Peter Scott – Science teacher 1965-1967

Greetings from the past.

In 1965 I arrived at a construction site known as Watson High School. I was 19 and very keen to teach my favourite subject and hobby, Science. As the male part of the two-person Science Department, I was made Acting Subject Master (it was a sexist world !) and set out building up the two (then four) labs, ordering all the equipment, writing all the programs and plans and generally having a lot of fun.

I was a mad caver then (and still like to get underground) and also a skier  – John Fleischer spent some patient moments teaching me how to have spectacular falls! (now it is my son, Andrew who insists we do the Black runs…but I have got over that and am off to Antarctica in Dec. this year to do some REAL skiing!)

Sorry that I did not know of the reunions…

After I left WHS at the end of 67 I went back to my home in Sydney and taught at Vaucluse Boys High and Blakehurst High.I studied at UNSW at night and got my B.Sc in 1975. That year I also married and got my Commission in the Army Reserve (I had been a Private in the Reserves in Canberra 1965-67). We moved to Armidale where I set up Science Teaching at the Uni where I lectured for 2 years (I always seem to be doing things outside of the box…most of my students had Masters and Doctorates!). I also started more studies doing research in my other love, Geology. Our first son was born in Armidale (he and his wife just had our first Grandson!) and then we went to Warialda where I was Head of Ag. and Science, completed my Masters Degree in Geology and settled into country life. Andrew our second son was born there but after 7 years we moved to Brisbane to be with our parents. Here, because of an “enlightened” approach by the State Government, I had to start all over as a probationary teacher in 1985 at Corinda State High. Within three years I got back to Head of Department status again at Ipswich State High. Sick of the State Government I went private in 1988, becoming Head of Earth Science at the prestigious Anglican Church Grammar School. Here I became a mad scientist/Mr. Chips/Reddog the Pirate figure as I regularly evacuated the school with explosions (I also taught Chemistry) and bad gases (acid on lead ore = Hydrogen Sulfide in large amounts). My students had great fun! I also ran the Naval Cadets there and took groups to sea in “Tall Ships” and I often threatened friendly students with “keel-hauling” ! I had a great time at that school and have many personal friends as ex-students. I continued studying at night (a compulsive habit!!) and completed my masters in Ed. Admin. and later a Doctorate in Education. As I also wrote the Qld Syllabus in Earth Science and chaired the committee which awarded Senior Certificates (=HSC) in that subject, I tended to get involved heavily in the mining industry and the Geological Society of Australia. After being awarded the Teacher of the Year by the mining fraternity, I retired at the end of 2008 (after 44 great years). The last few years have been hectic…Adjunct Senior Lecturer in Earth Science at the Uni of QLD, Tutor in Education at QLD Uni Technology (2009), guide at the QLD Maritime Museum, traveling all over the Pacific; off to NZ to see Andrew’s in-laws (he married this year after Matthew); becoming a grandfather to Matthew’s new son and now preparing an extensive trip to South America to visit Matthew’s in-laws in Peru and then off to Antarctica.

Who knows what will happen in 2012!…my point in the words above is that teaching science became addictive so I became a part-time Scientist and have been honoured for it. Earth Science is my main love (after my family) and so I guess I will continue exploring.

Great to see your site…and especially to see my old students (boy! they must be getting on in years?) and even a few pics. of me! Watson was my first school and it made a big impression on me. The lessons which I learn there continued until I retired. I have very many fond memories..especially of classes and the dances (I was the male PE teacher also and Anne Somes tried to get me to help her teach dancing…wow! a difficult task)


Dr Peter Scott

First Science Teacher WHS 1965-67

My memories are very happy ones from Watson because we got it right. This happened from Day One and continued for a little while after I left. Certainly the years 65-67 were fun and the school ran well and was a happy school. Errol Sweaney was a good Head and Morrie Beatton well-organised and had a heart. Most of the teachers were crazy. I remember as a teacher without car I often had to push Judy McDonald’s VW out of the school carpark (much to the delight of the students) down to the local garage because she always ran out of petrol in the reserve tank and forgot about it.  Oh well! I also remember when I got my first car (a new blue Renault 4) racing it down the street past the school sounding the horn to illustrate Doppler Effect. You can’t do that now! You would be arrested.

I probably won’t make the next reunion as I will be heading off to South America (Chile, Equador, Peru, Bolivia, Argentina) and then Antarctica on Nov. 1. but I would like to hear from others and how it all went. My email address is

photo Photos

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1965 staff photo Here I am behind Clive Bondfield at a school dance 1965 (I'm not reaching for a gun but my wallet!) Peter Scott WHS - Southbank, Qld Attila & Peter Scott WHS - Southbank, Qld

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