Talire School opened in 1950. The Retarded Children's Welfare Association ran it between 1952 and 1954 when the government took it over. It was a non-residential School which provided an education for day students with intellectual disabilities. Talire School closed during the 1980s.
Talire School was possibly the first of its kind in Australia. It opened in an old hall in Moonah with six students. Although the accommodation and equipment was modest, it was able to employ a teacher.
According to Alison Alexander, there are two versions of the origins of Talire School. That of the Retarded Children's (later Citizens') Welfare Association, was that Harold Gigney was the instigator. His son had Down's Syndrome and this led Gigney to be a driving force for both Talire and the Association. The Mercury's version was that Mental Health Association established Talire with the help of a parents' auxiliary.
After the establishment of the Retarded Children's Welfare Association in 1952, its committee ran the school. To provide better premises, they purchased Warwick Lodge, a historic house on the corner of Risdon Road and the Brooker Highway.
In 1954, the Education Department took the school over. Ten years later, they demolished Warwick Lodge to build more modern facilities.
By 1969, Talire had 100 students aged between six and 16.
Sources used to compile this entry: Alexander, Alison, From tiny acorns mighty oaks grow: the history of Oaks Tasmania, Oak Tasmania, Glenorchy, Tasmania, 96 pp.
Prepared by: Caroline Evans
Created: 19 January 2012, Last modified: 14 March 2014