What is the school system like?
Tasmania has long been recognised as having one of the better education
systems in Australia. Students from both public and private schools tend to
meet high academic standards on the average.
Public schools are operated by the state goverment, and attendance is free
except for basic levies to cover excursions etc. Most schools have a uniform
policy permitting casual dress (such as jeans or stretch pants and polo tops) provided it conforms to the school's colours and style requirements (which may, for instance, prohibit oversized or brand-name clothing).
Private schools are often affiliated with church denominations. They operate
on a fee basis and may have entry requirements. Many private schools have
stricter discipline and uniform codes, possibly mandating blazers, shirts and
ties (for boys), or frocks, hats and gloves (for girls).
The education system in Tasmania begins in Kindergarten and goes through to
Grade 12, divided as follows:
- Primary school
Primary school begins in Kindegarten and runs through to Grade 6. Some
Kindegarten students will attend Prep grade before Grade 1; others progress
directly to Grade 1. Students keep the same teacher throuhout the day, except
for specialty subjects such as music or physical education. In many schools,
grades are combined (e.g. Grades 3 and 4 might meet together), so that it is
possible for a student to be in the same teacher's class for two years.
- High school
High school includes Grades 7 through to Grade 10. Students have a different
teacher for each subject in their curriculum. For Grades 7 and 8, curriculum
choice is usually minimal - confined to selection of which foreign language
they wish to study, for example. Students in Grades 9 and 10 must take core
subjects, such as Maths and English, but are free to choose the remainder of
- Matriculation college
Matriculation (or senior secondary) college usually takes two years (Years 11 and 12). Matric is similar to high school but in a more adult setting. For instance, the student has virtually complete choice in subjects, no uniform requirement, no restrictions on leaving campus, and so on. Once a student has met certain academic requirements, they are said to have matriculated, and are then ready to attend university.
- TAFE college
TAFE college is an alternative to Matric. Many students who wish to pursue
trade-oriented careers pursue study at TAFE instead of Matric.
Also see the questions When are the school holidays in Tasmania and How
would an average work/school week go.
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Last reviewed 2006-08-06 12:44:23