St Joseph's School te aroha

The area of Te Aroha began to grow with many new gold miners and their families arriving – all hoping to find gold! The Parish Priest, Fr Kehoe, invited the Auckland Sisters of Mercy to join him in Te Aroha to help care of the many new Catholic families.

St Joseph’s School A, Te Aroha

So, the Sisters bought a property with 2 houses on it – one was used as a convent for the Sisters to live in, and the other house was used as a school house. On the first day of school in 1903 there were just 7 children at the school. The number of children at the school quickly grew and the Sisters soon needed to use rooms in their convent as classrooms too.

The Sisters built a new large convent in 1908, which included rooms for classrooms. A new larger school was built in 1927, so the Sisters no longer needed to use their convent as classrooms.

St Joseph’s School B, Te Aroha

In 1930, St Joseph’s School became the first Catholic school in New Zealand to have buses travel around the Manawaru area, picking up Catholic children who lived too far away to walk to school each day.