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About St Joseph's

St Joseph's Primary School Elsternwick

St Joseph's Primary School is located in Elsternwick, an inner southern suburb of Melbourne. The school is attractive and welcoming, and the main building is housed within a beautiful old mansion.


St Joseph's is a vibrant and inclusive learning community, where collaboration and strong relationships are evident in all we do. Classes are structured as 14 straight grades from Prep to Year 6 (2 classes in each year level). Classrooms are well-equipped with interactive boards, iPads, Chromebooks and trolleys. In Years 2-6, students benefit from a 1:1 Chromebook program. Specialist teaching roles include Physical Education, Visual Arts, Performing Arts, Music and LOTE (Italian). 


Students in Years 3-6 participate in school camp, with the students in Year 6 going Canberra for 4 nights. Our biennial school production and art show helps foster a strong sense of community, and celebrates The Arts within our school.


St Joseph's provides a rigorous and contemporary learning environment that aims to inspire a love of life long learning. Our teaching and learning program is drawn from the Victorian Curriculum, and the use of the Google platform for ongoing collaboration further enriches learning experiences for students. Our staff are trained and supported to use evidence based teaching strategies, with a focus on pedagogically sound teaching methods. This is supported with an evidence based intervention and extension program, which reinforces these foundational skills. 


Learning and teaching also involves more than providing academic instruction. It is about nurturing the individual - academically, spiritually, emotionally and physically - equipping students with lifelong skills to become compassionate and contributing citizens. We develop quality relationships with students, families and staff - built on respect, inclusiveness and a strong sense of welcome. We pride ourselves in knowing each child and family, and we aim to develop the whole child. Wellbeing is at the forefront of all our practices, as we believe that the connection between wellbeing and positive learning outcomes is vital. We strive to help students develop an understanding of the world, their community and their role in it.


Our outstanding academic results are achieved by working collaboratively with families. Our goal, in partnership with our parents, is to provide a comprehensive education within a safe, happy and rich learning environment. A dynamic 'Parents and Friends' association drives many fundraisers to support the school throughout the year and classroom helpers are welcomed across the school. Parental assistance with curriculum programs, such as Literacy helpers, excursions, guest speakers and sports events, are highly valued. Parents also run basketball, netball and soccer classes before and after school. 


The school continues to actively provide opportunities for students, families and staff to participate in Masses, Sacraments, liturgies and family faith nights. Our mission of Christian service continues to drive our strong involvement in a wide range of social justice initiatives that support our local and global communities, including Caritas Australia's Project Compassion, the St Vincent de Paul Winter Appeal and Christmas Appeal, and the Ryder-Cheshire Foundation in Klibur Domin, East Timor.


At St. Joseph's we value our greatest resource - the teaching and support staff. They are models of lifelong learners and work collaboratively with children and families to ensure that all students are provided with rich, authentic learning experiences that cater for their diverse needs and nourish their love of learning.

Our History

St Joseph’s has a long and interesting history as a place of education. The administration building was originally built as a private house in 1885, known as Chiselhurst. It was then used as the residence for the Day Sisters who began a private school, known as Cromarty School for Girls. 


In 1910 several new classrooms were designed by Harold Desbrowe-Annea and built in the early Spanish mission style. These rooms remain as part of our school facilities, notably the Prep classrooms and Art room. 


The Catholic Church purchased the property in the 1930s and, in 1933, St Joseph’s began as a Catholic primary school, conducted by the Presentation Sisters. Further classrooms and additional facilities were added in the 1970s. In 1999 the ‘convent’ building was renovated for school use while retaining several historic features, such as the fireplace and staircase, which are both heritage listed. 


The school has undergone several major refurbishments, with additional playground spaces, shade cloths, building projects and adventure playgrounds completed from 2014 - 2019. In 2023-2024 the school will undertake a major refurbishment project to refurbish and modernise the current facilities and learning spaces in the Junior School, to mirror the Middle and Senior school.

Our Vision

Our vision is to be a welcoming and safe Catholic school that inspires excellence in all areas of school life. We promote spiritual, social and emotional wellbeing and academic success. We empower our students to become compassionate, contributing citizens.



At St Joseph’s our mission is to:

Live our faith:

  • Uphold the values of Jesus Christ, so that each person experiences love, forgiveness, acceptance and hope.

  • Develop and enact a strong sense of social justice and stewardship.

  • Celebrate our Catholic faith and traditions.


Educate our students for the world:

  • Prepare  our students with skills and strategies to enhance their social and emotional wellbeing.

  • Develop expert teachers who provide a rigorous and contemporary learning environment.

  • Nurture and engage all students to be curious lifelong learners.


Connect and care for our community:

  • Provide a safe environment for all in our care.

  • Foster trusting and respectful relationships with all members of our community.

Meet the Team

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Claire Tobin


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Tom Hartney

Deputy Principal, Teaching & Learning, e-Learning Leader & Senior Mathematics Leader

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Alannah Harrison

Deputy Principal & English Leader


Adriana Aloi

Prep Teacher


Franca Butera-Crea

Italian Specialist Teacher

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Amanda Bowman

Learning Support Officer


Peader Cody

Year Five Teacher

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Kerry Burns

Office Administrator


Rianne Coldebella

Year Six Teacher & Wellbeing Leader

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Maria Crawley

Year Four Teacher


Wendy Dugosija

MSL Intervention Specialist

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Cassie Gleeson

Junior Teacher

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Elly Dillon

Year Three Teacher & Religious Education Leader

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Claire Dusting

Year Five Teacher


John Gatley

 Physical Education Teacher

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Lauren Doran

Visual Arts Specialist Teacher

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Melanie Foulkes

Learning Support Officer


Anita Jacobs

Learning Support Officer


Jack Jannson

Year One Teacher


Heather Lougheed

Year TwoTeacher

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Jen Kahan

Learning Support Officer

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Sandra Mackie

Learning Support Officer

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Monica Linke

Teacher Librarian

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Jess Matthews

Year Three Teacher

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Moira McKinnis

Finance & Office Administrator


Plaxy Nardella

Year One Teacher

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Annie Opasinis

Music Specialist Teacher

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Anna Perruzza

Learning Support Officer

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Elaine Shanahan

Year Six Teacher & Senior Team Leader

Lisa Mclean

Prep Teacher & Junior Team Leader

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Alice Nelligan

Year Two Teacher

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Melissa Pascoe

Learning Support Officer

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Karen Quitt

Year Six & Prep Teacher

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Alison Shea

Prep Teacher

Louisa Molfese

Year Three Teacher

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Sarah Nugent

Junior Mathematics Leader

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Geraldine Pepper

Year Three & Four Teacher

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Fiona Scammell

Office Administrator


Rebekah Skehan

Learning Diversity Leader

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Meg Wilkinson

Year Four Teacher & Middle Team Leader


OSH Club

At St Joseph’s OSHClub our aim is to provide an enriching, warm and fun learning environment that is a natural extension of what your children do at school. We value the relationships we have with each of our families as well as taking an active approach within the school community. We provide a range of highly engaging adventures that foster the interests and developmental needs of your child. Our before and after school activities are planned by the students, for the students, ensuring engagement across both sessions. . 


‘Rise then Shine’ is our morning program, where we fuel your child’s curious minds and growing bodies with a nutritious breakfast before engaging in a variety of engaging activities.


‘Stay and Play’ is our afternoon program, where we create meaningful connections and friendships. Our staff provide children with an opportunity to unwind at the end of a school day and connect over a variety of engaging activities.


Hours of operation:

Rise then Shine: 7.00am-8.30am

Stay and Play: 3.30pm- 6.00pm


Contact details:

Service mobile: 0437 730 158

Customer Service and Billing Team: 1300 395 735

For all enrolments, account changes and bookings please head to the iParent Portal through kidsoft at




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