Kempsey West Public School

Creating a child focussed centre of excellence

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Jim Stirling

Our school has permission from the family to publish the following information about Mr Jim Stirling. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers are warned that the following article contains images of deceased persons.



James (Jimmy) Stirling,  first came to Kempsey in 1951 to teach at Burnt Bridge School.

He was much-loved teacher at Burnt Bridge for five years, before being transferred on promotion, to East Kempsey in 1956 and West Kempsey in 1960. For seventeen years he was the Headmaster at the Crescent Head Primary School.

In 1990 he won the Kempsey Shire's Australia Day Sports Honour.   His achievements as a sportsman were exemplary.  His cricketing ability, particularly,  won innumerable honours and wide acclaim.

Sadly, Jim passed away on 24th July 2011, aged 81 years.

His detailed life story can be read in his Keynote Address to the Stolen Generations Conference, Adelaide 2001:

Jim Stirling (pdf, 85 KB)


During 1935-1938, Jim Stirling attended "The Bungalow" (Now known as Old telegraph Station), Central Australia- Northern Territory

The Bungalow- NT



New pupils enrolling at Bungalow School-January 29th 1936 and the School Band.


A young Jim and friends in Penrith, NSW


Jim's first teaching position- Burnt Bridge School, 1952                                    children in march at Burnt Bridge

At Crescent Head- the first Aboriginal principal in New South Wales








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