Jump to content
Matt&beck

Lets talk senior schools

Recommended Posts

Ok guys, I need some help here! So many Im hearing not great things about here SOR, Im confused!!

Any views on the following Ive heard:

 

Good/Ok

Willeton

Rossmoyne

Leeming

Melville

??Lakelands (heard good and bad)

Comet bay

Applecross (prob out of rental budget?)

 

bad/not good

Hamilton Hill

Lakelands

Atwell college

All of rockinghams - (not sure about Baldivis?)

 

 

Any views at all? Seems all coastal ones are not as good as inland ones. We have additional problem of son desperately wanting to cycle to school rather than bus. Private school is probably not out of our budget, if I can work out prices (websites arent clear - or maybe Im being special!!) but our kids are not catholic so that cuts out so many more. Am I right theres waiting lists for private!?!

So yeah basically, tell me about your schools!! Even NOR experiences, I think others will like to read opinions even though they are often different and it leads to mega confused, lack of sleep etc etc :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lakelands (Mandurah?) If so it doesn't have a public Highschool. It does have a very good Private school however. I've heard mixed views on Comet Bay, some of my friends kids have got on very well there others have found it really hard. That's about all the feedback I have sorry.

Edited by Give me a break!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lots of privates SOR and around Rockingham area usually $4k + and all your books etc.

 

Ones I can think of off the top of my head servicing the Rockingham area are Kolbe Catholic (24th on the school ranking). South Coast Baptist, Peter Carney, Tranby. A lot of kids also go to some of the private schools in Mandurah such as Frederick Irwin, Mandurah Baptist and Mandurah Catholic as there are buses or they take the train.

 

I've heard good things about Comet Bay. They have a relatively new headmaster who is taking the college in the right direction (so I've been told) and they also have an Academic Talent Programme which produces outstanding students, AFL football and golf development programs, Drama and Visual Arts extension programs, Music programs and a Media extension program. The school's intake area includes all students of high school age from Secret Harbour, Golden Bay, Singleton, some of Port Kennedy and Baldivis although I'm not sure if this has changed now Baldivis Senior School has opened.

 

Why don't you narrow it down by deciding which areas are in your top three and make appointments to go and see the schools? This may help with you settling on an area.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In general, if an area is good (you will be able to work that out by property prices) then the state schools should be good. Isn't that the same in the UK?! Yes, waiting lists (from birth) are usually the norm for the top private schools (particularly in the Claremont area, not sure about other areas), unless you have a connection with the school. There's another thing I've just discovered. Kids are being taken out of the local (state) primary schools in Year 4/5 to get into the top private schools (some due to an entry year being in year 5, and I guess others just so they've secured a place). The result is just a handful of kids left in year 5 and year 6 in some primary schools. It probably won't impact you at all but it will impact my son although I'm hoping not too many move...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you want statistical data to narrow the search down then you have two options -

 

1.The My School website - http://www.myschool.edu.au/ gives the results of the NAPLAN tests -go to a school, look on the left, click on Results in Numbers Green means above average and red means below. Comet Bay is below the national average in reading and spelling. It also tells you attendance rates. Comet Bay is 88% which means 12% aren't attending, If kids are interested, enjoying school and see the value of it they'd attend and I would want to be looking at a school with rates above 95%.

 

 

2. The annual report from the Curriculum Council detailing the results of the WACE exams for every school. http://www.scsa.wa.edu.au/internet/Publications/Reports/Statistical_Reports/School_Comparison_Statistics

 

This is where the top 50 schools list comes from but it gives a whole load of other information as well. It helps if you know how to interpret it rather than looking at the Top 50 list.

Basically there are three levels of exams - Level 1 is non Uni pathway, level 2 and 3 count towards Uni. The academic schools will have a high % of kids doing level 3 exams, the non academic schools will have more Level 1. Rossmoyne is one of the top State school and it had 14% Level 1, 8% level 2 and a wacking 77% doing level 3 - very academic. Comet Bay - 56% level 1, 11% level 2 and 32% Level 3 so half the kids are in the non Uni pathway stream.

In terms of results 66% of the Rossmoyne kids managed to get an A or a B in their exams, and only 25% of Comet Bay kids did (1% got an A).

The report has the top schools in individual subjects as well so if your child wants to do drama for example then you can look and see which schools scored the highest in that subject.

From the results of these reports I wouldn't put Comet Bay at the top of my list if you have an academic child who wants to go to Uni. It is doable but will be so much harder.

There is no Lakelands school.

 

I would be looking at the not so great house in the best school catchment area rather than the sparkly new house next to a bad school where you end up having to pay private school fees, but that's just me!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I believe there is a Lakelands school, isn't it round Bibra Lake way? I've also heard mixed reports about it. My husband has been told we cannot go wrong with Rossmoyne, Willetton or Leeming which is really the conclusion I've come to myself but I will be sending my husband on tours of the schools to see which give out the best vibes. I quite like the look of Melville too!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OK, just found it - 74% do Level 1 subjects and no one managed to get an A or a B in their Level 2 or 3 subjects so I would say one to avoid if you have an academic child. Chances of Uni entry very limited.

SOR Rossmoyne and Willeton the best

Western Suburbs - Shenton College and Chuchlands

NOR Woodvale Melville

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I should add that this is just a rough guide and a starting point, the stats aren't everything and different schools suit different kids. You can narrow down the search by looking at the sites above but then go and visit the schools and feel the 'vibe' and see what they have to offer. I know of one the prestigious girl's schools who will encourage students to do level 2 subjects where they might get a B, rather than a Level 3 where they would get a C and lower the statistics. These things happen but in general the report is a good starting point. In our case we needed a school with a good learning support department as my son was severely dyslexic, the reports don't tell you that sort of information and only visiting a school and asking relevant questions will let you know how they support dyslexic kids.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Living Waters k - 12 school so advantage of not having to move kids to high school if they are primary age. Small high school numbers though which may limit subject choices, they won't offer all the subjects a large school can. You'd have to put up with the religious element, I was a visiting consultant at one of the Baptist schools and they had employed a learning support teacher with zero experience over a highly experienced one because she was a devout Christian and the other lady wasn't. The Principal use to come into the staffroom and conduct passionate prayers at break time. When you look at the results compared to the local state schools then it is a good option -

A or B in Level 2 exams A or B in level 3 exams

Living Waters 61% 13%

Warnbro 0 10%

 

71% of kids at Warnbro do Level 1 non Uni entry exams so Living Waters more academic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
In general, if an area is good (you will be able to work that out by property prices) then the state schools should be good. Isn't that the same in the UK?! Yes, waiting lists (from birth) are usually the norm for the top private schools (particularly in the Claremont area, not sure about other areas), unless you have a connection with the school. There's another thing I've just discovered. Kids are being taken out of the local (state) primary schools in Year 4/5 to get into the top private schools (some due to an entry year being in year 5, and I guess others just so they've secured a place). The result is just a handful of kids left in year 5 and year 6 in some primary schools. It probably won't impact you at all but it will impact my son although I'm hoping not too many move...

Not necessarily

some suburbs may not be "bad" just not established yet so very new . A good investment actually.

Edited by Give me a break!
Spelling

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Be careful with just going off the statistics! For example, I expect a lot of the children at Leeming, Willeton, Rossmoyne have parents who work in the city whereas Comet Bay, for example, has more children with parents who work FIFO or in the military. I know lots of FIFO workers who will take their kids out of school for family holidays if their rostered time off doesn't coincide with school holidays. This doesn't mean the kids or parents are not interested in school. Something the stats don't show. My son is at a school in the top 50 schools in WA and attendance records are 90%...again it's not that the kids and the parents aren't interested in school it's just that a lot are FIFO or from overseas and take extended holidays. They also have sleeping students whose parents hold a place but aren't in attendance. So you've always got to understand what's behind the figures.

 

In terms of Comet Bay, I wouldn't proclaim it's one of the best. I can only comment, based on my limited knowledge of the school from friends. In terms of senior State schools in Rockingham and Mandurah it is one of, if not the best State senior school in the area.

 

I think sometimes people get too hung up on which is the best school. A school is only as good as it's staff and I particular it's leader; the head. The stats don't tell you the direction of travel of a school and whether you'll like the feel of the school.

Edited by Lou8670

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
OK, just found it - 74% do Level 1 subjects and no one managed to get an A or a B in their Level 2 or 3 subjects so I would say one to avoid if you have an academic child. Chances of Uni entry very limited.

SOR Rossmoyne and Willeton the best

Western Suburbs - Shenton College and Chuchlands

NOR Woodvale Melville

 

And you'll need $1m+ if you want to buy a home in the area...

Edited by Lou8670

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i'd add that it's not just the staff...it's the other students. And the standard of other students is often a reflection of what their parents do...

 

Do schools really allow kids to be taken out for holidays because their parent/s FIFO? that's terrible...Where we lived in the UK parent/s worked offshore on rotas so same sort of situation yet there wasnt any taking kids out of school for holidays!

 

Sent from my GT-I9100 using Tapatalk 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
And you'll need $1m+ if you want to buy a home in the area...

 

With the exception of Woodvale, we are in the catchment area for there and prices aren't that high, thank god!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lots of privates SOR and around Rockingham area usually $4k + and all your books etc.

Do you mean per term Lou or per year? and in $ not £?? This seems very cheap for private schooling!

 

Keep the comments coming! Very interesting to read all the different opinions. Lakelands is the high school serving Yangebup, bibra lake and success. Ive heard mixed reviews.

The comment on the nicer areas and higher house prices = better schools just doesnt seem to compute here. We were speaking to a teacher (in an off licence in Leeming :D) about schools today and he said in nicer areas many children go to private or their parents are in the city working and not very involved in their kids school life. His advice was to go and see all the schools myself, not their size and pastoral care (because my boy is sensitive) and take note of their specialities etc as if its very academic and my boy isnt then he will be bored or left behind whereas a not so good academic school he could thrive in because they have more sports etc for him to concentrate on. It made a lot of sense at the time ... yet here I am looking at the school tables on another tab!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rossmoyne and Willeton have good academic success, My daughter went to Leeming SHS and my son still attends and we're really happy with the school.

 

ETA: Leeming has an education support centre too

Edited by ali

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Rossmoyne and Willeton have good academic success, My daughter went to Leeming SHS and my son still attends and we're really happy with the school.

 

ETA: Leeming has an education support centre too

 

Thanks Ali, do you know how many pupils are there? ie. if its a big senior school or not?

Also do you like being in Leeming?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Do you mean per term Lou or per year? and in $ not £?? This seems very cheap for private schooling!

 

Keep the comments coming! Very interesting to read all the different opinions. Lakelands is the high school serving Yangebup, bibra lake and success. Ive heard mixed reviews.

The comment on the nicer areas and higher house prices = better schools just doesnt seem to compute here. We were speaking to a teacher (in an off licence in Leeming :D) about schools today and he said in nicer areas many children go to private or their parents are in the city working and not very involved in their kids school life. His advice was to go and see all the schools myself, not their size and pastoral care (because my boy is sensitive) and take note of their specialities etc as if its very academic and my boy isnt then he will be bored or left behind whereas a not so good academic school he could thrive in because they have more sports etc for him to concentrate on. It made a lot of sense at the time ... yet here I am looking at the school tables on another tab!!

No that's not a typo it's per year in dollars. Our sons in $5200 this year, and worth every dollar in our opinion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The thing that concerns me about Rossmoyne is that if you move out of catchment your place in the school isn't guaranteed. I like the look of Leeming, it seems a happy school and it's got a focus on performing arts which my kids will love. But all this I'm gauging from internet research, I think I'll know more after my husband has had a look round. Although my kids can hold their own academically I'd also like to see a school,that has a strong ethos on behaviour, respect and manners and you can only get a feel for that if you visit in person.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Do you mean per term Lou or per year? and in $ not £?? This seems very cheap for private schooling!

 

Keep the comments coming! Very interesting to read all the different opinions. Lakelands is the high school serving Yangebup, bibra lake and success. Ive heard mixed reviews.

The comment on the nicer areas and higher house prices = better schools just doesnt seem to compute here. We were speaking to a teacher (in an off licence in Leeming :D) about schools today and he said in nicer areas many children go to private or their parents are in the city working and not very involved in their kids school life. His advice was to go and see all the schools myself, not their size and pastoral care (because my boy is sensitive) and take note of their specialities etc as if its very academic and my boy isnt then he will be bored or left behind whereas a not so good academic school he could thrive in because they have more sports etc for him to concentrate on. It made a lot of sense at the time ... yet here I am looking at the school tables on another tab!!

 

Not a typo; that's per year. In the city you'll pay nearer $25k pa for private. I'm currently paying around $4k pay for year 5/6. It goes up to nearer $6k in senior years. Trouble is with privates you need to get their name down ASAP. Some of the better privates in the area have longer waiting times and some kids unfortunately are never offered a place. We put ours on the list for Tranby, Frederick irwin and Living Waters. Our eldest was offered a place at all 3 and I went with the offer from Freddie's. So glad I did as it was just off my research online and visiting the schools. I now know that locally Freddie's is where a lot of parents want their kids to go if they manage to secure their child a place.

 

Bite the bullet, ring around the schools after the long weekend (most admin staff will be back) and go and see them. It's all about you and your child and no one else. :smile:

Edited by Lou8670

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for all this info! So helpful!! It seems my research is going to have to be extended now as I hadnt realised the affordability of private schooling. I would prefer to keep him in public education however its looking highly likely the lack of rentals near good schools and the abundance of bad reputations means I might just have to. It has put my first dark cloud over Perth, I hadnt reckoned on being unable to leave near the sea sor due to schooling. All part of the journey I guess but when youve waited this long you really want to get here and it all be perfect (even though Im old enough to realise that rarely happens!!!)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Matt&beck Why don't you go and speak to the head at Comet Bay and some of the other senior schools like Baldivis and the privates. That way you'll start to form a picture in your mind of what you prefer. Make arrangements to go and take the kids with you when they reopen next week. I know you'll be keen to get the kids into school ASAP but what's another few weeks so you're all happy with your decision. Some won't take them anyway until you secure a long term rental. I think you'd be pleasantly surprised with Comet Bay. It's actually a very nice school. If you're child is sporty they'd love it there. You can't just go off stats. The head and some go the teachers at Secret Harbour have told me they've pulled their kids out of private school to go there because they're so impressed with the head and the direction the school is going in. The stats show this to some extent bearing in mind they're based on the performance of the children graduating so it takes a few years for the schools performance to improve. I've listed a few in the area below:

 

2013. 2014

54. 24. Kolbe Catholic (private)

68. 31. Frederick Irwin (private)

124. 96. Comet Bay (State)

 

I'm really conscious Beck that you're trying to live by the beach on a budget and a lot of the schools higher on the league tables are near the city and many are private or demand you live in an expensive suburb. Many at the top of the list charge huge fees and there is some elitism, as there is anywhere, as to which school your child attends.

 

I know your currently in Warnbro and that is a school I would want to avoid! It's now bottom of the league table!!! Either you need to decide you want to live elsewhere or that you're going to stay in the same area and narrow your search to schools in the area.

 

As you know we're in Secret Harbour so let me know if you still fancy meeting up for a chat over a coffee or walk on the beach end of this week.

Edited by Lou8670

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×