Melbourne’s private schools are highly regarded, with top schools carrying a high reputation. Among Melbourne’s elite, the prestige associated with these schools can be as important as your suburb of residence in regards to social standing. As such, most private schools have a stringent enrolment process and long waiting list.
If you can afford to do so, and wish to enrol your child in a private school, it is highly recommended that you apply to several as soon as possible following your arrival to ensure your place on the waiting lists of schools that interest you. When places become available, the school will notify you the school year before your child is eligible to apply.
Application / Enrolment Process:
While each private school’s admission process varies, there are some commonalities that you should expect when applying.
You will be expected to pay a one-off application fee (usually around $150) and provide details for your children (including previous school records), personal details for yourself (names, occupations, income level of parents), and a detailed questionnaire concerning your child’s interests and aptitudes. If your child has yet to attend a school in Australia, they will likely also be asked to complete an equivalency test to determine at which Year Level they should enter the school.
Following assessment of your initial application, an interview will be scheduled to allow an administrator or teacher to meet you and your child, and determine their suitability for enrolment. At this stage it is also common for the school to inform you of your eligibility for any financial assistance (scholarships).
Scholarships for private schools are available, but limited. As such competition is fierce and involves several intensive examinations (and occasionally auditions or practical demonstrations in the case of music or sporting scholarships).
Tuition and Fees:
If your child is accepted, you will be required to pay the first semester’s tuition (which varies greatly, but generally falls between $3,000-$10,000), as well as costs associated with any uniforms or other equipment deemed necessary by the school.
The Association of Independent Schools of Victoria can be a useful resource to help you find a private school that suits your children. Visit them at http://www.ais.vic.edu.au.
Another helpful online resource is the Internet Schools Directory. Here you will be able to narrow down your search based on your child’s year level, region of residence, family religion, and educational environment preference (all-girls, all-boys, or co-ed). http://www.isd.com.au/index.php?rid=31
List of Melbourne’s most highly respected private schools for your comparison
|School name||Religious affiliation||School website||Years||Further information|
|Wesley College||Uniting||http://www.wesleycollege.net||Early Learning to Year 12||1500 students. Co-Ed.|
|Presbyterian Ladie’s College||Christian||http://www.plc.vic.edu.au||Early learning to Year 12||Girls School|
|St Michaels||Christian||http://www.stmichaels.vic.edu.au||Early learning to Year 12||Co-Ed.|
|Firbank Grammar||Christian||http://www.firbank.vic.edu.au||Early learning to Year 12||Girls School|
|Camberwell Grammar School||Christian||http://www.cgs.vic.edu.au||Early learning to Year 12||1200 students. Boys School|
|The King David School||Jewish||http://www.kds.vic.edu.au||Kindergarten to Year 12||Co-Ed.|
|Bialik College||Jewish||http://www.bialik.vic.edu.au||Prep to Year 12||1000 students. Co-Ed|
|St Kevins||Catholic||http://www.web.stkevins.vic.edu.au||Year 7 to 12||Boys School|