Welcome to Blairgowrie Primary School

Our History

Established in July 1959, Blairgowrie Primary School in Gavin Avenue, is ideally situated in the pleasant residential area in the northern suburbs of Johannesburg. The Scottish background of both suburb and school are represented in the three school houses: Atholl, Murray and Dundee.

Origin of the Name

Mr Grey Rattray, an immigrant from Blairgowrie Scotland, owned the farm, which was later to become the suburb Craighall. In 1940 his daughter, Mrs Doris Grey McChesney applied to establish a township on a portion of Craighall, the farm Klipfontein No. 4 1941.This township was proclaimed and named Blairgowrie.

Origin of the Uniform

Blair Castle in Blairgowrie, Scotland, was the ancestral home of the Atholls of Murray. Permission was obtained from this family to incorporate their tartan with the uniform. This permission was granted to Mrs Francis and her Ladies Committee in 1960.

Founding of the School

In July 1959, the School opened with 259 pupils with Mr T. S. Skinstad as acting principal. In January 1960, Mr J. Lane took over the reins. The first official principal was Mr J. Geddes and the official opening by the Director of Education took place in March 1961. By 1963 the school had grown to 700 pupils.

Blairgowrie School Motto

The Thistle

“A shield, vert, sinister chief a Springbok salient argent. Per bend dexter, upon field gules, a thistle, all proper, argent bordure. Motto: “BE TRUE”.

“ A shield, left side  (looking from the wearer)  green, a silver/white Springbok leaping, divided from left to right. Right side red, a thistle in its natural position. Silver/White border.

The colours and the symbols are appropriate to Blairgowrie School. The red, green and silver/white are taken from the Tartan of the Clan  “Atholls of Murray” who hail from Blairgowrie in Scotland. For Blairgowrie, Johannesburg, the colours are symbolic in that the Red represents the Sun and the colour of the soil. The Green represents the green foliage and the silver/white represents the white waters of the Witwatersrand. The Springbok represents South Africa, and in its leaping position, symbolises “ youth going forward. ” The Thistle, being the floral emblem of Scotland refers to the Scottish origin of the name Blairgowrie.It is a hardy plant, protecting itself from destruction by the multitude of its prickles, likewise the number of its seeds, depicts the advantage of education, without which the children cannot succeed and survive.

The motto  “BE TRUE” is the prefix for a number of proverbs, and was chosen as a guide to a rule of conduct. For instance: Be true to your school. Be true, meaning be straight and honourable, “but above all else, to thine own self Be True.”

The badge is the one sign which identifies you with Blairgowrie School.

Do not disgrace it . . . It will never disgrace you.

Our History

BPS history

1959
1959

BPS OPENS

School opened with 259 pupils. Mr Skinstad acting principal
1960
1960

Mr Lane acting principal

1961
1961

OFFICIAL OPENING

Mr Geddes first principal. He has since passed away, but his daughter, Sue le Cordeur, still teaches ballet at the school.
1963
1963

PUPIL NUMBERS CONTINUE TO GROW

700 pupils
1964
1964

LIBRARY EXTENDED

As a result, the library was closed for a year
1965
1965

1 000 PREFABS BUILT

Originally the school was meant for 750 pupils only. 29 teachers 40 students per class. Badminton club, repertory players (parents), table tennis. Houses Mercury, Jupiter, Saturn and Neptune
1967
1967

MR GEDDES LEAVES

Mrs Telfer takes over as acting principal. Rian Malan head boy (journalist, author of My Traitor’s heart)
1968
1968

MR HARRISON APPOINTED AS PRINCIPAL

Pool, soccer and tennis courts built. Springbok swimmers: Irene Spoor and Susan Duncan. Lee Barnard head boy
1969
1969

ALADDIN PANTOMINE

1970
1970

OLIVER MUSICAL

1971
1971

MUSIC SCHOOL OPENS

Established with 156 pupils. Still going strong although privatised since 1998.
1973
1973

FAMOUS STUDENT

Peter Davies of Supersport Mnet a pupil
1974
1974

HIGHLAND DANCING CENTRE ESTABLISHED

50 Members of the dancing centre Also the National champions that year. Rolf Harris visits the school (entertainer, artist from Australia)
1975
1975

MR HARRISON LEAVES

Mr Forster acting principal. Northern Sotho taught. Mrs Una Ottermann starts her teaching career and is still here! She will be retiring in March 2000.
1976
1976

MR McCLOSKEY PRINCIPAL

Unfortunately passes away unexpectedly, the same year. Mrs Wright takes over.
1977
1977

MR MOSS ACTING PRINCIPAL

1978
1978

MR JORDAAN APPOINTED AS PRINCIPAL

Stayed on until 1992 when he retired. Today he owns a bus company and takes our children on day trips and on longer trips. He still has a granddaughter at the school and from time to time pops up at a sports day.
1981
1981

BEST SCHOOL CHOIR IN THE PROVINCE

Made an LP. Bought the first school Kombi.
1985
1985

MEDIA CENTRE EXTENDED

1986
1986

GYM DISPLAY

Participated in a gym display at the SA Games.
1990
1990

COMPUTER NETWORK ESTABLISHED

Pupil numbers have declined to 350.
1992
1992

MR JORDAAN LEAVES

Mrs Ottermann takes over for the rest of the year. Possibility that the school could close due to the low enrolment.
1993
1993

MR SELWYN MARX PRINCIPAL

Computer focus for the school.
1996
1996

HALL UPGRADED

Pupil numbers increase to nearly 600.
1998
1998

POOL RENOVATED

We win the primary schools best website competition. Greenside High wins the high school division with a past pupil of BPS as its designer!
1999
1999

MEDIA CENTRE REVAMPED

40th celebration. Second generation pupils at school. Many parents were also past pupils of Blairgowrie.
2003
2003

MR MARX RESIGNS

2004
2004

BPS 45 years old.

Mrs Harman acting principal.
2005
2005

BUILDING OF NEW AFTERCARE FACILITIES

Building of the admin block, pool steps, new technology room, art room and staff room. Mrs Harman appointed principal
2007
2007

POOL UPGRADED

Eco garden and braai area created. Discovery Vitality got involved with the school.
2008
2008

SOCCER LEGEND VISITS

Soccer legend Lucas Radebe visited our school.
2009
2009

50 th CELEBRATION

Grade R new building opened
2011
2011

TORNADO HITS SCHOOL

Destroys age old trees. Music Centre in existence for 40 years.
2012
2012

TEACHERS RECIEVE iPADS

2013
2013

MRS HARMAN TURNED 60

2014
2014

SCHOOL IS 55 YEARS OLD

Lapa built for staff and school functions . Mrs Harman retired. Purchased two Toyota Quantum 14 seater buses.
2015
2015

MRS PAT OOSTHUIZEN APPOINTED AS PRINCIPAL

Mrs Chesca Malcolm appointed as Head of guidance. Mrs Charmaine Vartharajaloo appointed as deputy principal. Ms Memory van der Merwe appointed as deputy principal. Pilot tablets and Ipads programme. 812 pupils.
2016
2016

PUPIL NUMBERS CONTINUE TO INCREASE

851 Pupils Ms Jaya Govender appointed as Head of department foundation phase.
2018
2018

IMMIGRANT POST CREATED

Ingrid Ballack was a pupil of the school and today still at the school as a grade 2 teacher and head of department.
2018

DELIVERY OF OUR FIRST BUS

World Cup Soccer Fever.
2018

BPS STILL GOING STRONG

Come be a part of our amazing school!