2018 Annual Report for St Mary's Catholic College, Woree
Motto Educare Et Sanctificare 'To Educate and Make Holy' SMCC - CMYK PORT SOLID GREEN.jpg
Address 53 Anderson Road, WOREE QLD 4868
Postal Address PO Box 259E, EARLVILLE QLD 4870
Phone Number (07) 4044 4200
Fax Number (07) 40546617
Email Address
Web Site
Total Enrolments 876 Mr Wayne Wood
Year Levels Offered 7-12
Student Population Co-Educational
Principal Mr Wayne Wood
Parish PriestThe Rev Fr Martin Kenny PP
Parish Number (07) 4054 1171

About our School

Situated in the southern suburbs of Cairns, St Mary's opened in 1986 and boasts a proud reputation for providing quality Catholic co-education for the families of this exciting and dynamic region.  Inspired by Mother Mary, our College is a place where individual strengths are nurtured and developed and where faith and a sense of "family" are fundamental to who we are.

The College has a strong academic focus.  We offer a stimulating academic and vocational curriculum, along with comprehensive co-curricular opportunities for our students to pursue their interest in sport, the arts, and service leadership.

St Mary's offers a broad technology rich curriculum delivered by quality and dedicated teachers.  The College has many outstanding facilities, with exciting new building projects around the corner that will bring about more contemporary and flexible learning spaces to optimise student learning.

Committed and dedicated staff work closely with parents to provide students with the supportive and caring environment essential for their spiritual, academic, social and physical development. 

Characteristics of Student Body

In 2018 St Mary's had a total of 876 students with the following demographics

   Male    Female  ESL Indigenous   SWD
 Total  458  418  13  67  26

Attendance trend

School Annual Improvement

  • School Renewal and Validation occurred in May 2017
  • 'St Mary's Strategic Directions 2018-2020' has been developed and shared with the college community
  • Building Master Plan currently in development (with University of Melbourne)
  • Implementation of St Mary's Shared Practices Framework that promotes teacher consistency and a culture of collaboration. With focus on:
    • Essential Skills of Classroom Management
    • Learning Intentions/ Success Criteria
    • LINK-S vocabulary focus: Cognitive verbs
  • Addition of new position: 'Director of Community Engagement'
  • Additional guidance counsellor for 2018 (2.4 FTE guidance counsellor) 

SCHOOL STRATEGIC PRIORITIES  (from Strategic Directions 2018-2020) Resourcing our future

  • A lived and celebrated Catholic Identity
  • School improvement agenda
  • Emphasis on learning
  • Wellbeing and personal growth
  • Community connections


  • Preparation for the new QCE system.
  • Significant professional development allocated in 2018 for teachers in preparation for the new QCE system and ATAR.
  • Continued response to Shaddock Report
  • Preparation for NAPLAN online


  • Potential growth in the southern corridor and implications for enrolments (MacKillop Catholic College will offer Year 7 in 2020)
  • Other areas of catchment area are gentrifying and impact on enrolments
  • Possible change in staff demographic mix
  • Significant building program planned to enhance the facilities at the College:
    • Sport Precinct (2018)
    • Hugh O'Brien Centre renovation
    • Library renovation
    • Performing Arts Centre Masterplan to provide further detail


  • Attention to priorities set out in the Strategic Directions 2018-2020
  • Alignment of Building Master Plan and College Business Plan
  • Planning to effectively manage disruption resulting from ongoing building work
  • Staffing considerations to effectively respond to increased access to LSL
  • Continued focus on building teacher capacity

Distinctive Curriculum Offerings

St Mary's offers a wide range of subjects, supported by good resources and highly trained and dedicated teachers.  Students are offered a vibrant curriculum of core and elective subjects based on the Australian Curriculum for Years 7-10 and in line with the offerings of the Queensland Curriculum & Assessment Authority (QCAA).

In the Senior School, a comprehensive range of authority and authority registered subjects are offered.  Also, Vocational Education and Training School Based Apprenticeship and Traineeship Programs are offered in an impressive on-site Trade Training Centre with trade qualified staff.

We offer a comprehensive learning support programme for students with special needs as well as extension opportunities for the academically gifted.

Extra Curricular Activities

St Mary's is justifiably proud of its students' outstanding achievements in a wide range of sport, performing arts, public speaking and debating events.  Students have the opportunity to participate in music and drama productions, choir, orchestra, concert band, stage band and a range of other vocal and instrumental ensembles.  Instrumental tuition is available to students through the College's Instrumental Music Program.

Students are also involved in public speaking competitions such as Lions Youth of the Year, Rostrum Voice of Youth, Cairns Junior Speakers Contest, and Rotary Debating.

There is a wide variety of sporting opportunities including Rugby Union, Rugby League, Cricket, Soccer, Basketball, Swimming and Athletics.  St Mary's is proud to be a part of the Confraternity Rugby League and QISSN Netball carnivals.  Seniors and Juniors compete in the CISSA (Cairns Interschool Senior Sporting Association) each year.  Students have the opportunity to participate in the Trinity Coast South Trials and Peninsula Championships and many students progress to State and National Titles.

Social Climate

The College has a fundamental belief in the promotion of a Catholic spiritual and religious ethos.  This is achieved through staff formation, life-giving relationships and formal Religious Education.  We believe in the uniqueness and dignity of each individual.  We endeavour to encourage each member of our community to be inner-directed, responsible, compassionate and just.  Students, staff and parents learn best in situations of loving relationships and mutual respect.  Hence, examples of forgiveness, honesty and integrity are evident in the conduct of all who would participate in our community.  St Mary's is a Catholic school which follows traditional Catholic values and therefore takes very seriously its call to be a voice for and educate the underprivileged and marginalised in our society.

The Responsible Thinking Process is designed to foster the highest levels of respect for all people and to allow individuals to develop a sense of respect for themselves.  A retreat program runs in all year levels, providing students with the opportunity for personal and communal prayer and reflection.

Each student belongs to a Homeform group which is facilitated by one teacher.  There is also a Pastoral Leader who oversees each Year level, caring for student wellbeing and managing behavioural expectations.  Heads of Year are specialists in the respective age group of the students that they are guiding and are well versed in the typical developments and behaviours associated with that age group.

Counselling services are provided by the College with professional counsellors on staff, as well as a Careers Counsellor and an Indigenous Education Liaison Officer.  A Campus Minister exists to provide a spiritual support base for students and staff.

St Mary's does not tolerate bullying and has established a culture where this is not accepted by students.  Bullying and its consequences are regularly the focus of Social and Emotional Learning classes which are conducted weekly.  St Mary's follows clear guidelines when responding to bullying issues and looks to work with all involved to bring about change.

Parent Engagement

St Mary's recognises that parents and families play an important role in supporting their child's education.  Parent engagement is more than being involved and informed about school activities.  The College actively looks to engage parents and works closely with the College's P&F Association and College Board to improve outcomes for students.

Parent Satisfaction

Parents strongly agree that:

  • this school is a place of learning in a Christian environment.
  • the school delivers an RE Program that is values based and meets student needs.
  • this school always aims to improve the quality of education it provides.
  • this school takes parents' concerns seriously.
  • the school encourages my child to persist with their learning when it is difficult.
  • my child looks forward to going to school.
  • the school is meeting the academic needs of my child.

Data Last Updated Wed 20 Nov 2019

Staff Reporting Data
Qualification Highest level of attainment Doctoral / Post-doctoral Masters Bachelor degree Diploma Certificate
Number of staff with this qualification 0 5 34 23 2

Workforce composition
Headcount FTE (Full-time equivalent)
Teaching Staff79 72.98
Non-Teaching Staff 59 40.97
Indigenous 3 2

Total funds expended on teacher professional development$67901

Teaching Staff Involved in Professional Development100%

Major Professional Development Initiatives

  • QCAA Training & Conferences
  • Growth Mindset - Luke McKenna
  • Subject Specific Conferences - Edutech, Art, English, Graphics, Sports, HPE, Library, Music, Science, (HEIAQ), (QAMT), (BEAQ), (QSTA), (QHTA)
  • Queensland Educational Leadership Institute - EDEL, Middle Leaders
  • DP/APA/APRE Conferences
  • Middle Leaders Conference
  • Senior First Aid & CPR Refresher Courses
  • Cyber Safety
  • CASPA - Carins -'Tropical and Topical'
  • VET Summit; VELG; ASQA & DET Inservice; TAFE Course - Hospitality
  • Accelerus Training; Timetabling Solutions
  • TREWTH Conference + Spirituality Workshop
  • NAPLAN Online - School readiness training
  • Career Development Association of Australia (CDAA)
  • Classroom Profiling / Essential Skills of Classroom Management

Average staff attendance rate for the school year, based on unplanned absences of sick and emergency leave for periods up to 5 days97%

Percentage of teaching staff retained from the previous school year89.00%

Staff Satisfaction

Teachers strongly agree that:

  • The school promotes justice, compassion and service.
  • The school is a welcoming and caring community where everyone is treated with respect.
  • St Mary's provides high quality services and delivers quality educational outcomes for students.
  • Staff are committed to a long-term association with Catholic Education and would recommend Catholic Education as an 'employer of choice'.
  • The Principal and Leadership Team at St Mary's Catholic College (Woree) model and expect high standards from staff.

Data Last Updated Tue May 14 2019

Student Reporting Data
Average student attendance rates
YR 7YR 8 YR 9 YR 10 YR 11 YR 12
94.77% 94.27% 93.13% 90.71% 93.65% 93.82%
How non-attendance is managed by the school

In line with the Catholic Education Diocese of Cairns guidelines and procedures for school attendance and truancy, St Mary's Catholic College fosters a school culture based on 100% attendance.  Every student absence requires an explanation and acceptable reason.  Early intervention and action are paramount where absences are becoming habitual.

Year 10 to 12 Apparent Retention Rate93
Post-School Destination Information

The Year 12 Completers Survey, is conducted approximately six months after students complete Year 12.  It is a summary of the post-school destinations of students from St Mary's College - Woree who completed Year 12 and gained a Senior Statement in 2018.  78 out of the 133  (58.6% response rate) Year 12 completers from this school responded to the 2019 survey.  Due to the low response rate, care should be taken interpreting the results.

In 2019, 89.7% of Year 12 completers from St Mary's College - Woree were engaged in education, training or employment in the year after they completed school.

Of the 78 respondents, 56.4% continued in some recognised form of education and training.  The most common study destination was bachelor degree.

A further 33.3% transitioned directly into paid employment and no further study. 

Student Satisfaction

St Mary's Catholic College undertook a School Results Survey in July 2018.  The survey revealed that the greater proportion of students at the College:

  • are proud to be a student at the College and find that the learning is challenging and really makes them think.
  • feel that doing their best is important to them and they are encouraged to do the best that they can.
  • use technology regularly at school for learning and have access to many useful classroom resources.
  • believe the school is organised and seems to run smoothly.
  • feel safe at school and have learned about child protection.

Data Last Updated Mon Nov 18 2019

Reading, Writing & Numeracy Results - Year 7, 2018
Reading Average Score for the school 541.6
Average Score for Queensland 549.4
% students at or above the national benchmark 96%
Writing Average Score for the school 494
Average Score for Queensland 506.4
% students at or above the national benchmark 86.9%
Spelling Average Score for the school 542.1
Average Score for Queensland 554.7
% students at or above the national benchmark 92.6%
Grammar and Punctuation Average Score for the school 544.7
Average Score for Queensland 553.8
% students at or above the national benchmark 99.4%
Numeracy Average Score for the school 551.5
Average Score for Queensland 549
% students at or above the national benchmark 96%

Data Last Updated Thu May 30 2019

Reading, Writing & Numeracy Results - Year 9, 2018
Reading Average Score for the school 586.1
Average Score for Queensland 590.1
% students at or above the national benchmark 97%
Writing Average Score for the school 523.8
Average Score for Queensland 543.4
% students at or above the national benchmark 73.4%
Spelling Average Score for the school 588.4
Average Score for Queensland 590.4
% students at or above the national benchmark 94.7%
Grammar and Punctuation Average Score for the school 584.7
Average Score for Queensland 598.3
% students at or above the national benchmark 98.2%
Numeracy Average Score for the school 582.2
Average Score for Queensland 587.5
% students at or above the national benchmark 92.9%

Data Last Updated Thu May 30 2019

No Naplan Data Available
School Funding By Source
Income 2018

Australian Government recurrent funding$3,142,111

State/Territory Government recurrent funding$783,153

Fees, charges and parent contributions$391,720

Other private sources$170,217

Total gross income (excluding income from government capital grants)$4,487,201

Deductions 2018

Income allocated to current capital projects$29,586

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

Income allocated to debt servicing (including principal repayments and interest on loans)$89,404


Total net recurrent income$111,035

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.