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Latest cost of education figures in Australia revealed

Sydney is Australia’s most affordable city for a Catholic education while Canberra is the most expensive, according to the latest research into the cost of education.

The Futurity Investment Group Investment in Education reveals Australia’s most affordable and expensive cities and regions for a Government, Catholic and Independent education.

– Melbourne is Australia’s most expensive city for a Government education ($108,879), an increase of $6,072 compared to last year.

– Canberra is Australia’s most expensive city for a Catholic education ($208,871), an increase of $11,204 compared to 2023.

– Sydney is Australia’s most expensive city for an Independent education ($377,993), an increase of $20,062 compared to last year.

The Index estimates the total cost of a Government education in Canberra will be $81,564 over 13-years for a child starting school in 2024, an increase of $4,562 compared to last year.

The total cost of a Government education in the Australian Capital Territory is 12% below the national average ($92,710) and considerably cheaper than Melbourne ($108,879) and Sydney ($94,819), Australia’s most expensive cities for a Government education.

Canberra parents are forecast to spend seven times more on outside tuition ($1,671) than school fees ($241) this year, with musical instruments ($912) electronic devices ($625) and school camps ($306) all adding to the total cost of a Government education.

The Index revealed school fees will make up only 4% of the total cost of a Government education for a child starting school in Canberra this year, with 96% spent on ancillary costs.

The Investment in Education Index found Sydney is Australia’s most affordable city for a Catholic education.

The total cost of a Catholic education in the Harbour City is forecast to be $188,759 over 13-years for a child starting school in 2024, an increase of $10,281 compared to last year.

The total cost of a Catholic education in Sydney is 3% below the national average ($195,074), and considerably cheaper than Canberra ($208,871) and Brisbane ($204,197), Australia’s most expensive cities for a Catholic education.

Sydney parents are forecast to spend almost double on outside tuition ($4,498) than school fees ($2,522) this year, with electronic devices ($974), musical instruments ($834) and school uniforms ($418) all adding to the total cost of a Catholic education.

The research found school fees will make up 21% of the total cost of a Catholic education for a child starting school in Sydney this year, with 79% spent on ancillary costs.

The Investment in Education Index discovered Perth is Australia’s most affordable city for an Independent education.

The Futurity Investment Group Investment in Education Index estimates the total cost of an Independent education in Perth will be $225,728 over 13-years for a child starting school in 2024, an increase of $11,839 compared to last year.

The total cost of an Independent education in the Western Australia capital is 29% below the national average ($316,944) and considerably cheaper than Sydney ($377,993) and Melbourne ($324,559), Australia’s most expensive cities for an Independent education.

School fees ($6,818) are forecast to be the most expensive component of an Independent education for a child starting school in Perth this year, well ahead of outside tuition ($1,873), transport ($793) and musical instruments ($636).

The Index revealed school fees will make up 54% of the total cost of an Independent education for a child starting school in Perth in 2024, with the remainder spent on ancillary costs.

Total estimated cost of education for a child starting school in 2024*. Image: Futurity Investment Group. *Estimates of future long-term education costs projected over a 13-year period are provided as a guide only and are population weighted. Being estimates the actual cost of education for a particular child or school sector or period cannot be guaranteed.

Regional education

The Index also calculated the total cost of education in regional and remote areas for a child starting school this year and discovered Tasmania is Australia’s most affordable region for a non-metro Government and Catholic education.

The Futurity Investment Group Investment in Education Index estimates the total cost of a Government education in regional and remote Tasmania will be $72,083 over 13-years for a child starting school in 2024, an increase of $4,037 compared to last year.

The total cost of a Government education in non-metro Tasmania is 10% below the national average ($80,303) and considerably cheaper than regional and remote New South Wales ($87,762) and non-metro South Australia ($86,677), Australia’s most expensive regions for a non-metro Government education.

Tasmania parents are forecast to spend 24 times more on outside tuition ($1,199) than school fees ($48) this year, with electronic devices ($833), transport ($451) and musical instruments ($408) all adding to the total cost of a Government education in non-metro Tasmania.

The Index revealed school fees will make up only 1% of the total cost of a Government education for a child starting school in regional and remote Tasmania in 2024, with the remainder spent on ancillary costs.

The Investment in Education Index found Catholic schools located in non-metro Tasmania are Australia’s most affordable.

The total cost of a Catholic education in regional and remote Tasmania is forecast to be $161,042 over 13-years for a child starting school in 2024, an increase of $9,001 compared to last year.

The total cost of a Catholic education in non-metro Tasmania is 7% below the national average ($172,981) and substantially more affordable than regional and remote Northern Territory ($184,725) and non-metro Western Australia ($175,413), Australia’s most expensive regions for a non-metro Catholic education.

Outside tuition ($2,623) is forecast to be the most expensive component of a Catholic education for a child starting school in regional and remote Tasmania this year, followed by school fees ($1,849), electronic devices ($1,124) and musical instruments ($703).

The research found school fees will make up 19% of the total cost of a Catholic education for a child starting school in non-metro Tasmania in 2024, with 81% spent on ancillary costs.

The research also discovered Queensland is Australia’s most affordable region for a non-metro Independent education.

It forecast the total cost of an Independent education in regional and remote Queensland will be $208,164 over 13-years for a child starting school in 2024, a jump of $11,288 compared to last year.

The total cost if an Independent education in non-metro Queensland is 6% below the national average ($221,501) and considerably cheaper than regional and remote South Australia ($252,068), the nation’s most expensive region for an Independent education.

School fees ($3,545) are forecast to be the most expensive component of an Independent education for a child starting school this year in non-metro Queensland, well ahead of outside tuition ($1,873), electronic devices ($1,143) and sports equipment ($902).

Futurity Investment Group CEO Mr Sam Sondhi said the costs associated with education are placing a substantial burden on many Australian families.

“Households are already stretched by spiralling cost of living and interest rate pressures,” Mr Sondhi said.

“With less discretionary money to spend, it’s going to be a challenge for many families to pay for the total cost of education, which has jumped 6% in the past year.

“It’s forecast school fees and a host of major school expenses including outside tuition, school camps, transport, uniforms, electronic devices and sports equipment will increase upwards of 14% in the next five years, and by almost 30% in the next decade.”

Data collection for the Futurity Investment Group Investment in Education Index was undertaken by McCrindle.

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