St Therese School began at the request of the Parish Priest, Fr John Mulherin, in 1939. He invited the sisters of the Good Samaritan to start a school in his parish. The school was staffed and administered by the sisters until 1978, when the first lay principal, Mrs Marie Debusch was appointed. Today the school is fully staffed by committed lay teachers and administrators.
St Therese is situated between the mountains and the sea, very close to Mt Keira on the Illawarra escarpment and on the edge of the Wollongong CBD. Generational enrolment is a feature of St Therese, with successive parents and grandparents continuing to be involved in school life.
We are a two-stream school, with 409 students and 30 staff. Two grades have three streams in 2012 – Kindergarten and Year 6, due to high numbers of siblings enrolling in those years.
We pride ourselves on being a happy, calm school, where all students are provided with an environment conducive to effective learning and strong friendships. We aim to provide a broad education, focused on the important skills of Literacy and Numeracy, while not forgetting critical thinking, appreciation of the arts and knowledge of our world. Each child’s spiritual needs are also taken into account by the provision of Religious Education, prayer, worship and reflection time.
For the past five years, the school has been involved in the Catholic Education Office ‘School Review and Improvement’ process, as are all schools in the diocese. Through this we have reviewed all aspects of school life, seeking to make improvements in all areas to the betterment of our students. This ongoing improvement continues, especially in the area of learning. Teachers are learning about the way in which children learn in the 21C and are actively seeking out the best teaching methods. In particular, the planning of challenging programs of work for more able students and the differentiating of activities to suit student needs, have been enthusiastically embraced by staff members.