St Columban's College, Caboolture

St. Columban's College

For God and Australia
Caboolture, Queensland
Coordinates 27°04′43″S 152°57′48″E / 27.0785°S 152.9634°E / -27.0785; 152.9634Coordinates: 27°04′43″S 152°57′48″E / 27.0785°S 152.9634°E / -27.0785; 152.9634
Type Independent, Co-educational, Day school
Denomination Roman Catholic
Established 1928
Chairman Mr. Martin Jonkers
Principal Mrs. Anne Rebgetz
Chaplain Ms. Elizabeth Palmer
Staff 54[1]
Key people Ms. Lauren Dunn - Campus Minister
Enrolment 1200 (7-12)[2]
Colour(s) Blue & Gold
Slogan "Spirit, Tradition, Community"

St Columban’s College is a Catholic, co-educational day school, catering for approximately 1200 students[2] from years 7 to 12.

The College was established in 1928, and is situated on a 12-hectare site at Caboolture, Queensland, Australia.


St. Columban's College was established in 1928, at Albion, as a boys college by the Congregation of Christian Brothers.[3]

1985 was the last year of the Brothers presence following the decision to hand the administration of the College to the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane.[3] Three brothers stayed on teaching during this year. The first lay principal, Mr Peter Crombie, took up his appointment in 1985.

In 1988 and 1989 the intake for Year 8 slowly dropped. Great efforts were made to attract more students, but despite these efforts the drop in numbers became steady and continuous. In 1989 number had dropped to 425 students when only 15 years earlier, numbers were at 800. Subsequently, a decision was made some 10 years later to relocate the college to Caboolture and to become a co-educational college.[3]

Detailed history

Founded in 1928 on an Albion hilltop site overlooking the city of Brisbane, St Columban’s College commenced as another practical outreach by the Congregation of the Christian Brothers, in providing readily accessible education for young boys. The college developed a working-class identity with strong patronage from the racing fraternity, reaching a maximum enrolment of some 850 boys from Years 5 to 12 during the 1980s. Always supported by an active parental group, the college thrived through the 1960s and 1970s, being associated with some well-known Brisbane events, including the Colana Carnival. Parents built by hand the college swimming pool and worked tirelessly to raise funds for construction of many buildings to add to the opportunities offered to its students.

Throughout its history the college gained a reputation for having a strong identity in sport, with its students being called upon to ‘have a go’. St Columban’s College was a founding member of The Associated Schools association, established in 1947. In 1985 the Congregation of the Christian Brothers formally handed the college over to the Archdiocese of Brisbane. Shortly after, the primary school was phased out with the college offering secondary education focused between Years 8 to 12.

The work of the second lay principal, Mr Michael Harkin, was well known for his efforts to stem the loss of enrolments that followed during these ensuing years. Despite his best attempts to maintain adequate student numbers, a decision was made in 1995 to relocate a financially unviable college campus to Caboolture. Preparation commenced for a new co-educational campus with an inventory created of how and what to move from a college in order to preserve its best qualities.

Notable alumni




See also



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