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Whether you’ve got a child about to enter high school or you’re keen to make the important decision sooner rather than later, listen up. When it comes to choosing the perfect place to send your child for some of their most formative years, a hefty price tag doesn’t always signal the right choice.

In fact, there are plenty of state schools around that offer programs for gifted tweens and teens across a number of disciplines – sport, music, arts and academia, just to name a few. These schools, dubbed ‘schools of excellence’ by the Queensland Government, offer innovative and specialised programs designed to cultivate your child’s special skill, under the tutelage of industry experts and education professionals.

A number of these schools are also strongly linked to tertiary institutions and local industry, ensuring the programs are up to date and paving the way for your children once they graduate.

Here are just a few examples…

STEM at Wynnum West State School
As one of just four metro Brisbane state schools to receive the $19,500 Federal Government Digital Technologies Grant, Wynnum West boasts an impressive, comprehensive STEM program. Teachers have undergone special training to deliver the program, which covers robotics, coding and computer languages, global competitions and more.

www.wynnumwestss.eq.edu.au

Cavendish Road State School’s Academy of Ideas
A first-of-its-kind venture, Cavendish Road’s Academy of Ideas focuses on critical and creative thinking skills through fields like philosophy, archaeology, problem solving, sustainability and creative writing. Working with industry experts, students at Cavendish Road are learning to embrace innovation and think differently in areas that aren’t typically addressed in the usual school curriculum.

www.cavendishroadshs.eq.edu.au

High-Performance Sports Academy at Coombabah State High School
Coombabah State High is on a mission to be recognised as one of the leading schools for talented young sports-people. Their sports excellence program delivers students the opportunity to focus on their sporting endeavours while also achieving an important academic balance, and features opportunities for tertiary pursuit of sporting achievements both in Australia and in the US.

www.coombabashs.eq.edu.au

Encore at Wellington Point State High School
Wellington Point’s arts excellence program ‘Encore’ covers the Performing Arts – including singing, dancing and acting – visual art, and even technical production. Students from grades 7 to 12 can audition for anyone of the available disciplines and, if accepted into the program, will take part in extension workshops, special projects and excursions.

www.wellingtonpointshs.eq.edu.au

Miami State High School’s Stellar Program
Students with a propensity for academia will thrive in Stellar – Miami High’s academic excellence program designed to help students reach their highest potential. The innovative curriculum incorporates higher-order thinking skills to encourage students to think reflectively, critically and confidently.

www.miamishs.eq.edu.au

Golf School of Excellence at Kelvin Grove State High School
Nutritionist Michelle Bridges is on board with Kelvin Grove State High School to deliver their class-leading golf excellence program. The program covers technique and game, while also helping students develop knowledge about the relationship between psychological and physiological influences and their success.

www.kelvingrovesc.eq.edu.au

Japanese Excellence at Broadbeach State School
While Broadbeach State School students – like many Queensland students – learn Japanese in their younger years, the Japanese Excellence Program is designed for those with an aptitude for the language and desire to master it. Taught at a faster pace using more complex language, this program is best suited for students who want to continue to excel at Japanese.

www.broadbeachss.eq.edu.au

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haven is all about family, life and style in Brisbane's inner city suburbs, the Gold Coast, south to Byron Bay. We have been keeping parents in the know for over eight years, with fun, fresh and helpful stories that they can take tips from or treasure in their own library.