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The staggering cost of private school: revealed

Back to school today! Image: Getty
Back to school today! Image: Getty

Today, school children across the country are returning to their classrooms, slightly sunburnt and with great stories of the holidays to share.

For parents, they’re breathing a sigh of relief after a spending spree for uniforms, text books and new backpacks.

Schooling in Australia is expensive.

In fact, research released today has shown 13 years of schooling at a government school in metropolitan Australia will cost a whopping $68,727.

A Catholic education in an Australian city will cost an average $127,027 and a private education will cost an extortionate $298,689.

Government schools – which state is most expensive?

Brisbane is the most expensive city to send a kid to public school ($85,903), followed by regional NSW ($83,829) and Melbourne ($80,465).


But the cheapest place to send your child to a state school is regional Tasmania ($46,105).

Source: ASG
Source: ASG
Catholic schools – which state is the cheapest?

Parents hoping to send their children to a Catholic School will find prices are significantly more expensive.

Adelaide is the most expensive ($153,365) over the course of a child’s schooling, while regional Tasmania is again the cheapest ($100,634).

Source: ASG
Source: ASG
Independent schools – the most pricey option

An independent education is generally considered the most expensive education.

But it’s particularly expensive in Sydney, where parents can expect to spend more than half a million ($545,181) on their children’s education over the 13 years.

Melbourne isn’t much cheaper. Here, parents will spend an average $516,425.

Regional Western Australia is much cheaper ($132,809).

Source: ASG
Source: ASG
Why does it cost so much?

For Australian state schools, school fees of around $482 a year actually make up only a small amount of the overall spend.

The cost of devices and external tutoring help push the price up.

It’s different at Catholic schools, where fees are easily the most expensive component ($4,196). But parents are also paying for transport and uniforms.

And at independent schools, average school fees of $14,116 per year make up a substantial portion of family’s overall spend. But musical equipment and excursions add up too.

ASG CEO Ross Higgins noted that the cost of education in Australia has risen at more than twice the rate of inflation over the last decade.

“Education costs, including tuition costs, uniforms, transport and devices are demanding a far greater share of the family budget than in the past,” he said.

“More than ever, the costs associated with education are placing more of a burden on Australian families, who are already challenged by the rising cost of living.

“With less discretionary money to spend, it’s going to be very hard to pay for education, which means parents who have saved will be in a better position in the long run.”

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