About Us

A brief history of our school

We affectionately refer to our school as MONTY.

For almost a century, Montague School has been at the leading edge of program development for students with mild intellectual disability.

Montague School opened in 1886. The school building was designed by Henry Bastow, whose memory is now enshrined in the Bastow Institute of Educational Leadership which is housed in another of the buildings he designed, the Queensberry Street State School in North Melbourne. Since the early 1900s, momentum was building in Victoria to establish special schools for students with an intellectual disability and in 1928, Montague School became a Special School in its own right, with Bessie Scott as its first Head Teacher.  Innovative programs and teaching methods during the 1940s and 1950s saw Montague School used as a training school for student teachers from the Melbourne Teachers’ College.

In 1960 a major initiative of the staff under the guidance of Head Teacher Miss Jean Trewhella, was the development of the first established and recognised work experience program in any school in Victoria and probably Australia. It is the only Victorian school where every student undertakes work experience at every year of enrolment. Added to this are the various industry and collating programs that have been set up and developed over the years. Vocational Education continues to be an important part of the curriculum with students working towards gaining their VPC and VET certificates and undertaking work experience.

Throughout Montague’s time as a special school, it has remained at the forefront of initiatives in the teaching of students with mild intellectual disability. Montague School is recognised as a high-end provider of vocational education and care programs for students aged 15 to 18. We address the needs of young people who are prone to falling through the cracks of a traditional school setting. We provide a very structured, personal, planned approach to their education and prepare them for life beyond school. Our team includes teachers, teaching assistants, youth workers, counsellors, psychologists, special educators, as well as other allied health professionals. The principles that underpin our practice of teaching, knowledge and learning are designed to be enduring, challenging and connected. These principles are founded on strong, positive and supportive relationships. 

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