Poor Clare Sisters began St Clare’s College, Waverley in 1884 at the invitation of Fr Patrick Dunne OFM, Guardian of the Franciscan Friary at Waverley. He made the request through Archbishop Vaughan, who was anxious for Religious Orders to maintain Catholic schools after government funding ended in 1883. The Sisters took over the local St Charles’ parish school, previously staffed by lay teachers.

They were also asked to establish a school for ‘young ladies’. First known as Our Lady’s High School and later as St Clare’s College. In 2011 the Poor Clare Sisters made the decision to hand over the governance of the College to the Archdiocese of Sydney.