Schooling in Australia lasts for thirteen years, starting from preparatory up to the senior secondary. From age twelve to about sixteen or seventeen, students will attend secondary schooling. Other schools separate into “senior” and “junior” schools in acknowledgment of the various roles and responsibilities they play in the overall system of education.
In Australia, attending school is required and compulsory until year ten (when students are about fifteen or sixteen). Those who decide to stop studying at this year most of the time start training for their chosen trade or go to apprenticeships. The last two years of school in secondary level are made to make students prepare for a much higher trade or make them ready to enter universities.
International students usually come to Australia to pursue a secondary education, more for years eleven and twelve, with the aim of furthering studies at an Australian college/university. Once a student has completed year 12, he or she will be issued a certificate of Senior Secondary Education. Each state in Australia calls this certificate different names, but needless to say they are all the same.
Two Types Of School In the Secondary Level
Government schools or public schools are operated under the influence of State Department Education. They are all kept up by a centralised body of government, hence students will get almost the same level of education at any provided place. The government offers a tough platform of teaching without any denomination of religion behind it, yet they have the same curriculum as compared to independent schooling.
Most of the time, government schools are co-educational (accepting both male and female students). But there are a few schools that are single-sex, accepting either male or female.
Independent schools or private schools are operated separately from the administration of government, whilst in accordance with the regulations and standards set by the government. Their curriculum is often supported by religious denominations. The funding of private schools comes mainly from the administrators of schools, and schools are controlled and operated by a nominated school board.
Independent schools can either be co-educational (accepting both male and female) or single-sex (only girls or boys).
International students who come to Australia to study in a government school will possibly live in a homestay arrangement, meaning the student will live with one of the local Australian families for a specified fee. The school can assist these students with finding the family that best suits them. Parents need not worry as their child will live with a family that have highly responsible adults.
Independent schools on the other hand have their own boarding facilities within the campus or near their school. Boarding means sharing rooms or dormitories with different students but during the final year some students will be given their own room. Independent schools may also consider homestay accommodations.