Nationalnews.com.auEnrolments surge in Adelaides south-eastas skilled migrants send children to schools withbest NAPLAN results
SKILLED migrants enrolling their children in south-eastern suburbs public primary schools arebehind a surge in enrolments, principals say.Student numbers at Linden Park Primary have grown by 96 per cent in the past five years, Rose ParkPrimary is up 52 per cent per cent and Glen Osmond up 25 per cent.Principals said would-be migrants were using the Federal Governments My School website, whichpublishes results from the annual National Assessment Program Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) testing,to decide which school zone to live in.Linden Park principal Vicki Porter said Chinese and Indian skilled migrants were attracted by the schoolsacademic results and its International Baccalaureate program.More than half the schools population was now from a non-English speaking background.We find many parents have done research into schools, Ms Porter said.Linden Park had the best NAPLAN results for a public primary school in metropolitan Adelaide in 2013.Rose Park principal Brett Darcy said a large number of new enrolments were children of skilled migrantsfrom China, Korea, India and Japan.The school rated second to Linden Park in NAPLAN results.Its population of students from non-English speaking backgrounds had increased from 5 per cent to 20 per
cent in the past three years.Mr Darcy said people were renting in the area so their children could be enrolled and then moving to moreaffordable suburbs once they had been accepted.We did a count because our numbers are so full and about 26 per cent of our kids dont live in our zone atthe moment, Mr Darcy said.Glen Osmond Primarys enrolments have increased from 284 to 356 over the past five years.Principal Joy Milward attributed the increase to older people moving out of the area to make way for familiesand to skilled migrants choosing to settle in the schools zone.We have quite a large cohort of business and academics from South-East Asia and China, Ms Milwardsaid.The other thing Id say is families choose Glen Osmond because they like the advantages a smaller schoolbrings.There is a warm and welcoming community allowing close relationships.Im able to learn all the childrens names and families love that.
The schools said the increased numbers had caused problems with overcrowding.At Rose Park, the school now limits children of different ages to different areas of playground.Ms Porter said increasing enrolments had created some overcrowding during breaks.We looked at yard space and opened up areas that perhaps hadnt been opened at lunchtime to cater forthat increase, she said.Public primary schools are required to take students living within the schools zone.Education Department preschool and school improvement executive director Anne Millard said parentslooking to enrol their child into a zoned school must provide sufficient evidence that the address used toenrol their children was their permanent and primary place of residence.
This policy helps ensure that schools can offer an enrolment to all students that genuinely live within theirenrolment zone and can help manage capacity.Carolyn Harbord, of Frewville, sent her daughter Madeleine, 8, to Glen Osmond Primary after moving backto Adelaide from the UK.I had wanted to live near the beach but partly for family reasons and partly because of the options for publicschools we decided to go back to the eastern suburbs, Mrs Harbord said.Our children are more exposed to a socio-economic and cultural diversity here that they would be (at aprivate school).Other local schools to experience a surge in enrolments include Parkside (up 45 per cent to 335), Norwood(up 36 per cent to 377), Unley (up 19 per cent to 512) and Marryatville (up 12 per cent to 491) primaryschools.Click on the locations below to see the increases (blue) and decreases (red) in enrolment at south-eastern suburbs public and private schools. All figures are from the My School website comparing2008 to 2013 so they may be different to figures in the story.