A new permanent display showcasing the story of the Nelson School Society, which established some of Nelson Tasman’s earliest schools, is opening at Founders Heritage Park.

Opening on 31 August, the display chronicles the efforts of Matthew Campbell, who helped establish multiple schools, known as Campbell’s Schools, from Nelson through to Motupipi in Golden Bay.

The work of the Nelson School Society is credited with being the model for the free, compulsory public school system established throughout the country in the New Zealand Education Act of 1877.

The display will allow visitors to look inside the old school desks and see what children used and played with when schools first began.

The display opening dates may be delayed depending on COVID-19 Alert Levels.