Cross Country carnival at Eastern Creek Raceway in July. Although not achieving a place, the boys put in a creditable performance.


In 2008, twelve KHS cricketing students from year 7-9 at KHS gathered at Koola Oval on Monday 10th November in the evening for the first session of the KHS Cricket Academy. The Academy was an initiative of the PDHPE faculty, the KHS Principal and former a New Zealand International cricketer, who was also a parent of KHS students. The aim was to have fun and improve on skills, but also to give elite cricketers in years 7-9 exposure to the experience of an international cricketer, as well as competition with other schools in the area. It was also hoped that these sessions would allow boys to ‘bond into a team’ at a young age, which would increase the likelihood of a high level of performance once they were in their senior years of school and competing for the Davidson Shield. The aim was to provide the boys with at least two ‘friendly’ matches with schools in the area before the end of 2008.

In 2008, KHS were placed 2nd in the Ku-ring-gai Zone Swimming Carnival at Homebush swimming pool. Cherrybrook Technology HS came 1st, and Pennant Hills HS were 3rd.

In 2008, the KHS 15 yrs 4x50m boys relay swimming team set a new zone record of 1:55:71, replacing the old time of 1:56:57.

In 2008, a former KHS student from year 12, 2004, who was a member of Adelaide United Soccer Club, headed overseas to Germany for the first division club, FC Nuremberg. He also played with the Socceroos in the Australia vs Iraq match mid 2008.

In 2008, a KHS year 7 female student represented KHS at the NSW All Schools Athletics Carnival, competing in six events – 100m, 200m, javelin, long jump, discus and shot put. She was awarded a bronze medal in the U13 javelin. She has also been selected to compete in the NSW Pacific Schools Games.

In 2008, a year 12 KHS male student was awarded 2nd place in the Newcastle Northern Classic Body Building Titles. He came second by a single point.

In 2008, a KHS year 10 female student was selected as a member of the 2008 NSW U17 Badminton team.


In 2009, KHS’s Boys A Grade Basketball team won their final, defeating Turramurra HS 50-44.

In 2009, KHS students competed against other schools in the eastern side of the Ku-ring-gai zone (Turramurra, St Ives and Chatswood) in sports listed below:

  • badminton
  • basketball
  • frisbee
  • softball
  • touch footy
  • volleyball

In 2009, KHS’s recreational sports in the summer season were:

  • rock climbing
  • ten pin bowling
  • ice skating
  • beach walking
  • surfing

In 2009, a large group of KHS students, largely of Rugby Union players, attended a Rugby League Gala Day at the NSW Rugby League Academy at Narrabeen. KHS entered a team in the U13 and U15 divisions. It was a strong competition and KHS U13s played three games on the day putting in good performances. The KHS U15s also put in good performances also. Though KHS teams did not win their respective divisions, the NSWRL representative at the Gala Day was so impressed with the talent and determination of the KHS teams that he asked KHS to represent North Sydney at the ‘7aside Captain’s Cup’ which was to take place in August.

In 2009, a year 11 male KHS student embarked on a journey on board the Young Endeavour. He was selected as a member of the youth crew and set sail on an 11-day voyage from Airlie Beach to Townsville that covered 355 nautical miles. (The Young Endeavour is a 44m tall ship given to Australia to mark the Bicentenary of Captain Cook’s landing in 1988. Since then thousands of young Australians have taken part in the Young Endeavour Youth Scheme, which aims to give young people the opportunity for personal development.)

In 2009, a year 10 KHS student was selected to represent Australia in the under 21 years Beach Volleyball Junior World Championships to be held in England in September 2009.


In 2010, KHS celebrated the 40th anniversary on this site. A celebratory evening event was held in the Kerrabee Centre, and two previous KHS Principals spoke. A KHS ex-student from the 1983 cohort, as well as a current parent, shared her humorous memories. The guest speaker was a former KHS student from 1979-1984, and Captain of the Wallaby’s Rugby Union Australian side in 2010. The Band, ‘Gluteus Maximus’ played hits songs of the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.

Year 9 KHS PASS students assisted with the running of the Athletics Carnivals at most of the local primary schools, providing our students with leadership opportunities and the chance to use those skills they developed in their PASS classes. The local primary schools were very grateful for the coaching and scoring that was provided by our students and asked KHS to repeat this in 2011.

In 2010, the KHS’s Under 15 Boys soccer team won their way through to the final four in the Greater Metropolitan Sydney area in the Bill Turner Cup.

In 2010, KHS’s girls’ volleyball team achieved the accolade of 4th best team in the State.


In 2011, the KHS 15 boys’ soccer team once again were the North Sydney Champions.

In 2011, sixteen KHS students won their way through to the Sydney North Carnival in Cross-Country. The students were aged between 12 and 16 year girls.

In 2011, twelve KHS winter sports teams made it through to the semi-finals on this occasion, with eight of those making it through to the final. There were:

  • C grade basketball (boys)
  • open B grade soccer (boys)
  • 15’s A grade soccer (boys)
  • basketball (girls)
  • volleyball – both A and B grade volleyball (girls)
  • B grade netball (girls)
  • mixed table tennis team

Both grades in girls’ volleyball and the mixed table tennis team came away with the Ku-ring-gai Zone Premiership.

In 2011, all year 7 KHS students travelled to Ermington Putt-Putt for a ‘Fun Day’.  The cohort was separated into four different colour groups: blue, red, green and yellow, separating in groups of eight to compete against each other in the three courses – the waterway, the jungle trail and the fun run.


In 2012, the KHS Sports Council of 2011-2012 organised the World’s Biggest Beep Test, in the hope to exceed the current Guinness Wold Record on the 11/11/11, where three hundred and twenty seven KHS students ran in unison to the multi-stage fitness test. Although KHS missed out on the record by a small margin, it was hoped that next year’s attempt would break the record.

In 2012, the KHS Sports Council organised volleyball and Bompo Dompo competitions during lunchtimes for the enjoyment of KHS students.

In 2012, the KHS Sports Council organised a school mascotthe Killara Lion – to represent ‘Killara Pride’. Throughout the carnivals during the year, the mascot was present, and it was hope that they could ensure that this mascot was also at any sporting event in which a Killara athlete was representing KHS.

In 2012, the KHS Sports Council attended the ‘Rising Generations’ leadership day, in order to assist the Council on how to make the most effective meeting possible.

In 2012, the following KHS’s swimming relay teams went through to the Sydney North Carnival:

  • 13 years girls’ and boys’ teams
  • 14 years girls’ and boys’ teams
  • 17 years girls
  • 12-17 years girls’ relay

KHS was also placed first in the knockout relay.

In 2012, five of our KHS swimmers went through to the Combined High Schools Swimming in the following events:

  • 100m and 50 m freestyle
  • 50 m freestyle
  • 200 m freestyle
  • 14 years boys relay 1st


In 2013, the KHS Sports Council’s mufti day was to raise money for Wheelchair Sports NSW, who provide wheelchairs for many athletes with a disability which allows them to participate in sport. KHS students came to school wearing their favourite team colours. Manchester United (Soccer), the Manly Sea Eagles (Rugby League) and numerous local sporting teams were represented.

In 2013, the KHS Sports Council organised the Bompo Dompo Competition for stage 4 students during lunchtimes. In their respective houses, KHS students competed against each other, with the aim of promoting house spirit while having fun at the same time.

In 2013, two KHS sport teams progress through to the finals in summer sports. These were the Boys A Grade Touch team and the Boys B Grade Soccer 7s team.

In 2013, six KHS sports teams progress to the finals in the winter season sports. They were:

  • the boys junior rugby
  • boys B grade 15 soccer
  • girls hockey 7s
  • girls A grade and 9/10 netball
  • mixed table tennis teams

Of those teams, KHS claimed three premierships with the Boys Rugby, the Boys Soccer and the Girls 9/10 Netball teams. The Rugby team broke a twenty-seven year drought in regards to winning the Premiership.


In 2014, the KHS Sports Council cohort (2013-2014) organised a number of activities/events for the KHS community. These included:

  • The World’s Biggest Beep Test
  • Bompo Dompo Competitions – between all year groups and stages, as well as students versus teachers
  • Sports activities week – skipping competitions, obstacle courses. Each stage grouping of students in the Sports Council also organised rival events between years. For year 7 and 8, this included soccer, touch football, basketball, and netball. A ‘speedaway’ game between year 11 and year 12 girls, and a rugby union game between the year 10 and year 11 boys.
  • The annual ‘Killara Gift’ – in 2014, the Sports Council gained sponsorship from a sports store in Gordon. The sponsorship included a multitude of vouchers for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place getters in the respective boys’ and girls’ finals of the races.
  • Mufti Day to support the McGrath Foundation and their fight against breast cancer – through an event called ‘Pink Stumps Day’, many students and teachers wore pink. There were food stalls and a cricket game between students and teachers at lunch time. Through this event, the SRC raised $1500 for the foundation.

In 2014, a senior KHS student qualified to get through to the Combined High Schools Cross Country Carnival.


In 2015, the KHS Sports Council (2014-2015) organised a mufti day to raise funds to support the 2016 Paralympic team. Over $2000 was raised. KHS students were encouraged to wear sportswear from their favourite team from around the world.

In 2015, KHS students achieved Zone Premierships in the following winter grade sports:

  • Open Boys B Grade Basketball
  • Boys Soccer sevens A and B grade
  • Girls soccer sevens A grade

In 2015, KHS students in were successful in the following spring grade sports:

  • boys B grade basketball – Zone premiers
  • Rugby League boys 7s competition – winning the final against Turramurra HS
  • the girls B grade frisbee – Premiers

In 2015, KHS students represented the Sydney North team at the CHS State Athletics Carnival. A senior KHS student was placed first in the 100m, 400m, 400m hurdles and the 4x400m as well as 2nd in the 200m.

In 2015, two male KHS students – one junior and one senior student – qualified for the Australian National Athletics Championships held in Melbourne in December.

In 2015, KHS sent a number of students to the CHS State Swimming Carnival. Some of the results included:

  • a senior female KHS student competed in four events, resulting in 1st for the 50m and 100m freestyle
  • a year 7 male KHS student competed in eight individual events and finished 1st in the 50m, 100m and 200m freestyle as well as the 100m breaststroke and butterfly. He was also part of the 12 years 4 x 50m relay team.

In 2015, KHS won the Zone Cross Country held at St Ives Showground.

In 2015, a number of KHS students progressed through to various zone, regional and/or state competitions in a number of sports. These included:

  • two KHS students were successful in reaching the CHS State Cross Country Carnival
  • a KHS student was selected in the Sydney North Representative Baseball side
  • two KHS students progressed to the Sydney North tennis side
  • four KHS students progressed to the Sydney North Rugby Union side
  • one KHS student progressed to the Sydney North Softball side
  • one KHS student progressed to the Sydney North Hockey side
  • a KHS student made the NSW CHS representative side for Rugby Union
  • a KHS student made the NSW CHS representative side for gymnastics

In 2015, sixty-two Physical Activity and Sports Studies (PASS) KHS students in years 9 and 10 attended the bi-annual ski camp held at Thredbo ski fields.


In 2016, the KHS Sports Council (2015-2016) hosted an even called ‘The Battle of the Genders’ for year 10 KHS students in which females were pitched against males in sports and skill-based events.

In 2016, the year 11 KHS PDHPE class attended a whitewater rafting excursion at Penrith’s White Water Stadium, as part of their course work on outdoor recreation. Students worked together in their raft teams to support each other whilst on the rapids.

In 2016, the year 11 KHS Preliminary PDHPE class participated in a first aid course, in which the certification received at the end of the course included CPR and emergency life support with the use of a defibrillators. Students were also rehearsed on how to manage a range of major and minor emergencies, including asthma, anaphylaxis, slinging, choking and envenomation.

In 2016, year 11 PDHPE participated in an Archery and Last Tag excursion at Sydney Olympic Park.

In 2016, one hundred and twenty KHS students attended the Zone Athletics Carnival held at the Homebush Sydney Athletic Centre. KHS finished 2nd in the Zone Carnival, with students excelling particularly in the 4×100 relay event, with six KHS teams (out of twelve) coming 1st or 2nd in their event.

In 2016, KHS students represented Ku-ring-gai at the Sydney North Athletics Carnival, where Ku-ring-gai won the event. KHS students achieved many placings in their individual events. These included:

  • a year 7 female KHS student -1st place in hurdles
  • a year 7 male KHS student – 1st place in hurdles
  • a year 9 male KHS student – 1st place in long jump
  • a year 10 female KHS student – 1st place in triple jump
  • a year 10 female KHS student – 1st place in javelin (same KHS student as above)
  • a year 12 male KHS student – 1st place in 100m, 200m, 400m hurdles and shot put
  • the KHS male 17+ years 4 x 100m relay – 1st place in the final

In 2016, in term 4, year 7 and KHS students participated in the Swim and Survive Program at Lane Cove Aquatic Centre, which aimed to provide students with skills in aquatics, rescue techniques, resuscitation and first aid.

In 2016, twelve KHS students competed at the State Level in the CHS Athletics Carnival which was held over three days in September. KHS students achieved many placings in their individual events. These included:

  • a year 7 female KHS student -1st place in hurdles
  • a KHS male student – 17+ years – 1st place in 100m and 200m

In 2016, seventy KHS students participated in the Zone Swimming Carnival. KHS was successful in winning this carnival for the 2nd in a row. KHS students achieved many placings in their individual events. These included:

  • 1st in age groups for a year 7 female KHS student, year 8 male and female KHS students, a year 9 KHS female student and a year 10 male KHS student

In 2016, thirty-five students competed for Ku-ring-gai in the Sydney North Swimming Carnival. KHS students achieved many placings in their individual events. These included:

  • a male year 8 KHS student – 1st place in the 400m freestyle, 1st place in the 100m butterfly, 1st place in the 100m freestyle and 1st place in 50m freestyle, and 1st place in the 200m Individual Medley
  • a male year 8 KHS student – 1st place in 100m breaststroke
  • a male year 9 KHS student – 1st place in 100m freestyle, 1st place in 50m freestyle, 1st place in 100m backstroke
  • 1st place – 16 years girls – 4x50m boys relay

In 2016, eleven KHS students represented Sydney North at the NSW Combined Secondary Schools Sports Association Swimming Championships (CHS) held in Apri. KHS students achieved many placings in their individual events. These included:

  • a male year 8 KHS student – 1st place in 200m freestyle, 100m breaststroke and 100m butterfly
  • a female year 9 KHS student – 1st place in 100m freestyle

In 2016, KHS’s Open Boys Baseball team finished in the top four of the State.


In 2017, the KHS Sports Council (2016-2017) designed and constructed House scoreboards and were placed facing the main quadrangle. Scores were regularly updated. It was planned that a ‘House Party’ would be held for the winning house at the end of the calendar year in 2017.

In 2017, the KHS Sports Council (2016-2017) held a mufti day to support Wheelchair Sports NSW, as well as the following activities:

  • the World’s Biggest Beep Test
  • the Stage 4 Bompo Dompo Compeition
  • the Killara ‘Gift’
  • the year 9 soccer competition
  • the Stage 4 futsal competition
  • the year 10 ‘Battle of the Genders’

In 2017, the PDHPE faculty purchased a class set of heart rate monitors, courtesy of a P&C grant, allowing students to explore the effects of exercise on cardiovascular fitness.

In 2017, the KHS boys table tennis team (a team of four male students) came 2nd in the state.

In 2017, KHS won the Ku-ring-gai Zone Swimming Carnival held at the Homebush Aquatic Centre for the 3rd year in a row. Many KHS students achieved a top five position in their age championships.

In 2017, forty KHS students participated in the multiple events for Ku-ring-gai Zone at the Sydney North Swimming Carnival. Several KHS students qualified for the CHS Swimming Carnival. Some of the results included:

  • a fourteen-year-old male KHS student came 1st in the 200 IM (Individual Medley), the 400 IM and the 100m breaststroke. He also came 2nd in the 100m butterfly and 6th in the 200m freestyle and 400m freestyle.
  • a sixteen-year-old female KHS student came 1st in the 100m freestyle and 100 butterfly, as well as 4th in the 50m freestyle.

In 2017, a 12-year-old KHS female student broke seven individual records on the day of the KHS Swimming Athletics Carnival.

In 2017, a group of KHS students participated in the Ku-ring-gai Zone Cross Country Carnival at St Ives Showground. Each group delivered top ten runners. KHS finished 3rd overall. The KHS fourteen-year-old KHS male team won their even and were able to compete on the Sydney North Team, along with nineteen other students from KHS. At the Zone Cross-Country Carnival, KHS student athletes contributed to Ku-ring-gai winning the carnival.

In 2017, the KHS table tennis were ranked 2nd in the state following the CHS competition.


In 2018, the KHS Sports Council (2017-2018) organised a number of events including:

  • The World’s Biggest Beep test
  • Wheelchair Sports mufti day
  • Sports Appreciation day at ‘Aqua Splash’
  • KHS vs St Ives HS baseball extravaganza
  • ‘Bullying No Way’ day
  • Stage 4’ Capture the Flag’ competition
  • Year 9 futsal competition
  • Years 10 girls’ slide hockey competition
  • Year 10 boys’ crossbar challenge
  • Stage 6 ‘Bompo’ competition

In 2018, the annual KSP program continued with seven schools in the partnership. Extension workshops for year 2 through to year 6 included a sports gala day.

In 2018, three KHS students participated in the State Cross Country Carnival.

In 2018, the KHS swim team won the Zone Swimming Championships for the 4th year in a row. KHS had a total of fifty-six 1st places, twenty-three 2nd places, and eleven 3rd places. Many individual swimmers also achieved a top five position in their age group.

In 2018, selected KHS students participated in the NSW Combined High Schools Sports Association Swimming Competition. A year 11 female KHS student was placed 1st in both 100m freestyle and 100m breaststroke, a year 9 KHS male student was placed 1st in the 100m backstroke, and a year 11 KHS male student came 1st in the 100m breaststroke and 3rd in the 100m butterfly.

In 2018, forty-four KHS students represented the Ku-ring-Gai Zone at the Sydney North Athletics Carnival at the Sydney Olympic Park Athletics Centre. Notable achievements included:

  • a KHS 12-year-old female student: 1st place in the long jump, 2nd in the hurdles and 3rd in the shot put
  • a KHS 13-year-old female student: 1st place in shot put, and 3rd place in the 100m, the 200m and the long jump. This student broke the record in discus, which has stood since 2007
  • a KHS 17+ year-old female student: 1st place in the long jump and triple jump
  • a KHS 17+ year-old male student: 1st in the 400m and 3rd in the 200m

In 2018, a selection of KHS students represented the CHS (State) Athletics Carnival.  Notable achievements included:

  • a KHS 17+ year-old female student: 1st place in the Pentathlon – an event which is comprised of the 200m, 800m, high jump, long jump, and shot put
  • a KHS 14-year-old male student: 1st place in the high jump
  • a KHS 13-year-old female student: 1st place in the discus and shotput and 3rd in the 200m


In 2019, the KHS Sports Council (2018-2019) organised/participated in a number of events. These included:


  • Sport Appreciation Day to Aqua Splash, Gosford
  • The World’s Biggest Beep Test
  • ‘Bullying No Way’ Day
  • Mufti Day to fundraise for ‘Red Dust’
  • Killara vs St Ives Basketball Extravaganza
  • Stage 6 ‘Bompo Competition’
  • Year 10 human sized fusball game
  • Year 9 boys slide hockey competition
  • Year 9 girls basketball competition
  • Stage 4 Sports Week



A student government at KHS took the form of a School Council. Students voted the School Council out in, and in 1971, School representatives were elected from 4th Form [year 10] (at that time, the highest form at KHS).

By 1972 it was decided that more authority was needed and a decision was taken to call school leaders ‘prefects’.

Prefects operated in 1972-1973, but in 1974, a modification of the system was devised, so that the new prefect elections would take place by the early months of each year. Twelve Sixth Form [year 12] and ten Fifth Form [year 11] prefects were elected and these students would meet with junior years to discuss problems, advise and glean new ideas.


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