Balgowlah North Public School In-Person

I visited the Balgowlah North Public School in 2016, I cannot believe how long ago that was and do not ask me why it took me so long to write the school up. Balgowlah North Public School is situated in Sydney’s northern beach area. Balgowlah uses to be one of the old sleepy suburbs in Sydney. Thirty years ago if you walk through it, you will find mostly old red brick and weatherboard houses. It is very typical of what you call a working-class suburb. However, if you visit the suburb in recent years, you will find that a lot of the older houses got demolished and replaced by Macmansions and custom build large houses. These days North Balgowlah has an average house price of over two million dollars, it certainly has come a long way from its roots decades ago.

Balgowlah North Public School is situated on the Manning Street in the suburb of North Balgowlah opposite to the bushland. Despite its seemingly bush setting, the school is less than ten kilometres from the Sydney CBD and less than three kilometres from the world-famous Manly beach.

Academically Balgowlah North Public School usually falls between 100 to 300ish and please see the following table for the ranking.

YearNSW Primary School Ranking
2018330
2017174
2016344
2015199
201495
2013211
2012183
2011161

To find out school’s catchment, you can search for a particular school or address in the search box in the top right-hand corner of the embedded map or zoom into an area of interest on the map.

The most common name used by the NSW Department of Education is called “catchment” which refer to that students resides in a particular area is guaranteed a position in specific schools. When discussed from the perspective of a particular school is often referred to as one of the following terms.

  • School Zone
  • School intake area
  • School catchment

In 2018 there are 607 students consist of 318 boys and 289 girls. This number has been fairly consistent for most of this decade. There are 31 full time equivalent teaching and non-teaching staff in 2018. The percentage of students with language background other than English in 2018 is 12 percent, again this number has been fairly consistent and had not seen the dramatic increase that many other Sydney schools had experienced in the last decade or so.

Balgowlah North Public School has a lot of open green space and unfortunately full of demountable classrooms as well. Following are a brief photo tour of the school.

Balgowlah North Public School
Balgowlah North Public School

Balgowlah North Public School when I visited in 2016 has a lot of demountable classrooms as you can see from the photos below. In fact most of classrooms I saw in the school consisted of demountables.

Balgowlah North Public School Demountable Classrooms
Balgowlah North Public School Demountable Classrooms
More Balgowlah North Public School Demountable Classrooms
More Balgowlah North Public School Demountable Classrooms

Balgowlah North Public School has a lot of open space which is rare for a school this close to the Sydney CBD and is very pleasant. A lot of schools I know are so short of playground and open space and had to even have different recess and lunch time for different grades to reduce the crowding.

More Balgowlah North Public School Open Green Spaces
More Balgowlah North Public School Open Green Spaces
More More Balgowlah North Public School Open Green Spaces
More More Balgowlah North Public School Open Green Spaces

If you have any further questions please feel free to contact me at the About Us page or leave a comment.

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Interesting Tidbit With Killara Public School

While I was researching for the school introduction piece with the Killara Public School, I noticed something interesting regarding the percentage of students at Killara Public School coming from language backgrounds other than English. If you missed the previous article regarding Killara Public School, you can find them as following.

Alright lets first look at stats first

  • 2008 : Enrolment 219 : Percentage of non English background is 18%
  • 2009 : Enrolment 225 : Percentage of non English background is 32%
  • 2010 : Enrolment 250 : Percentage of non English background is 38%
  • 2011 : Enrolment 272 : Percentage of non English background is 30%
  • 2012 : Enrolment 303 : Percentage of non English background is 38%
  • 2013 : Enrolment 321 : Percentage of non English background is 43%
  • 2014 : Enrolment 360 : Percentage of non English background is 52%
  • 2015 : Enrolment 384 : Percentage of non English background is 53%
  • 2016 : Enrolment 440 : Percentage of non English background is 55%
  • 2017 : Enrolment 447 : Percentage of non English background is 59%
  • 2018 : Enrolment 428 : Percentage of non English background is 63%

The enrolment increase I have already discussed in the previous article. However take a note of the increase of students with non English background, it went from 18 percent in 2008 to 63 percent in 2018. This is very significant changes consider Killara is one of the “old” suburb and established for a long time, also dominated by detached housings until recent years.

Let’s go over this in a bit more detail for those that are not familiar with the public schools in the Sydney north shore areas. All the public schools in Sydney north shore area that I know of all got larger kindergarten cohorts than their year four to six counterparts. For example, the kindergarten can easily have six class compare to two in year six. The class size is smaller in kindergarten level from memory is 20 compare up to 30 in year six. This means that it is not unusual to have double the number of kindergarten students compare to year six.

What happens is many parents often opt for the local public school when the children are young to take advantage of local proximity. When the kids got older from roughly year 3 onwards, a lot will be leaving for the private schools. This is a very common phenomenon in the north shore area.

Now we got that out of the way, let’s do some number regarding this using the fact above. For the students entered kindergarten with the school in 2012, they will be year six in 2018. You will get new students join and some leave, however, the composition do not change as significantly compare to the changes in kindergarten enrolment. If kindergarten in 2012 got 45 per cent of non-English background and in 2016 to achieve the school-wide ratio of 63 per cent, the kindergarten class in 2018 probably has a non-English background ratio of 75 to 80 per cent.

So here is another interesting series of study of Killara Public School. I enjoyed the research and the actual visit to the school. So I wish everyone a happy Sunday and enjoy the sleep in.

As usual, contact the school in question or Department of Education for the final confirmation and you can also access the full NSW and Sydney Public School Catchment Map by following this link.

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Killara Public School In-Person

I was actually at the Killara Public School in late 2016 but never had a chance to write it up until now. Killara Public School located in the leafy upper north shore suburb of Killara in Sydney. The school is located at Ridgeland Ave roughly about 20 minutes on foot west of the Killara Station. One thing to note is that west of Pacific Highway, it is a fairly steep downslope. So if you walking towards the direction of Killara station after school finishes, it can be a fairly long trek.

Killara Public School is fairly small by Sydney standard even after it experienced 116 per cent growth in enrolment from 2008 to 2018. In 2011 the school has 219 students. However, by 2018 the enrolment number is 428. This growth is particularly strong when compared to neighbouring schools. In 2018 it also has a full-time equivalent teaching staff of 22.5.

Academically the Killara Public School also performs very well both Sydney or nationwide. The school consistently ranked inside the top 100 in NSW when compare to both government and none government schools.

 NSW Primary School Ranking
201896
201760
201690
201583
201446
2013117
2012185
201134

You can search for a particular school or address in the search box in the top right-hand corner of the embedded map or zoom into an area of interest on the map.

The most common name used by the NSW Department of Education is called “catchment” which refer to that students resides in a particular area is guaranteed a position in specific schools. When discussed from the perspective of a particular school is often referred to as one of the following terms.

  • School Zone
  • School intake area
  • School catchment

The school also is fully of demountable classrooms, this is the consequence of the rapid expansion of the last decade. I visited the school in 2016 and last year eight permanent classroom was added to the school, so there are some welcoming changes recently not included in the photos below.

Killara Public School
Killara Public School

As you can in the below photo the school is very leafy and the playground is well shaded with large gum trees.

Killara Public School Playground
Killara Public School Playground

The semi permanent classrooms in the school.

Killara Public School Classrooms
Killara Public School Classrooms

Very nice and large open green space with the backdrops of the demountable classrooms which is everywhere in the school.

Killara Public School Grounds and Surrounding
Killara Public School Grounds and Surrounding

View of the open space and again you can easily notice the surrounding large and mature trees.

Killara Public School Grounds and Surrounding
Killara Public School Grounds and Surrounding

If you have any further questions please feel free to contact me at the About Us page or leave a comment.

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Update on Willoughby Public School Expansion Progress

I have done two articles on Willoughby Public School previously introducing the school and discuss its expansion plan. You can find both below.

I have recently visited the school again and walked around to take some photos of the expansion in progress for both Willoughby Public School and Willoughby Girls High School. Looking at the progress, it should be ready next year or first half for sure. Both schools were previously fully stuffed with all types of demountable classrooms, so it was really nice to see the expansion happening and on track.

The first photo is the view of the school from the front gate, it is a good mix of the old and new.

Willloughby Public School
Willloughby Public School expansion from front gate

Following image shows the main expansion building for the Willoughby Public School, as you can see it is progressed pretty far already and should not be too long before it is ready.

Willoughby Public School Main Expansion Building
Willoughby Public School Main Expansion Building

Next shows the massive amount of new demountable classrooms brought in to hold over, I lost count but it is around 30. These are shared with Willoughby Girls High School, so not all are only used by the Willoughby Public School.

Willoughby Public School Demountable Classrooms
Willoughby Public School Demountable Classrooms

Rest of the school are more or less the same as before and you can see photos of them from my previous article entry. I am also putting two photos of Willoughby Girls High School here as this is considered as one expansion plan and carried out at same time.

First is the main expansion building for the neighouring Willoughby Girls High School. It takes place on what use to be the tennis court. Demonstration of how tight the space got in some Sydney school, the tennis court where the construction now taken place was taken over by demountable classrooms already. The last photo was where some demountable classrooms use to sit and now a construction site and looks like so far mostly used for storage of material and equipments.

Willough Girls High School Main Expansion Building
Willough Girls High School Main Expansion Building
Willoughby Girls High School Construction Site
Willoughby Girls High School Construction Site

This is certainly exciting times and I look forward to see the expansion when it finishes.

As usual, contact the school in question or Department of Education for the final confirmation and you can also access the full NSW and Sydney Public School Catchment Map by following this link.

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Artarmon Public School Part 2

I have done an Introduction on Artarmon Public School a few month back. I wasn’t able to actually visit the actual school at the time. I was happens to be nearby on last Saturday, so I paid a visit. You know most of facts just by reading about it and looking at satellite map, however visiting it is still prove to be very interesting for me.

You really get a sense of the pressure the public schools in Sydney north shore area is currently under. Artarmon Public School is in the epicenter of this wave of increase in enrollment and there is no end in sight any time soon. Artarmon Public School is scheduled to receive a major upgrade by removing a lot of demountables and construct new multi level building to replace them.

So many demountables got put up, school itself has very limited open space. I counted fifteen demountables and semi permanent type of buildings contain roughly 17 classrooms.

IMG_20160116_140918584 IMG_20160116_141100566_HDR IMG_20160116_142431456_HDRIMG_20160116_141431319

Enjoyed the pictures and I certainly had a good time visiting the school.

 

Mowbray Public School

I have not done a specific school introduction for a while, mostly due to I have not had the chance to collect the information needed. Starting this back up with Mowbray Public School which I manage to find some time to visit on last Sunday. I could not find information on when the Mowbray Public School was established and there seem to be distinctive lack of general information on this school via online searching. This rather unfortunately as I was hoping to get some background information on the school.

Mowbray Public School is located on the Mowbray Road in the suburb of Lane Cove North. North of the Mowbray road belongs to Willoughby council and south of the road is part of the Lane Cove Council. Lane Cove Council recently rezoned pretty much entire section alone the Mowbray road and apartments just spring up like weeds in my garden after a good summer rain. I drove past this section of the road almost weekly and in the space of a few years, the entire southern side of Mowbray road in Lane Cove West is either built, being built or waiting to be built. This, of course, is one of the reasons that Mowbray Public school is undergoing a major expansion.

In 2014 there were 378 students enrolled and compare to 2008’s number of 267 students, this is an increase of 42% over the space of six years. This might sound high, but actually not uncommon in North Shore area. In 2014, 36 per cent of the students in the school are from none English language background. This number actually is fairly consistent over the years, fluctuating between 35 to 41 per cent. This number may rise in the next few years, with a lot of Asian buying in the area in the recent time, a fair number gets pushed over into Mowbray Public School’s catchment due to sky-high property price in Chatswood.

Mowbray Public School does very well academically and consistently ranked as one of the state’s top public school.

 20102011201220132014
Ranking91212619372

Mowbray Public School Catchment is bounded by Epping road to the south, Pacific High Way to the east, Chatswood golf club, Coolaroo Park to the north and Lane Cove River to the west. A really major expansion for the school is currently underway and proposed to be finished by 2016. The enrolment number is estimated to triple from 360 to 1000. What this means is that it will likely absorb part of the catchment of nearby schools that are currently overcrowded and under stress. Following is the current catchment map, once the new expansion completes, this will probably expand significantly. I will do another post to guess the possible changes in the catchment this will result in. You can search for a particular school or address in the search box in the top right-hand corner of the embedded map or zoom into an area of interest on the map.

The catchment use to be a good mix of multi and single dwellings, however recently following Lane Cove council’s rezoning, apartments are going up in a maddening fashion alone the Mowbray Road. This no doubt contributes to the need to expand the school’s capacity as it will no longer able to deal with the significant increase in population. I drove pass Mowbray Road weekly and it was really interesting to see the progress of the new classrooms close up last weekend. I took a few pictures and it is certainly a massive expansion and definitely the biggest of all the schools I have visited so far. In the following Google Map cut out, I draw out roughly what the new building situates compare to the old set up. The bottom area as marked on the map alone the Mowbray Road is where the new building is going up, essentially all the old classrooms got demolished to make room for it. About 20 new demountables are placed in the northern part of the school as marked on the map. Expect these to be removed once the new classrooms are completed and ready for use.

Mowbray Public School Pre Expansion Satellite Map With Marking

I quite like the new design, it pretty much maintained all the open space and oval. Public school often utilized for a variety of activities outside of school hours and maintaining these open spaces are very important inside and outside of school hours. The new classrooms look great and I am looking forward to its completion and students moving out of demountables. Due to the mounting pressure with the increase in enrolment, it is rare in North Shore area to maintain such lovely amount of open space which will be great for the community in the long run.

Following is the new classrooms that are under construction.

IMG_20151101_134912261_HDR IMG_20151101_134829846

Following is the lovely existing oval view of demountables are currently up to replace the existing classrooms while the new classrooms are under construction.

IMG_20151101_135103961 IMG_20151101_134620198

As usual contact the school in question or Department of Education for the final confirmation and you can also access the full NSW and Sydney Public School Catchment Map by following this link.

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Major delays in opening of new public schools in west Lindfield from 2017 to 2019

I just read the news that new public schools in west Lindfield on the old UTS Kuring-gai site is not expected to open until at least 2019, this is changed from original schedule of 2017, original article Overcrowded Sydney schools will wait longer for new space on SMH. The news has major implication for the North Shore area, this is the first major new school opening in a long time and urgently required to relief the strain a lot of public school in the area went through in the last few years. Some schools went through 40 to 50 percent increase in the number of students enrolled in just handful of years, Chatswood public school is probably one of the worst hit and with huge influx of new apartments being completed in next year or two in the area, this is going to get worse. Surrounding public schools all have similar issue and have very limited spare capacity to absorb the new influx.

Now is a bit of fun exercise on what potentially the school catchment of new Lindfield West Public School can look like in 2019 when it opens.

Lindfield West Public School Catchment Map

Most of potential catchment for the new Lindfield West Public School will likely coming out of Lindfield Public School which is very crowded and reducing its burden will allow it to cater for the increased apartments in its catchment and take over some of the load for its neighbouring schools as well. Also the most over crowded the school near by is Chatswood Public School, so I think there is a high chance that Chatswood West will ended up in the catchment of the Lindfield West Public School when it opens. Currently Chatswood West is far enough from Chatswood Public School, it not likely making that much difference shifting it to the new school. There is minor possibilities of part of the Beaumont Road Public School catchment gets shifted to the new Lindfield West, but its zone are well isolated and do not have a large number multi dwelling being completed, so its enrolment number is not likely to change significantly in the near future anyway. I do not see large change of its catchment when the new school opens.

So after 2019, I can see large part of Chatswood and Lindfield Public School’s catchment going to the new school. As a consequence, it is likely that surrounding schools will see changes to their catchment as well, such as Roseville and Killara Public School etc. Overall this is going to be interesting time and I cannot wait to see new investment in the public education to bear fruit and the opening of the new schools.

As usual contact the school in question or Department of Education for the final confirmation and you can also access the full NSW and Sydney Public School Catchment Map by following this link.

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North Ryde Public School

North Ryde Public School was originally called City View Public School and established in 1876. The school changed its name to the current North Ryde Public School in 1877. The original building in Coxs Road was a brick and sandstone building which now houses the NSW Schoolhouse Museum of Public Education. It is one of the oldest school buildings in New South Wales(#1). There is a good chance that if your children is studying in one of the public school in Sydney, that they will end up visiting the museum one day.

North Ryde Public School is located on the Coxs road near the intersection with the Lane Cove Rd. In 2014 there are 282 students enrolled in the school and this is increase of 16% over the 238 students enrolled in 2008. This is probably higher increase than average school would see in the same time period, but certainly not the most extreme as well. In 2014, 50 percent of the students in the school are from none English language background. This number had not changed much since 2008, which actually is a little surprising. I am expecting this number to rise over the next few years, there are a lot of Asian buying into the suburb in the last few years.

North Ryde Public School has been doing very well recently academically and rising steadily in rank in general.

 20102011201220132014
Ranking74121495637

North Ryde Public School Catchment is bounded by the Shrimpton creek to the west and Lane Cove river to the north, Wicks road to the east and Quarry Road to the south. The catchment is mostly single dwellings, also a mix of medium density dwellings as well.

North Ryde Public School Catchment

North Ryde Public School is located not near any train stations despite the same name train station on the Chatswood-Epping line. For out of area students, bus and car are the only real option, unless you are ready to do fair bit of walking.

I was a bit surprised when visiting that there are no real new buildings for the school, most of public schools I visited got new building or builds constructed during 2008 GFC stimulus period, North Ryde public school is one exception by the look of it. The school got real good playgrounds and open area for the number of students enrolled.

IMG_20150815_133856791_HDR

 

Following are a few shots of the buildings in the North Ryde Public School, most of buildings are of similar type and look. There are plenty of space in the school in comparison to most I have visited and with the increase population and demand, I would not be surprised with a future expansion and new permanent and temp buildings to be put in.

IMG_20150815_133912807_HDR IMG_20150815_133518743_HDR

As usual contact the school in question or department of education for the final confirmation and you can also access the full catchment map by following this link.

 

  1. http://www.schoolhousemuseum.org.au/

Lindfield Public School

Lindfield Public School is one of the older more established school in the north shore area. The school is located on the corner of Pacific High Way and Grosvenor I have done some research and only after some innovative searches, I was managed to confirm the school was established in 1903.

In 2014 there are 725 students enrolled in the school which is an increase of 10 per cent over the 660 students enrolled in 2008. It has not seen the significant increase in the enrolment like many other public schools in the north shore area. The main reason is likely that Lindfield Public School is pretty much at max capacity and you simply cannot squeeze much more students into the school. The new public school in west Lindfield will come into play in a few years which should relieve the pressure it is currently under. Once the new public school opens then the catchment for Lindfield Public School will change significantly and likely will have flow on for other nearby public schools like Roseville and Chatswood etc.

In 2014 students with a language background other than English sits at 35 per cent. Lindfield Public School also performs very well academically and consistently rank in the top of the state public schools.

 20102011201220132014
Ranking58
69304726

Its catchment straddles both sides of Pacific High Way and the North Shore Railway. The catchment consist mix of single and multi-dwellings. The multi dwellings concentrated around East of Pacific High Way and around the Lindfield Railway Station. You can search for a particular school or address in the search box in the top right-hand corner of the embedded map or zoom into an area of interest on the map.

The school itself is located just a stone’s throw away from the Lindfield railway station which made is very easily accessible by public transport.

As with most of older public schools, there is a mix of old and new buildings. The school contain a swimming pool as well which is very handy. However there are very little playgrounds in the school, this is actually likely is one of the more crowded schools in the north shore area.

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As usual contact the school in question for the final confirmation and you can also access the full catchment map by following this link.

 

 

Roseville Public School

Roseville Public School was established in 1915 and is situated in the leaf upper north shore suburb of Roseville. It is also one of the older state public school with an excellent reputation. Its motto of “Facta Non Verba” means deeds not words in English. In 2014 there are 620 enrolled in the school which is actually three less than the number enrolled in 2008. This is a very rare thing in north shore suburbs and in fact uncommon in NSW overall. Many north shore public school I know of had 40 per cent more increase in enrolment number during the same time period. I put this down to the enrolment area of Roseville Public School is almost purely consistent of single dwellings and unlike many suburbs alone the north shore line had significant new multi dwellings built during the same time period. Although there are a number of apartments nearing finish on the boundary roads in Roseville so things will likely change as well.

In 2014 students with a language background other than English sits at 24 per cent. Roseville Public School also performs very well academically and consistently rank in the top of the state public schools.

 2010201120122013
Ranking63402220

Its catchment straddles the north shore rail line and covers the majority of the Roseville, parts of Chatswood and Lindfield as well. For final confirmation of the school catchment please contact the school directly.

The most common name used by NSW Department of Education is called “catchment” which refer to that students resides in particular area is guaranteed a position in specific schools. When discussed from the perspective of a particular school is often referred to as one of the following terms.

  • School Zone
  • School intake area
  • School catchment

You can search for a particular school or address in the search box in the top right-hand corner of the embedded map or zoom into an area of interest on the map.

The school situated east of railway alone the Archbold Rd, the part of Roseville past Archbold road is actually very flat at least in terms of Sydney geography anyway. So the school itself is very flat as well much more so than Chatswood Public School in comparison. As with the schools established around the same time, it has the older red double brick buildings and newer ones. It also a three-floor new one build during the 2008 GFC period. Say what you might about the stimulus, just visiting the schools you will realise that how much the schools were neglected and the capital investments were well received in the communities.

IMG_20150612_085920751

With a fairly stable number of students over the years, Roseville Public School is also one of the few I have visited that got no demountables at all, this is indeed a rare thing in North Shore area in my personal experience. School contain two main building, along with the usual library, school hall and offices etc. As you can see in the following pictures, there are very sizable playgrounds and excellent sports facilities. In this instance, no demountables taking up valuable playground space is beneficial indeed.

IMG_20150612_090003848

IMG_20150612_085928488_HDR

As usual contact the school in question or Department of Education for the final confirmation and you can also access the full NSW and Sydney Public School Catchment Map by following this link.

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