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Expats moving to Adelaide can choose between plenty of high-quality public and private schools. The compulsory school-going age is 6 to 16, though in practice most children attend school beyond the compulsory years.
Those who want their child to study at an international school in Adelaide should be aware that their choices will be limited, and it will be important to start the application process as far ahead of time as possible.
Public schools in Adelaide
Students attend public schools within their designated school zone or catchment area, which is determined by residential address.
English is the language of instruction in government schools, but some schools offer language-immersion programmes where teaching is in English, along with an additional language, such as French or Chinese.
Government schooling is free for permanent residents of Australia, but those on temporary visas will have to pay a flat fee to attend. Additional costs for materials are also required, and these can add up to a fair amount.
Private schools and independent schools in Adelaide
An alternative for temporary-visa holders is to send their children to a private Catholic school. Though private, Catholic schools are funded by a combination of donations and state funding, meaning fees are often more reasonable.
Independent schools, on the other hand, are those private schools that aren’t religiously affiliated, but which have their own educational philosophies, and alternative teaching and learning styles. There are scores of independent schools to choose from, but they are typically expensive, and parents will often have to factor in additional costs of textbooks, field trips and uniforms.
International schools in Adelaide
Adelaide only has a handful of international schools, most of which offer the International Baccalaureate programme.
Demand for places at these schools is high and waiting lists are long, so expat parents need to submit their applications as soon as possible. Fees at these schools tend to be exorbitant and, again, parents will probably have to budget for additional expenses such as uniforms, school trips and other extra-curriculars.
Some specialised schools offer language-immersion programmes where English curricula are accompanied by an additional tongue, such as French or Chinese.
Special-needs education in Adelaide
Schools in Adelaide ensure the well-being of special-needs students by disrupting their educational experience as little as possible while providing the necessary support.
Non-specialised schools offer internal interventions that include attending a special class or disability unit. Where more support is needed, specialised schools dedicated to meeting special educational needs are also available.
Tutoring in Adelaide
A variety of tutoring companies operate in Adelaide. Some specialise in a particular subject, such as maths or science, while others offer a full bouquet of services. Tutors can be the ideal solution for children adapting to a new curriculum and schooling system or those preparing for university entrance exams.
Some reputable tutoring companies in Adelaide include Tutors SA and High Performance Learning.
►For family-friendly neighbourhood recommendations, see Areas and Suburbs in Adelaide
Are you an expat living in Adelaide?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Adelaide. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
Expat Health Insurance
If you’re thinking about taking out private health insurance, our trusted partner Cigna Global is very aware of all the difficulties that expats can face when it comes to healthcare in a new location, so they have created a range of international health insurance plans specifically designed for expats, which you can tailor exactly to the needs and ensure access to quality care for you and your family.
Sirelo has a network of more than 500 international removal companies that can move your furniture and possessions to your new home. By filling in a form, you’ll get up to 5 quotes from recommended movers. This service is free of charge and will help you select an international moving company that suits your needs and budget.