Choosing the right school for your child from preschool to Year 12 is a huge decision and one that will impact their entire lives.
Year 7, is a particularly important time in the life of your child's education. This is the year they step into a high school, choose the subjects that could inspire them for life and create friendships that will last a lifetime.
There are possibly even more aspects to consider when deciding which secondary school will be right for your child, than when you first enrolled them into kindergarten.
Parents need to take a whole range of issues into consideration and it will be different for every family.
Does your child have a particular interest such as music, sport, languages, vocational or academic studies that you want the school to nurture?
Each high school will offer a variety of subjects, both curricular and extra-curricular that could prove to be the backbone of your child's enjoyment at their school.
Some parents will choose to allow their children to attend the same school as the rest of their graduating junior year. This means they will transfer easily when it comes to making new friends and settling down.
In some instances, parents may consider moving their child away from earlier influences in their lives that may have proved to be disruptive. Either way, Year 7 is the perfect time to move them to a school you know has everything to offer your child.
You may at this point consider if Is it important that the school is single sex or co-educational.
This is a highly personal choice and quite often is based on your own past experiences, or your family cohort.
If you want to send everyone to the same school and you have both boys and girls in your family, a co-ed school saves on the school run.
For those who live more remotely in our regional areas, choosing a school with boarding facilities that offers everything you want for your child, means you have some homework to do.
Talk to past-parents and students and make the time to discuss the ethos of the school and how your child will spend their days when they are not studying.
A school's educational philosophy and their facilities will often be the key to your making up your mind.
Parent's associations and volunteer work are often very rewarding for both your child and the school.
Each school will have a cost structure that could determine your final choice. Remember to factor in textbooks, uniforms, excursions and extracurricular activities and find out if scholarships or bursaries are available.
Ask for a copy of the school's prospectus, look at the school's website and make an appointment to take a tour during school hours.