Are you curious to know about Science at Wesley?


21 facts you should know about the development of science at our school:


Wesley College opened on 13 February. Biology was the only science subject taught and Miss Dorothy Milner was the only science teacher. Miss Milner left in Term 2 and was replaced by Miss Mildred Le Souef. As Mrs Manning she would continue to teach biology for 54 years.


Chemistry and physics were added to the Senior School curriculum.


Perth Technical College made its facilities available for the teaching of laboratory based subjects.


The first chemistry laboratory was built on campus.


Roger Rossiter (30–31) became the first Wesley student awarded a University Exhibition (Science). In 1935 he became Wesley’s first Rhodes Scholar. In 1932 his cousin, Reginald Rossiter (31-32), also won a University Exhibition (Science).


Mr V R (Vic) Cooper was appointed to teach science. He would become second master (Deputy HM) in 1953 and remain the senior science master until 1968.


Mrs Manning was allocated a small space to use as a biology laboratory. She still provided most of her own equipment, books and teaching aids.


Construction of Stage I of the Science building included chemistry and physics laboratories. Stage II of the Science building was opened in May 1959. It comprised a biology laboratory, workroom and manual arts facility.


Mildred Manning’s 40 years of service was celebrated by the naming of the biology laboratory after her. She was named in the Queen’s Birthday Honours, having been made a Member of the Order of the British Empire, in recognition of her service to teaching in WA.


The resignation of Mr Vic Cooper after 31 years of teaching at Wesley. He was replaced as Head of Science by Mr Don Carter, an Old Scholar (42–46), a former industrial chemist and an experienced science teacher. Mr Carter would also become Deputy Headmaster.


Trevor Keates commenced teaching science. During his 27 years at Wesley he would widen the scope of scientific teaching through astronomy, meteorology and electronics.


Mildred Manning retired, having taught biology to three generations of Wesley students.


Mr Les Ware was appointed and would later become Head of Science, a position he held for much of his 30 years of service, during which time he was credited with overseeing innovative change in the teaching of both Junior and Senior school science.


Professor John de Laeter AO, Cit WA, a world-renowned physicist from Curtin University, became the Chairman of the Wesley College Council.


Chemistry and Physics remained popular subject choices as more students aimed to achieve university admission.


Wesley, via the college Radio Club (call sign VK6WE) was one of only six schools worldwide to be selected to make contact with the space shuttle Endeavour. During a special broadcast the MIC, Mr Trevor Keates,

and selected Year 8 and 9 students, made contact with the astronauts circling the earth.


Matthew Crockett (78–87), a mining engineer, became Wesley’s third Rhodes Scholar when named as Western Australia’s Rhodes Scholar for 1994.


In September the refurbished science facilities were opened by Professor de Laeter. The physics laboratory was named the J R de Laeter Physics Laboratory.


The science quadrangle landscaping was completed. More recent changes to the façade of the building included the incorporation of a lift and an elevated walkway to connect the building with the Resource Centre. The sculpted head of Mr Vic Cooper was positioned in the foyer.


Dustin Stuart (01–05), a physicist, became Western Australia’s 2010 Rhodes Scholar. He left WA to study laser physics at Oxford University.