4220.0 - Schools, Australia, Preliminary, 2000  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 12/02/2001   
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The statistics in this publication relate to government and non-government schools, full-time students, and school staff, and were collected through the National Schools Statistics Collection held in August 2000. The data provided here are preliminary and subject to revision.


Figures have been rounded and discrepancies may occur between totals and the sums of the component items.


ABS Australian Bureau of Statistics
AEE Ancillary Education Establishment
FTE full-time equivalent
NSSC National Schools Statistics Collection


For further information about these and related statistics, contact the National Information Service on 1300 135 070.



In August 2000 there were 9,595 schools, of which 73% (6,961) were government schools and the remainder were non-government schools. This compares to 10,007 schools operating in 1990 of which 75% (7,490) were government schools.


There were 3,247,456 full-time students attending these schools in August 2000. Of these, 69% attended government schools. In 1990, 72% of the 3,041,657 students attended government schools. The number of full-time students attending government schools increased by 601 between 1999 and 2000, while the number of full-time students attending non-government schools increased by 20,205 (2.1%).


There were 150,610 full-time equivalent (FTE) teaching staff in government schools and 67,449 in non-government schools in August 2000. Government school FTE teaching staff increased by 128 between 1999 and 2000, while teaching staff in non-government schools increased by 2,207 (3.4%).


The apparent retention rate of secondary school students from Year 10 to Year 12, at the


Australia level, was 74.4%, the same as in 1999. In 1990 the equivalent rate was 66.5%.


The age participation rate for full-time students attending secondary schools was 93.6% RATES for 15-year-olds and 61.6% for 17-year-olds. Overall rates for 15-19-year-olds varied from a high of 63.4% in the Australian Capital Territory to a low of 41.7% in the Northern Territory. Female school participation rates were higher than the rates for males in this age group, for all States and Territories.

AGE PARTICIPATION RATES(a), Full-time Students - Aged 15-19: 2000



1 This publication contains preliminary statistics of government and non-government schools, full-time students enrolled and active in a course of study at those schools, and school staff as at August 2000.

2 The National Schools Statistics Collection (NSSC) is a collaborative arrangement between State, Territory and Commonwealth education authorities. A schools statistics committee, of which the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is a member, was established in 1979 to improve the quality of education statistics relating to government and non-government primary and secondary education. It has developed a set of concepts, definitions and classifications for use in the NSSC.

3 The statistics are compiled, in cooperation with the Ministerial Council on Education, Employment, Training and Youth Affairs, from collections conducted by the State and Territory Departments of Education (government series) and the Commonwealth Department of Education, Training and Youth Affairs (non-government series).

4 With the implementation of the NSSC concepts, the definitions, classifications and coverage were revised. The current government series was implemented in 1981 and the non-government series in 1984.


5 The scope of the NSSC series comprises government and non-government establishments which have as their major activity the administration, and/or provision of full-time day primary/secondary education, or primary/secondary distance education.

6 Education services in Jervis Bay Territory are provided by the Australian Capital Territory Department of Education and Community Services through Commonwealth government funding. For the purposes of the NSSC, figures for Jervis Bay Territory are included in statistics for the Australian Capital Territory. As at August 2000, there was one government primary school in Jervis Bay Territory with 84 students, 7.0 FTE teaching staff, and 2.9 FTE non-teaching staff.

7 In the government series, Pre-year 1 in Western Australia is called Pre-primary. In 2000 there were 20,008 students attending Pre-primary on a four day per week basis, supported by 1,779.5 FTE school staff. The Education Department of Western Australia has advised that Pre-primary students will be attending five days per week from 2002, at which stage the students will be included in the scope of the NSSC.

8 The Northern Territory Department of Education advises that commencing in 1995, secondary school-aged students in remote Aboriginal schools have been reclassified to the ungraded secondary category. The removal of these students from the calculation of apparent retention rates for the years 1995 onwards has resulted in an increase in the Year 10 to Year 12 rate from 1997 onward and in the Year 7/8 to Year 12 rate from 1999 onward compared to those for prior years.

9 More detailed statistics and information about the scope and definitions used in this collection are published in the ABS publication Schools, Australia (Cat. no. 4221.0) which is issued annually.


10 The census date for the collection is the first Friday in August each year, which for 2000 was 4 August. However, due to administrative reasons, the Northern Territory held its census on 18 August.


11 This publication draws extensively on information provided freely by education organisations. Their continued cooperation is very much appreciated; without it, the range of education statistics published by the ABS would not be as extensive. Information received by the ABS is treated in strict confidence as required by the Census and Statistics Act 1905.


12 Other ABS publications which may be of interest to users are:

Education and Training in Australia (Cat. no. 4224.0) - issued irregularly, latest issue released in January 1999

Education and Training Experience, Australia (Cat. no. 6278.0) - issued irregularly, latest issue 1997, released in November 1998

Schools, Australia (Cat. no. 4221.0) - issued annually, latest issue 1999, released in April 2000

Transition from Education to Work, Australia (Cat. no. 6227.0) - issued annually, latest issue May 2000, released in December 2000

Directory of Education and Training Statistics (Cat. no. 1136.0) -electronic version only, issued irregularly, last issued in November 2000.

See the National Centre for Education and Training Statistics (NCETS) webpage: http//www.abs.gov.au/ncets/

National Report on Schooling in Australia - issued annually by the Ministerial Council on Education, Employment and Youth Affairs (MCEETYA) - latest issue 1999

13 Additional information can be found in publications produced by ABS offices in each State and Territory, various publications of the Commonwealth Department of Education, Training and Youth Affairs, the Ministerial Council on Education, Employment, Training and Youth Affairs, and in annual reports of the State and Territory Departments of Education.

14 The ABS Year Book Australia (Cat. no. 1301.0), the State Year Books and the publication Australian Social Trends (Cat. no. 4102.0) also contain commentary and data on education. NCETS has recently established a webpage on the ABS website for the dissemination of information on education and training: http//www.abs.gov.au/ncets/.

15 Current publications produced by the ABS are listed in the Catalogue of Publications and Products (Cat. no. 1101.0). On Tuesdays and Fridays the ABS also issues the Release Advice (Cat. no. 1105.0), which lists publications to be released in the next few days.