In October 1889 the Committee of the Rockhampton School of Arts was given a grant to enable the School to introduce technical education courses. A sub-committee was formed to head the The Rockhampton Technical College.
The College offered technical education courses, including subjects such as architectural and mechanical drawing, painting, mathematics, practical biology, chemistry, carpentry, shorthand, typing, grammar, sewing and dressmaking.
Initially the College was administered by a sub-committee of the Committee of the Rockhampton School of Arts. In 1910 the Technical College separated completely from the School of Arts.
From the beginning the Department of Public Instruction was heavily involved in approving course syllabi, administering examinations, and appointing teachers. Financial assistance was distributed to Technical Colleges by matching funds raised by course fees and donations.
The "Technical Education Act of 1918" enabled the Department of Public Instruction to take full administrative control of Technical Colleges. In 1919 Rockhampton Technical College was taken over by the Department. A High School Department within the College was opened at the same time.
In 1962 Rockhampton Technical College and Rockhampton State High School split administratively, and the High School moved to a new location.
From 1967 the College was known as the Rockhampton College of Advanced Education.
The TAFE System was introduced in Queensland in the late 1970s and from 12 October 1976 the school became the Rockhampton Technical and Further Education College.
Secretary for Public Instruction, c. 1904 - 27 Apr 1944
Minister for Public Instruction, 27 Apr 1944 - 7 Mar 1946
Secretary for Public Instruction, 7 Mar 1946 - 12 Aug 1957
Minister for Education, 12 Aug 1957 - 9 Jun 1960
Minister for Education and Migration, 9 Jun 1960 - 26 Sep 1963
Minister for Education, 26 Sep 1963 - 17 Jan 1968
Minister for Education and Cultural Activities, 17 Jan 1968 - 12 Oct 1976