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Our Lady Help of Christians School
Motto I have come so that you may have life and have it to the full - John 10:10 OLHOC-logo.jpg
Address 18 Balaclava Road, EARLVILLE QLD 4870
Postal Address 18 Balaclava Road, EARLVILLE QLD 4870
Phone Number (07) 4054 2566
Fax Number (07) 4054 2426
Email Address
Web Site
Total Enrolments 578 Mr Luke Brown
Year Levels Offered P-6
Student Population Co-Educational
Principal Mr Luke Brown
Parish PriestFr Martin Kenny
Parish Number (07) 4054 1171

About our School

For over 50 years Our Lady Help of Christians has served the Cairns community by providing quality Catholic education in the Mercy tradition to the sons and daughters of those families seeking a Catholic education. OLHOC is first and foremost committed to providing a quality education for all students. The school is a distinctive Catholic community that is committed to provide a quality learning environment that challenges all members of our community to make a difference.

At its core OLHOC has the values of Respect, Justice, Community, Empathy and Forgiveness. Students of OLHOC strive to embody these values in both word and action. The core values are further supported by a comprehensive Social and Emotional Learning program across all grades. OLHOC seeks to provide a safe and supportive learning environment for all.

With a current enrolment of 578 students OLHOC offers a very well-resourced educational program to all students. Extra curricula programs support the development of student's gifts and talents across a variety of pursuits including academic, sporting and cultural area. OLHOC has a long history of valuing success and this is evident in all fields of endeavour.

Our Lady Help of Christians is a school committed to ensuring that all students receive a high quality education in order to reach their potential and make a difference. High quality contemporary learning is supported by committed and well supported staff who have a desire to see all students learn. By using contemporary learning practices together with high levels of technology student learning outcomes are maximised for all students.

Distinctive Curriculum Offerings

"Vision to excite and empower learners to enjoy, shape and enrich our changing world, inspired by the Gospel of Jesus Christ..."

At OLHOC we believe that the essential focus of our school is the overall development of each child according to the needs and potential of the individual. As such, we strive to provide a curriculum that will enable the child to grow in the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values necessary to become a spiritual, well integrated, secure, self-disciplined person, confident and able to contribute to the betterment of themselves, society and the environment in which we live.

Learning and Teaching is the core activity of our school. Quality learning and teaching at OLHOC aims:

  • To foster the full potential of all students, academically, socially, emotionally, spiritually and physically to live in a changing society.
  • To foster an atmosphere where students will enjoy relationships and learning.
  • To teach students to think and work both independently and cooperatively.
  • To develop the ability to think critically and make decisions.
  • To develop self-discipline through firm, loving discipline throughout the school.
  • To encourage students to work to the best of their ability.
  • To cultivate and demonstrate attitudes and behaviours showing care and concern for others, who are less able academically or socially; the environment; the country and the world in which we live.
  • To facilitate students' abilities to evaluate and use appropriate technology and educational materials in all areas of the core curriculum.
  • To help students to develop a positive self-image through a realistic understanding of personal strengths and weaknesses.
  • To promote an environment that fosters respect for self and others.

The learning and teaching community at OLHOC 'seeks to inspire high expectation for learning that maximises engagement, progress and achievement for each student.

We are committed to cultivating a culture of learning. We set high standards and expectations for all students - teachers and staff believe that all students can learn and excel.

Curriculum, instruction and assessment are aligned with standards and essential academic learning requirements. Staff frequently monitor learning and teaching to apply differentiation strategies for gifted and talented students and for those who require further development.

Our Lady Help of Christians offers a supportive learning environment. Students feel respected and connected with staff, allowing them to engage in learning. We encourage family and community involvement and recognise its value in supporting the progress of each learner.

Distinctive Curriculum Offerings include:

  • Religious Education - Our core subjects include Religious Education which involves a formal study of Religion in the Catholic Tradition guided by the Archdiocese of Brisbane's Religious Education Curriculum.
  • Action for Social Justice to support various Catholic agencies including Mercy Works, Caritas, Catholic Mission, The Society of St. Vincent de Paul and Rosie's.
  • Social Emotional Learning - providing students with the foundations for learning. The Second Steps program, along with Circle Solutions are the key strategies for delivering Social Emotional Learning content.
  • Coaching in Reading and Writing with particular emphasis on Reading in 2016.
  • E-Learning delivered via significant student access to digital devices in classrooms, a one-to-one program in Years 5 and 6, a dedicated computer lab, an ICT Centre in the Mercy Centre of Learning, interactive whiteboards in every classroom all supported by a full time ICT assistant and consistent Tech support.
  • Strong emphasis on implementing the Digital Technologies curriculum implemented through Lego Robotics, Sphero Robotic Balls and Bee Bots to teach Coding and Programming.
  • District Teacher Librarian support three days per week focusing on the area of digital literacy.
  • Specialist teachers for Physical Education, Visual Arts and Performing Arts.
  • String and wind instrument teachers delivered through collaboration with St Mary's Catholic College's Music Department.
  • School camps for students in Year 5 and 6.
  • The Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program
  • A Science Expo supported by exhibits from organisations within the community.

Extra Curricular Activities

Student Leadership opportunities that include:

  • School Captains and Vice Captains
  • School House Captains
  • Liturgy Committee
  • Spirit Committee
  • Community Committee
  • Social Committee
  • ICT Monitors
  • Library Monitors
  • Art Monitors
  • Out of School Hours Care Monitors
  • Highly successful school choir - offering both Senior and Junior Choirs
  • ICAS (Independent skills-based assessments with a competition element)
  • School Band Development
  • Rugby League Team
  • Netball Team
  • Homework Club
  • Chess Club with participation in interschool competitions
  • Robotics Enrichment Program
  • Digital Photography Enrichment Program
  • Travel Smart Program
  • Daily story time sessions in the library

Social Climate

Our Lady Help of Christians draws upon its Mercy charism to make explicit its Catholic Identity. The school community regularly and frequently seeks to celebrate its faith through prayer and liturgy. It seeks to celebrate significant community events, including Mothers' and Fathers' Day, ANZAC Day, NAIDOC and Grandparents Day, within an explicit Catholic context. The school explicitly displays, and is driven by the Gospel values of Respect, Empathy, Justice, Forgiveness and Community. The school also actively promotes action for social justice particularly supporting a number of Catholic Agencies. This action often combines education, prayer, and fundraising.

Our Lady Help of Christians School has a very caring and welcoming atmosphere. Visitors to the school regularly comment on the polite, helpful manner in which they are treated and spoken to by the students.

A school counsellor is available part time to work with students who require some additional support to manage concerns and difficulties they have in their lives. The school's staff are proactive in responding to issues which come to light, involving the school's leadership team as required. Students are supported to initially develop the skills to manage general friendship issues themselves in an appropriate manner, and to pass on information to staff when issues become too difficult to manage or they feel they need extra support. OLHOC continue to participate in the National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence providing students with a voice to share their learnings around the role of an upstander and responsible digital citizenship skills.

The school encourages parents to be involved in the education of their children, including the social development of their children. Our Lady Help of Christians School works collaboratively with an Out of School Hours Care facility for students after school until 6pm. The Out of School Hours Care facility also offers a vacation care service and a morning care facility.

Our Lady Help of Christians School is comprised of students 55% male and 45% female students from a range of cultural backgrounds. The attending students come from many parts of the Cairns area, but largely from within the school's geographical context and Cairns' southern corridor.

Parent Involvement

  • Parents and Friends Association - "Steak of Origin", working bees
  • School Board
  • Assemblies
  • Parent Helpers in classroom including involvement in reading activities
  • Story time in the library before school supported by parents
  • Parent Helpers in the tuckshop
  • Parent Helpers at Athletics Carnival and Under 8s Day
  • Parent Information Evening at the beginning of the school year to inform parents about what will be covered during the year
  • Parent / Teacher Interviews to discuss student's progress
  • Student Report Cards each semester
  • Curriculum Workshops for parents and Parent information sessions with guest speakers
  • School celebrations such as Mother's and Father's Days, Grandparents Open Morning
  • Parent involvement with NAIDOC activities, participation in school camps for Y5 & Y6
  • Travel Smart with parents operating bike, walk and scooter options with staff

Parent Satisfaction

Overall, the parents are satisfied with the education their children receive at OLHOC. They believe that the school is a place of learning in a Christian environment, where prayer and reflection is encouraged. Parents recognise that OLHOC school delivers a Religious Education program that is values based and meets the students needs.  Parents see that teachers are good at encouraging the students’ learning and that OLHOC is aiming to improve the quality of education it provides.

Data Last Updated Tue 13 Feb 2018

Staff Reporting Data
Qualification Highest level of attainment Doctoral / Post-doctoral Masters Bachelor degree Diploma Certificate
% Staff with this qualification 0% 6% 48% 8% 14%

Workforce composition
Headcount FTE (Full-time equivalent)
Teaching Staff36 32.6
Non-Teaching Staff 28 17.4
Indigenous 2 1.27

Total funds expended on teacher professional development$32700

Teaching Staff Involved in Professional Development100%

Major Professional Development Initiatives

  • Building Relationships: Themes, Theology and Practice
  • The Shape of Religious Education
  • Courage to Care
  • TREWTH Conference
  • Visible Learning
  • Effective Behaviour Management
  • Collaboration and Planning
  • Data Analysis
  • Assessment Practices
  • Big 5 of Reading
  • Literacy Blocks
  • Phonics and Phonological Awareness
  • Explicit Teaching
  • eLearning initiatives
  • First Aid
  • Student Protection and Mandatory Training
  • Professional Learning Communities

Average staff attendance rate for the school year, based on unplanned absences of sick and emergency leave for periods up to 5 days96%

Percentage of teaching staff retained from the previous school year86.00%

Staff Satisfaction

The staff believe that OLHOC is a place of learning in a Christian environment that encourages prayer and reflection. They feel committed to this school and value the opportunity to engage in professional learning teams supported by the school based Teaching and Learning team.

Staff have trust in the Leadership team and believe that their colleagues set positive examples to the students. Staff feel that behaviour management is consistent across the school and that OLHOC encourages a climate conducive to learning.

Data Last Updated Wed Feb 21 2018

Student Reporting Data
Average student attendance rates
Prep YR 1 YR 2 YR 3 YR 4 YR 5 YR 6
93.82% 94.82% 95.11% 95.13% 94.77% 96.21% 94.45%
How non-attendance is managed by the school

If a student is absent, parents are required to contact the school by 9am. Notification can be made via the following ways:

  • Through email to:
  • Using the Skoolbag App
  • By telephone - if out of hours a message can be left
  • A note to the office or via the class teacher
  • In person

Daily absences that are unexplained are monitored by the school and contact via Blink messages are sent to any families in the first instance and then followed up with a phone call as appropriate. Blink messages are sent after 9am.

Absence records are maintained on the school database. Absence collation is reported to parents on the semesterly School Reports. Ongoing absences either for extended periods and/or unexplained are followed up by the Admin team.

The distance travelled

OLHOC continues to analyse student performance data to support our direction towards better learning outcomes for students. In 2016, the school has employed a Leader of Pedagogy, who through their role, supports teachers in the method of explicit instruction and inquiry based learning. Support is delivered through the implementation of Professional Learning Teams within a Professional Learning Community. The OLHOC Teaching and Learning Team seek to support teachers in the adoption of contemporary pedagogy across all year levels. Whilst our student performance data is good we continue to work towards continual improvement.

Where are we going ?

  • Continued focus on coaching within core subjects. 2016 emphasis on Reading and Writing across the school, using Explicit Teaching practices
  • The use of Learning Walks to highlight best practice within the school
  • Roll out of digital devices across the school. E-Learning delivered via significant student access to digital devices in classrooms, a one-to-one program in Years 5 and 6, a dedicated computer lab, an ICT Centre in the Mercy Centre of Learning, interactive whiteboards in every classroom all supported by a full time ICT assistant and consistent Tech support
  • Incorporation of Specialist teachers for Physical Education, Visual Arts and Performing Arts
  • The teaching of Indonesian to continue across Y5&6 classes
  • Implementation of the Second Steps program to teach the skills needed for Social Emotional Learning
  • Contemporary learning environments in the Upper School
  • Implementation in Whole School Approach to Phonics and Phonological Awareness using the Soundwaves Program

Student Satisfaction

The students at OLHOC say they feel positive and cheerful while they are here. They say their teachers put a lot of energy into teaching their classes, arewell prepared and are strongly preparing students well for their future. The students expressed that they feel good about being a student at our school and have a sense of belonging at OLHOC school.

Data Last Updated Wed Feb 21 2018

Reading, Writing & Numeracy Results - Year 3, 2016
Reading Average Score for the school 443.432
Average Score for Queensland 427.632
% students at or above the national benchmark 96.907%
Writing Average Score for the school 409.271
Average Score for Queensland 420.141
% students at or above the national benchmark 98.969%
Spelling Average Score for the school 422.402
Average Score for Queensland 415.204
% students at or above the national benchmark 98.958%
Grammar and Punctuation Average Score for the school 450.285
Average Score for Queensland 439.375
% students at or above the national benchmark 100%
Numeracy Average Score for the school 413.067
Average Score for Queensland 400.942
% students at or above the national benchmark 97.938%

Data Last Updated Mon Jun 26 2017

Reading, Writing & Numeracy Results - Year 5, 2016
Reading Average Score for the school 494.482
Average Score for Queensland 507.478
% students at or above the national benchmark 89.61%
Writing Average Score for the school 455.353
Average Score for Queensland 474.369
% students at or above the national benchmark 87.013%
Spelling Average Score for the school 470.663
Average Score for Queensland 491.655
% students at or above the national benchmark 90.909%
Grammar and Punctuation Average Score for the school 495.569
Average Score for Queensland 512.334
% students at or above the national benchmark 94.805%
Numeracy Average Score for the school 488.108
Average Score for Queensland 494.654
% students at or above the national benchmark 94.805%

Data Last Updated Mon Jun 26 2017

School Funding By Source
Income 2016

Australian Government recurrent funding$4,063,047

State/Territory Government recurrent funding$1,217,096

Fees, charges and parent contributions$1,343,297

Other private sources$191,329

Total gross income (excluding income from government capital grants)$6,814,769

Deductions 2016

Income allocated to current capital projects$381,651

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

Income allocated to debt servicing (including principal repayments and interest on loans)$170,744


Total net recurrent income$6,262,374

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.