Contextual Statement

Contextual Statment and School Overview

St Mary’s Parish Primary School is located in the bayside western suburb of Williamstown and has been educating local children since May 1842. Established initially by a concerted effort of lay people determined to provide Catholic and values based education for the local working class children, the school commenced its proud history with a total of 14 students that soon saw the appointment of a priest, a direct parish community and from 1900, the Sisters of St. Joseph who were fundamentally committed to educational longevity influenced by the Charism of Mary Mackillop, in Williamstown.  

St Mary’s proudly continues today, with the strong link to its origins- drive, determination, commitment and financial support of education in a Catholic suburban context.   

The school highly values the historical significance of the physical establishment dating back to the construction of the first school building in 1925 while ensuring that contemporary learning is happening in a Catholic environment.  

 The Parents and Friends continue to support the legacy of our founders and together with the recently established School Building Fund, are fundamental in raising capital required to support a well-maintained facility that caters for contemporary learning within our historical walls and harnesses the opportunity to create new legacy for future generations. Further input is provided by the Advisory Board and its working parties to support the school, Principal and Parish Priest in the operation and management of the school. 

Consciously maintaining total student enrolment numbers between 330–365, St Mary’s caters for a 2 stream P-6 school within the facility provisions and physical footprint. Operating 14 classrooms of approximately 27 students, the school supports traditional teaching structures, lead by a dedicated teacher and supported by specialist staff. The school approaches education holistically and caters for the full range of learning needs within the parameters of existing resources and facilities and importantly seeks to provide a solid foundation for our students academically, spiritually, socially and emotionally.  

The school has a strong academic focus based on the Australian National Curriculum with high expectations of student learning outcomes in the areas of:

  · Religious Education

  · English

  · Science

  · Mathematics

  · History

  · Performing Arts

  · Italian

  · Physical Education

Specialist classes are provided for:

  · Italian

  · Physical Education

  · Music

St Mary’s has is recognised as a school of Science Excellence with a strong focus on:

  · Sustainability

  · 5E’s  Inquiry model

  · Environmental studies

A range of extra curriculum activities are available to students which include:

  · Independent instrument classes

  · Competitive sports teams

  · Performance Arts Project (Wakakirri)


The school focus on the well-being of students ensures that the following programs are strongly

supported by:

  · Personalized  learning plans

  · Student leadership programs

  · Restorative practices

  · RE programs

  · Faith education services to Parish families

  · Passionate connectedness to the Parish and relationships with the parish community

      supporting Seniors in their monthly mass and luncheon

  · Bike Education

  · Relationships and Partnerships with various industry authorities that provide community

      links to such bodies as:

        ­ St Vincent De Paul Society

        ­ Asylum Seeker  Resource Centre

        ­ Joseph’s Corner  

        ­ Hobson Bay Council

        ­ Melbourne Water

        ­ Bird life Australia

        ­ Parks Victoria

        ­ Clean up Australia

        ­ Friends of Williamstown Wetlands

  · Social Justice philosophies using the Charism of Mary Mackillop :

        ­ Respecting each other

        ­ Taking action to make a difference

        ­ Never see a need without doing something about it

        ­ To grow in knowledge and thrive in faith.

  · Partnerships with parents to support the schools work

  · Continuous learning and growth programs for teaching and support staff. 


Students graduate from St Mary’s Parish School ready for further education, with a strong sense of identity and self belief. They have a solid foundation set of skills, knowledge and attitudes to continuously support their enthusiasm for academic, spiritual, social and emotional development to:

  · Be the best they can be

  · Know their place

  · Respect life, family, community and the environment, 

and importantly, students have 

  · Motivation to succeed

  · A curious disposition

  · Perseverance in a variety of settings 

  · Confidence in themselves

  · Ability to reconcile differences

  · Understanding of care and compassion for others 


St Mary’s Williamstown with its proud history, support from the Parish and the school community,

continues to be committed in providing a contemporary education within the context of a Catholic

environment for the common good. 


118 Cecil Street Williamstown 3016 Victoria Tel: 9397 7926 Fax: 9397 7671 Send us an e-mail