A Brief History of Wallace High School

A Brief History of Wallace High School

In the late 1960s a new government policy of fully comprehensive non-selective schools began in Scotland. At the same time, Stirling University opened in 1967 and Stirling's population began to rise. A new high school was needed to replace the former Riverside Junior Secondary School (which became a Primary School), and Wallace High duly opened on a green-field site at Causewayhead in 1971. The first Rector was Tom McIntyre, who served in that post to 1983. Realising the importance of winning public and parental confidence for this new school, he led Wallace High through its formative years and ensured high standards and achievements from the start. The school's first uniform was a purple blazer with gold trim - purple still features in the school's dress code today.

The school quickly achieved both academic and wider success. The Music department became especially noted for its excellent annual operas, and many pupils went on to distinguished careers in music. Early sporting strengths were in canoeing, fencing and rugby.

In 1983 Mr McIntyre retired, to wide praise for his great work in having seen the school so well established in the area. He was followed by Bill Brodie, who served as Head Teacher to his retirement in September 2002. During this time the school continued to grow stronger. Two teachers, Mr Sandy Gauld of the Technical Department and Mr Charles Lees of the Chemistry Department, were voted British 'teachers of the year'.

In further diverse examples of success, from our Creative and Aesthetic department came Angela Donald, who is Head of Design for the fashion company Yik Yue (H.K) Commercial Ltd. Alison Kilgour (Dowell) our Head Girl from 1996 had a great career in Scottish Construction, she also founded a charity 'So Precious' supporting the neo natal unit for sick kids in Forth Valley.

Rugby player Kenny Logan went on to win 70 Scottish international caps, footballers Gary and Steven Caldwell found similar success, winning 55 and 12 Scottish caps respectively, while slalom canoeist Campbell Walsh won an Olympic silver medal at Athens in 2004.

During the 1990s - 2000s the school was especially noted for its excellent debating teams, science innovators, musical shows, the success of its Ochil House pupils in many swimming and athletics events, its annual ski trips and many other overseas visits etc. In rugby, the team won the Scottish Schools 7-a-side quaich tournament at Murrayfield, and regularly won the Central Schools 15-a-side league and cup. One young player in more recent teams was Finn Russell, now enjoying a Scottish international career.

In September 2002 Mr Brodie retired and was followed as Head Teacher by Mrs Linda Horsburgh. She led the school's move in 2008 to its present location on Airthrey Road, to an exciting new building, the result of a public-private funding partnership. Since then the school has evolved further. It is now an award-winning Scottish School of Sport with a focus on Football, Rugby, Swimming, Dance and Basketball, as well multiple rich activities across creative industries, STEM disciplines and the arts. In December 2012 Mrs Linda Horsburgh retired as Head Teacher and was succeeded by Mr Scott Pennock. The school continues to evolve in the twenty-first century, constantly seeking to adapt and to ensure that our many youngsters go on to have happy, successful and fulfilling lives in an ever-changing world.

Compiled by Mr Craig Mair, former Principal Teacher of History