About St Anthony’s - Our History

St Anthony’s is located on the traditional lands of the Darumbal people. We respectfully acknowledge the Darumbal people, past, present and future, as the traditional owners of the land on which our school stands.

The school was first established in 1901 by the Sisters of Mercy. On the 20th January 1901, the school began operation in the new church at Koongal. The school was established to service the needs of the large number of families drawn to the area by the Canoona Gold Rush and the eventual establishment of Lakes Creek meat works. The Church was named after St Nicholas the patron saint of butchers.

Over 80 years later, on 14th July 1981, the school was moved from its original site in Koongal to the current site in Norman Gardens. The relocated school was open and blessed as St Anthony’s. From the humble beginnings with an enrolment of 75 students, St Anthony’s has developed into a co-educational school with an enrolment of 540 students in 2018. A Sister of Mercy filled the position of principal until 1985. A Franciscan Sister was named principal in 1986 and 1987 and in 1988 the first lay principal was appointed. The last full-time religious member of staff was in 1994.

Statement of Special Religious Character

We acknowledge the contributions of the Sisters of Mercy who through their commitment and vision have handed to us the mission of St Anthony’s Catholic Primary School.

Today, we recognise the principles of Mercy spirituality in valuing:

  • freedom,
  • mutual respect,
  • environmental sustainability,
  • participation
  • protection of the rights and responsibilities of all

St Anthony of Padua our school patron modelled his life on the message of Jesus in the Gospels.

Love pervaded Jesus’ teaching: The sign by which Jesus would be known among his followers would be that of love:

“By this love you have for one another, everyone will know that you are my disciples.” (Jn 13:35)

At St Anthony’s we aspire to show Jesus’ love By Word and By Deed:

  • Valuing and respecting each person’s uniqueness
  • Collectively sharing the responsibility for the development of each member of our school family
  • Giving praise and being thankful that all things are gifts from God
  • We are reflective people who understand that life-giving growth comes from saying sorry and accepting forgiveness
  • Embracing a joyful, fun attitude that is forever grateful for God’s gifts
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