Central Highlands


The Central Highlands geographic area of our Central Queensland region and covers the geographic area from Blackwater, west to Anakie, South to Springsure and as north as Clermont. We’ve c​​​ompi​​led some information below to help you decide where you might like to teach in this part of the region.


Emerald is a large country town, located 270 km west of Rockhampton. It is widely regarded as the hub of the Central Highlands and a gateway to one of the largest sapphire fields in the southern hemisphere. The town is supported by a wide range of industries including coal mining and agricultural production, such as cotton, grape, citrus and grain growing.

Emerald is a fantastic place to live, and has all the modern conveniences with a relaxed country vibe. Teachers who take up an opportunity in any of the four schools in town (Denison State School, Emerald State School, Emerald North State School and Emerald State High School) are welcomed into the community with open arms.

When you're teaching in Emerald, take advantage of living in this beautiful part of Central Queensland – there's so much to see and do on weekends and school holidays. You can try your luck at fossicking for sapphires on the gemfields or at catching one of the barramundi, golden perch, silver perch and red claw crayfish at Lake Maraboon/Fairbairn Dam. The local botanic gardens is the perfect spot for a weekend outing – there are trees to read a book under, a playground and picnic tables. It’s also a hot spot for park runners and charity fun runs. For a longer walk, we recommend exploring the Sapphire Gemfields Wetland Reserve, a 14 hectare protected area with a 3.6 km gravel walking trail and plenty of birdlife, flora and fauna to observe during your walk.

Fun fact about Emerald

​Emerald is home to the world's largest Van Gogh sunflower painting, one of seven in the world, perhaps as a tribute to the town's history of being a major sunflower producer.



Sitting under the watchful eye of Virgin Rock at the base of Mount Zamia, is the charming country town of Springsure. This is a rich pastoral community with cattle farms, sorghum, wheat and chickpea plantations, and picturesque fields of sunflowers, located approximately 66 km south of Emerald.

Springsure is in a beautiful part of the world with Virgin Rock and Mt Zamia Environmental Park, Minerva Hills National Park and Carnarvon Gorge all within driving distance. These provide striking views, towering sandstone cliffs, vibrant gorges, pre-historic cycads, diverse flora and fauna and Aboriginal rock art.

Springsure State School is a P-10 school with high levels of student attendance and satisfaction from parents and teachers. Many students are either fourth or fifth generation learners at the school so there is a strong sense of connection between the school and the local community. The school is broken into two campuses - primary and secondary and supported by a number of teachers, a Head of Curriculum, cluster Heads of Special Education, teacher aides and non-teaching staff.


Known as the Coal Capital of Queensland due to its rich mining history, Blackwater is located approximately 200 km west of Rockhampton. It is an ideal place to live, away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

On your weekends, head to the local Bedford Weir for a spot of fishing, boating or camping, or head 55 km east to the spectacular Blackdown Tablelands National Park. The tablelands are a sandstone island, which rises 600 metres above the surrounding plains, managed by the traditional owners, the Ghungalu Aboriginal people. You can expect to find waterfalls, dramatic cliffs, hundreds of plant and animal species, Aboriginal rock art and plenty of walking trails, lookouts and picnic areas here to enjoy.

There are two local primary schools in Blackwater and a secondary school which means greater opportunities for teachers.

Blackwater State School prides itself on a culture of collegial support and mutual respect. The school’s vision, ‘every day, in every classroom, every student is learning and achieving to the best of their ability’ is achieved by the expectation that teachers know their students, differentiate the curriculum to engage them and teach with a quality pedagogical framework. The learning environment caters for this by using a combination of small classes in large, open, air-conditioned classrooms with the support of teachers and teacher aides.

Three kilometres away, Blackwater North State School utilises innnovative strategies to ensure their students achieve success. They do this by ensuring students’ prior experiences, personal strengths and cultural backgrounds are integrated into their learning experiences. The school’s special needs program caters for students with varying requirements and has a focus on quality literacy and numeracy outcomes. Facilities incude two computer labs, a multi-purpose court, a hall and information centre. All buildings are air-conditioned and fridges are provided for lunch storage.

The local secondary school, Blackwater State High School is passionate about creating brilliant futures for their students and are dedicated to academic excellence, vocational achievement, and individual care for each student. As a member of the Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy, teachers have access to a variety of academic and vocational activities to support them to do this. The school has a spacious oval, 3 multipurpose courts, a cricket wicket, practice nets, grassed fields and undercover hand ball courts. They host an annual art show and a science night as well as a Biannual USA NASA Space Camp Tour. The school recognises its teachers are its greatest asset to student success both inside and outside of the classroom – will this be you?

Fun fact about Blackwater

Olympic track cyclist and 2016 Rio Olympics Flag Bearer and medalist, Anna Meares was born in Blackwater. In 2012, the town celebrated her success by naming a street after her in a new subdivision in the centre of Blackwater.


Woorabinda is a proud Aboriginal community located on the traditional lands of the Wadja (Wad-ja) and Gungaloo (Gun-ga-loo) Aboriginal peoples, 178 km from Rockhampton. There are more than 52 clans represented within the community. The town has a strong cultural presence with an enduring connection to the traditional languages, art and dance, with these cultural practices ever present throughout the community.

When you teach in Woorabinda, you’ll have access to the town’s many facilities, most of which are within walking distance. These include a hospital, stadium, sports complex, swimming pool, café, post office and butcher.

Woorabinda State School is a proud and deadly school. As a teacher in Woorabinda, you will work closely with the traditional owners, elders and community members who are important members of the school community, as part of the curriculum component of the school’s embedding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Perspectives agenda. The school has a strong history of teaching the two local traditional languages, Ghungalu and Wadja, as its official Language Other Than English (LOTE). Students learn science through a unique science and language program where the specialist science teacher works alongside a local language teacher. This is an exceptional contextualised curriculum for students.

There is so much strength in the Woorabinda community and the rich diversity amongst students and staff adds great value to the learning environment.


The small country town of Capella offers teachers a change of pace in an idyllic setting, with the majestic Peak Range as a backdrop. Capella is located just a short 40-minute drive north from Emerald.

On your weekends, unwind at the local aquatic centre where you’ll find free barbeque areas, a wading pool, plunge pool, shallow pool, an Olympic pool and sun loungers. If adventure is more your style, Capella is a great base to explore the volcanic mountain peaks, sapphire fields and forests of the Central Highlands.

Capella State School offers students individualised programs according to their needs and interests. The majority of students are from farming backgrounds, with some parents working in the local mining sector. The school features an interesting blend of traditional and modern school buildings, a covered sports court and covered outdoor gym, two computer labs and interactive whiteboards in classrooms. Teachers work closely with learning support staff, visiting support personnel and educational advisors, with specialist lessons provided in Physical Education, Music and Languages Other Than English.

Students from Capella and the nearby town of Tieri attend Capella State High School. The school caters for all students' needs and interests, and offers a distinctive curriculum with alternate pathways reflecting the rural and mining setting in which it operates.

 Capella photo gallery


A little over an hour’s drive north of Emerald, sits the rural town of Clermont. Here you’ll find a town with its own story to tell, from tragedy to prosperity. It is an important service centre in the area, supported by coal, gold and copper mining, cattle and sheep grazing and grain crops.

Some key locations in the area include Hood's Lagoon, a scenic watercouse full of birds and wildlife, with winding footpaths and boardwalks; Centenary Park, perfect for picnics and barbeques; and Peak Range National Park, a chain of striking mountains between Moranbah, Clermont and Dyart. Nearby Theresa Creek Dam is a popular spot for camping and water sports.

The local primary school, Clermont State School, has a reputation for combining inventive teaching methods with a compassionate approach. The school offers an innovative and engaging curriculum to meet the needs of every student. They achieve this through an uncluttered curriculum designed to accommodate the learning rates and styles of students and embrace the need for flexible approaches to learning.

Clermont State High School has a positive, inclusive and engaged school community. The school strives to equip their students for the future, so they can contribute socially, economically and culturally to a diverse society. They have adopted a research-based pedagogical framework which is focused on providing a high-quality education. The school offers a diverse curriculum underpinned by literacy and numeracy, providing academic and vocational opportunities for all. They are passionate about ensuring that students have access to opportunities to engage in science, technology, engineering, maths, coding and robotics, regardless of their rural location.

Clermont fun fact

It is believed the town was named after the French town, Clermont-Ferrand, the home of Oscar de Satge who at the time was the owner of Wolfang Downs in Clermont.​

Last updated 17 February 2022