Named after St Finbar, a monk from Cork in Ireland, our school is steeped in a rich Catholic and Irish history.
Historically, the parish of St Finbar’s is closely associated with the first railway that was built through the Glenbrook Gorge tunnel. The hundreds of Irish men working on this tunnel wanted a Catholic education for their children. Thanks to the strong commitment of parents and the parish, the little Church of St Finbar, built in 1912, became a makeshift school. The Sisters of St Joseph ran the school until the building of the tunnel was finished and the workers moved on.
Following the end of the Second World War, the population of Glenbrook increased and in 1954 a small wooden building was erected and became St Finbar’s. Again, the Sisters of St Joseph stepped in to educate the 40 founding students.
Brick buildings and amenities were added in the 60s and 70s, with the work being carried out by the parishioners. And in February 1994 more extensive building works were added, including a new administration block and a library.
The school underwent a major refurbishment in 2000 with the classrooms being renovated and new amenities added. Further refurbishments were made in 2007 and 2008, and again in 2011 and 2012, through the Australian Government’s Building the Education Revolution (BER). The BER enabled a complete refurbishment that has helped the school move into flexible learning spaces that reflect a 21st century learning environment. The Fr Barlow room, which housed the original church and school over 100 years ago, was completed in 2013.