4221.0 - Schools, Australia, 2015 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 04/02/2016   
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SUMMARY OF FINDINGS


COMMENTARY ON STUDENT NUMBERS

All full-time and part-time students.

Between 2014 and 2015, the number of students enrolled in schools in Australia grew by 56,872 (1.5%) to a total of 3,750,973. The increase was greater in government schools (1.6%) than non-government schools (1.4%). Within the non-government sector, the number of students attending Independent schools increased by 2.0%, while those attending Catholic schools increased by 1.0%.

Across the states and territories, the largest proportional increases in student numbers occurred in Western Australia (3.1%), followed by the ACT (2.3%) and Victoria (1.9%). Student numbers fell slightly in the Northern Territory (0.5%) and Tasmania (0.4%). At the affiliation level, student numbers at Independent schools rose by 5.4% in the Northern Territory and by 2.4% and 2.3% respectively in Western Australia and Victoria. Students attending Catholic schools rose by 3.5% in Western Australia and by 1.8% in Queensland.

Overall, government schools continued to be the major provider of school education in Australia in 2015, with 2,445,130 students (65.2% of all students) attending, while 1,305,843, students (34.8% of all students) attended non-government schools.


Graph shows the number of students by affiliation as Australian totals for the years 2009 to 2015


Graph shows the number of students by states and territories in 2015


Part-time students.

The number of students in Australia attending school part-time continued to decline in 2015, down to 20,279, representing a fall of 17.3% since 2006. There were almost equal numbers of male and female part-time students in 2015, whereas in 2006 females comprised nearly 60% of such students. In 2015, close to half (46%) of all part-time students were in Queensland, while next largest group (16.2%) were in Victoria.


Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander students.

The number of students in Australia identifying as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander increased by 4.2% between 2014 and 2015, with larger proportional increases in the ACT (7.5%), Victoria (6.8%), and South Australia (6.4%). These increases continue on from those in recent years, in part reflecting the success of programs to improve identification and data collection strategies for this group of students.

In 2015, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students totalled 200,563, and made up 5.3% of total enrolments in Australia’s schools. The majority of these students (84.0%) attended government schools, while 10.4% attended Catholic schools, and 5.5% attended Independent schools.

Graph shows the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in Australia in 2015


Of the 200,563 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander school students in Australia, the largest proportion was in New South Wales (32.0%), followed by Queensland (29.9%), and Western Australia (12.9%). As a proportion of all students within a state or territory, Northern Territory had by far the highest figure, with 40.5% of students there being Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, followed by Tasmania (8.3%), and Queensland (7.6%).

Graph shows the number of Aborignal and Torres Strait Islander students by affiliation in the states and territories in 2015