Top 50 fastest growing QLD schools revealed

 

BRISBANE'S northern suburbs have emerged as a booming hot spot for school enrolments, as the state's fastest growing schools are revealed.

An analysis by The Courier-Mail using enrolment data from the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) has calculated the student number increase or decrease rate of every Queensland school from 2013 to 2018.

Among those to show the biggest boost to student enrolments over those five years was the newly-built Catholic school St Benedict's College in Mango Hill, in Brisbane's northern suburbs.

After opening in 2013 with about 50 students, it grew rapidly to record more than 610 enrolments by 2018 - a 1012 per cent increase. It now has about 715 students enrolled.

St Benedict's College deputy principal Alison Gilbert said the increase in student numbers at the school had been great to see, and was expected in the rapidly-growing area.

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"St Benedict's College has been master planned to be a six stream college with a total of over 1000 students in the next few years," she said.

"This growth while quick, has been exceptionally well planned and implemented under the guidance of foundation Principal Claire McLaren, who has been with the College since day one."

Students Erin Brown, Morgan Lock and Dean Scott at St Benedict's College at Mango Hill. (AAP Image/Josh Woning)
Students Erin Brown, Morgan Lock and Dean Scott at St Benedict's College at Mango Hill. (AAP Image/Josh Woning)

"While over 1000 students may seem like a large school we fit neatly into a middle-sized school, which means that students are known personally by staff members rather than them being just a number as in many of the larger schools."

Ms Gilbert said being a new school, St Benedict's College was "blessed" to be able to offer parents and students state-of-the-art facilities.

Mansfield State High School has seen a surge in enrolments, climbing from about 1700 students in 2013 to more than 2600 in 2018, and almost 2800 this year. The school has a built capacity for more than 3000 students. Picture: Richard Waugh
Mansfield State High School has seen a surge in enrolments, climbing from about 1700 students in 2013 to more than 2600 in 2018, and almost 2800 this year. The school has a built capacity for more than 3000 students. Picture: Richard Waugh

"Our latest building project was officially opened in August last year and included two new science laboratories, two performance spaces, two visual and media arts spaces, seven general purpose classrooms and an extension to the resource centre with provision for learning enhancement," she said.

St Benedict's College is not the only school in Mango Hill to have seen a rapid rise in enrolments.

Mango Hill State School's student numbers have also shot up, from about 400 in 2013, to more than 1150 in 2018 - a jump of more than 185 per cent.

And just a ten minute drive away, Murrumba State Secondary College has seen its enrolments almost triple over five years, from 569 in 2013 to more than 1500 in 2018.

According to ACARA's enrolment data, of the 100 fastest growing Queensland schools from 2013 to 2018, 69 were government schools, 12 were Catholic schools and 19 were independent schools.

These included 56 primary schools, 21 combined schools, 12 secondary schools and 11 special schools. 17 were located in Brisbane, while 12 were on the Gold Coast, 13 in Ipswich, and eight in Toowoomba.



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