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Parents Urged to Do Their Own Homework on School Costs

Independent Schools Queensland (ISQ) has urged parents to do their own homework on school education costs, describing the annual "fee fright" campaign as misleading and a distortion of the true costs the majority of families will face.

ISQ Executive Director David Robertson said the figures released by the Australian Scholarships Group (ASG) did not reflect the actual costs the majority of Queensland independent school parents would face over their child’s schooling life.

Mr Robertson said the report failed to detail the significant variation in tuition fees charged by Queensland independent schools in both metropolitan and regional centres 

“In Queensland the average tuition fee for an independent school is about $8000 a year, with the majority of independent schools in the low to mid-fee category. Parents can do their own sums to work out this doesn’t come close to the figures put forward by ASG even when other costs such as books, extra-curricular activities and uniforms are included,” he said.

“Queensland independent schools are more affordable than this report portrays. I urge parents to do their own research on school fees and to contact Queensland independent schools directly as many offer scholarships or bursaries, sibling discounts and all-inclusive fee options.”

“Many parents sacrifice other areas of family life for the education of their children. Independent schools recognise this and strive to keep tuition fees as affordable as possible for their communities.”

Mr Robertson said ISQ’s What Parents Want Survey showed Queensland parents were very savvy when it comes to planning for their child’s education with seven in 10 researching school options at least two years prior to their child starting school.

“Parents who believe their child will learn and thrive in an independent school examine their education choices early and plan and budget according to their personal circumstances and the needs of their children,” he said.

Mr Robertson said independent school parents should be acknowledged for the significant financial contribution they make towards the education of their children, with their investment reducing the burden on the government purse and therefore taxpayers.

“Parents are the primary contributors to Queensland independent schools, funding on average about 50 percent of the school’s operating costs and 75 percent of the infrastructure and maintenance costs.”

Media Contact: Justine Nolan 0428 612 315 or jnolan@isq.qld.edu.au

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