Our Story

St Bernadette’s has a long and interesting history. Over the many years since our opening in 1958, we have developed our school site and worked hard to provide facilities that reflect the needs of our students. Come and learn more about who we are and how we became the vibrant school community we are today.

School History

St Bernadette’s school was opened in 1958 by the Good Samaritan sisters. Since 1972, St Bernadette’s has had a lay Principal. St Bernadette’s church was also part of the school buildings until 1965 when the new church and presbytery were built. The old presbytery then became part of the school. More buildings were added as the school grew, with some of the buildings being built by the parents.

In 1987–88 a Commonwealth grant was received which allowed for the painting and renovation of buildings, addition of verandahs, re-location of the administration block and landscaping of the grounds.

In 1999, the school received a refurbishment grant from the Catholic Education Office. Work commenced early 2000 and this resulted in the refurbishment of five classrooms, the provision of a literacy support room, a special education room, technology room, new library, librarian work room and teacher resource room.

In 2008, the administration and library blocks were changed to meet the requirements of the new Child Protection Legislation and to increase security for the office staff.

In 2010, with the Federal Government Building Education Revolution, St Bernadette's was able to build a state-of-the-art flexible learning space to meet the educational needs of the children in a 21st century learning environment.

Our School Logo

Our school logo, with the Franciscan Tau Cross, places Christ at the centre of all that we do here at St Bernadette’s, Dundas Valley.

The water represents St Bernadette, our patron saint, who centred her life on Christ, and who had a deep faith and simplicity, as well as great trust in Christ’s help at her most difficult times. The blue and gold represent Our Lady who appeared to St Bernadette and invited her to ‘come to the water ’and pray for sinners. Blue is also the colour of our founding order, the Good Samaritan Sisters who also have prayer at the centre of their ministry and who worked tirelessly under great difficulty in the early years, to lay the foundations that made St Bernadette’s Primary the great school it is today.

As we are now a Franciscan community, we have taken the true expression of St Francis - the Tau Cross. The Tau represents Christ’s Cross. Pope Innocent III, at the Fourth Lateran Council in 1215, encouraged his people to be ‘champions of the Tau’. St Francis took up this challenge and made it his own symbol and had great devotion to it for the rest of his life.

The shell, on which Francis carved the Tau Cross, was used in ancient times to hold water and food for the weary traveller. At St Bernadette’s, Dundas Valley, we welcome all members of our community in a spirit of true inclusion, peace and harmony.