For most parents, this is a big decision at the best of times. But when you have just moved halfway across the world to a completely different country, how do you choose?
And that’s not the only problem, here in Australia we have state schools, (which, confusingly, can also be referred to as public schools) Catholic schools and private schools. I’ll give you a link to a post with more information about that shortly, but for now, here’s what I think.
State vs Private
Many people, when they come to Australia, feel that the best option for their child or children would be a private school. We were the same, we’d even put our name on the waiting list of a private school, even though our daughter was only 3 1/2 when we got here.
But then, once we had settled into the community, we discovered that the locals all loved the nearby state school. And when I say nearby, I mean 5 minutes walk. The private school, on the other hand, would have required a (minimum of) 45 minute round trip by car.
Oh, and we would have had to pay the fees. Again, more about those later.
Our daughter is now seven (well, as at July 2011) and she (and we) love the local state school. She comes out of there smiling everyday and looks forward to going in the morning. And when she does have to go to high school, the reputation of the one nearest to us is also really good.
So don’t feel you have to do go the private, state schools here in Australia are pretty good.
But how good?
The government set up a website where you can check the performance of all schools in Australia. I made a video about it….
To check out school performances for yourself, click on myschool.
More useful links:
I have several posts about schools….
- Here’s the original post with the myschool video.
- This one is about state & private schools and school fees.
- This is about my daughter’s prep year.
- And this about her first year in a state primary school.
- This is about tuckshop or school dinners.
- This is about school holidays and things to do.
- This compares Australian Education with the UK and USA
- Be aware of State School Fees for Temporary Visa Holders in Australia
- And here are More Tips on Choosing an Australian School
- Find out At What Age Do Children Start School in Australia?
- For high schools see Choosing a High School in Australia: State or Private?
- For more on school fees Cost of Private School Education: Australia and the UK Compared