West Australian parents don’t have to be rich to access world-class education for their children, they just need to know how to secure affordable housing in prime high school catchment zones.
A report in The West Australian newspaper showed that the catchment areas for the top schools covered a range of socio-economic areas, with median prices as low as $325,000 in suburbs more known for their multimillion-dollar homes surrounding expensive private schools.
Real Estate Institute of WA president Damian Collins said Rossmoyne and Willetton high schools were renowned for high standards and their reputations had added as much as 10 per cent to the value of homes inside the catchment areas. Mr Collins said families were factoring school rankings in their choice of suburb now more than ever before, especially as NAPLAN and ATAR results boosted transparency.
Pulse Property Group director Di Addenbrooke said families were increasingly moving into the area purely to take advantage of the educational benefits of the local school.
She said the influx of families focused on education helped boost the schools’ academic performance and added a real community dynamic to neighbourhoods.
“What it does mean is that parents can essentially buy a good education for their child for the cost of a median-priced home,” Di said. “And it means the family gets to live in one of Perth’s most well serviced and scenically beautiful suburbs.”
Willetton, the top school in The West Australian’s Top 50 List, has a localised catchment in Willetton, with a small optional area in neighbouring Bull Creek.
Two-bedroom units start at $350,000 in Willetton, and homes start at $475,000.
The median price is $681,500, which is above the Perth metropolitan median of $485,000. Brentwood has the lowest median price for property, at $615,000.
Rossmoyne Senior High School was ranked third and while the suburb has a median house price of $1,077,500, there are still affordable options within the school catchment in suburbs such as Shelley, Riverton, Bull Creek and Bateman.
With a median house price of $960,000, Di said Shelley still represented exceptional value for such a well serviced, intimate suburb of just 4,500 population.
“The riverside lifestyle is idyllic,” Di said. “Shelley is cut off by Leach Highway so there is no through traffic. It’s a great community with plenty of sporting clubs – netball, football, tennis, lawn bowling and sailing.”
The West Australian’s Top 50 Schools list was based on a range of criteria — not just ATAR results. It included academic achievement and socio-educational advantage.
TOP 50 SCHOOLS
1. Willetton Senior High School
2. Perth Modern School
3. Rossmoyne Senior High School
4. Churchlands Senior High School
5. Shenton College
6. Christ Church Grammar School
7. Chisholm Catholic College
8. Hale School
9. Applecross Senior High School
10. Carine Senior High School
11. Mount Lawley Senior High School
12. John Curtin College of the Arts
13. St Mary’s Anglican Girls’ School
14. Sacred Heart College
15. Santa Maria College
16. Corpus Christi College
17. St Hilda’s Anglican School for Girls
18. Trinity College
19. Duncraig Senior High School
20. Aquinas College
21. Wesley College
22. Newman College
23. Perth College
24. John XXIII College
25. All Saints’ College
26. Presbyterian Ladies’ College
27. Penrhos College
28. Kennedy Baptist College
29. Scotch College
30. St Mark’s Anglican Community School
31. Iona Presentation College
32. Methodist Ladies’ College
33. Mercedes College
34. Lynwood Senior High School
35. Melville Senior High School
36. Frederick Irwin Anglican School
37. Ashdale Secondary College
38. Guildford Grammar School
39. Leeming Senior High School
40. John Septimus Roe Anglican Community School
41. Prendiville Catholic College
42. Lake Joondalup Baptist College
43. Carey Baptist College
44. Christian Brothers College
45. Ursula Frayne Catholic College
46. Woodvale Secondary College
47. Bunbury Catholic College
48. Kolbe Catholic College
49. St Stephen’s School
50. Margaret River Senior High School
Source: The West Australian