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Found 15 results

  1. There seem to be a few questions on here about Primary Schools in ACT and we have just gone through the process of researching, visiting and choosing a school so I though I would share my findings with anyone who is interested I did a load of research first from the UK in terms of "good" schools - alot of info came from this forum and alot came from other forums. I have a son who is gifted in Maths so I really wanted a good school for him. I do think you need to visit the schools when you get here if you can and alot of this can be arranged before you get here. Its well worth the time. I printed off a map of Canberra and put it next to my computer and shaded areas where there were the "target" schools and their catchment. I shaded area private schools differently. Jut this visual aid helped in me narrowing where we may be looking for housing and also allowed me to further research commute times and bus routes.... The list of schools I visited were: Gov schools: Curtin Primary North Ainslie Aranda Kaleen Torrens Private schools visited: Emmaus Christian School Holy Trinity , Curtin St Peter and St Paul, Garran Montsorri, Holder Girls Grammar School I wanted to visit more. Garran and Chapman Gov schools will not let you visit unless you have a confirmed place to live and paperwork to prove it in their Catchment. They must get innundated! Both are EXCELLENT schools with excellent NAPLAN results but I could not visit them. If we decided to live in either of these areas we were prepared to take a chance on the schools but nothing happened to be suitable and available at the time and this is a key thing as the rental market here is a nightmare. Will maybe post findings on this separately if people are interested. There were more private schools I also wanted to visit but they were full and therefore did not want even a speculative visit for going onto a waiting list. You can check the results of a school my going to http://www.myschool.edu.au/ and finding the school you want and clicking on NAPLAN on the left hand side. I would look at results in "numbers" as the graphs and others are confusing. I would also not take the results completely to heart as its a relatively new thing - but I do thnk its fairly good indicator of things and is a good benchmark - some may disagree. I just wanted schools that were above or exceptionally above average in most of the areas tested as this was a promise I made to myself on moving here in that I just wanted an excellent school for my son. All the Gov schools I visited were good and I would not be worried if my son went to any of them however not all were best fit for him - some had an Arts focus and were creative, some focussed on other areas etc...but once I had a short list of favourite schools we narrowed our search on houses to certain areas. I have to say if you look at the "ranking" of the schools I visited, they all had relatively good results so Im not sure how the other schools I did not visit were so cannot comment... All schools in Canberra (and rest of Ox I think) received a massive grant of around $1,5 million dollars when the world went into recession, to inject money into the local building trade so they all have a new gymnasium, library or hall or something. This applied also to private schools. In comparison to the Private schools, I would say places like the grammar school are in a class of their own but I did not choose it as they had this strange policy of wanting to put my already advanced son back a year into Pre School instead of Kindergarten which is where his age allows him to be, simply because he was a boy and therefore may not be "mature" enough!. Im sure if I pushed it they would have said ok to Kinder but it was not for us in the end.. I really liked Emmaus and have put both my kids on the waiting list there and my son will go to North Ainslie in the meantime. Some private schools are definately better - just better equipped, better results, seem better organised, facilities are newer and the libraries are lovely. That said Torrens primary had a gorgeous library and I though this was an EXCELLENT government school and was definately in my short list and would have chosen this over some of the private schools I saw. its all a matter of taste and what your child needs. The problem with the very good private schools is that they all have MASSIVE waiting lists and I mean a 2 - 3 years long at least and so we did not have any choice. If I did I would have chosen Emmaus. I like Holy Trinity Catholic school in Curtin but Curtin Primary which is a government school was just as good in some ways (if a bit chaotic). If we lived in Curtin I would have chosen Holy Trinity simply on the fact that it was smaller in size but eveything else was the same and Curtin has a good "gifted" scheme. When we arrived we looked at houses in ALL areas (except Tuggeranong) and we looked at things like commute to Civic/public transport as well as the area of the shortlisted schools. We loved the space in the massive houses in Gunghalin but when I did some research, the schools results near to houses we looked at were not great, this was only in a few of the suburbs and we decided it was too far so did not research too many of the areas here.. We wanted to try and get away with having one car (Cars are EXPENSIVE) hence choosing the Inner North in the end. We liked Belconnnen and looked in Aranda but no houses came up in the time we were here and looking and I think this is what you also need to consider. I think you need to have a few areas to consider as had we found a house in Aranda we also would have moved there.. but nothing came up.. My husband came on a 457 visa and we were advised my Saskia Hancock at the Dept of Education here that unless we were on the SOL list, we would have to pay an annual fee of 9.9K$ for going to government school. Some private schools are cheaper (the catholic ones) but the problem in some of the good ones is getting a place. Holy Trinity, St Peter and St Paul had space, Radford who I approached did not, Emmaus does not, St Josephs who I approached did not... There are many which do have space of course but you will find that the ones with excellent results will not (much like the UK) As it happened, my husbands work is on the SOL list so once we had found a property on a long term rental, we emailed Saskia Hancock stating we wanted to register Ethan at North Ainslie as we were in the catchment. She issued us a waiver, told the school of this and we enrolled him directly with the school. It is worth taking time to research and people talk about more than 50% of the population put their kids in Private schools and this may scare lots of people off and make you think that the gov schools are terrible. I do think you have to chose carefully and do your research. Definately some gov schools have problem kids there who may have been chucked out of all the local private schools... and this is a difference in that gov schools have to take kids in their area even if they are full and cannot select whereas the private system can. Look at the demographics of the area, the houses etc..I think this is often a good indication of the school overall. Definately the facilities in the private school are better, but there are good gov schools. Most private schools have lower fees also than the government imposed $10K. (The grammar is around 11K so you may as well consider this if you have to pay the gov fee. private schools are generally around 2-4K a year so not that expensive. Just find a good one that has a spot. Hope all this helps...happy to answer any questions Angela
  2. I am new in this forum and my family of 5 are moving to Melbourne in early Jan 2012 from Singapore. We have 3 kids ( 7yr old, 4 yr and an infant ) and we are looking for a relatively good (of course it's subjective) primary school near CASEY or MONASH which will offer Mandarin/Chinese as a LOTE program. I do not know if it is OK to start my child in term 2 as we need time to settle in with housing etc.... What are the benefits or not if we start our child later then earlier... Please give me your comments!!! Thanks in advance!
  3. munchbaby99

    Anybody work in gov either in Oz or UK

    Hey, I'm trying to find the best way to approach the visa process. I have worked in central Gov for 16 years odd and for the past 8-9 I have been in procurement (of which I see there are loads of jobs which is encouraging). Does anybody work in gov in Oz? Particularly Qld? I want to try to find out if I would be able to get a job in government as that is where I have worked all of my working life and was hoping that its seen as great experience. Any advice would be great!! Thanks Katie
  4. Guest

    Ozzie Gov- whats happening

    Hi all peeps in OZ Is there any breaking news yet if the Ozzie government have yet sorted out their HUNG PARLIMENT and who's in bed with who???? Just getting fed up waiting for the SMP's to be announced if they ever are going to be..............and I've heard nothing yet that a pack has been made.... HURRY UP .... GET US OUT OF HERE :arghh: Judy & Daz
  5. Hi all After finding about the new changes announced this week, hopefully i'm not the only one to be confused with it all. Having recently got our SS in January for WA after 27 weeks of waiting OH skill is a carpenter ( WA said 16wks when we first applied in july 09) does anyone have any idea's how these changes will affect us. We have now sent the form off to change our 175 visa lodged in June 09 to a 176 visa.. So how does this new change effect us???? we will go up to a priority 2 cat once the new changes come into affect in July if our visa is not processed before then (now cat dont know if we are a 3 or 5 at mo with all the changes) or is it the case we can loose everthing if my OH trade is not on the new sol list that will be issued at the end of april....can they go back on what we have so far gained??? I just hope and pray that we move up the priority ranks and not lose everthing we have been paying and waiting out for as I know a lot of us pio's are now in the 176 awaiting visa queue and got SS already???? CONFUSED TO SAY THE LEAST..... HELP ANY ADVISE Judy & Darren:realmad:
  6. Guest

    ask gov if i can buyhouse ???

    hi all, just got back from brisbane and really like it, but the estate agent out there said to buy a house in oz even tho we have perm visa we have to ask the goverment first before we can buy which i have never heard of before just wondered if anyone else has or even done it ??? cheers dee
  7. I applied for the Australia Needs Skills Expo, now to be held in London only as Manchester was cancelled. I have just received the following email from them Further to your interest in the Australia Needs Skills expo, we would like to make you aware of the Australian State and Territory Government Migration Open Day to be held in Manchester on Sunday 21st June. For full details and to register, please refer to the attached flyer. Regards Australia Needs Skills Expo team Australian High Commission London WC2B 4LA The attachment directed me to web site australianstates.co.uk where you can register interest. They're looking for Doctors Nurses Allied Health Professionals Engineers Trades and Construction Workers Information Technology Professionals Assuming I have not been invited to the Expo, oh well, I'll see if they invite me to this one & hope this is of some use to people. Shel
  8. kernow43

    Ex Bank of England gov dies

    Eddie George Ex Governor of the Bank of England has died of cancer. Eddie was a cousin of mine and retired to Cornwall.:sad:
  9. Guest

    UK Gov , stimilus ?

    Whats going on in the uk ,can any one let me know . Whats the uk gov ,doing. Is there a stimilus plan in action. Is it still doom and gloom or are things on the up. Many thanks eddie.
  10. Guest


    Hey Do you know what tax form we need to fill in by June 09 to get the $950 from the gov? Thanks x:goofy:
  11. A bit of good news for those buying an established homes but you must get in before Jun 09 The offer, effective immediately, triples the $7000 grant now payable under the existing first-home owners grant if new entrants to the market sign a contract on a newly built home before June 30 next year. It doubles the grant to $14,000 for contracts signed on established homes 09. Cheers Paul
  12. Is anyone else having trouble with the Immi website? I can access the status page of my Visa application, I can access the page for attaching additional documents but each time I try to add them I get error messages. However I can't access any other immi web pages...just get unusual error messages...is it me ?
  13. Hi all, Can anybody tell me if they went to the Queensland Government stand at the Expo a couple of weeks ago and if they said they would sponsor you.And if so have they emailed you yet.I read a post a couple of days ago and some people have heard from one of the stands for mining company I think. Please if anybody can help I would love to here from you. Luv Gwen x x x :sad::sad:
  14. Hi all Just started the visa process buit with the change of gov. I have been wondering how it will affect the immigration system. We're having our skills assessed now and compiling info. for lodging visa application when the vetassess come back, so I guess nothing should change too rapidly. Does anyone know the new gov. policy/opinion on migrants? Will they open the gates or keep things as they are? Thanks hope2
  15. Guest

    au gov date for truckers

    hi all any one any info if the au are gonna let truckers in on the skilled list or even just in cant find any sites with this info any help in getting us out there would be great thanks all love from scotland