The Nailsworth Primary School is one of the longest existing public schools in Adelaide. It was founded only twenty five years after the British colony of South Australia was proclaimed. In the early years, it was a main provider of public schooling in the area which originally stretched for several kilometres in all directions that now has been reduced to the existing school zone.
It expanded from its handful of original students in 1862 to more than 1600 in the 1930's, to 1300 in the mid-1950's, contracted to about 200 in the late 1980's until today where it has approximately 540 students.
During its long existence, it has moved through a sequence of buildings, adding and discarding many of them as it has evolved. At its largest, it had three major solid buildings and a forest of temporary wooden buildings. The first major building, from 1881, still exists at the Prospect Library complex.
There is a rich record of praise by official inspectors, appreciation and support by parents, choices by staff and a wide range of benefit to students.
The history of Nailsworth Primary has been documented by Roger Wiseman in a document called:
"Nailsworth Primary School. The local school from 1862"