Australian Private Schools

Quite a few Australian expatriates return to Australia with the intention of enrolling their children in a private school - and it is probably one of the highest priority issues faced by the family. In fact, it's common for the location of the school to substantially determine where the family will live. Also, particularly when the children reach secondary school age, and the host country can't provide suitable education, many children will return to Australia into a boarding school.

Private school tuition fees vary quite considerably across Australia, however you can expect to pay anywhere between $18,000 and $30,000 for a Year 12 day student attending an established, well regarded metropolitan private school - with boarding fees usually at a comparable level. The table below provides a quick summary of the direct costs involved in an Australian private education - bearing in mind that there are a raft of other, indirect costs. These include uniforms, school trips, music tuition - the list is almost endless.

Note that these are the fees for Australian citizens and permanent residents; higher fees apply to international or foreign students. Multiply these costs by the number of years your child(ren) will spend at school and the investment is enormous. this is why your choice of school needs to be given considerable time and attention - apart from issues about whether the type of school fits your child's personality, it is not a foregone conclusion that higher fees = better academic results.  Education costs have been rising in Australia at a much faster rate than general inflation and we believe this poses a significant problem for private schools - swollen waiting lists can disappear quickly and the financial viability of a school should also be a factor considered in the selection process.
 

STATE/SCHOOL
2013 Fees
ACT  
Canberra Grammar
19,340
Canberra Girls Grammar
18,720
NSW  
PLC Sydney
27,240
QUEENSLAND  
Brisbane Boys Grammar
22,020*
Anglican Church Grammar
20,397*
SOUTH AUSTRALIA  
Prince Alfred College
20,550
Walford
19,680
VICTORIA  
Melbourne Girls Grammar
27,644
Trinity Grammar
26,080
WESTERN AUSTRALIA  
Christ Church Grammar 
22,820

 

Note:

* There is also an increasing trend for schools to introduce certain compulsory levies. Examples include Brisbane Boys Grammar, where a $1005 "Tablet/PC" levy is payable by all students from year eight, and Anglican Church Grammar where a Book Rental Levy, Administration Services Levy and Building Fund Levy effectively add an additional $1,110 to the cost of Year 12 education. All of these compulsory levies are included in base fees for comparative purposes.

Some schools have a policy of not publishing fees - high profile examples include Geelong Grammar School, perhaps Australia's most expensive boarding school, and Scots College in New South Wales. Interestingly, the behaviour is much more prevalent amongst the more expensive schools.
 

Non- Residents : Private School Costs

The difference between private school fees for resident and a non-residents can be quite substantial; the figures below are those applying in relation to Anglican Church Grammar Year 12 boarder, and they are fairly representative:

 
Resident
Non-Resident
Tuition Fees
20,397
29,538
Boarding Fees
19,940
25,920
Total
40,337
55,458