10 Questions

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10 questions to consider for your child’s senior secondary schooling…

What is the outcome of a StPatsTech education?
More than 800 of our past students began an apprenticeship during their time at the College and 94% are still in or have completed their training. Other students have moved straight into work or onto further studies with our TAFE SA direct entry program, while a small number choose to go on to university. Nearly 100% of past students report they are currently in employment.

Does the school have a particular philosophy or mission?
Jobs are our thing. Our focus is not on ATAR scores or pressuring students to gain a university place. We recognise that not everyone wants or needs to attend university to have a fulfilling career. Our mission is to create well-rounded young people who are ready for the working world. This means our students study maths and science which is applicable to their trade or technical area. This practical approach means students are able to better comprehend complex ideas and see how and why they work in the real-world.

Will StPatsTech prepare my child for a career?
Yes. We won’t hand your child an apprenticeship but we will treat them like a young adult and teach them appropriate workplace behaviours and practices. Our state-of-the-art workshops and facilities mean our students know their way around the work environment and are confident with employers during work experience placements. We also know that sometimes things change. Once you have been exposed to range of potential career choices in a real, hands-on way, you might change your mind about your future – and that’s okay. You can change your course to suit your abilities and passions. And if you decide on a career that requires further education, including a university degree, then we’ll make sure you have the correct entrance requirements as well.

Does the College meet my child’s basic education needs?
Yes and more. Not only will your child complete their SACE they will concurrently study a TAFE SA Certificate II or IV (depending on their chosen stream). If a student secures a School-based Apprenticeship they transfer into a Certificate III course as part of their trade. This means these students can complete Year 12 and the first year of their apprenticeship at the same time. Th they graduate from school straight into full-time employment in the second year of their apprenticeship.

What support will the College offer my child?
Many of our teachers come from a trade or technical background and we have strong links to industry and employers. We actively promote job opportunities to students and our staff passionately want to see the students succeed. We are a Catholic Secondary School and offer strong pastoral care – providing mentoring and support to all of our students. Our extensive Work Ready Skills program means students leave the College well-prepared for the adult world of work.

What is the application process like?
It’s pretty straightforward. Download an Application for Enrolment from our website, complete and return to the College. Your child will be asked to complete an aptitude test and attend an interview with at least one parent / guardian. The earlier you lodge your application, the better chance you have at securing your position in your first-preference course.

How many hours of homework are expected of students?
Our homework standards are not laborious as students are putting their classroom theory directly into practice in our fully-equipped workshops. There are compulsory areas of the SACE curriculum which will require some at-home work, but on the whole we cover most of the students’ learning here at the College. Just like an employee, they are required to give their focus to their work during school hours but we do not expect them to do large amounts of homework – in fact, we’d rather they are working part-time or engaging in sporting pursuits or hobbies in their free time.

What are the extra-curricular opportunities available?
We are not your regular school with sports teams and swimming carnivals. Instead we offer students a much more exciting program. Regular site visits to industry are a big part of preparing students for work. We also have footy and soccer teams which compete against other schools in the state knock-out carnivals. Students can travel to England where they are exposed to global industries such as Rolls Royce and JCB. A Cambodian Pilgrimage sees students put their trade skills to work in disadvantaged communities. On top of that, students are encourage to help others through a number of events such as cooking food for Fred’s Van at Elizabeth Vinnies, attending a local aged care home to do beauty treatments for residents, and sewing quilts for women in crisis accommodation.

Who will be teaching my child?
We are proud to have a strong mix of traditional teachers who teach core skills subjects and tradesmen and women who take on the trade and technical training. Our trade and technical trainers have followed the path that many of our students are just beginning and are a great example that Technical Vocational Education & Training (TVET) can open so many doors in a career. Our teachers’ strong industry links and knowledge means our students are better prepared for work.

Who will my child be socialising with?
Our students come from far and wide. We consider the slate clean when they arrive here at StPatsTech which means students can be themselves and meet new friends. While they must leave their current school to enrol with us, everyone is in the same boat. We have students with a passion for a particular career and others who are here to try and find their potential. Your child will be at school with aspiring chefs and hairdressers, mechanics and welders, plumbers and sparkies, chippies and computer programmers.