Agricultural schools

There are three agricultural high schools that take boarders.

  • Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School, Tamworth – boarders and day students, boys only
  • Hurlstone Agricultural High School, Glenfield – boarders and day students (boarders must be from rural areas), co-educational
  • Yanco Agricultural High School, Yanco – boarders only, co-educational.

Boarders are required to board (live) at the school.

James Ruse Agricultural High School in Carlingford is co-educational and only has day students.

Agriculture is a compulsory subject from Years 7 to 10 in Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School, Yanco Agricultural High School and James Ruse High School.

Boarding schools

If successful for placement, a residential agreement and student medical history must be completed.

For a boarder placement, extra consideration may be given to students who have brothers or sisters already boarding.

For Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School and Hurlstone Agricultural High School, the placement process for day students and boarders is different – a student offered a place as a boarder cannot automatically transfer to a day student and vice versa.

Boarder fees

In addition to satisfying residency requirements and other conditions for entry as a boarder, boarding fees must be paid. You must confirm the latest boarding fees and the timing of payments with the school.

If accepting an offer you must sign a boarder agreement undertaking to pay the boarder fees on the first day of each term. If you do not pay the fees in full and on time, your child's offer may be withdrawn.

Boarding schools may require a deposit after acceptance of a boarder placement. The deposit is deducted from the boarding fees paid on enrolment. If a student withdraws after accepting the offer of a place, the school keeps the deposit.

Financial assistance

The rural and distance education team administers financial support programs for eligible families whose children must board away from home to obtain secondary education. Closing dates apply. See rural and remote education for further information about financial assistance.

Boarding Scholarships for Isolated Students

Boarding Scholarships for Isolated Students (BSIS) are available for eligible families whose children are required to board to attend a specialist high school, such as an agricultural high school. Applications are made through the rural and distance education team – applicants must meet strict isolation and economic circumstances criteria.

Living Away From Home Allowance

The NSW Government offers assistance in the form of the Living Away From Home Allowance (LAFHA) to geographically isolated families whose children need to board to attend secondary school. The allowance is administered by the rural and distance education team and is subject to a means test.

Australian Government assistance

The Australian Government also offers financial support through ABSTUDY, the Youth Allowance and Assistance for Isolated Children Scheme (AIC),

The Assistance for Isolated Children Scheme (AIC) is an Australian Government program that targets students who cannot attend a public school because the family home is geographically isolated or the students have a disability or special health needs.

Agnes Borsody scholarship

Female students with a refugee background can apply for the Agnes Borsody Scholarship which provides financial support during Years 7 to 10 if they receive an offer of placement.

Changes to Hurlstone Agricultural High School – new Glenfield precinct

Hurlstone Agricultural High School no longer accepts applications for boarding placement from students living in metropolitan areas. Read more about the Minister for Education's announcement (PDF 71 KB) about the future Glenfield precinct. The school at the Glenfield site will remain fully selective under the new name, Roy Watts High School. The school will continue to cater for boarders until 2022.

A new school at Hawkesbury will take the name of Hurlstone Agricultural High School, opening in 2020 for Years 7 and 11 and boarders. It is expected to be fully operational by 2024.

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