For Parents

For Parents

Independent schools provide choice, diversity, innovation and excellence in education and enable families to choose an education that best meets the needs of their child and family. South Australian Independent schools educate students within a curriculum underpinned by a diverse range of religious beliefs (Anglican, Baptist, Christian, Christadelphian, Greek Orthodox, Islamic, Lutheran, Seventh-day Adventist, Uniting) and educational philosophies (Montessori, Waldorf Steiner). The sector also includes a number of secular schools and a special school which educates students with severe disabilities.

COVID-19 Pandemic

For the latest information on COVID-19 please visit

If you have any queries regarding the operation of a specific Independent School in relation to COVID-19 please contact the school’s Principal.


2020 NAPLAN Cancellation

On Friday 20 March Education Ministers decided that NAPLAN will not proceed in 2020. The NAPLAN test window was scheduled to be held from 12 to 22 May.  This decision was made so that school leaders, teachers and support staff can focus on the wellbeing of students and prepare for the continuity of education.  For more information please see ACARA’s NAPLAN 2020 FAQs for Parents.

Communications from the Minister for Education

The Hon. John Gardner, Minister for Education has written to parents and caregivers of SA Independent school students regarding the COVID-19 pandemic:

Parent letter non government services 08.04.2020
Parent letter non government services 18.03.2020

Resources for Parents and Caregivers

Australian Curriculum and Reporting Authority (ACARA) 
The ACARA website has information on various resources available for parents and carers, including an overview of how the Australian Curriculum is organised, information on what a child learns at each stage of their schooling, activity ideas to support children in Foundation to Year 2 in finding opportunities to apply computational thinking in their everyday life, as well as links to useful resources provided by education departments and other organisations. A recent opinion piece by ACARA’s CEO, David de Carvalho, on remote learning can also be accessed here.


A Social Story on Coronavirus 
A short picture book created by Manuela Molina, Mindheart, to support children under the age of 7 and their families discuss COVID-19 and the range of emotions arising from the current situation. The narrative has been translated into 25 languages.


Australian Childhood Foundation 
The Australian Childhood Foundation has produced a poster highlighting ways parents and carers can share connection, comfort and care with their children: Staying Connected with our Children.


Berry Street
Caring for Children in out-of-home care during the COVID-19 outbreak provides advice for adults including an example and blank structure and routine template for use.  The template provides examples of activities as prompts.  Berry Street’s Take Two service are currently developing resources to help families with children who have experienced developmental trauma to support and manage their wellbeing.


Education NSW
Advice to parents and carers including key considerations such as establishing routines and expectations, wellbeing and communication.


Emerging Minds
Communicating with your child about COVID-19 – This resource is designed to help parents and carers to talk to their children about COVID-19 and decide what information to share.

Supporting children during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak – This curated selection of resources will assist parents and carers to best to support their children and reduce worry and distress. It contains a video, factsheets and tips about what you can expect and how you can help children cope.

The Community Trauma Toolkit provides resources to support adults and children before, during or after a disaster or traumatic event.

Parent-child play: A mental health promotion strategy for all children – This resource provides practical information on the use of play to strengthen child-parent relationships and promote children’s mental health (0-12 years).


eSafety Commissioner 
COVID-19 online safety kit for parents and carers – With many students learning at home, parents and carers can find some great tips in this online safety kit from the eSafety Commissioner.


Evidence for Learning 
This collection of evidence based home-supported learning concepts aims to help parents to be effective partners in learning while children are not attending their regular school or early learning centre.


Independent Schools Victoria
Independent Schools Victoria’s parent website features a selection of articles to assist families during the COVID-19 pandemic including How to use a school closure to surge ahead academically and Coronavirus: A guide for parents to support their children.


Reach Out
Coping during the coronavirus – This page contains links to relevant articles which will help parents to support their teens (12-18 years).


SBS Multilingual Coronavirus Portal
Coronavirus and health advice available in many different languages as either video or audio files is available on the SBS’s Coronavirus information in your language webpage.


ESA has recently introduced a new ‘Guest Access’ to Scootle, enabling parents and families to access the national digital resource collection which supports teaching and learning in class and at home. Scootle Guest Access is available via the website.


Smiling Mind
Developed by psychologists and educators, Smiling Mind (an Australian not for profit organisation) provides a free mindfulness app for students and teachers to practice daily meditation and mindfulness exercises which can be downloaded here. Suggestions for how mindfulness can help during COVID-19 are available on their website.

Choosing the Right School for Your Child

Choosing the right school for your child can be a challenging task.  A clear sense of the kind of school and education you are seeking will make the process easier. Schools will have information they can send to you about curriculum, fees, ethos, etc. A visit to the school can also help. All schools should welcome this visit.

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Search our Member Schools

To learn more about our schools and assist you in finding the appropriate school for your child, you can search through our schools by location, gender, religion, and/or year level. We have included email and website links to schools for further information. All information is kept as accurate as possible. It is subject to modification, and changes are made on a regular basis.


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Term Dates

Individual schools should be contacted for details of their own particular arrangements. Some schools may commence Term 1 a week early, and take a three week break in either April or July.


2021 Term Dates



Term 1

Term 2

Term 3

Term 4

Term Dates 27 January – 1 or 9 April or
1 February – 9 or 16 April
20 April – 25 June or
27 April to 25 June or 2 July or
3 May – 2 or 9 July
19 July – 24 September or
26 July – 1 October
11 October – 3 or 10 December or
18 October – 14 December
Exeat Dates 13-14 February, 6-8 March 15-16 May, 12-14 June 7-8 August, 4-6 September  30-31 October, 20-21 November
Department for Education &
Catholic Education SA Term Dates
27 January – 9 April 27 April – 2 July 19 July – 24 September 11 October – 10 December

2021 Public Holidays

Friday 1 January: New Year’s Day
Tuesday 26 January: Australia Day
Monday 8 March: Adelaide Cup Day
Friday 2 April: Good Friday
Monday 5 April: Easter Monday
Monday 26 April: Anzac Day
Monday 14 June: Queen’s Birthday & Volunteers’ Day
Monday 4 October: Labour Day
Monday 27 December: Christmas Day Public Holiday
Tuesday 28 December: Proclamation Day


2022 Term Dates



Term 1

Term 2

Term 3

Term 4

Term Dates 31 January – 14 April or
7 February – 14 April
2 May – 1 or 8 July 
25 July – 30 September 17 October – 16 December
Exeat Dates 12-13 February, 12-14 March 14-15 May, 11-13 June 13-14 August, 3-5 September  29-30 October, 19-20 November
Department for Education &
Catholic Education SA Term Dates
31 January – 14 April 2 May – 8 July 25 July – 30 September 17 October – 16 December

2022 Public Holidays

Monday 3 January: New Year’s Day
Wednesday 26 January: Australia Day
Monday 14 March: Adelaide Cup Day
Friday 15 April: Good Friday
Monday 18 April: Easter Monday
Monday 25 April: Anzac Day
Monday 13 June: Queen’s Birthday & Volunteers’ Day
Monday 3 October: Labour Day
Monday 26 December: Christmas Day Public Holiday
Tuesday 27 December: Proclamation Day


2023 Term Dates



Term 1

Term 2

Term 3

Term 4

Term Dates 30 January – 6 or 14 April or
6 February – 14 April
26 April – 30 June or

1 May – 30 June or 7 July 

24 July – 29 September 16 October – 8 or 15 December
Exeat Dates 11-13 February, 18-19 February
10-14 March
13-15 May, 9-12 June 12-13 August, 1-5 September  28-30 October, 3-5 November,
18-20 November, 25-26 November
Department for Education &
Catholic Education SA Term Dates
30 January – 14 April 1 May – 7 July 24 July – 29 September 16 October – 15 December

2023 Public Holidays

Monday 2 January: New Year’s Day
Thursday 26 January: Australia Day
Monday 13 March: Adelaide Cup Day
Friday 7 April: Good Friday
Monday 10 April: Easter Monday
Tuesday 25 April: Anzac Day
Monday 12 June: Queen’s Birthday & Volunteers’ Day
Monday 2 October: Labour Day
Monday 25 December: Christmas Day Public Holiday
Tuesday 26 December: Proclamation Day


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Australian Bushfires: Resources for Families

Dealing with the impact of the Australian Bushfires will be a significant challenge for many.  Please consider the following resources related to the wellbeing of children and adults during this difficult time: Australian Bushfires – Wellbeing Resources for Families


The Australian National University (ANU) has also released a series of factsheets on how to protect yourself and others from bushfire smoke:

What is bushfire smoke and how harmful is it
How to protect yourself and others from bushfire smoke
How to monitor local conditions

Parent Initiatives in Education (PIE) Grants Program

The PIE Grants Program aims to support parent groups to increase the participation of parents/carers in their child’s school community. The AISSA administers the program on behalf the Minister for Education.


The grants are intended to support schools and preschools and their communities to develop innovative projects or new initiatives which will:


  1. Encourage and promote greater participation of parents and caregivers who are not well represented in their school and preschool decision making; and/or
  2. Encourage and increase an understanding by parents and caregivers of their role in supporting children and young people’s learning in literacy and numeracy through parent engagement strategies.


For more information please contact the AISSA on +61 8179 1400 or email

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Scholarships: South Australian Co-operative Entry Program

The South Australian Co-operative Entry Program (ACEP) is for Year 8 scholarship entry to Independent and Catholic schools in 2022. Some schools offer this scholarship for students entering Year 7.  The scholarship testing is organised by the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER).  For details of schools participating in the ACEP test and registration details, please visit or telephone (03) 9277 5749.


School Governance

AISSA is committed to assisting its member schools to undertake effective and professional governance arrangements through a major annual conference, workshops and on an individual school basis as required. There have been substantial developments in governance theory and practice in recent years of which boards need to be aware if they are to lead their schools successfully into the future.  AISSA understands that effective governance is critical to the growth, health and innovative spirit of the sector and for education provision as a whole.

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The National Assessment Program (NAP) assists governments, education authorities and schools to determine whether young Australians are reaching important educational goals.  The NAP includes:

  • The National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN)
  • Three-yearly NAP sample assessments in science literacy, civics and citizenship, and information and communication technology (ICT) literacy
  • International sample assessments.

In May of every year, students in years 3, 5, 7 and 9 take part in the National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN). NAPLAN was introduced in 2008 and is part of the NAP.


Useful Resources for Parents

AISSA Member Schools Code of Social Conduct
Bushfires and your child’s Independent school or preschool
Policy Statement – Government Funding Principles (Feb 2021)
the Raising Children Network


Child Protection Training for Volunteers

If your volunteer work is with children (under 18 years), under current SA legislation, you are a mandated notifier. This means you need to understand how to notify and report child abuse. All ongoing volunteers (people who help out more than once at any school) must do mandatory notification training. This includes people on School Boards/Councils. The training has been updated and is now called Responding to Risks of Harm, Abuse and Neglect – Education and Care. We call it RRHAN-EC for short.


If you are a new or existing volunteer you will need to undertake the new free online RRHAN-EC Fundamentals course before 31 December 2021.


The course is available on the government learner management system called Plink.


You need to create a Plink account using the Non-Department for Education staff log-in option and then select volunteer. You can ask your school leader/contact person for help getting Plink set up. If you have technical issues accessing the course please email


When you have completed the course you will have access to your certificate which can then be presented to the school, who will keep a record of your training completion. You may use this for other schools/sites where you also volunteer but not for paid employment.


This three-year RRHAN cycle will end in 2024 when you will be asked to complete another update course if you are still volunteering in schools.


More information for volunteers is available on the Department for Education’s website.


National Principles for Child Safe Organisations

The National Principles reflect the ten child safe standards recommended by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, with a broader scope that goes beyond child sexual abuse to cover other forms of harm to children and young people.  In February 2019, the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) endorsed the National Principles which aim to provide a nationally consistent approach to creating organisational cultures that foster child safety and wellbeing across all sectors in Australia, including schools and Early Learning Centres.  All states are currently working towards implementing them and the AISSA is part of the SA education cross sector reference group.  Parent information can be found here.


National School Chaplaincy Program 2019-2022

The National School Chaplaincy Program (NSCP) is a voluntary program that supports schools to promote the wellbeing of students. The Australian Government currently provides $7.59 million each year to South Australian Government, Independent and Catholic schools for the NSCP through the project agreement. The list of participating SA Independent schools is available here.