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Thread: Year 7 school selection

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    Post Year 7 school selection

    My child is studying year 6 in Singapore. I want my child to study year 7 on wards in Sydney. We are late for applying for selective exams, now I have 4 options with me -
    1-Cherrybrook technology high school
    2-carlingford high
    3- chatswood high
    4-Epping boys high

    Please provide your valuable reviews about these schools.

    One more question (sorry for being naive) - Do all comprehensive secondary/high schools have same core and elective subjects or different?

    Thanks

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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    Sorry if my response is too lengthy. I'm only in Year 8 (at James Ruse Agricultural High), so there's not too much advice I can offer (other than things I've heard from older students).

    Can I just say, it doesn't really matter which of these schools your child goes to. Most students are able to obtain the same study resources regardless of which school they go to. However, there is the competitive element where some schools put more pressure on students to do better. If your child thinks they may be doing well in their new school, they probably aren't compared to those in the top schools (sorry, I don't mean offence).

    A good indicator of how well a school performs is its "strike rate of distinguished achievers", basically the success rates of its graduating students. To give you a rough benchmark, the best selective school (James Ruse) has a success rate of 77.42% from the latest HSC.

    1-Cherrybrook Tech's success rate is 21.1%.
    2-Carlingford High's success rate is 18.6%.
    3-Chatswood's is 21.3%.
    4-Epping Boys High's is only 17.4%.

    All four schools are more or less equal in standard. The marginal difference in success rates is negligible.

    The main point here is which school your child will find to be most helpful. I'd recommend Carlingford High, because it is very close to James Ruse (the top school) and students often meet up at tutoring centres to discuss homework and study. It would be good if your child could find some friends in the top selective schools; that's usually the way to compensate for attending a poorly-performing selective school.

    Additionally, Carlingford (the suburb) has a high Asian population, so your child might fit in better. I think Cherrybrook also has a large Asian population (though not nearly as large as compared to Carlingford). Don't take my advice too seriously, because your child may want to attend one of the other schools. Students are usually able to switch schools during high school, so if your child doesn't like one school, he/she may be able to enter another (by way of examination or application). If he/she enters by application, he/she will need a good record of extracurricular activities and have a good academic performance.

    In regard to your second question, most schools do have similar subjects. This is because they are based on the NSW curriculum. However, schools have different priorities, e.g. Sydney Boys High School is very sports-oriented and James Ruse is very maths-/science-oriented. If your child has a particular strength, he/she may choose to attend a school that leans towards their strength.

    Some schools may lack elective subjects that they consider to be useless, e.g. James Ruse drops compulsory music after Yr 8, but continues compulsory Agriculture until Yr 10. (Music is still available as an elective subject after Yr 8, though.) Do some research on this forum and ask other students what their schools have for core/elective subjects, I can't say much about those four particular schools you're asking about.

    Once again, I apologise if this answer was too lengthy.

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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    Thank you!!!
    No problem with lengthy answers, in fact they give better understanding. I am tempted to ask one more question. As my son has missed the selective school exam (we were not aware of the same), what are his other options for an entry to a selective school?
    Thanks once again.

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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    im pretty sure you can't enter selective schools without doing the test itself. Unless you have extremely good third-party test results (eg. UNSW tests)
    its very unlikely to be accepted.
    stillthinking likes this.

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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    Quote Originally Posted by markkkkkkkkk View Post
    im pretty sure you can't enter selective schools without doing the test itself. Unless you have extremely good third-party test results (eg. UNSW tests)
    its very unlikely to be accepted.
    That above is pretty much right. However, I know a few exceptions from people who entered my grade late in Yr7 but they were definitely few in number (maybe 1-2). I would encourage your child to attend any of the above schools as I think they are all fantastic schools and are probably some of the best non-selective schools around. Then in Yr8 provided your child has a decent report (probably straight As) they can apply to James Ruse/Baulkham Hills etc if they still want to. There are also advantages of staying at the above 4 schools, you will definitely have a better rank when it comes to HSC internals and will most certainly have a chance at scoring 99.95 (I know 2 ppl from Carlingford who got it in my year alone for example).
    Baulkham Hills '16

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    ATAR: 99.95

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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    I would advise allowing your child to attend one of the four schools available, and then transfer to a better school during Yr 8/9/10/etc.

    Unfortunately, since your child did miss the selective exam, there's not many options left available. Most schools such as James Ruse require entrants to sit the exam. With other schools, your child would only be accepted if he/she has amazing academic competition results (and I mean amazing as in "he/she came 1st in so-and-so competitions with full marks each time").

    If your goal is for your child to enter a school like James Ruse in Yr 9/10/11, do not waste time on trying to get into a good school in Year 7!!! I can't stress this enough! I know lots of friends who were able to enter James Ruse in Yr 9/10/11 from non-selective or poorly-performing selective schools. THIS IS NOT A PROBLEM. Through continuous study and perseverance, they were able to enter James Ruse by either sitting an exam (most cases) and then passing an interview. Very rarely, students with good academic results were able to skip the exam.

    (BTW, this admission process may include sport-related components in future. I think the NSW DoE is planning to add sport as a criterion for admission into selective schools in the future, so beware.)

    Essentially, there's nothing you can do about your child's situation now. Let him/her attend one of those four schools, and arrange for him/her to transfer to a better school maybe one or two years from now. Allow him/her to take part in a wide range of extracurricular activities (VERY important if you want him/her to attend a better school in future) and make sure he/she keeps up academic results in the meantime. That's the only way he/she will get a good ATAR in Yr 12.
    stillthinking likes this.

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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    Quote Originally Posted by stillthinking View Post
    My child is studying year 6 in Singapore. I want my child to study year 7 on wards in Sydney. We are late for applying for selective exams, now I have 4 options with me -
    1-Cherrybrook technology high school
    2-carlingford high
    3- chatswood high
    4-Epping boys high

    Please provide your valuable reviews about these schools.

    One more question (sorry for being naive) - Do all comprehensive secondary/high schools have same core and elective subjects or different?

    Thanks
    I didn't go to any of those schools but the school you go to doesn't matter much in my opinion it's about how much effort you put in (plus natural talent plays some part). Also when discussing with some of my friends I found that my school (Parra Marist - catholic school) actually had really good teachers in comparison to some people in top selective schools (from what I've heard) and they say it's the large amount of tutoring that everyone gets that makes up for the lack of good teachers there. Not sure if this is true as I didn't attend a selective school.

    But the main thing is just that the school picked doesn't really matter just pick whatever is closest to your home (assuming you've moved to Sydney already but not sure) in my opinion because the ATAR your son will get in around 6 years time is just going to be dependent on his own motivation and hard work. I mean, having a more competitive environment CAN stimulate you to work harder but I know lots of people from my school or from low ranked schools who had crazy motivation to work hard so it's up to the student (in my opinion).

    I guess what PiAndQuadratics said about the asian areas and fitting in can play a role in your decision if your son cares about the type of area I guess so you can take that into account.
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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    Don't stress too much about getting into a 'better school' - it may not be worth it, especially because transferring schools can often negatively impact students.

    Seriously. There are heaps of kids out there who went to non-selective/non top-performing schools and they have surpassed many students from top schools (I'm a recent graduate of a top selective high school).

    It all depends on the individual.

    You get a good ATAR from hard work and perseverance. Not from attending a top selective high school.

    Yes, selective schools = being surrounded by likeminded individuals, but at the same time this may not be the best environment as it is more competitive and may be demotivating at times. From personal experiences, teachers are less willing to devote their all into teaching as they assume that students have already learnt content at private tutoring.


    To answer your question, I think Carlingford High School might be what you're looking for. As for core/elective subjects - call up schools, visit schools and ask them for their elective subjects and subject coordination at the junior and senior years. Visiting schools would also be a good idea to get a feel of the environment.

    I also agree with andrew12678's response - If your child chooses to stay at any of the four schools you mentioned, they "will definitely have a better rank when it comes to HSC internals", which is pretty important.

    See what your child's opinion is about transferring during their time at high school, then when the time comes, try out for selective schools if they are still keen. Also, extracurricular activities are important, not only for attempting entry into a better selective school, but also for the future. For example, some scholarship or cadetship applications for universities assess students beyond their educational experience.
    Last edited by 30june2016; 20 May 2018 at 12:21 AM.



    UTS BIT 2018




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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    Thanks markkkkkkkkk for the insight.

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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    Thanks andrew12678, will keep that advise in my mind.

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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    Thanks once again PiAndQuadratics, its not that we want our child to enter only selective school, instead if any other non selective school has good teachers and had produced good results, we would be more than willing to go there. If any one of you is aware of singaporean education system then may be you know that it is highly highly competitive system more often called as pressure cooker. Yes after so much pressure Singaporean children do extremely good in PISA and other ranking. Therefore we were confused that what standard should we be looking for, as of course at present my child is doing quite good in extremely competitive system.

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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    Thanks Pikachu975, totally agree with you that its generally tuition help because of which grades go up and competition increases. Same here in Singapore. Tutoring is such a big and profitable business here that I know many Harvard graduates leave their full time job to open their tuition centres. I think it may be same in Sydney too.
    As about asians, my child gets adjusted with any race/culture. At present also, his school cater to different races and he has friends from all races, so hopefully that wont be a problem for him.

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    Re: Year 7 school selection

    Thanks 30june2016, yes I think my child too wont like to change the school once he is settled there. I know this from the fact that here in SG we have a Gifted education program (an exam) in primary3. He got selected into that but refused to change the school after that. He said he is better off in his present school than to go to a gifted school.
    May I ask by enrichment you mean electives or enrichment means extracurricular, because here enrichment is extracurricular?

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