Nurturing a Love of Learning

Our School

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St John's Catholic Parish Primary School

Welcome to St John’s Primary School – a school with a long and proud tradition with an excellent reputation in the community.


At St John’s, students benefit academically from programs based on sound educational principles and practices. The curriculum is shaped by the Victorian Curriculum and Horizons of Hope. Our Religious Education program is based on the To Know Worship & Love texts for students.The learning experience is also enhanced through a comprehensive Literacy program, additional needs program, Mathematics extension groups, Reading Recovery, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics), Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program (SAKGP), Inquiry based excursions and incursions, Inter-school sport, visits from the Life Education Unit, community involvement, a Playgroup for preschoolers and a Before and Aftercare program. In addition, we provide opportunities for individual and group musical instrument tuition, out-of-school-hours tennis coaching and Kelly Sports program.


Parent engagement is an important part of our school and parents are invited and encouraged to participate in the life of the school through the School Advisory Council, the PIC (Partners in Community) program, the Parish Pastoral Council, Student Led Conferences, Parent/Teacher Interviews and Parent Engagement in the Learning opportunities.


We welcome the opportunity to partner with parents in the responsibility and privilege of developing their children spiritually, academically, physically and emotionally.

Meet the Team

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St John's Catholic Parish Primary School


Maureen Stella

School Principal

Elizabeth Whiting

Acting Principal


Fr Joel Peart

Parish Priest


Leanne Bradley

Office Administration


Melanie Sharples

Office Administration


Connie Bandiera

Acting Deputy Principal

Adam Salemme

Education in Faith and Wellbeing Leader / Classroom Teacher

Nicola Dunne

Learning and Teaching Leader/

Classroom Teacher


Joanne Campbell

Performing Arts Teacher


Christine Caripis

Learning Support Officer

Marianne DiFabio 

Classroom Teacher


Helen Pini

Learning Support Officer


Brooke Davis

Classroom Teacher


Catherine Carrick

Classroom Teacher

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Judy Doupe

Learning Diversity Leader & Library Support


Simone Egan

Classroom Teacher


Anne Boyd

Language - Italian Teacher


Rebecca Georgiou

Classroom Teacher


Virginia Halse

Learning Support Officer

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Liza Hyland

Learning Support Officer


Tracey James

Classroom Teacher


Sue Lew-Kee

Classroom Teacher

Paul Tarabay

Classroom Teacher


Ben Friggi

Classroom & PE Teacher / Sports Coordinator


Wayne Daniell

Mathematics & eLearning Leader & Classroom Teacher


Marguerite Ryan

Reading Recovery Teacher


Chloe Livy

Learning Support Officer

Grace Totino

Classroom Teacher


Robert Orme

Classroom Teacher

Shane Thompson

Classroom Teacher

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Marnie Power

STEM & Digital Technologies Teacher


Chantelle Wegner

Classroom Teacher


Lisa Wenhrynowycz Classroom Teacher


Samantha Galea 

Learning Support Officer


Simone Porthouse

 Classroom Teacher

School History

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St John's Catholic Parish Primary School

Our History

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St John's Catholic Parish Primary School

St John’s Catholic Primary School, Heidelberg is situated in the North-Eastern corridor of Melbourne. It is approximately 13 kilometres from the Melbourne CBD and lies within the municipality of the City Of Banyule. Our children are mainly Anglo Saxon and of second generation European backgrounds. The area is primarily residential.

Historical Perspective

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St John's Catholic Parish Primary School

In 1836, Joseph Tice Gellibrand and a party of men from the Port Phillip Association became the first Europeans to explore the area. In the following year, government surveyor Robert Hoddle surveyed the area and created three Parishes. He named the central Parish, which now covers Ivanhoe, Heidelberg and Watsonia, the Parish of Keelbundora, an Aboriginal word for "round, brackish swamp". This was later renamed " Heidelberg " by Richard Browne because it reminded him of his "ever-remembered, ever-regretted" Heidelberg in Germany .


St John’s Church and then the school were established to cater for the farming communities in the area. Heidelberg village soon grew, complete with hotels, post offices, general stores and police stations. It supported a range of small industries and in time, miners, labourers, trades people and small farmers settled into the village. The discovery of gold in the early 1850s brought a huge influx of hopefuls to the area. However, compared to the rich fields at Ballarat and Bendigo, finds were scant and scattered and soon petered out.


The estimated population in the school area in 1856 was approximately 555.

In July, 1871 a new school building was built – the current Library.

1910 was an important year in the history of St John’s school. It was in this year that the Sisters of Mercy first arrived. Their mission was to set up the district’s first Catholic Secondary School (Our Lady of Mercy College) and the sisters’ other role was to manage and conduct the primary school.

The area also has a significant European cultural heritage.


The painters of the Australian impressionist, such as Arthur Streeton, Tom Roberts, Frederick McCubbin, and Walter Withers (names of our House teams) as well as architects and urban landscapers including Walter Burley Griffin , are associated with the area.


The area also has close links with the birth of the Australian Art Movement and groundbreaking artists such as Albert Tucker and Sydney Nolan who lived and painted in the area during the 1940’s and 50’s. Sydney Nolan's first art exhibition was held nearby in Burgundy Street.