Dalby Christian College commenced in 1981 due to the desire of local Christians to provide a Christian Education for their children. This era saw the birth of many Christian schools in Australia as Christians became increasingly concerned that God was slowly but surely being pushed out of public life and education.
The passion and commitment of these Christian Education pioneers is inspiring. To start a school would require significant sacrifice in time and resources. Land, buildings and money would need to materialise to make it a reality, not to mention the applications for accreditation, the development of curriculum, and the necessary staff.
Dalby Christian College was initially established by the congregation of Dalby Gospel Chapel, with Mr Grahame Kerr taking up the role as the School Administrator. The school initially operated out of a second hand hospital building that was purchased for $6000 and used a modified Accelerated Christian Education (ACE) curriculum. By 1983 the school had approximately 100 enrolments
In 1984, Mr Winston Svenson was appointed Principal and the school developed Board approved Primary and Secondary Programmes taught from a Christian perspective. Dalby Christian College became affiliated with 60 other schools across Australia as a Christian Community School. In these early days, staff worked for considerably less than teachers in the state system and finances were very tight.
1985 saw the commencement of Boarding in Bethel House which had previously been used as a home for girls from difficult families. This building was soon outgrown and a disused aged care facility from Laidley was purchased. This building served the College until 2015 when a new purpose built Boarding facility was opened and expanded to accommodate 32 students.
From 1989 to 1993, Mr David Coates served as Principal and the College grew from 65 to approximately 277 students. During this time funding issues were dramatically improved and the school governance became more denominational, enabling greater sense of ownership by the broader Christian community of Dalby. More second hand buildings were brought onto the site to meet this growth including the current Administration and library building, and B block.
Mr Geoff Dethlefs served as Principal from 1994 -1998 followed by Mr Peter Kirk from 1999 – 2005. During these years the school stabilised as enrolments reached 300 students. From 2006 – 2008 enrolments fell to below 200 students, but during this period the first new buildings were built and ushered Dalby Christian College into a new era. 8 modern Primary classrooms were constructed along with a new car park.
In 2009 Mr Stephen Wilson was appointed as Principal, and in 2010 the governance of the College was taken over by Christian Community Ministries (CCM). This Board comprised of some of the early pioneers including Mr Grahame Kerr and Mr David Coates. CCM brought a new level of governance and centralised support to a growing number of Christian schools. There are now 11 schools operated by CCM and it continues to grow in Queensland and other states also.
In 2010 the Multipurpose Centre was built and named after Mr Eric Turner, a founding Board member of the College who had contributed greatly to the College over the years in land and buildings. 2014 saw the addition of a Kindergarten extension and the new Boarding House, 2015 a Science and Home Economics Specialist Block and in 2017 a Creative Arts Block.
The College has a bright future with enrollments in 2020 of over 360 students and ongoing building improvement plans. We give God all the glory as we work together in educating, nurturing and discipling students at Dalby Christian College.
We thank the men and women through the history of the College who have served and sacrificed in order to provide a Christ centred education to the Dalby community. Above all, through the good times and the tough times, we thank the Lord Jesus for His faithfulness and blessings. The history of Dalby Christian College may be of interest to many, but the real effect of Dalby Christian College on the lives of many students and families is difficult to record. May Dalby Christian College continue to be for His glory, now and into the future.