New data reveals how student enrolments fared in 2023

New data reveals how student enrolments fared in 2023

For the first time in several years, all school sectors across Australia recorded positive enrolment growth in 2023, according to new data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The private school sector recorded the largest growth with a 3.9% increase (25,304 additional full-time equivalent students), surpassing the Australian population growth of 2.4% by June 2023.

Independent Schools Australia (ISA) Chief Executive Officer Graham Catt said while Independent schools have seen the strongest growth, all three school sectors are critical to delivering the best educational outcomes for Australian children.

“It’s only through collaboration through all sectors and government that we will achieve genuine reform in education,” Catt said.

“The past three years have shown the highest enrolment growth since 2008. The 2023 figures show that Independent schools enrol 16.3 per cent of all Australian school students, and 20.4 per cent of all secondary enrolments.”

Public schools were able to breathe a sigh of relief, too, with the ABS data revealing a 0.3% increase in student enrolments in 2023 – a welcome change from the 2022 data, which saw public school enrolments fall for a second successive year.

Growth of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students across all school sectors was 3.6%. For the Independent sector, this represents an increase of 1,414 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students, or 8.4%.