Seeing school from both sides

CANNONVALE State School is in its 100th year.

To mark the milestone, the school is planning a centenary party weekend on August 31 and September 1.

Hundreds of past students and teachers have been invited back to the school to help celebrate the special festivity.

But one person who will be attending the celebrations as a past student and present teacher is Peter Smith.

Mr Smith started at Cannonvale State School as a pre-schooler in 1986 and has since returned to walk through the school gates, but this time as a teacher.

“It was a bit weird coming back,” Mr Smith said.

“I'm proud to have my name as a teacher and a student.”

Back at the school as a teacher, Peter has noticed many changes since his days as a schoolboy.

“The technology in the school is state of the art and I've got a different appreciation of how hard teachers work, now that I'm on the other side,” he said.

While a student at the school, Mr Smith discovered his love for cricket and in 1992, when he was school vice-captain, he was named cricket player of the year.

“You see your name up on the board and it's a bit of a shock,” he said.

“You kind of sit back and look at a kid and say like ‘That was me'.”

As a cricket fanatic and a sports lover in general, it seemed only natural that Mr Smith would choose a career in teaching sports.

“I've always had a thing for coaching kids,” he said.

“To make one difference in one child, then that's a win in my eyes.”

Just two days before his 18th birthday, Mr Smith decided he wanted to teach and he is now settled happily back at Cannonvale State School, teaching Year Seven students.

“I'm very happy to be back home because of the great weather, the friendliness of the town and the closeness to my family,” he said.

The Cannonvale State School centenary will be held in the school hall over the August 3-September 1 weekend.

For more information, visit the Cannonvale State School website:

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