NSW enrolment growth audit

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The NSW Government requested an enrolment growth audit to understand the impact of population trends on student enrolment projections.

The findings will aid in the accurate long-term planning and delivery of NSW public school infrastructure.

The audit examined the changes in student population and school infrastructure planning across NSW from 2018 to 2023 and found that student enrolment trends are dynamic and complex and vary significantly across different geographic areas.

The audit makes use of individual case studies to illustrate the impact of local factors in specific areas and proposes seven actions for SINSW to implement to address the challenges and improve infrastructure planning and delivery in the right areas, at the right time. 

The proposed actions include:

  1. Develop custom school population projections to add more granularity than is currently provided by population and dwelling forecasts provided by the Department of Planning, Housing and Infrastructure (DPHI), for use in forward planning school infrastructure.
  2. Continue to enhance population projection methodologies and access broader data sources in collaboration with NSW Government agencies and the Common Planning Assumptions Group.
  3. Engage with local government stakeholders and the development sector for up-to-date dwelling forecasts, particularly in preparing for Day 1, Term 1 each school year.
  4. Develop a strategic land provisioning strategy for priority growth areas and precincts.
  5. Coordination and collaboration across NSW Government agencies for the planning and delivery of new housing.
  6. Active monitoring of the top 10 growth areas identified in this audit and more frequent monitoring of the top 20 growth areas across NSW.
  7. Continuing with short-term enrolment management strategies.

Whilst there will always be a level of uncertainty in population projections, an improved whole-of-government approach is helping SINSW continue to adapt and plan to deliver educational infrastructure that meets the needs of our students, teachers and school communities now and into the future.

Access the NSW enrolment growth audit to examine the findings in more detail.