St Gerard’s Catholic Primary School was founded in 1964. The building project was undertaken by the Parish and built mainly by community volunteers who constructed a red brick building to provide three classrooms for the first students enrolled.
Fr Nolan invited the Parramatta Sisters of Mercy to develop the school. A Mothers’ Club was formed and a huge amount of time, patience and hard work was needed as our fledgling school slowly took shape.
Later that year Sister Le Merci (Sr Patricia Anderson) embedded a syllabus and processes into the growing school. Until Father Nolan purchased a small car for the use of the nuns, the parents had provided a roster to meet the daily transport needs of the sisters, between Parramatta and Carlingford.
The growth of the school was rapid and further building projects were done between 1967 and 1968 (again mainly from parent volunteers). In 1969, the playground was levelled and asphalt laid down in some sections. By 1975, enrolments reached 511 and the students were taught by three Sisters of Mercy and fourteen lay teachers.
In 2007, the parishes of Epping and Carlingford amalgamated to form the Parish of Epping and Carlingford. This was done under the pastoral guidance of Father Colin Blayney. This historical event was celebrated with a combined mass between the two parishes and a picnic followed to commemorate the occasion.
The tradition of service and support for the school is still evident in our school culture today. We owe much to Fr Nolan’s vision and the high standard of education established by the Sisters of Mercy. We are grateful to our nuns, priests and parishioners for their tireless work and compassionate service to St Gerard’s school. We can be proud of their contribution and only hope that we never lose that sense of ‘service to’ and ‘love of’ school, that our past generation displayed.