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(often referred to as Public/State Schools)

There are many good quality primary schools in Dawin and Northern Territory and in most cases you are able to have a place if you live within the school’s catchment area. Good areas tend to have good local schools, so often housing is chosen based on the schools zoning. Class sizes can be high (up to 35 students to one teacher) but most parents are happy with the quality of schooling for these formative years.

Entry: Pre-school starts at the age of four. A transition year (or preparatory) takes place when your child is approximately 5 years of age. Primary school starts at the age of 6 through till the age of 11.


Local State High Schools

When it comes time to go to high school (Year 8 – age 12+), the number of state schools decreases but the relevant catchment areas become much larger. The reputation of state high schools can vary considerably. Some schools achieve much better results and have far better on site facilities. The number of children attending a school increases the funding allowance. Students can finish their schooling in Year 10 or continue through to year 12 at which stage they will receive a high school graduation certificate.

* The Northern Territory Certificate of Education (NTCE) is the credential awarded students who successfully complete senior high school level studies (years 11 and 12 or equivalent) in the Northern Territory

Entry: Secondary School begins at age 12 and carries on through to 18 years (generally). Senior Students (in years 11 and 12 of school) will be encouraged to complete a Northern Territory Certificate of Education. There is a variety of subjects applicable to the certificate and results will be measured on the student’s level of achievement in the subjects.


Public/State Schools in Darwin – What will it cost me?

Overseas residents in some states pay a higher premium for school fees in Australia. In the NT some temporary residents are charged up to $12,000 a year – however those on a visa subclass 457 as well as a number of other skilled migration visas are exempt from International student fees.

Please note: Students who are initially on a short stay bridging visa may be required to pay higher school fees.


1. Make an appointment at the public school within your zone

2. Fill in the enrolment form which will need to signed and witnessed by staff at the school: Student enrolment form

3. Collect documentation. You will need : Birth Certificate, Passport, Copy of your lease showing you live in catchment area; name and contact details of parents/guardians and emergency contacts; languages spoken; information on health of the child; doctor and dentist details and immunisation details.

3. Each school will assist if you need an interpreter to fill them in.










For the further information go to:

To find a state school in your area go to:



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