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About Sibella

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  1. Sibella

    Childcare/schools in Point Cook

    Are you set on living in Point Cook? You can check out schools and their results on the myschools website http://www.myschool.edu.au where you can type in Point Cook and see what comes up. When we first moved we had a look at Point Cook / Sanctuary Lakes and although it is quite new and rentals are cheap I could not find one school I liked. We settled in Outer Eastern Melbourne which is not that expensive yet and here there are loads of good public and private schools to choose from as well as childcare centers by the dozen as it is a more established, older area. But if you have decided on Point Cook maybe someone else can assist you.
  2. We live in Wonga Park which is beautiful and 10 mins from Ringwood. You can also look at North Ringwood, Croydon North, Croydon Hills, Warranwood or Chirnside Park. Good schools as well. Also not all rentals around here are basic, we live in a beautiful modern double story house - check on http://www.realestate.com.au as suggested.
  3. Sibella

    Getting desperate in Melbourne

    We live in Outer Eastern Melbourne which is 40 mins on the train, 30 mins drive (not in peak time) from CBD. We rent a spacious 4 bedroomed plus study house for $630 a week. Lots of great schools in surrounding areas. Look in Warranwood, Warrandyte, North Croydon, Croydon Hills, North Ringwood, Wonga Park etc. Good luck - you sound like us, we have 3 kids and we ended up going for the house first and the area second as we really struggled to find a 4 bedroomed house. But we did get the second one we looked at though. This area is good as the houses are more spacious than ones closer to the city.
  4. Sibella

    Baby healthcare facilities, groups etc.

    Good suggestions above. Also try your local library as they also run story times for babies and toddlers. If you can't join a mothers group ask the nurse if there are any other groups you can join. At the clinic there are always notices about groups you can join - breastfeeding groups, mums under 25, etc. I'm going to attend a free sleep clinic tomorrow so lots of facilities for mums. I had my baby here but as she was my third I wasn't supposed to get a Mothers Group but asked the nurse and she included me in one which has been a lifesaver. I also take my baby to a playgroup and a music class. Also check out Essential Baby for local forums and discussions which also helps to get into the Ozzie groove a bit!! With regards to areas to live in we live in Outer Eastern Melbourne - areas around here are North Ringwood, Warranwood, North Croydon etc. but I see it's about an hour from Broadmeadows. So you might be better off looking at areas in the West like Point Cook, Sanctuary Lakes etc. - lots of poms live there. Good luck!
  5. Sibella

    Quality of schooling vs UK

    I had the opposite experience. In the UK my kids were in a supposedly excellent state school with great results (but no homework and a bit new age). My eldest enjoyed it very much and did really well and was in the top groups for most things. My youngest suffered in Reception as she was obviously not ready for school at age four and the teacher said she wasn't interested in reading. Fast forward to Australia, my eldest joined a state primary school in Grade 4 and is now in Grade 5/6 (Grade 5 of 5/6 composite class). Her confidence has taken a bit of a knock because she isn't in the top groups anymore, she gets more homework than in the UK (but still only a few spelling words and a spelling sheet a week) and discovered her learning lacked in quite a few areas, especially grammar and punctuation. In the UK the kids were encouraged to write freely but their work weren't corrected and they also didn't learn any grammar rules and things like digraphs etc. So she has quite a bit of catching up to do. Also they use IT a lot more here - each child has access to a notebook where in the UK they usually had to share so I think my daughter always ended up watching instead of doing. They also use ipads in class. She recently had to do a project on Powerpoint and it was a big learning curve for her. My six year old on the other hand is much more confident and doing much better in Prep here because she is older and the way they are taught to read is more structured than her old school so she is flying through her books with confidence. So for us the schools here are better, it depends on what the UK school is like compared to the new one in Australia. And like opinions it can vary a lot.
  6. I am just acting on instructions given to me, but personally I feel applicants have nothing to lose by applying.
  7. The consulting company ensured me that Permanent Residents can and should feel free to apply.
  8. Thanks for bumping Petals because I haven't had any replies so far!:sad:
  9. Sibella

    Good suburbs within 30-40 min train commute of CDD

    Agree Starlight7, we live in Wonga Park, also check out Croydon North, Ringwood North, Warranwood, Croydon Hills, and even East Ringwood, Heathmont etc. Good variety of both public and private schools, close to the Yarra Valley wineries, close to the river at Warrandyte for quaint shopping, coffee shops and long river walks, near the Dandenong Ranges with it's forest and villages and 30 mins to the city or the beach. We pay $630 per week for a huge 4 bed house plus study. You also might get one with a pool because many in this area have one and the properties are larger than inner city ones. Good luck!
  10. Sibella

    Canberra or Melbourne

    We live in Melbourne and haven't been to Canberra, so can't really compare. But the way you describe your life in the UK I think you will enjoy Melbourne more. You can live about 30 mins drive / 40 mins on the train from the city and feel like you are living in the countryside. We live 20 mins from the Yarra Valley Wineries and 15 minutes from Mount Dandenong which has beautiful spots for walking and quaint villages for shopping. But then it's still a quick drive to Melbourne where there are a million things to do. Also lots of nice shopping centers in the suburbs if you need something closer.And then there are the beaches - city beaches like Brighton & Mordialloc for a quick swim and lunch at one of their lovely cafes, or if you want to make the day out of it drive up to the Mornington Peninsula or the other way down the Great Ocean Road.Also Canberra gets really cold in winter. Melbourne is also cold but more in a rainy kind of way, not totally freezing. And in summer you'll have a few hot hot days followed by a thunderstorm and some lovely cooler days.I just think Melbourne has more to offer.
  11. A Consulting Company urgently need people for a contract that currently runs for 3 years from 1 July. Will need to be Australian citizens/permanent residents and achieve NV1 security vetting. · Teradata Support Specialist · Informatica Support Specialist · Cognos Support Analyst · Security Specialist · Storage Support Analyst · Identity & Access Management · PMO Analyst · DBA – Oracle · Performance Tester · SAS / ESSRI Support Specialist This is a great opportunity for those heading to / already in Canberra. If you are interested please send me a pm asap!
  12. They urgently need people for a contract that currently runs for 3 years from 1 July. Will need to be Australian citizens/permanent residents and achieve NV1 security vetting. · Teradata Support Specialist · Informatica Support Specialist · Cognos Support Analyst · Security Specialist · Storage Support Analyst · Identity & Access Management · PMO Analyst · DBA – Oracle · Performance Tester · SAS / ESSRI Support Specialist This is a great opportunity for those heading to / already in Canberra. If you are interested please send me a pm asap! Thanks a million!
  13. Why does it have to be a new house? The reason I ask is that established suburbs normally have better infrastructure and variety of schooling options. We live in the Outer Eastern suburbs of Melbourne near North Croydon / North Ringwood area and there are lots of great primary schools in this area without catchments. Chirnside Park has some new developments as well and is just a bit further North. There are some new developments but mostly established housing, the house we live in is about 10 years old but stunning, we'd never be able to afford to buy such a house though. You can also look at the Bayside areas if you want to live close to the beach, friends of ours live there - Aspendale Gardens, etc. There are lots of new developments it seems. They say Altona is nice though, best thing is to come and look for yourself. We thought at first we'd like to be near the beach but it's too flat for us. We like it here in the hills!! Also don't limit yourself to one area, we liked Eltham as well but couldn't find a 4 bedroomed house there, I listed about 10 suburbs on realestate.com.au where I was searching for a rental property. Only after we found the house we liked did we investigate the area and the schools and it all worked out well. So I'd say take a few weeks and just drive drive drive, stop at schools, go into shopping centers, check the schools' results on the myschool website and get a feel of the suburbs. Good luck!
  14. Sibella

    Croydon & Ringwood Areas

    We live in Wonga Park which is next Croydon North which is a nice area. Also Croydon Hills, Ringwood North, Warranwood, Park Orchards. All good schools in these areas as well. Basically when you drive on the Maroondah Highway from Melbourne the suburbs on your left are nicer (that is my perception only). But there are hidden pockets in Croydon, Heathmont, Ringwoood East etc. on the other side of the highway which is also good. Let me know if you need more info.
  15. Sibella

    Schools in Melbourne - best suburbs to rent in

    We live near Park Orchards (as suggested above) and most of the primary schools in this area are very good and there are no catchment areas so you can pick and choose the school you like. The good areas around here are Ringwood North, Croydon North, Warranwood, Wonga Park, Croydon Hills and the schools in these areas get very good results on the Myschool website. Also loads of private schools - Good Shepherd Lutheran Primary, Luther College (Secondary), Holy Spirit Catholic Primary, Yarra Valley Grammar, Oxley College. Close to the Eastlink so 30 mins to the beach at Mordialloc (which we visit often) and 30 mins drive to Melbourne. Close to Eastland, Knox City and Westfield Doncaster shopping centers. Train link from Croydon or Ringwood - 40 mins to Melbourne. Close to the Yarra Valley Wineries for drives and lunch on a Sunday or Dandenong Ranges with the villages of Sassafras and Olinda to visit. And the river, the Bakery and play area at Warrandyte is one of our regular hangouts. It's beautiful here - hilly with lots of trees which we personally love. Properties are also larger than those closer to the city and the beach and 4 bed houses are easier to find (which is what we needed). Lots also have swimming pools which is nice (my kids swim with 2 sets of neighbours!) Negatives are that it's not close to the beach, the Maroondah Highway which goes straight from Melbourne right through all the suburbs to the wineries although useful with the variety of shops it provides is not very attractive. Also this is suburbia at its best, we like it but not everyone's cup of tea.