Joan Everiss would dash up the hill to make it to school in time.
But the 83-year-old made it to Central School with plenty of time to share her stories with modern day students as part of the school's 130th anniversary celebration yesterday.
"It feels good to be back," Everiss said.
Everiss was also joined by a fellow former schoolmate, Terry Boon, 76, who was with the school in 1942.
Children also dressed up in period costume to re-enact schooling days in the Victorian era.
"I remember the school bell more than anything," Everiss told the Taranaki Daily News. "If I heard the bell, I thought: ‘I'm late'."
She also remembers two specific teachers and one was "very lovely" while the other was "strict".
Boon said he had a lot of fun growing and learning at the school.
"I had a lot of fun with all the sports, dances and fancy dress ball," Boon said.
He was one of the four generations to attend the school.
"My dad came here about 110 years ago," Boon said. "My two children and three grandchildren also went through the school."
His favourite teacher was Phyllis Grey, 102, whom he described as "inspiring."
"I was taught to do the basics very well," Boon said.
The day also featured a cake-cutting ceremony and tabloid sports.
- Taranaki Daily News
Will Aaron Cruden's omission hurt or help the All Blacks?Related story: Senior All Blacks 'pretty disappointed' in Cruden