Our College

Are you looking for something more for your children and their schooling?

Downlands College is an independent, Catholic, coeducational, day and boarding school with a long tradition of heart-centred and values-based education. Owned and conducted by the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart (MSC) with the assistance of a deeply committed group of teachers and support staff, Downlands has a long history of academic, sporting and cultural achievement and is the school of choice for many families.

At Downlands, you are part of a family built on strong traditions. Strong values and Senior role models encourage students to make wise choices. We want students to do well at school and also in life, by being good people - strong in mind spirit and faith.

downlands003col-copyAt Downlands, families have choice:
  • Broadest curriculum 
  • Huge range of sports and co-curricular activities 
  • Extensive arts and cultural programme 
  • Onsite rural centre 
  • Vibrant and active community 
Our heart-centred approach promotes academic excellence, encouraging students to integrate faith with life and to develop a love of learning. As school should be a place to learn about life, our coeducational College reflects the world in which we live. A Downlands education prepares students for the world beyond the classroom, academically, socially and morally.

Visit our beautiful campus to truly understand what makes Downlands the school of choice.

Why choose Downlands?
  1. Community. As a Missionaries of the Sacred Heart (MSC) College, our pastoral care activities engage Downlanders in a wide range of social justice activities beyond the classroom. Many schools talk about it, but at Downlands we live our commitment to a strong and vibrant, faith-based community every day.
  2. Educational Excellence. With a diverse range of subjects to choose from, students have a pathway to their life beyond school and have available to them both academic (OP focussed) and vocational training choices. 
  3. Cultural, Ag and Sport options. With teams in more than 14 local and regional sports competitions, a thriving Cattle Show Team and extensive student involvement in arts, music and drama activities, there truly is something for everyone at Downlands. 
Click here to find out more about enrolling at Downlands.


Our College CREST

logo-onlyThe Downlands Crest consists of a horizontally-divided field in College colours: royal blue and cardinal red.

The upper of the shield carries a gold gryphon, and the lower half bears the Maltese Cross of the state of Queensland. The shield is surmounted by the heart crest with the letters SHC (Sacred Heart College) supported by rams' horns and ears of wheat, to symbolise the College's setting in the Darling Downs.

The gryphon emblem (half eagle, half lion) embraces the strength of the bird and animal kingdom and, together with the Cross, proclaims in simple design, the motto of Sacred Heart Colleges: Fortes in Fide - Strong in Faith.



Downlands Day Houses

As a Catholic school situated in the charism of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart, we have a “story to enter; a language to speak; a group to belong to; a way to pray; a work to undertake; and a face of God to see.Fr Claude Maréchal, Assumptionist Superior General, 2001

Our Day Houses honour the memory of the men recognised as important co-founders, with Jules Chevalier, of the MSC, and of the ‘Father’ of the Australian Province of the MSC – Fr Pierre Marie Treand MSC. All belong to a particular time in MSC history; all were people of great virtue and were Fr Chevalier’s most faithful and constructive collaborators during the vital years of the founding of the MSC. They were also his oldest and most trusted friends.

The naming of the Day Houses after these MSC offers an opportunity for us to deepen our knowledge of our Founder and our identity, values and distinctiveness as an MSC School; to learn more about these co-founders; and to emulate their virtues.

The Day House crests were designed by our talented Graphic Designer, current parent and past student, Mary-Kate Thomson (Class of 1986). Mary-Kate is passionate about the College and its ethos and has a keen interest in and love for our history. Mary-Kate has devoted a great deal of time and thought into researching icons and symbols, then distilling their essence so as to capture the right graphics for the figures after whom the Houses are named.

The crests, each in the shape of a shield and each with a ribbon on which is the House name, mirror the College Crest. There is a thread linking the crests – on each there is a flame, a symbol of ardent faith/hearts on fire and strong in faith; the Christian symbol of the cross calls us to the message of Jesus in the Gospel – to love one another; and the path through the stylised heart on each badge recalls for us the journey of faith and love towards what is true in life, while also reminding us of missionary travels to spread the MSC spirit and Gospel message.

JOUËT (pron. - jooeh) is named in honour of Fr Victor Jouët MSC, b. Corsica 1839 - d.1912.

Fr Jouët was a diocesan priest in Marseilles, France, before becoming an MSC. In doing so, he met significant resistance from his local bishop, but he persevered none-the-less.


Fr Jouët is remembered as being exuberant, highly intelligent, enthusiastic, and a man of great personal charm who was capable of conquering the most insurmountable obstacles. He had fire in his soul, an active spirit and an energetic will; he knew when to act and when to pause and wait before taking up again the activity he had begun. A man of ardent faith and of complete self-abnegation, he never thought of himself. Fr Jouët had a special devotion to Our Lady and he instituted the annual procession in honour of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart in Issoudun

Jouët crest colour and symbols:

Blue - the colour for Mary

Rose – hope, joy

Crown – sovereignty, Mary Queen of Heaven


PIPERON (pron. - piperrong) is named after Fr Charles Piperon MSC, b. Vierzon 1828 - d.1915.

Fr Piperon was a loyal friend to Fr Chevalier all his life. During his 60 years as an MSC he held positions of significant responsibility – as Novice Master 1880-1889, Assistant General 1869-1905 and was for a time Chaplain to the hospice and prison in Bourges, near Issoudun.


He was a perfect ‘second’ to Fr Chevalier, never aspiring to lead, but always ready to help and give what he believed was very little, but in fact was so much more. Fr Piperon is remembered as man who was a model of MSC virtues; everywhere, in all things and with everyone he was meek/gentle and humble of heart. In all difficulties, Fr Piperon always showed moral strength, force of will and strength of character. He was known for his charitableness to others, his zeal, goodness, affability and devotedness in dealings with both superiors and students. He was never seen angry, impatient or ill-humoured.

Piperon crest colour and symbols:

Purple – combines wisdom, humility, dignity, devotion and peace

Lamb – a symbol of meekness, gentleness, humble heart, as well as a symbol of faith and zeal (Lamb of God)


VANDEL (pron. - vondel) honours the memory of Fr Jean Marie Vandel MSC, b. Nernier 1808 - d.1877.

Fr Vandel joined the MSC late in life, at age 57; prior to that time, he was a diocesan priest, having been ordained in the Diocese of Lausanne, Switzerland, in 1846. He is often spoken of as the ‘second founder of the MSC’ and was highly regarded by Fr Chevalier for his wisdom, experience, zeal and holiness.


Fr Vandel enjoyed great respect and the affection of those amongst whom he worked. He was known for his humility and compassionate kindness, his spirit of piety, his patience and his natural modesty. He was a man of great gratitude for all that was done for him or given to him, so much so such that he was often moved to tears. This sense of gratitude marked Fr Vandel as a man of exceptional character. He may be remembered as a ‘quiet light’ for his steady strength and consistency. The light of his example, his faith, charity and patient kindness inspired many and gave them unforgettable memories of Fr Vandel. Fr Vandel founded the Apostolic School for boys wishing to become MSC, of whom there were 150 in its first year of opening in 1867 at Chezal-Benoît, close to Issoudun in France. 

Vandel crest colour and symbols:

Green – hope and new life (young MSCs emerging from the Apostolic School)

Open book – learning, knowledge, truth

Hands – strength, action, faith, prayerfulness


TREAND (pron. - trayon) is named after Fr Pierre Marie Treand MSC, b. Hermance, Switzerland 1856 - d.1926.

Fr Treand was a contemporary of Fr Chevalier. He was ordained in 1882 and after a time in England he came to Australia in 1891. The MSC had come to Sydney from France in 1885, to establish a supply base for their new missions in New Guinea that had been founded in 1882, near Rabaul. They originally settled in the Eastern suburbs of the expanding city of Sydney where they were given the parish of Botany Bay & Randwick. Soon the Congregation began to accept local Australian vocations and a seminary was established - Sacred Heart Monastery, Kensington, opened in 1897.


The Australian Congregation continued to grow and by 1905 a separate MSC Australian Province was established with Father Treand as the first Provincial. He continued as Provincial until 1913, and is known as the ‘Father’ of the Australian Province of the MSC. To this day, the Provincial of the MSC resides in Treand House, Sydney. Fr Treand was a man of great humility; he was spoken of with awe and reverence by all who knew him. He is remembered as an excellent retreat giver, spiritual director and counsellor.

Treand crest colour and symbols:

Red – colour of the dove when representing the wisdom and inspiration we draw from the Holy Spirit

Stylised Australia, with hints of ‘heart’.

Dove and olive branch – symbols of – wisdom, good counsel, peace, love, pastoral care, messenger (over the seas from France to Australia); the biblical dove (Noah’s Ark) flew across the waters.