Our Learning

St Mary’s is a single stream school with small, structured class sizes, where there is a focus on academic rigour. There is particular attention made to ongoing assessment of student growth and tracking of essential learning.

St Mary’s is a Professional Learning Community (PLC). Our educators work in collaborative teams and focus on the following three big ideas:

  • Focus on learning rather than teaching
  • Work collaboratively on matters related to learning
  • Hold themselves accountable for the kinds of results that fuel continual improvement

The Curriculum

Stages 1,2,3 (Primary K - 6)

St Mary’s follows a curriculum like other primary schools in NSW, based on stages of learning. Each stage is approximately equivalent to two school years. For each learning stage there are skills, knowledge and a level of understanding that each student should develop.

Early Stage 1 refers to Kindergarten
Stage 1 includes Years 1 and 2
Stage 2 includes Years 3 and 4
Stage 3 includes Years 5 and 6

The primary curriculum is divided into Key Learning Areas (KLAs) and meets the guidelines within the NSW Syllabus for the Australian Curriculum. Primary teachers meet weekly to identify essential learning in English and Mathematics and use regular assessments to gather data on individual student learning needs.

There are seven Key Learning Areas in the Primary Catholic School Curriculum in NSW.

  • Religious Education
  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Science (Incorporating Science and Technology)
  • Creative Arts
  • Personal Development, Health and Physical Education
  • History/Geography

In English and Mathematics the students are grouped into flexible learning groups which are tailored towards their learning needs.

Stages 4 and 5 (Secondary Years 7 – 10)

The Stage 4 and 5 curriculum places emphasis on the core NESA subjects of English, Mathematics, Science, History, Geography and Personal Development, Health and Physical Education.

Secondary teachers meet to identify essential learning in key learning areas and use regular assessments to gather data on individual student learning needs.

Electives which may be offered to Years 9 and 10 include:

  • Wood Technology
  • Graphics Technology
  • Agriculture
  • Textiles Technology
  • Food Technology
  • Commerce
  • History
  • Geography
  • Music
  • Drama
  • Information and Software Technology

Stages 4 & 5

The Stage 4 & 5 Curriculum follows the NSW Syllabuses and places emphasis on the core NESA subjects of English, Mathematics, Science, History, Geography and Personal Development, Health and Physical Education.

Access to Distance Education – optimising diversity. Students at St Mary’s are able to access distance education if they wish to access a subject that is not available at the school.

Learning Enrichment

Additional opportunities for students include -

Spelling Bee
Wellington Eisteddfod
Writing focus groups
Flexible Learning Groups
Chess Tournaments
Mock Trial
Maths Olympiad
Art CompetitionsLunch time clubs: Chess, Science, Art, Garden, Choir, Passive play
Year 9/10 Work Experience program
Career Pathways – academic, trade and retail pathways
White card; Poultry Penthouse
Technology to Support Learning
computers, ipads, chromebooks and interactive boards
Google Classroom

Renaissance Reading Program

This is a program that assists teachers to manage and monitor children’s independent reading practice.

Sporting Pathways

Students have the opportunity to be nominated in diocesan selection teams in a variety of sports throughout the year. This provides a pathway to state and national competitions. Sports accessible include tennis, basketball, softball, swimming, netball, athletics, touch football, rugby union, rugby league and cricket. Every Year 3 -10 child at St Mary’s is placed into a Sport House (Xavier, Patrick or Dominic). Children have the opportunity to compete as a House on a number of occasions throughout the year, namely NAIDOC, Cross Country, Swimming and Athletics Carnivals. Secondary students participate in a two-day carnival against other Catholic Schools called the Quinn Cup.