Narrandera Library looking through reels of microfilm of non-indexed copies of local papers seems to be the fastest way to ruin my eyesight. Fished through the headlines of Narrandera Argus from January 1899 to December 1966 when the Old Birrego School finally closed its doors.
The school first opened as a provisional school in February of 1886, then kept closing and reopening, each time having their teacher withdrawn by the presiding governmental department as their student enrolment figures fell below the required number of nine or ten, depending the era. Couple of times the Old Birrego School was upgraded to the status of a public school, when student numbers climbed to twenty five and over.
In efforts to cross reference dates given by the Department of Education and Training website and bundles of old paper found and photographed during my visit to the State Records Authority several days prior to my arrival, I persevered through the incomplete editions of The Narandera (this is the way they spelled Narrandera) Ensign from1888 to 1913, but nothing substantial was uncovered by skimming through the newspaper archives compared to the oral histories given to us by the former students in the preceding days.