Cost - Primary & Secondary Education

The Australian education system can be more easily explained if it is divided into two parts. The first part provides primary and secondary education; the second part provides tertiary education. School education is similar across all of Australia with only minor variations between states and territories.

Education in Australia – Costs

All New Zealand citizens are defined as Australian residents for the purpose of publicly funded Commonwealth supported education places. That means, public education is provided without compulsory cost for primary and secondary schooling for New Zealand citizens. In Australia there are two types of education – Public (also known as State or Government) and Private.

Public Versus Private Education

  • Public Schools are run by the respective state government. They offer free education to all students, however many schools ask parents to pay a small contribution fee and a materials and services charge. Public schools accept all students from their government-defined catchment areas, and teach using the Australian curriculum. School uniforms are usually compulsory in public schools, mainly in primary education.
  • Private Schools usually offer religion-based systems of education and charge high fees (sometimes over $10,000 per year per student) and are therefore able to afford facilities that government funded schools cannot. Private school uniforms tend to be more expensive than those for public schools and are more strictly enforced.

Regardless of whether a school is government or private, it is regulated by the same Australian curriculum standards framework.


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