Moving down under was a big item on our checklist, or better to say bucket list, and it is DONE. We have moved as a family to Australia, specifically Melbourne. Why Melbourne? It was love at first visit, plus it has everything we as a family were looking for.
So the move was done, and as that item was ticked off the checklist, more and more items kept jumping on the list, until you feel it could be endless. It feels like being born all over again, except you are the adult and you are the child. I had to look everything up, every single thing required extensive research and analysis of pros and cons before a step can be made. The house, furniture, appliances, cars, licenses, schools, childcare, parks, markets…etc.
Melbourne is all about choices. I guess it begins with the big decision of living North or South, West or East. It sounds simpler than it actually is, especially if you do not have a direction to belong to, no coordinates to refer to like a job or certain school. The only information I got off the internet was not enough to make a choice, so the accommodation requirements and budget were the starting point. Once that gave us a slight indication of where we wanted to look for housing, the house hunt started. I will leave the hurdles of renting in Melbourne to my other post Australian Experience…The Chicken and the Egg. Next came the schools. Now there are different website I can recommend to give you details about the school zones and school basic profile.
- To find out which public school zone your accommodation falls in, simply enter your address on http://www.street-directory.com.au/ and you can look up the closest school. The website is very helpful to identify the closest attractions and main points of interest to your address.
- To view any school basic profile, you can type the school name or even just select a suburb on https://www.myschool.edu.au/. This website provides a basic profile of each school such as socio-educational distribution, number of enrollments, NAPLAN results. It is a comprehensive website for all schools (public and private).
No matter when you move in, your local public school is obliged to offer your child a place. If you are interested in enrolling into a private school, you will need to contact the school administration and inquire about available spaces.
There is a lot to digest here, the school year which starts from Jan till Dec. The four semester school year as opposed to 2 or 3 depending where you are coming from. The naming of the year classes prior to Grade 1, which is even different by State in Australia.
House and school sorted, now time for the real thing: the job hunt!