Educating the ‘whole person’ the aim, as 155,000 students return to Melbourne Catholic schools

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27 January 2023

Around 155,000 – or one in five – students, along with 21,600 teachers and staff, will commence or continue their journey at one of 334 Catholic primary, secondary and special schools across the Archdiocese of Melbourne this year.

This includes about 11,500 students commencing in Prep and 13,000 moving into Year 7 in Catholic secondary schools.

One new Catholic school, Mary Queen of Heaven Primary School, Greenvale, will open in the northern growth corridor of Melbourne with an enrolment of 105 students in Prep to Year 6.

Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools (MACS) Acting Executive Director, Dr Edward Simons said the enrolments demonstrate the value families place on a Catholic education and the quality of education Catholic schools are delivering right across the city.

‘Parents are increasingly looking for a more holistic approach to education – one that is focused on development of the whole person – spiritually, intellectually, emotionally, physically and culturally’, Dr Simons said.

‘They want an education that will help their child succeed and be happy and confident in the world, no matter what path their future may follow.

‘The distinctive promise of our Catholic primary and secondary schools is to provide an education that is focused on the whole person and tailored to each student’s individual needs.

‘We want our schools to inspire and enable every child to flourish and, in turn, enrich the world around them.’

Dr Simons said Catholic schools aim to be inclusive by keeping fees as low as possible and remaining accessible to all who seek their values, with average annual fees per student for MACS schools around $1,600 for primary and $6,400 for secondary.

‘We recognise the cost-of-living pressures on families and encourage any family experiencing financial difficulties to discuss the situation with their school as quickly as possible. No child should miss out on a Catholic education because of financial circumstances’, he said.

Dr Simons said Catholic schools encourage parents to become involved in their child’s learning and engaged in school life.

‘By working together in partnership, schools and families can create an effective learning environment and a climate of mutual respect.

‘As always, Catholic schools will continue to respond to the expectations of parents and the changing landscape of contemporary learning to engage students and prepare them as global citizens, equipped to face the world with confidence and sensitivity to social justice issues.

‘On behalf of Catholic education in the Archdiocese, I extend a very warm welcome to the 2023 school year to all students, families, principals, teachers and staff, especially those joining our community of schools for the first time’, Dr Simons said.

Media contact: Gerard Delaney on 0413 274 176 or

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