East Maitland Public School was opened in April 1858 on the land between the old Post Office and the Hunter River Hotel. This was regarded as an undesirable location and so in 1881 a new school was built on the present site. The magnificently restored building which today houses the school's administrative office and some classrooms, is a fine example of late nineteenth century architecture.
Over the years the school continued to grow and many additional classrooms were erected. In 1982, due to severe structural weaknesses in a large proportion of the newer buildings, major demolition work was necessary. The school was divided. The Infants Department was relocated in demountable accommodation near Maitland High School. There they stayed until December 1989, when they were able to return to new and restored buildings in William Street. Today East Maitland is a united school enjoying one of the st learning environments in the Hunter Valley.
The school celebrated it's sesquicentenary of foundation in 2008. Community celebrations were held on Foundation Day 31st of March with each class contributing items to a time capsule to be opened in 2058, at it's bicentenary celebration.