Queensland State High Schools

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Queensland State High Schools cater for Years 7 to 12 (or some smaller range within this). Years 8 and 9 are known as Junior and Years 10, 11 and 12 are known as Senior. The term "Senior" is widely applied to those in Years 11 and 12. The technical term Sub-senior is sometimes encountered in relation to Year 11, but is not in widespread use. In 2015, Queensland began moving year 7 from primary school to high school, also known as Secondary School.[1] As a part of this change, Junior Secondary Schools have been formed which encompass years 7, 8 and 9 to recognise the different learning needs of younger teens. [2]

State education system[edit]

Queensland, Australia has an extensive state education system, which is free and open to all residents, administered by and funded through a Queensland State Government Department now known as Education Queensland and also responsible for the Arts.

The system consists of Primary Schools generally called State Schools, High Schools, Special Schools (catering to the needs of those with physical and intellectual handicaps severe enough to preclude mainstreaming) and the Correspondence/Remote support service.

Naming of schools[edit]

Secondary Schools in the Education Queensland system are normally named Town/District State High School, and often referred to by their acronym e.g. TSHS. Unlike some other schooling systems, State High Schools in Queensland are normally not (re)named to commemorate significant individuals or historic events. A few schools (e.g. Bundamba State Secondary College) have adopted other styles of names. Some schools have been renamed from Town SHS to District SHS, this sometimes occurs when smaller schools in a district are closed, and rural school bus services to the major centre provided instead.


In some rural areas, small local State High Schools cater only to years 8 to 10, with students continuing to Year 12 busing to a larger centre for their final two years. There have also been a few schools, usually in extremely remote areas, that provide Years 1 to 10 (Hightop Primary Schools), with those wishing to complete Senior usually moving to a larger centre to complete their schooling.

A very small number of State High Schools offer or have offered either dormitories or out-boarding placements, however the majority of boarding schools in Queensland are religiously affiliated, mostly Anglican, Lutheran or Catholic schools.

In recent years, some new schools have been built with a clear division between the Junior (years 8 & 9) and Senior (years 10 - 12) facilities, with the Junior sub-campus referred to as the Middle School.


The Queensland Certificate of Education is a Certificate of completion given to students at the end of Year Twelve. It is considered a minimum qualification for most employment. A certificate was historically given at the conclusion of grade 10, known as the Junior Certificate, while the final certificate received at the conclusion of grade 12 was the Senior Certificate. It is now Queensland Government policy that student must remain in education, training, or work, until they are 17. This requirement has become known as the earning or learning policy.

Under the previous system, Apprenticeships and other post (Junior) Secondary employment and training options, coupled with compulsory attendance only until age 15 saw many students leave to enter the workforce before completing the Junior Certificate. Changes to employment conditions, compulsory education requirements and other factors have seen most students now completing Junior and attending through to Senior Certificate level. Now all students must achieve either a Queensland Certificate of Education or be working full-time.

This system has only recently been applied and so the last group of year 12s to receive the traditional Senior Certificate were those who graduated at the end of 2007. Following this year all students receive a Senior Statement, showing all subjects and results achieved and eligible students will also receive a Queensland Certificate of Education. Students can keep working towards their QCE for up to nine years.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Year 7 is moving to high school. Queensland Education Department. Retrieved 17 April 2015.
  2. ^ Junior Secondary in state high schools . Queensland Education Department. Retrieved 17 April 2015.

External links[edit]