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Choosing a school is arguably one of the most important decisions you’ll ever make, however it can be time consuming and difficult to compare your options.

We’ve listed some of the top concerns as well as questions to ask when comparing schools.

Location, location, location

State schools operate under catchment areas, which can limit your options. Catholic schools don’t have catchment restrictions, so you can choose the best school for your child’s needs regardless of where you live provided there is availability.

Questions: Are there catchment areas? Is boarding available? Is there a bus service? Is there a wait list?

Facilities and Subject Choices

Your child’s unique needs and talents will likely help determine which school will best cater to their interests. Find out what facilities, subjects or excursions the school can offer your child.

Questions: What subjects are on offer? What programs or opportunities are available?

School Culture

School culture and values that align with your family can help guide your decision. Taking a tour of the school and chatting with the principal is a great way to figure this out. It is also worth asking about fees during your initial conversations. Catholic schools are often less expensive than expected, and concessions are available for those experiencing financial hardship.

Questions: What is the school’s approach to bullying? What are the school’s values? Do we need to be Catholic to attend a Catholic school? What are the fees and what is included?

Size Matters

Whether you’d prefer a larger school or think your child would thrive in a smaller setting is something to consider. Some schools offer P-12, while others are just primary or secondary. Consider your child’s temperament and what option suits your family long-term.

Questions: How many students are at the school? How many students are in each class?

Some Other Questions You May Need to Consider Are:

• Is it important that all your children go to the same school?
• How well does the school support children with additional needs, if this is something you need to consider?
• What opportunities exist for parent and family involvement?
• Do you need before and after school care?

Overall, the decision will depend on what is important to you and your child; whether that’s academic offerings, sporting or arts options, or integrating faith-based values.

To help you find the perfect school for your child, Cairns Catholic Education has created an enrolment concierge service, allowing you to speak to one person about which of the 30 Catholic schools in our region would be the right fit.

Text “SCHOOL” and the year level/s you are looking for to 0448 876 342 and our enrolments concierge will call you.