Agricultural high schools

There are four agricultural high schools.

  • Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School, Tamworth - boarders and day students, boys only
  • Hurlstone Agricultural High School, Glenfield - boarders and day students, co-educational
  • Yanco Agricultural High School, Yanco - boarders only, co-educational
  • James Ruse Agricultural High School - day students only, co-educational.

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

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

Richmond High School-Richmond Agricultural College is a partially selective high school where students in the academically selective stream will be required to study agriculture through the Richmond Agricultural College Centre of Excellence in Agricultural Education. Students will study at two campuses, Richmond High School and in the Richmond Agricultural College.

Boarding schools

The placement process for day students and boarders is different—a student offered a place as a boarder cannot automatically transfer to a day place. Selection committees give extra consideration to applications from isolated students. For a boarding placement, extra consideration may be given to students who have brothers or sisters currently attending the same school.

For schools with day and boarder places, take care to select the boarding section of the school when applying.

If an offer is accepted, the school's student residential agreement and student medical history form must be completed. The school will provide these forms to parents.

A. Yes, late application requests for boarder placement in Year 7, 2024 will be accepted up until 6 February 2023.

Apply by submitting a late application in the online application portal.

Early offers for rural and remote students

Early offers are available for students who live in rural or remote locations and who apply for boarding at:

  • Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School
  • Hurlstone Agricultural High School
  • Yanco Agricultural High School

Applicants still complete the online application. Additionally, parents will need to provide recent academic reports for their child. The school will contact you directly if you are eligible to apply for an early offer and to request academic reports.

The student’s academic merit will be considered, along with confirmation that they live in an eligible rural or remote location.

The student may be asked to attend an interview at their chosen agricultural school. This will help the school to get to know the student and their interest in an agricultural boarding school experience.

We anticipate that students will receive early offers from the beginning of 2024.

Students who have received an early offer will still be required to sit the Selective High School Placement Test. Test results help schools to plan for their students’ learning needs.

A. Yes. Students with an early offer must still sit the Selective High School Placement Test.


Parents accepting a boarder place for their child will need to sign the school's student residential agreement that includes agreement to pay boarder fees on time. Contact the school to find out the current fees.

Boarding schools may require a deposit after acceptance of a boarding 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 two 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 scholarships for further information.

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.

For more information

Rural and Distance Education Team
PO Box 717
Bathurst 2795
02 6334 8070


  • DoE

Business Unit:

  • NSW public school
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