Choosing a School for Your Child NSW

NSW Issue #37 2021

When it comes to education, we all want what’s best for our kids. Decisions about where your child goes to school are very personal and can be daunting. In Choosing a School for Your Child we aim to make this process as simple as possible. These days, choosing the right school is more than simply choosing between co-educational or single-sex, government or independent. Other factors to consider include educational options, the school’s philosophies, religious affiliation, the co-curricular programs and much more. Some schools are noted for their sporting and musical programs, while others have a strong vocational emphasis. Some make involvement in community service compulsory, while others offer an extensive range of languages and international exchange programs. Our regular features detail everything that a parent needs to know about the NSW education system and the HSC, RoSA and the IB. In order to keep you informed and up-to-date, we have compiled a series of articles that address important issues. Our comprehensive listings highlight information about government and independent schools in New South Wales, divided by location for easy reference.

Universal Wellbeing PTY Limited

in this issue

2 min
from the editor

Welcome to another issue of Choosing A School For Your Child magazine. As editor, I had the chance to speak to many schools about the innovative approaches of staff, students and parents in 2020, during and after the COVID-19 lockdown. Take a look at our feature, learning in lockdown (from page 32), to see the various changes that schools made, often very quickly, to adapt to new ways of learning. One common denominator in all schools was that student wellbeing was always the top priority, and Roseville College was one school that comes to mind here. “Roseville College adapted the government’s language of ‘social distancing’ —which translates well for adults — to “physical distancing”. The reason was to make the health requirements clear to children that the risk of COVID-19 spreading…

16 min
education 2021/2022: the big picture

Education regularly undergoes changes, so it’s important to have a thorough understanding of the current educational curriculum, policy and teaching methods when choosing a school for your child. Here’s an overview of what to expect from your child’s years of schooling. Australian curriculum The national curriculum is produced by the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) in consultation with educators. The Australian curriculum sets out the core knowledge, understanding, skills and general capabilities important for all Australian students. It describes the learning entitlement of students as a foundation for their future growth and makes clear what young Australians should learn as they progress through their school years. It is also the foundation for the high-quality teaching required to meet the needs of Australian students. ACARA developed the Australian curriculum in consultation with…

8 min
choosing a school for your child

Schools vary greatly in their emphasis, philosophy, activities, staffing and costs. It’s more than just a choice between private and public schooling as there are many factors to consider. We are fortunate in Australia that our education offerings are of a very high standard and we have a large range of options from which to choose. Because you want to match the best school with the interests and abilities of your children, this often requires a considerable amount of footwork to visit schools to see the facilities on offer and to speak with staff and principals. When judging schools, you should be persistent, well researched and have a clear understanding of the New South Wales education system — as well as the choices available — before making your final decision. Ask your child Your…

18 min
education options in nsw

The choice within the NSW public school system has greatly increased in recent years. Your child is automatically entitled to a place in their local high school, but you can also apply for a place at non-local high schools, such as single-gender, specialist, selective, sports or agricultural high schools. You can potentially take advantage of increased specialisation in the public education system. Some restrictions do apply. Students from outside a school’s designated local enrolment area can be offered a place only if space permits after local students have been accommodated. Additionally, schools such as selective and agricultural high schools have special enrolment criteria based on academic merit. Selective and agricultural schools Currently in NSW, there are 17 fully selective schools, four selective agricultural high schools, 25 high schools with selective classes and a…

11 min
understanding the rosa, hsc and ib: a concise guide

Today’s Higher School Certificate (HSC) offers more than 110 courses, including a range of nationally accredited Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses. Depending on the subject choice, NSW students can graduate with a Higher School Certificate, a nationally recognised VET qualification, credit transfer into TAFE NSW courses and/or an Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR). The Higher School Certificate (HSC) The HSC is an internationally recognised qualification for students who have successfully completed secondary education in NSW. The HSC is flexible and accessible to all students. There’s a wide variety of subjects to choose from for the HSC. The syllabuses make it clear to everyone what students are expected to learn and be able to do in each course by the end of Year 12. Sample examination questions and marking guidelines help students set goals…

2 min
inspirational principals

Lee MacMaster, college principal (K-12) of St Gregory’s College Campbelltown What made you want to enter teaching? I always loved school and had fantastic teachers who I respected and looked up to. I enjoyed learning different things and the ways teachers made learning enjoyable. I wanted to do the same in my life — help others to learn and grow. My teachers made me think outside the square — to be innovative and resilient. What do you like most about working in a school? I love the environment we work in because I can witness on a daily basis the impact that education can have on young people. It is a privilege to work with young people and see the strong relationships they build with teachers who care for them and want to see…