snifter

Useful links for schools, primary and high school

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    Many times I have sat down with the intention of typing this out and posting it but I always seem to get sidetracked :unsure: Anyway, today is the day!

     

    A few useful links for those looking at the education system here in SA. Anyone else with useful links or in general information (no one school specific here please) please feel free to add :smile:

     

     

     

    My School website. I found this one really useful with regards to information about individual schools. It covers data from 2008 onwards so you can see a bigger picture. When you view info on a particular school there is the menu on the left hand side of the page you can select from to see different aspects reported on. School profile, finances, NAPLAN, VET in schools, attendance and local schools (a handy map of other schools in the area).

     

    Bit of blurb from the site to give you an overview.

     

    My School enables you to search detailed profiles of Australian schools simply by entering a school’s name, suburb or postcode.

    On this site, you can quickly find statistical information about schools of interest to you and then compare their resources and performance with similar schools across the country.

    Before you start, it may be helpful to discover more about My School and the expanse of information you can access here. Click on the ‘More information’ tab above, or view the video below.

     

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    Then we have

     

    LINKS REMOVED AS NO LONGER WORKING

     

    Both of these list the top ranked schools for NAPLAN, state and private combined for SA. Top 150 for primary, top 100 for high schools. If a school you are looking for is not listed you can search for it individually using the search function. Covers from 2010.

     

    If you want more info on what NAPLAN is, what it means and so on, can read it here - http://www.nap.edu.au/naplan/naplan.html

     

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    Next, school zones.

     

    Primary schools are not all zoned, only some are. This is usually simply due to lack of spaces left for students and so they apply a zone to ensure kids living nearest get a chance first. I found zoning for primaries to not be a solid indication of its standing or what it offers or achieves etc. For some schools it did appear to be the case they were highly sought after so people buy or rent a house in the zone (same as for high schools later on), but some did not seem to be so in demand and even though they were zoned, seemed to be happy to take kids from outside the zone so long as they had space. My own personal experience with ours attending a zoned school is that in the past in slightly quieter years, a number of kids from outside the zone were accepted. In busier years where demand is high (for example, this years reception intake), the zone is applied strictly.

     

    Primary school zones - http://www.decd.sa.gov.au/locs/pages/default/pszoning/?reFlag=1

     

    All state high schools (Urrbrae is the only one not zoned that I know of, its an agricultural school) are zoned. Living within the zone (and able to prove it with a years lease at least) is the requirement to attend generally (I can't comment on exceptions made as I don't know of any personally but if it can happen, happy for people to say).

     

    Some state high schools offer programmes that kids from outside the zone can apply for with a view to getting on them and attending the school. Brighton HS for example, certain sport (IIRC its volleyball) and music talent (2 instruments played to the standard required I think it is) can see you accepted from outside the zone. Blackwood HS offers netball and Aussie rules football programmes with pretty high standards for academic side also. A few high schools offer the Ignite programme. If you live outside a zone but are interested in it see if it offers anything like any of these. May not, but its worth the time spent to check and see.

     

    High school zones - http://www.decd.sa.gov.au/locs/pages/default/pszoning/?reFlag=1

     

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    OSHC - Out of School Hours care. This runs at many/most schools , before school and after. Also vacation care during school holidays where there are a number of day trips each week plus on site days. Prices will vary. For example, our school we pay $9 for before school care, $19 for after school, till 6:15pm. General cost for a full day during vacation time is $48-50

     

    Here is a PDF of OSCH providers http://www.decd.sa.gov.au/docs/documents/1/SitesServicesOSHC.pdf

     

     

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    A couple of other things might be of use -

     

    Packed lunches seem to be the norm. Schools generally do have a canteen of some sort where 'lunch' can be ordered daily or snacks purchased. Good packed lunch bags (with a cool pack in in hot weather) are the way to go for most. Also in hot weather consider getting a drinks bottle you can either freeze 2/3rds full overnight and then top up with water in the morning or one you can bung masses of ice cubes in.

     

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    No hat no play rule - Sun hats are required to play outside for about 9 months of the year. The winter term sees hats going away generally from what I can tell, but otherwise, hats rule.

     

    I don't buy the schools own one as find them very pricey. Instead I head to Best & Less or Target or some place. It can depend on the colours allowed as the big stores only tend to stock the basic few colours, navy, bottle green, dark red/red. Also I try to buy hats with a UV rating. We prefer the legionnaires type style over the wide brimmed hats, find they tend to stay on kids heads better. Name them clearly :biggrin: I go for silver marker on the outside so its quick for the kids to find their hat and for others to not use it :cute:

    Edited by snifter
    removed dead links

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    Also in hot weather consider getting a drinks bottle you can either freeze 2/3rds full overnight and then top up with water in the morning or one you can bung masses of ice cubes in.

     

    I found this year that only half filling the bottle, lying it on its side in the freezer overnight and topping up in the morning meant that they didn't have to wait too long to be able to actually drink the water (we learnt the hard way not to leave filters in the bottles as they freeze - best if you can prop them up with their lids off). We've also started using stubbie holders to catch the condensation drips so they don't get into trouble at school for either dripping on their work or leaving puddles on their desks.

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    Thanks Snifter,

     

    Anyone have any views on Cardijn College. The curriculum looks very good for seniors. My son will probably have to do year 8 again as he will only have done 3 months, I wonder how that has been for others. He has been doing very well at school all along (top 2% in country) is there any way he can go straight to year 9 with good reports and scores etc? I just worry that he is already too advanced and will be bored.

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    We are looking at Aberfoyle Park for our daughter. She has completed year 8 with level 7's. They are going to look at putting her in the IGNITE program with a view to going to Flinders for Science and Maths in year 10. By going into year 9 in January it will give her the chance to settle down after the move before going on with her studies. Might be worth letting your son do the same. The IGNITE program runs for year 8 and 9 students.

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    Wonderful! Thanks for the info. Looks amazing. Will you keep in touch as Id love to know how she gets on.

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    Very useful information. Thanks !

     

    It may sound a bit silly, but if someone can help that will be highly appreciable. I'm looking to enrol my 2 yo boy in Immanuel Primary. The school is asking for a letter of reference about the family. I queried whether this would be more relevant once my son is older, but they said they need it now with the application form.

     

    Not having done this before, I'm wondering what they're looking for?

     

    Has anyone else done this, and if so, what worked for you?

     

    Any advice greatly appreciated :)

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    Very useful information. Thanks !

     

    It may sound a bit silly, but if someone can help that will be highly appreciable. I'm looking to enrol my 2 yo boy in Immanuel Primary. The school is asking for a letter of reference about the family. I queried whether this would be more relevant once my son is older, but they said they need it now with the application form.

     

    Not having done this before, I'm wondering what they're looking for?

     

    Has anyone else done this, and if so, what worked for you?

     

    Any advice greatly appreciated :)

     

    I've no clue about the letter of reference I'm afraid. I'd guess perhaps it comes from someone who s of good standing in the community and who can speak well of your family or someone who already has kids at the school?

     

    I figure demand for places is high so they have a specific application process.

     

    Do do you have to apply now? It's 3 years or so till he'd be starting. And lots can change, plus you may prefer a different school.

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    Thanks Snifter,

     

    Anyone have any views on Cardijn College. The curriculum looks very good for seniors. My son will probably have to do year 8 again as he will only have done 3 months, I wonder how that has been for others. He has been doing very well at school all along (top 2% in country) is there any way he can go straight to year 9 with good reports and scores etc? I just worry that he is already too advanced and will be bored.

     

    Don't forget the education system here is different. Can take a bit of adjusting to and finding feet and all that. Also consider the age of the kids in the year group and above. Could be some kids are a fair bit older if he went up a year here. I'd talk with the school and see if they are open to assessing and moving your son if need be.

     

    Not really familiar with the school you mention. It's private and not on our radar for later on :) I'd guess it's getting good results. I'd figure parental input and other factors play a part in those. Visit it once you are beer, view other choices too and see what feels best.

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    Don't forget the education system here is different. Can take a bit of adjusting to and finding feet and all that. Also consider the age of the kids in the year group and above. Could be some kids are a fair bit older if he went up a year here. I'd talk with the school and see if they are open to assessing and moving your son if need be.

     

    Not really familiar with the school you mention. It's private and not on our radar for later on :) I'd guess it's getting good results. I'd figure parental input and other factors play a part in those. Visit it once you are beer, view other choices too and see what feels best.

     

    Thanks. Yes will definately be visiting all the possible options before we decide. Im sure it will be a balancing act. Its the first and most important decision I guess. The school will dictate where we live but luckily there are a lot of great ones to choose from within a reasonable commute to the CBD.

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    Very useful information. Thanks !

     

    It may sound a bit silly, but if someone can help that will be highly appreciable. I'm looking to enrol my 2 yo boy in Immanuel Primary. The school is asking for a letter of reference about the family. I queried whether this would be more relevant once my son is older, but they said they need it now with the application form.

     

    Not having done this before, I'm wondering what they're looking for?

     

    Has anyone else done this, and if so, what worked for you?

     

    Any advice greatly appreciated :)

     

    Hi keittim,

     

    I have heard of this. If you are a member of a church your minister will be used to giving these. Its just a letter stating that you are an upstanding member of the community etc etc. Otherwise if you know (as Snifter advised) a member of local government, doctor or anyone with some standing who knows your family then you can ask them to provide a family reference. Its probably just a technicality.

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    Thanks. Yes will definately be visiting all the possible options before we decide. Im sure it will be a balancing act. Its the first and most important decision I guess. The school will dictate where we live but luckily there are a lot of great ones to choose from within a reasonable commute to the CBD.

     

    If you are looking at private then there are a lot of options open to you as you won't be having to live within a zone as you do for state high schools. If its a state school then the zone aspect comes in to play.

     

    Hubby used to live a train ride and walk from his school. Took him about 45 minutes all up each way. That is if he made the train on time. If he missed it because he was late out of school for whatever reason, it could be 90 minutes till he got home. Most of his friends used to travel in on the train or bu from all over.

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    If you are looking at private then there are a lot of options open to you as you won't be having to live within a zone as you do for state high schools. If its a state school then the zone aspect comes in to play.

     

    Hubby used to live a train ride and walk from his school. Took him about 45 minutes all up each way. That is if he made the train on time. If he missed it because he was late out of school for whatever reason, it could be 90 minutes till he got home. Most of his friends used to travel in on the train or bu from all over.

     

    OK Didnt know that if you were private the zones dont come into play. Good to know, Thanks a million. I would be ok with an hour commute each way.

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    OK Didnt know that if you were private the zones dont come into play. Good to know, Thanks a million. I would be ok with an hour commute each way.

     

    Lots of private schools will run a school bus along major routes (or perhaps popular ones?). Most kids either walk to their bus stop in the morning or parents drop them off at them. Don't forget to research what they run when you check out the schools and potential areas to live.

     

    There are some very good state schools around too, mostly in the eastern suburbs or close to them. Others dotted around.

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