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2017 Annual Report for Mount St Bernard College, Herberton
Motto Luceat Lux Vestra 'Let Your Light Shine' Final _ Correct MSB Logo 2.jpg
Address 15 Broadway, HERBERTON QLD 4887
Postal Address PO Box 14, HERBERTON QLD 4887
Phone Number (07) 4096 1444
Fax Number (07) 4096 2509
Email Address
Web Site
Total Enrolments 180 David Finch
Year Levels Offered 7-12
Student Population Co-Educational
Principal David Finch
Parish PriestFr Barry Craig
Parish Number (07) 4091 1125

About our School

Mount St Bernard College is located at Herberton, on the Atherton Tablelands. Established in 1921 by the Sisters of Mercy as a day and boarding school, the College enjoys a proud history and a rich tradition.

The Sisters of Mercy began their educational ministry in the Herberton district over 100 years ago with the opening of St Patrick's Parish Catholic primary school in 1910. Responding to the changing educational needs in far north Queensland, the original Sisters of Mercy Boarding School, St Mary's Cooktown, was moved to Herberton in 1921. The Sisters of Mercy gifted the college to the Diocese of Cairns in February 2006 and it is now administered by Cairns Catholic Education Services.

As a Catholic school, Mount St Bernard College is open to all who support its values and are seeking a holistic education. The College serves local students from the Tablelands district and welcomes as boarders students from rural and remote areas of the Far North and North West of Queensland. Mount St Bernard College also reaches out to students from the remote communities of Cape York, the Gulf of Carpentaria, the Torres Strait, Northern Territory & Papua New Guinea.

With male and female day students and boarding for both girls and boys, the College enrolment reflects a broad spectrum of cultures and experiences. Mount St Bernard College strives to enable its students to develop a broad range of skills enabling them to become the persons God created them to be.

Mount St Bernard College: Mercy Traditions, Spirited Learning and Building Futures, promotes a holistic approach to education in a caring Christian environment.

Distinctive Curriculum Offerings

The MSB curriculum has been designed to provide diverse pathways to meet the wide ranging of needs of the students we serve. We offer a broad curriculum intended to contribute to the deep learning and holistic development of students. In response to the needs of individuals and their breadth of aspirations, an MSB education can help prepare young people for direct entry into the world of work or lay the foundation for tertiary studies through our academic programs. A range of Vocational Education & Training (VET) offerings complement the academic curriculum. These include VET certificate training in IT and Media, Engineering Pathways, Education Support, Sport and Recreation, Public Safety, Hospitality and Allied Health Assistance. The college also offers transition learning units that focus on building literacy & numeracy skills to accelerate students.

MSB is renowned for its expedition programme. Individuals have an opportunity to challenge their comfort zone and develop traits of self reliance, leadership and teamwork.

Extra Curricular Activities

The following extra curricular programmes are offered within the college community;

  • Student Representative Council
  • Sporting opportunities - regional, state & national Representatives.
  • Pastoral Care
  • Recreational Pursuits
  • Expeditions
  • Cultural Dance
  • Reading club
  • Liturgies
  • School bands
  • Choir
  • Social Opportunities
  • Cultural Art and Craft opportunities
  • Youth Group - CSYMA
  • Sacramental Program

Social Climate

Mount St Bernard College is a school in the Mercy tradition. As a Catholic school, the values of Mercy education - love, respect, participation, service and personal best effort - have endured as proud traditions at the heart of the life of the College.

Mount St Bernard College is committed to providing a safe, respectful and disciplined learning environment for students and staff where students have opportunities to engage in quality learning experiences and acquire values supportive of their lifelong wellbeing.

MSB values respect, participation and personal best. Students are supported to respect themselves, fellow students and adult members of the school community. Respect is experienced in positive relationships, affirming language and peaceful actions. Respect for school facilities and the surrounding environment is also promoted. Importantly, student respect for the purpose of school is observed in students' positive engagement in their learning.

Bullying behaviours are proactively addressed by MSB's structured development of students' Social Emotional skills. MSB's Student Wellbeing & Pastoral Care Team respond to individual bullying incidents to both support students subjected to unwanted and inappropriate behaviours and assist students engaging in bullying behaviours to address their inappropriate attitudes and actions.

The Pastoral Care and Student Counselling Team also work actively in the residential setting, leading discussions and activities focussing on anti-bullying strategies and learning about resilience and respect. Middle Leaders in Pastoral Care liaise with the Head of Pastoral Care and the AP-Mission on student matters. The Heads of Residential work closely with day school personnel.

School Wide Positive Behaviour Support is designed to facilitate high standards of behaviour so that learning and teaching can be effective and students can participate positively within our College community.

Parent Involvement

We are committed to building strong partnerships with parents through regular contact and encouraging open relationships between staff and parents supportive of students' growth and learning.

This is assisted by formal structures:

  • Information evenings
  • The College newsletter, with editions each fortnight helps the parent and family community maintain awareness of upcoming events, celebrate student and community achievements , stay informed of emerging developments in education
  • Students are issued with a diary each year, and parents are advised to monitor this as it is used as a key means of communication by staff to families
  • Students and families are also encouraged to participate in community social events throughout the school year. NAIDOC celebrations are very popular.
  • The college Facebook page is very popular and a wonderful source of information. Many families access this regularly. The Facebook page is updated each week.

Mount St Bernard College has a Parents and Friends Association which meets twice per term. Meetings are advertised in the newsletter. Parents are invited to attend or join the group regularly.

Parent Satisfaction

2016 Parent Survey (SRS)

  • 82.8% of parents surveyed agree or strongly agree or are satisfied that this school delivery a Religious Education program that is values based and meets students' needs.
  • 90.9% of parents surveyed are satisfied, agree or strongly agree that the school always aims to improve the quality of education it provides and offers a broad and relevant curriculum.
  • 86.1% of parents surveyed agree or strongly agree that they respect the Principal and school leadership in their decision making.
  • 94% of parents surveyed agree to some extent, agree or strongly agree that the teachers at my child's school are very good at encouraging my child to learn.
  • 86.1% of parents surveyed, agree or strongly agree that they would recommend the college to others.
  • 88.6% of parents surveyed, agree or strongly agree that each child is encouraged to achieve to the best of their ability.
  • 86.3% of parents surveyed, agree or strongly agree that they have confidence in the teaching staff at Mount St Bernard College.
  • 84.1% of parents surveyed, agree or strongly agree that the staff are MSB are accessible, respectful and respond promptly to their concerns.

Data Last Updated Mon 26 Mar 2018

Staff Reporting Data
Qualification Highest level of attainment Doctoral / Post-doctoral Masters Bachelor degree Diploma Certificate
% Staff with this qualification 0% 8% 27% 19% 9%

Workforce composition
Headcount FTE (Full-time equivalent)
Teaching Staff41 36.8
Non-Teaching Staff 77 55.87
Indigenous 10 8.87

Total funds expended on teacher professional development$38264

Teaching Staff Involved in Professional Development100%

Major Professional Development Initiatives

2016 Teaching Staff Professional Development Opportunities
  • Revising eMinerva
  • Biology Panel Monitoring Observation
  • Maths B Panel Monitoring Observation
  • Maths A Monitoring Regional Panel
  • English Middle Leaders Networking Day
  • Introduction to Circle Solutions
  • QCAA Accreditation Workshop
  • RTO Managers/VET Coordinators Meeting
  • QAMT Regional Meeting
  • APRE Induction Day
  • iLearn
  • E-learning Forum
  • TTC Forum
  • Masters Class - Family Law
  • CTA Network Meeting
  • Mental Health First Aid
  • RTO Managers
  • Matt Golinski Industry Currency
  • Arts - Middle Leaders Networking Day
  • Regional Moderation CTA
  • APRE Professional Learning Day
  • ANZELA Legal Studies Teacher Conference
  • Aspirant Leaders
  • Middle Leader Networking Day
  • Validation Day for Hospitality
  • LST Day
  • ACHPER Qld Conference
  • Get Active Qld Accreditation
  • Assessment Non suicidal Self Injury
  • The Code to Success in Mathematics
  • QAMTAC State Maths Conference
  • Religion Apps for Ordinary Time
  • Religious Education Curriculum - planning a Religion Unit
  • ASREAP Annual Conference
  • Equity Contact Officer in service
  • Cairns Cluster Teacher Librarian Network Meeting
  • APRE Retreat
  • Geography Teachers Annual Conference
  • Ingenious Bandscale Training
  • Women in Leadership Meeting
  • Teacher to Teacher Mentoring
  • Design Led Learning Communities Conference
  • ETQAC English Teacher Association Conference
  • VET Pathways Update
  • QCAA Calibration Training
  • ML Science Network Day
  • Intensive Restorative Practices Training
  • CTA Cert 3 Ed Support Moderation
  • Christian Retreat and Meditation
  • A Catholic Perspective on Relationships and Sexuality Education
  • Pastoral Care Network Meeting
  • Mindset Unlocking Student Potential
  • Literacy Strengthening Reading and Comprehension in junior secondary
  • QCAA Verification Legal Studies
  • QSITE Cairns Conference Technologies in the Tropics
  • Three Worlds
  • Religious Life of MSB Interpreting Sacred Texts
  • Industry Currency for Cert III Health
  • Introduction to JCU Law Degree
  • Drum Beat Facilitator Training
  • Indigenous Students and Language
  • Trainee and Apprenticeship Information Session
  • Walking Together Creative Ways of Working with Aboriginal young People
  • Jobs Qld Apprenticeship Forum

Average staff attendance rate for the school year, based on unplanned absences of sick and emergency leave for periods up to 5 days95%

Percentage of teaching staff retained from the previous school year76.00%

Staff Satisfaction

The MSB Staff satisfaction survey indicates a very high level of commitment by staff to Mount St Bernard College. Staff acknowledge the availability of professional development opportunities.

2016 Staff Satisfaction Survey (SRS)

  • 78.1% of staff surveyed agree or strongly agree that Mount St Bernard College promotes justice, compassion and service
  • 81.8% of staff surveyed agree or strongly agree that MSB provides high quality services to parents and students.
  • 81.9% of staff surveyed are satisfied, agree or strongly agree that MSB provides opportunities for me to show teacher leadership in the life of the school.
  • 80.2% of staff surveyed are satisfied, agree or strongly agree that all policies and procedures are applied uniformly to staff regardless of position.
  • 76.1% of staff surveyed, agree or strongly agree that they have adequate flexibility to choose how I achieve the requirements of my role.
  • 80% of staff surveyed are satisfied, agree to some extent, agree that they feel empowered to make a positive difference.
  • 80.7% of staff surveyed are satisfied, agree or strongly agree our school encourages students to develop a love of learning.
  • 98.2% of staff surveyed are satisfied, agree or strongly agree that the college leadership encourages me to have a work/life balance.
  • 86.6% of staff surveyed are satisfied, agree or strongly agree that they have real job satisfaction with their current position.
  • 75.9 of staff surveyed are satisfied, agree or strongly agree that the leadership of the college encourages staff to have a say in planning for the future.

The religious and spiritual culture of the College is valued by staff. An appreciation of the school's student centred religious education program is also indicated.

Data Last Updated Mon Mar 26 2018

Student Reporting Data
Average student attendance rates
YR 7YR 8 YR 9 YR 10 YR 11 YR 12
91.56% 91.88% 87.85% 89.33% 85.2% 87.2%
How non-attendance is managed by the school

Parents are encouraged to contact the school on the day that a student is absent. If students are absent without notification, a MSB staff member telephones parents on that day.

Mount St Bernard College has a proactive Pastoral Team Care who monitors and supports maximised student attendance. Individual students at risk through non-attendance are counselled and supported to maximise their participation.

Boarding students are always accounted for - if unwell they remain in the Morrissey Boarding House.

Year 10 to 12 Apparent Retention Rate70.96
Post-School Destination Information

Please see below:

The distance travelled


Where are we going ?

Target Area Catholic School Defining Feature
CES Strategic Priority MSB Goal/Objective and Implementation Strategies

Defining Feature:

  • be a place of authentic evangelisation where faith and life are one

Strategic Priority 1:

  • Building Catholic school identity.
  • Reviewing Junior RE Programmes and designing rigorous assessment tasks
  • Youth Minister Team based at college working in the day / boarding school and wider community
  • Youth Worker based at the college and living on site - working closely with all students
  • Providing liturgies for individual year levels to promote faith and identity
  • Working with Fr Robert Greenup and Deacon Ralph Madigan Indigenous Community Outreach
  • Implement sacramental programme
  • Liturgical ministry training for students
  • Re-engagement with Religious to support pastoral care and student wellbeing.
  • Deacon Alban Hunt working with RE staff and classes.


Defining Feature

  • be a centre of vital holistic learning

Strategic Priority 3:

Maximise learning opportunities of students by developing quality work programs and supporting contemporary pedagogical practices

  • Collection of authentic data to assist with developing programmes to address the learning needs of diverse range of students
  • Curriculum team
  • Learning Support "LST school officers"
  • Transition classes to assist students access mainstream curriculum - further develop student profiles & develop continuous assessments tasks/testing tools to inform readiness for moving into mainstream classes
  • Whole school reading programme to enhance and improve both reading and comprehensions skills
  • Up skilling school learning officers "offering PD"
  • Facilitate PD for teachers to assist with the implementation of Australian Curriculum
  • Continue to work with CES personnel in the area of Transition classes
  • PD for teachers on Indigenous Band scales
  • RELATIONSHIPS Defining features:

    • be welcoming to all who want to share their life
    • be a community sustained by life giving relationships

    Strategic Priority 4:

    A mission of inclusiveness

  • Implementation of a range of scholarships and bursaries to enable equitable access to Catholic schooling at MSB
  • Integration of counselling services - Two counsellors employed on a 1.0 FTE basis.
  • Employment of Indigenous Liaison officers who work as pastoral support for students and important contact for families.
  • Equitable allocation of resources to cater for diverse range of students
  • Visits by college personnel to Cape and Island communities and the NT
  • Implementation of accompanied travel "college staff to accompany students home/back to school at holiday periods
  • Continued association with Wuchopperen and Miden to support the physical health and social and emotional wellbeing of Indigenous students
  • Continued liaison with Transition Support Services & TSU to support student/family engagement

    Defining Feature

    • Be a place of self renewal and agents of change

    Strategic Priority 10:

    • Resourcing for excellence in learning outcomes, equity in learning provision and outreach for new mission.
    • Facilitation of "Strategic Futures Project" leading to MSB's 2012-2016 strategic plan
    • New structures (boarding facilities and General Teaching Areas) to reflect the needs of the students
    • Capital Building works 'Block Grants' redevelop school facilities new buildings and refurbishing existing buildings

    Student Satisfaction

    2016 Student Satisfaction Survey (SRS)

    • 80.1% of students surveyed, agree or strongly agree they feel positive about the school and areproud to be a student at Mount St Bernard College.
    • 73.8% of students surveyed, agree or strongly agree thatprayer is an important part of what we do at the college.
    • 76.3% of students surveyed agree or strongly agree that religion is an important part of school life.
    • 90% of students surveyed agree or stronglyagree that the Principal and leadership team are respected at Mount St Bernard College.
    • 66.3% of students surveyed, agree or strongly agree that school rules are fairand consistent.
    • 70.2% of students surveyed agree or strongly agree that they tell others that MSB is a great school.
    • 90.2% of students surveyed are satisfied, agree or strongly agree that they always get on well with others at school.
    • 93.8% of students surveyed agree or strongly agree that the teachers encourage them to do the best they can.
    • 87.5% of studentssurveyed agree or strongly agree that when I have a problem with my learning, my teacher always helps me.
    • 81.3% of students surveyed agree or strongly agree that there are many resources in the classroom that I can use and rely on to help me learn.
    • 52.6% of students surveyed are satisfied, agree or strongly agree that the dining room provides healthy and adequate options.

    Data Last Updated Mon Mar 26 2018

    Reading, Writing & Numeracy Results - Year 7, 2017
    Reading Average Score for the school 465.937
    Average Score for Queensland 547.752
    % students at or above the national benchmark 69.444%
    Writing Average Score for the school 416.704
    Average Score for Queensland 511.064
    % students at or above the national benchmark 50%
    Spelling Average Score for the school 479.933
    Average Score for Queensland 546.972
    % students at or above the national benchmark 78.378%
    Grammar and Punctuation Average Score for the school 445.053
    Average Score for Queensland 545.862
    % students at or above the national benchmark 62.162%
    Numeracy Average Score for the school 466.155
    Average Score for Queensland 553.377
    % students at or above the national benchmark 55.556%

    Data Last Updated Mon Jun 26 2017

    Reading, Writing & Numeracy Results - Year 9, 2017
    Reading Average Score for the school 514.13
    Average Score for Queensland 586.335
    % students at or above the national benchmark 76%
    Writing Average Score for the school 466.184
    Average Score for Queensland 541.31
    % students at or above the national benchmark 42.308%
    Spelling Average Score for the school 525.062
    Average Score for Queensland 579.775
    % students at or above the national benchmark 80.769%
    Grammar and Punctuation Average Score for the school 506.963
    Average Score for Queensland 573.99
    % students at or above the national benchmark 65.385%
    Numeracy Average Score for the school 528.594
    Average Score for Queensland 589.065
    % students at or above the national benchmark 88%

    Data Last Updated Mon Jun 26 2017

    Year 12 Outcomes

    Number of students awarded a Senior Statement. 30

    Number of students awarded a Queensland Certificate of Individual Achievement. 1

    Number of students awarded a Queensland Certificate of Education at the end of Year 12.27

    Number of students awarded an International Baccalaureate Diploma (IBD).

    Number of students awarded one or more Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualifications.29

    Number of students who are completing or completed a School-based Apprenticeship or Traineeship (SAT).3

    Number of students who received an Overall Position (OP).5

    Percentage of OP/IBD students who received an OP 1-15 or an IBD.100%

    Percentage of Year 12 students who are completing or completed a SAT or were awarded one or more of the following: QCE, IBD, VET qualification.96%

    Percentage of Queensland Tertiary Admissions Centre applicants receiving a tertiary offer.100%

    Data Last Updated Thu Jun 16 2016

    School Funding By Source
    Income 2017

    Australian Government recurrent funding$3,962,487

    State/Territory Government recurrent funding$1,001,947

    Fees, charges and parent contributions$974,321

    Other private sources$349,606

    Total gross income (excluding income from government capital grants)$6,288,361

    Deductions 2017

    Income allocated to current capital projects$76,306

    Income allocated to future capital projects and diocesan capital funds$0

    Income allocated to debt servicing (including principal repayments and interest on loans)$413,449


    Total net recurrent income$5,798,606

    School Annual Reports

    Catholic schools in the Diocese of Cairns meet their annual reporting requirements under the Education (General Provisions) Act 2006 (the Act) Section 423 (1) by updating their information on this section of the Cairns Catholic Education website. Information contained in each section of the report relates to the previous calendar year. The required information is published by 30 June each year, excepting post-school destinations data for Year 12 completers which is published by 30 September.