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Welcome to St Joseph's Parish School, Atherton

St Joseph’s Parish School, catering for boys and girls from Prep to Year 6, is an integral part of the Cairns Diocese and the Atherton Catholic Parish. Located approximately one hour’s drive from Cairns, Atherton sits within the heart of the naturally beautiful and agriculturally rich Atherton Tablelands. Despite its many changes over the years, St Joseph’s Parish School has remained committed to providing its students with a well-balanced and relevant education and curriculum.

This website is designed to provide a practical and informative view of our school but by no means replaces personal contact. Please browse at your leisure but also feel free to contact us at any time.

Please click here for a message from our Principal

Latest News & Events

We are excited to have welcomed back our Prep and Year 1 students this week and are looking forward to the rest of the students joining us in two weeks time.  School is a lonely place without the children.  The staff and I have been deeply appreciative of all the positive feedback from parents during this extraordinary time and look forward to continuing the great relationships that have been developed into the future.

The biggest change we have had to deal with this week has been the drop-off and pick up routine as parents are currently unable to be onsite.  Thank you to parents for your co-operation with this.  The children have coped remarkably well and are feeling proud of their developing independence.  While we had a few tears yesterday, this morning's feedback was, "No, I don't need any help.  I can walk to my classroom by myself."  Sometimes, we just have to remember that given the opportunity, our children are capable of operating much more independently than we give them credit for.  One of the great pluses of this online learning experience is that our students have taken a much greater responsibility and become much more self-directed in their learning.  

One of the difficulties we experienced yesterday was pick up time.  Parents have the option of using the Jack St or Alice St entrances.  Drop-off works quite well as the children arrive at different times.  Pick up is another story as everyone is waiting for their children at the same time.  We identified a number of safety concerns yesterday afternoon.  We had parents who were standing on the road and crossing the road to vehicles right on the corner of the intersection where we frequently witness accidents.  In the interests of ensuring the children's safety at pick up time, we would like as many parents as possible to use Alice St as their pick up point.  We are recommending the following procedure:

  • Use the Jack St "Kiss and Go" if you are not intending getting out of your vehicle
  • If you are getting out of your vehicle to collect your child, use the Alice St exit.  The students will be escorted across the road by the lolly pop ladies at the crossing where parents can be waiting on the other side.  There is much more parking available there and it is a safer exit path for vehicles as well.
  • Please ensure your child knows their pick up point, and if in doubt, send your child's teacher an email to let them know.  Teachers are escorting the children to their pick up point each afternoon.

Your assistance in working out a safe and workable routine would be greatly appreciated, as the afternoon departure will be much more hectic if we are still required to operate under the same restrictions when the Year 2 - 6 students return next fortnight.

I would also ask for your assistance in informing new families who may be considering enrolling their child here at St Joseph's in any grade to make contact with the school as soon as possible. Word of mouth is always the best form of communication and I am always thankful for the positive feedback I hear from new enrolments and I am most appreciative of those of you who spread the “good news” about our great school.


At this time of year, we are moving towards finalising our Prep enrolments for 2021.  As existing families with Prep age children receive priority placement, could all existing families ensure they have submitted their enrolment applications via the following link:


2020 Term dates Weeks
Term 1 28 Jan – 3 Apr 10
Term 2 20 Apr – 26 Jun 10
Term 3 13 Jul – 18 Sept 10
Term 4 6 Oct – 4 Dec 9
Student Free Day      Friday 4th September
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