1926 brought in a complete change of staff to Box Hill Grammar School and of the 53 students enrolled, 23 were new.
Charles Fitzroy Walker, a 26 year old teacher from Scotch College and local to the Box Hill area, was appointed headmaster and taught all subjects in the school’s senior section.
Although Walker went on to become the school’s longest-serving – and one of its most successful – headmasters, his first appointment was to last only a year.
Writing about this event decades later, his son Evan recalled:
“The circumstances were discouraging. His predecessor had resigned and announced at speech night that the school was closing but with only a few days notice, Walker was able to muster 17 boys by day one and some 60 by the end of the year. But he was at odds with his council over a number of issues and resigned at the end of 1926 to take a job selling cars for Cheney’s Motors (in Melbourne).”
During that year Walker wrote with both insight and foresight about the school that was to become a large part of his life:
“One wonders sometimes how the old school manages to survive amidst so much change and reconstruction. Yet it clings with wonderful tenacity to life. It is not the buildings; it is not the ever-changing staff; it is not merely the present group of boys; it is a subtle something, an unseen power which seems indestructible. It is the community of all who have passed within its wall.”