St Joseph's College was founded in 1894 in Bracknell by the Sisters of St Marie Madeleine Postel, whose aim was to provide a good education in a warm and loving atmosphere. This simple aim is as appropriate today as it was when St Joseph's was founded over 100 years ago.
The order of St Marie Madeleine Postel was founded by Julie Postel who was born in Barfleur, France in 1756, and opened a school for girls in 1774. She was a pioneer in education, basing her teaching on the De La Salle method. In 1807 she formed a religious order with a group of her friends. She was named superior and took the name Marie Madeleine. The Sisters specialised in the education of girls, and ran their centres of learning according to the most enlightened educational principles of the time. Their schools were declared by the Schools Inspectors to be the best run establishments of their kind in the whole region.
During the last few year of her life, Mother Marie Madeleine saw her sisterhood expand and achieve great things. She died on 16 July at St Sauveur, venerated for her holiness and miracles, and was canonized in 1925. Her feast day is 17 July.
It is now over 200 years since Julie Poster founded the order. Today its sisters around the work are engaged in the education and service which she inspired them to undertake.
We are proud of our heritage and seek to maintain the original aim of the school. St Joseph’s also strives to provide a forward thinking and progressive education for all pupils, both academically and to prepare them for life in the 21st century.