• Dawn Riley

The End Of Clandonald School

Photo submitted

With the last day of the 2020-2021 school year, the end of Clandonald School became a reality. Due to a combination of funding cuts from the province and a continual decline in enrollment, Buffalo Trail Public School announced in March that this past school year would be the last year of operation after over 100 years of education in the area.

First established as Wellsdale School in roughly 1910, Clandonald School Division came to be in 1928, with school being held in the Orange Hall. It was not until after the Depression that a building could be constructed, so during the 1930s students attended school at the convent on the south end of town. A new school was erected in 1940, and by 1956, four rooms were required to house all the students comfortably.

Meanwhile, the Clandonald Separate School was established in 1929. This school was housed in the convent and run by the Benedictine Sisters until 1932 when the Sisters of St. Joseph from Peterborough took over and added a boarding school. During the 1940s and ’50s, various stages of expansion were required to accommodate the growing number of students, and by 1960, several buildings had been built and added on to.

When the separate school division dissolved in 1969, and students from both divisions began attending school under the public umbrella in the s