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Regional transitional arrangements

Following community consultation, the following transitional arrangements (PDF 3.3MB) are being put in place for the move of year 7 to high school.

Only primary schools that are more than 20 km by road from their local area or high school (including School of the Air) are eligible for these arrangements.

These arrangements will apply for a transitional period (2022-2024) to 45 eligible schools

Exemption to remain in primary school

By default, all year 7s will go to high school or area school from 2022. 

Parents won’t be asked to make a choice about whether to keep their child in primary school or send them to high school – it’s assumed all year 7s will go.

During the transition period, parents at eligible primary schools can seek a ‘by exception’ exemption from the principal to keep their year 7 child in primary school for a transition period, where special circumstances exist. 

The guidance for parents outlines how parents can apply for an exemption to their primary school principal.

The principal has delegated authority during the transitional period to approve a student remaining in primary school for year 7. 

Parents will need to apply for an exemption when their child is in year 6. Exemptions are expected to be finalised in week 4 of term 2 in the year a parents applies for one.

This is a firm cut-off date so schools can plan and parents will be unable to apply for an exemption after this date.

Key dates for when exemptions must be finalised

  • If your child is in year 7 in 2022, your application must be approved by Friday 21 May 2021.
  • If your child is in year 7 in 2023, your application must be approved by Friday 27 May 2022.
  • If your child is in year 7 in 2024, your application must be approved by Friday 26 May 2023.

How we will support eligible primary schools

Where the departure of year 7 students would cause an eligible primary school to drop a class, and the forecast number of classes is less than 4, top-up grant funding will be made available to maintain the same number of classes the school had in 2021.

This will apply for a transition period from 2022 to 2024.

How we will support the arrangements

We will provide more funding for the extra transport costs for transition activities in country schools in 2021, when the double cohort (years 6 and 7) get ready to start high school.

We will provide extra support to the regular process of updating bus routes in 2021, to make sure the changes required for the double cohort moving to high school are in place for 2022.

Consultation process

Communities were invited to have their say on how year 7 will move to high school through a series of forums in regional South Australia, and through the yourSAy website

Consultation occurred from July to September 2019.  Over 250 individuals were involved in regional sessions and 25 written contributions were received, including 4 from peak representative groups.

The community feedback (PDF 412KB) captures the contributions made throughout the consultation process. 


Year 7 to high school project team

Email: Year7toHS [at] sa.gov.au