Northcliff Primary School

Aemulamini Meliora

Welcome to Northcliff Primary School 

Northcliff Primary School opened on 23 February 1942 with Mrs E. Morris as acting Principal. The school started off with only seven pupils and one teacher, Mrs Morris herself. By April 1942, the numbers had risen to 32 children and two members of staff. Mrs C.M.J. Trott was appointed to assist Mrs Morris.

At that time the school consisted of a small building comprising of an office, a small staffroom and three classrooms. The third classroom was used as a ‘hall’. The staffroom was used by the Civic Guard who did police duty in the area. They used it as their night Orderly Room until the end of 1945.

It was also during this time that Mrs Morris announced that the school was to have a special uniform. The colours were to be burgundy and turquoise, with a badge on the pocket. A lighted torch appears on our school badge. At the bottom of the torch, we find the words: ‘AEMULMINI MELIORA’, which means “We strive for better things’.

Mr Fred Cohen was responsible for having our school built. Mr and Mrs Stakesby-Lewis were the architects responsible for drawing up the plans of our school. Since 1942 we have had more buildings erected to accommodate more children.

The first principal was Mr B.P. Ryan, who was appointed in 1945. On 7 August 1942 Northcliff Primary School was officially opened by the Director of Education. It was named after the suburb, Northcliff, in which it was built.

When the School re-opened after the Christmas Holidays, the number of pupils had risen to 46 and the building was taken over entirely by the Transvaal Education Department. Parents were reluctant to send their children to a new school in the area and preferred sending them to a more established schools like Greenside and Parkview.

 In October of that year, the first School Committee was elected. There was a healthy spirit of co-operation between the parents and the school and the recently elected Committee took their responsibilities seriously. They immediately embarked upon a project providing the School with playgrounds, playing fields and beautifying the school grounds.

Mr E.A. Heller was responsible for the laying out and maintenance of the gardens and playing fields. Mr Heller worked hard at this for 9 years.

In 1973, Mr Wilson was appointed as the second headmaster. Mr Tisdall became the new Principal in 1979. In 1994, Mrs R. Botha became Principal and in 2010 Mrs Kerr became our current Principal.