Holy Spirit College Fitzgibbon, New Secondary Catholic School in 56 Years, Officially Opens

After more than a year of construction, Holy Spirit College Fitzgibbon, the first co-ed Catholic high school to be established in Brisbane in 56 years, has officially opened!

The school welcomed nearly 100 students attending Year 7 at its new $1.35 million facilities in February 2022. But on 3 June 2022, the school welcomed His Grace, the Archbishop of Brisbane Mark Coleridge, alongside The Hon Stirling Hinchliffe, the Minister for Tourism, Innovation and Sport, and Member for Sandgate for the blessing and opening ceremonies. 

Holy Spirit College Fitzgibbon Principal Stephan le Roux said that they were inundated with applications from parents within a few months of the announcement of the plans to build a new Catholic school in North Brisbane. He confirmed that enrolments are “fully subscribed until the end of 2025.” 

Two more buildings are due to be completed in the coming years. Wunya, which means “welcome” in the local Turrbal language, will house the administration block. The other building will be called Garrnang, which means “community”. 

The buildings were funded by the Queensland Government and Brisbane Catholic Education (BCE).

The last BCE high school to open in Brisbane was Clairvaux Mackillop College, Upper Mount Gravatt in 1966.  

Executive Director Dr Sally Towns that locals in Fitzgibbon have been looking for a faith-filled co-educational schooling option and BCE recognised the community as a priority growth area. 

Needless to say, the students and staff have been eager to come to school and experience the “innovative approach to education, implementing project-based learning to enhance the teaching of the Australian Curriculum,” according to the principal. 

Expressions of Interest for New Catholic Secondary School on Beams Road, Fitzgibbon Now Being Accepted

Expressions of interest are now being accepted for a new co-educational Catholic Secondary School being proposed for Beams Road in Fitzgibbon, planned to open in 2022.

Brisbane Catholic Education seeks to develop a Catholic High School, on the corner of 441 Beams Road and Carselgrove Avenue, catering to Grade 7-12 students. The 5.76-hectare land was the former site of the Big Easy Golf and Leisure Centre.

BCE is a community of parish and dioscesan Catholic schools operating 141 schools across the Archdiocese. The institution recently opened two Prep schools in Bli Bli and Coomera.

Between 2020 and 2025, Brisbane Catholic Education plans to open six new schools:

  • Primary school in Redbank Plains , to open with Prep – Year 3 in 2020
  • Three secondary schools: Plainland and Yarrabilba – to open in 2021, Fitzgibbon – to open in 2022 
  • Two Prep schools: Flagstone – to open in 2024; Narangba – to open in 2025.

The future high school in Fitzgibbon will feature two-storey classrooms, specialty classrooms, administration, PE/Hall with car park, Learning Centre, Music and Performance, cafe,  tennis court, sports field, campus piazza, and staff parking.

 co-educational Catholic Secondary School being proposed for Beams Road in Fitzgibbon
Photo credit: Amanda Cooper – Councilor  for Bracken Ridge Ward / amandacooper.com.au

Councilor Amanda Cooper, however, expressed concerns about the proposed development. The applicant, she said, is seeking Ministerial Infrastructure Designation (MID), which means Council will not be able to assess the plans and will remove the process of letting residents voice their concerns regarding the proposal.

“While I recognise the need, and support the provision for additional educational facilities, I hold serious concerns about the lack of community consultation this development will receive,” Councilor Amanda Cooper said.

“Fast tracking a development of this nature should not occur without adequately addressing the existing issues that are already impacting residents, specifically the Beams Road open level-crossing and the significant lack of commuter parking at Carseldine Train Station. 

“In seeking a MID for this site, it ultimately and unnecessarily removes the ability for Council to review, assess and provide guidance on the impacts that will be experienced by the community. Most importantly, it also removes the right for residents who will be at the forefront of any impact, the ability to express their concerns,” she said.

Parents wanting to express their interest in the new proposed Catholic Secondary School in Fitzgibbon may click on this link to access the form.