Most Australian school children are used to their annual school photograph being taken in the school hall or out in the playground, a decades-long tradition. Not so at Nullawarre and District Primary School, where the 2014 school photo was taken in a hay shed on the back of a 1950s Bedford truck.
A short drive from Warrnambool, Victoria, Nullawarre and District Primary School is a small school offering big opportunities. School principal Kane Horwill has instigated a new tradition for the school’s 55 pupils by having memorable locations for their school’s official photographs.
This began last year with Childers Cove as the photography location and continues this year with the hay shed shoot.
“We provide many extra opportunities for students to succeed through science, drama, Japanese, physical education, music and mobile library sessions. These all complement our high quality spelling, grammar, writing and mathematics program,” Mr Horwill explained.
“I wanted to offer students an opportunity to want to keep their school photos and be proud them!
“I wanted each student to identify each year of being at our school with a theme. For example, the Childers Cove beach year or the truck in the hayshed year. The response from the parents, students, community, staff and other schools has been overwhelmingly positive and supportive.”
Helping Nullawarre and District Primary School achieve these unique school photographs is MSP Photography Mt Gambier business owner, Frank Monger.
“Having worked with most of the smaller schools within a 250km radius of Mt Gambier for the past 18 years, it’s great to be able to show some of the town features within school photos,” Mr Monger said.
“Over the years I’ve used some unusual places for school photos. In a shearing shed amongst the wool, on top of the local mountain looking out across the valley to other mountains in the distance, on tractors or rusted out old machinery, in canola crops, the whole school on a Harley Davidson motor bike (at a six-student school) or in the local park with lovely autumn leaves.
“I’m sure the parents appreciate the variety that can be achieved in small school photos that are simply impossible in our larger city schools, and I enjoy working in different locations as it makes me think a bit more and test my skills.”
Mr Horwill praised Mr Monger for his ability to capture Nullawarre’s students in such a unique way.
“Frank helps us achieve this goal by being flexible, not being rushed, being a good communicator and providing high quality photographs.”
We look forward to seeing what the location of next year’s school photos will be.