Toowoomba and surrounds


​​​​The Toowoomba and surrounds geographic area of the Darling Downs includes all areas within a 50-minute drive from Toowoomba. Communities this captures includes Gatton, Laidley, Lockyer, Oakey, Pittsworth, Cambooya, Highfields, Crows’ Nest, Goombungee, Greenmount and all schools in between. We’ve compiled some information below about the key communities. This is not an extensive list, but these communities are representative of others in the area.​

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Heralded as the Garden City, Toowoomba is Queensland’s largest inland city and home to the iconic annual Carnival of Flowers every spring.

It is a fantastic location for teachers and their families, with 20 state schools scattered around the city, a playground every couple of blocks and plenty to see and do in and outside of Toowoomba. It even has its own university campus for teachers considering post-graduate qualifications or who have family members pursuing tertiary qualifications. Foodies will be delighted with a great selection of cafes and restaurants, and weekly farmers markets that have a plentiful selection of fresh, local produce. You’ll find everything you need right here in town and it won’t take you long to get there.

Its proximity to Brisbane and the coast makes it ideal for a weekend escape to the city or the beach. Equipped with an airport with direct access to international markets makes it convenient to take a longer school holiday trip to, well, just about anywhere!

Learn more about living in Toowoomba on the Toowoomba Regional Council website​.



Gatton is a farming community, located between Ipswich and Toowoomba, approximately an hours’ drive from inner Brisbane. This is a great location for teachers that will give you the best of both worlds: you’ll be close enough to the city for a weekend away, but with the benefit of abundant fresh produce, an affordable housing market, beautiful scenery, and the peace and tranquillity of a more laid-back rural lifestyle.

The local school, Gatton State School, is a close-knit school community with a large Special Education Program and an Early Childhood Development Class for children with disabilities who have not yet reached primary school age. You’ll find a mix of old and new school buildings (all air-conditioned) with a fridge in all classrooms. Students and teachers also have access to 2 computer labs and a STEM Lab. Large shady trees line the school oval, with several playground areas around the school for students to play and socialise. Our students are looking forward to meeting you.


Lockyer District State High School, also located in Gatton, provides students with a well-balanced curriculum, a wide range of subjects that cater for diversity of abilities, interests and career aspirations and a Special Education Program that supports the needs of students with disabilities. The school looks for staff who are passionate about supporting students to reach their potential and assist them when personal difficulties arise, with a care team in place to do so.

In addition, there are over 20 schools in the surrounding areas of Lockyer and Laidley,​ which means there are plenty of opportunities for teachers in this area.


There are many great reasons you should consider teaching in Laidley. With a backdrop of rich farmlands and stunning scenery, it’s hard to believe that Laidley is only a 60-minute drive to Brisbane’s CBD. If you currently live in the Ipswich area, you should definitely add Laidley to your list – it’s only a short drive away and you’ll be heading against the traffic instead of with it!

Many regard the community as friendly, making it a great place to bring your family. From scenic drives through Laidley Valley, to picnicking in Lions Park and relaxing on the banks of Lake Dyer (Bill Gunn Dam), you’ll enjoy the relaxed lifestyle living in this beautiful community can provide you.

Laidley District State School is a newer school with facilities that are modern and well-kept. Staff pride themselves on caring for each student at the school and are recognised as experts in their field. It is important to the school that they engage closely with their local community and partners. As a result, the school boasts awards for their work in community engagement and in the area of Indigenous education and partnerships. Learn more about the school on YouTube.

Laidley State High School is a positive and vibrant school community, providing a safe, supportive and high-quality learning environment for students from Laidley and its surrounding communities. Students, parents and staff have positive opinions about the school, teaching and learning, school operations and student outcomes. The school is actively implementing the School Wide Positive Behaviour Support framework and is focused on explicitly teaching expected student behaviours and recognising and rewarding positive behaviour by students.

Our students can’t wait to meet you.

Last updated 28 April 2022