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History of CAPS

CAPS was born out of frustration of many local Aboriginal people who felt that the existing systems of schooling were not adequate to meet the needs of their children. They further added that the standard of schooling that was being provided to Aboriginal students was very poor and that the teachers did not have confidence in the capacity of Aboriginal students to achieve high outcomes.

Many of the parents were raised on Mount Margaret and had achieved very high standards of education and now held senior positions in business and government. They were frustrated and therefore, saw their children leaving school early and being unable to perform basic numeracy and literacy tasks.

In April 1980, a group of Aboriginal people formed a committee to investigate the possibility of forming an independent Aboriginal school that would emphasise high academic standards within a Christian context. They wanted to replicate the strengths of Mount Margaret mission of the 1930s to 1960s. CAPS Coolgardie was opened in 1981, and officially opened on 17th July1982

The founding members of the School Board embraced the Christian faith and desired to see a Christian environment develop to surround their children during their education. This is because they saw the Christian faith as the cornerstone to individual achievement.

The essential principles enunciated in 1981are still being promoted. These principles are;

  • Christianity being the cultural environment in which the school is situated.

  • Belief in the potential of Indigenous students to achieve the highest levels in learning.

  • The need for the school to prepare students for training and employment.

  • Excellence in education with all students being offered learning opportunities that are tailored at their level and needs while also being challenged.


Kurrawang is a medium sized Aboriginal community, located 12kms south-west of Kalgoorlie in the state of Western Australia. Kurrawang was established a mission settlement in 1953 on a Crown Land Title reserve. During the 1960s Kurrawang setup dormitories for children. In the 1970s the dormitories were replaced with a detached housing accommodation system. In 1984 mission control was replaced by a community based executive committee. In March 1955 the Kurrawang Aboriginal Community was issued with the title to land in freehold.

A desire to have a school within the Kurrawang community came from community members themselves. The members approached the Chairperson of the community, Fred Meredith, who also happened to be the Chairperson of the CAPS Board.  After a number of meetings between all parties; the CAPS Board and the people who lived and worked within the community, CAPS Kurrawang was established in 1987.


The first building was donated and transported from what was Eastern Goldfields Technical College. Since then the school has grown to include the following facilites

  • 2 classrooms

  • Art/science room

  • Library

  • IT Lab

  • Sports Stadium

  • Outdoor Basketball Court

  • Large kitchen facilities

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