NSW reviews cult school's registration

The New South Wales Board of Studies is reviewing the registration of a school run by a doomsday cult which has received more than $300,000 in Federal Government funding.

St Joseph's School, near Nowra, is run by the Order of St Charbel, which has been banned by the Catholic Church because of its teachings.

The Wollongong Diocese has been investigating and issuing warnings to the order for at least 20 years.

Education Minister Andrew Refshauge expects to have the results of an investigation within a week.

Dr Refshauge says while the school has been cleared of similar claims in the past, there are now stricter laws governing the accountability of private schools.

"We've had these allegations about this particular school and those particular other associated people before," he said.

"They've been investigated and found not to be true but I do want this allegation investigated, I want it investigated by the Board of Studies, using the new legislation on accountability."

Board of Studies president Professor Gordon Stanley says complaints have been made against the school.

"Some issues have been drawn to our attention and the school's registration is being reviewed," he said.

"Our concern, and schools are registered depending on their religious perspective or any other perspective, [is] simply in terms of their capacity to deliver the curriculum, the mandatory curriculum which is a requirement for all schools in New South Wales."

He says the board will not make judgements about the religious context of the school.

"There are lots of religious groups that have varying reasons for being involved in schools," he said.

"Our task and our responsibility is to make sure that the school is a properly constituted body in terms of its legal entity and to inspect to see that students are in fact being taught in accordance with the New South Wales curriculum."

"If they meet those requirements, then that's an appropriate basis for registration."

"Schools have faith bases - there are all kinds of philosophical basis on which schools are run - the judgements about those are really judgements for parents in the community that wants to support that school."