Maffra Secondary College was established in 1927, initially as Maffra Elementary School. In its humble beginnings, the school consisted of four classrooms and five teachers. The school motto, “Honour the School” was proudly displayed at the central office, and with only four form groups, any student who proceeded past intermediate level typically continued their studies by correspondence in the headmaster’s office.
In 1955, Maffra High School officially opened with an enrolment of 149 students. The first headmaster was Mr. T. A. Kavanagh. The school became a Special Class High school in 1968, and an A Class School in 1971. In 1978, the school had an enrolment of just under 500 students with a staff of 40.
The school added the Theatre and the Gymnasium in 1970, reflecting the diversification of curriculum to include a core focus on Physical Education and the Arts.
In 1990, the school name was changed to Maffra Secondary College to devolve the distinction between High and Technical Schools.
Today Maffra Secondary College has modern, state of the art facilities, while retaining some beautiful old architecture such as our school library. The school boasts student enrolment of over 600 students, with 90 staff across the school.
The Maffra Secondary College logo features the Banksia Canei, named after local botanist Bill Cane. Bill was born in 1911, and lived in the areas of Maffra, Sale and Valencia Creek. He showed an interest in plant life during his schooling years, but it was through his work with bees as an apiarist he began to explore local native plants. In 1936 Bill bought an A Model Ford and moved his bees to Nowa Nowa. He held president roles at the state and national level for various apiarist associations, and raised the profile of honey production in Gippsland.
In 1947 Bill bought two acres on Brewer’s Hill, just out of Maffra where he built a house and established his Clearview Nursery. Bill collected and provide many unidentified plant specimen for the state. When Bill came across the then unnamed Banksia Canei, Bill knew it was different from other species. The species was later named in his honour by the late Jim Willis, Victorian Government Botanist.
Bill Cane passed away in the Maffra District Hospital on the eighteenth of January 1987, and lies in the Maffra Lawn Cemetery, under a plaque adorned with Corymbia ficifolia.