The old Ipswich West Boys School was renovated after some years of disuse and opened as an opportunity school on January 30, 1973. The building has been well maintained and a veranda has been enclosed for use as a TV room and a withdrawal area. The grounds are being developed, trees have been planted and playground apparatus is being installed.
(excerpt from Geoffrey Swan, Inspector of Schools 21/12/1976)
In 1973 the Teaching Principal was Kevin Morris, in the forty years since Ipswich West Special has had 9 Principals and some Acting Principals. These leaders have all had an input into the shaping of the school that it has now become. The principals have been Kevin Morris, Murray Cooper, Harry Mole, Domitri Glianos, Peter Davis, Daphne Healy, Bruce Lane, Neil Larter, Andrew Thompson and currently, Renae Somerville. Towards 1980 the school had a name change from Ipswich West Opportunity School to Ipswich West Special School. Some of the memories from Gloria Kerwitz the first teacher aide are of the Music Classics being played in class and the students either having to stand or raise their hands when the ‘cannons’ in 1812 Overture, were fired.
The buildings of our school here have undergone many changes as has the education style in the last forty years. Manual Arts and Home Economics were taught at Ipswich Special, so the students were ferried by bus for several half days per week. The Skating Rink at West Ipswich was a place for regular activities, as well as horseriding. With the school population growing in the early 1980’s a demountable building was moved in place with two extra classrooms, soon after the Home Economics and Manual Arts areas were built. The school was still needing extra areas for teaching so another four classrooms, storerooms and toilets were built in the 1980's. In 2013 approval was given for a new multi purpose structure which includes 4 extra classrooms, specialist areas for therapists and staff.
During 2017, construction began on 6 additional classrooms, a full adminsitration and staff precint, as well as a fully accessible commercial grade kitchen, multipurpose room, external cafe are inground trampoling, outdoor ampitheatre and therapy room. This is due for completion mid 2018.