When you are new in Australia one of the biggest questions that bothers you, is deciding which suburb to live in. While zeroing down on a suburb, choosing a school for your kids is one of the most critical factors that you need to consider. This article will help you understand all that you need to know about schools in Australia, which school to opt for, types of schools etc.
The Australian academic year starts in February and continues till late November. Summer vacations are in December and January.
Academic schedule in Australia normally follow a schedule of 10 weeks of classes followed by 2 weeks of school holidays. Holiday periods are normally around the months of April, June-July, and September-October.
Schools In Australia –
This table will help you understand the type of schools, corresponding grades and permissible age for admission.
|Grades||Approximate Age For Admission||School Type|
|Preschool||3 to 5 years|
|Primary School||5 to12 years|
|Secondary or High School||12 to 18 years|
Government Schools –
Government (or state) schools (also sometimes called “Public Schools”) are operated by the respective state government. They mostly offer free education*; however, some schools might ask parents to pay a contribution fee and a materials and services charge. Public schools can be divided into two categories: open and selective schools. Public schools accept all students from their government-defined catchment area. Many public schools have selective classes in which better performing students are offered extended and accelerated learning. Selective government schools are considered more prestigious than open government schools. They have high entrance requirements and cater to a much larger area. Entrance to selective schools is often highly competitive. (source: Wikipedia).
*Public school education is normally free for children of citizens and permanent residents. Children of people on temporary visas like student visas, working visas must pay school fees. These fees vary according to the age of your children and the state where you will live. Approximate fees are around 4,000 to 17,000 AUD per year, per child.
Private Schools –
Commonly religion-based institutions (churches) or by independent bodies run these schools. These schools generally charge fees which sometimes could be as high as $25,000 a year. Although there is a general perception among certain parents that private school education is “better”, this is not necessarily true.
All schools in Australia, irrespective of whether they are public or private, follow a common curriculum which is decided by the Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA).
You can find schools in your locality here.
How to Get Admission For Your Children?
If you wish to enroll your child in a government school, you need to visit the school in the suburb where you live and seek admission for your child. All students living in the “catchment area” of a school can be admitted to that particular school.
Before your child moves to Australia do not forget to ask your pediatrician to provide an immunization record of your child.
Although this is not compulsory, the authorities might request you to provide your ward’s vaccination record at the time of admission.
If you have a specific question about schools in any city in Australia, do not hesitate to get in touch with your Chalo Australia Buddy. We will be happy to answer your queries.