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28 October 2014

QLD families to save thousands on private school fees.

From today, families in Queensland can secure substantial discounts on places at a range of private schools as the world’s first competitive online marketplace for private school places expands into the state.

“School Places” (schoolplaces.com.au) helps private schools maximise student numbers and optimise revenue by connecting them with families who are searching for discounted, last minute private school vacancies.

Over 150 Queensland parents have already registered on schoolplaces.com.au to be alerted when a vacancy that matches their search criteria is loaded on to the site. From today a core group of schools will publish vacancies on the site including Caloundra City Private School, Calvary Christian College, Ipswich Girls’ Grammar School and Canterbury College.

School Places is expecting a strong response, having achieved 35,000 vacancy searches on its official launch day in Victoria in April. Since then, it has delivered more than $3.7M in enrolment fees to its 38 partner schools in Victoria and New South Wales with over $3.3M in enrolment fees currently pending processing by the schools, and saved parents almost $200,000 in total through the offers they have taken up.

School Places’ CEO Natalie Mactier said: “We are delighted to expand School Places into QLD today, with a core group of five partner schools offering discounts of between five to 50 per cent for one to five years, and more schools planning to join us later in the year.

“When it comes to enrolling their child in a school, the number one concern for parents is choosing the right fit for their child’s needs. Until now, parents have tended to enrol far in advance for places in many private schools on the basis that demand for places is high and they do not want to miss out. We are now seeing that many parents keep their options open and are still considering alternatives right up to the intake year.

“What we’ve learned is that places become vacant all the time because families relocate or decide to switch for personal reasons. However, until now, there’s been no central place for these vacancies to be advertised.

“Meanwhile, fee growth at private schools has been outstripping income growth for some time, and schools remain under constant pressure to ensure that every place available is filled, so they can deliver capital development, increased resources and improved programs to the benefit of the entire incumbent school community.

“School Places is therefore addressing a parent’s basic need while assisting schools with their most pressing issue. I encourage parents who see a place on our site to claim it fast because they are usually snapped up very quickly”, she said.