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Transitioning to a private high school in Perth


14 September 2022

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Penrhos College

The transition to High School is an exciting time in a teenager’s life. So many things are new: new friends, new school, new experiences, new routines.

Your support and encouragement is so important for your teenager. But in order to prepare and equip them for the transition to a Perth High School, you first need to know what to expect.


What to expect in the transition phase

Every child’s Secondary School experience is unique. However, students of all backgrounds share a few common experiences, whether entering a public or private High School, co-educational or all-girls High School, regional or inner-city school.


Mixed emotions

Some teenagers will approach the start of Secondary School with unbridled excitement. Others might be nervous to leave old friends and familiar routines behind. Many teenagers, if not most of them, will fall into both groups.

Encourage them to talk about their emotions, fears, frustrations and excitements, as discussing their jumbled mind can often help straighten things out.


Many changes at once

Teenagers go through puberty around the same time they transition to Secondary School. Close friends might also be moving away or attending a different Perth High School.

All these changes once can be overwhelming for young people. Especially when everything that is happening seems outside of their control.

Involving them in decisions during the transition to High School can be empowering and stabilising, often leaving them feel more involved and confident in the transition out of Junior School.


Social circle

Friendships evolve and change regularly during childhood and teenagehood, but the transition to High School catalyses a social shift.

Old friends move to different high schools. New friends find each other. Social structures shuffle around as young people go from being the ‘big fish in a small pond’ to the youngest students in Secondary School.

At Penrhos College we run many academic orientation programs in the lead up to starting at the College to help ease the transition. Encourage your child to participate with an open mind.

Connections established in these early days often grow into wonderful friendships that last a lifetime.



Most Perth High Schools present new learning styles and structures (compared to Junior School).

Work with your teenager to establish a new routine that helps them adjust to the workload. That could include:

  • Colour-coding a calendar
  • Setting up a dedicated workspace at home that will encourage them to focus
  • Joining a study group
  • Encourage them to attend the after hours sessions at the Library that is provided by Penrhos College

It’s important that the young person has agency in their new routines. If they own the decisions, they will be more empowered and encouraged to stick to studying.


Choosing the right Perth High School

Choosing the right school for your child is a big decision. The world will look very different by the time they graduate, so choosing a high school that prepares them for the future is just as important as making them comfortable now.


Deciding between co-educational or an all-girls high school

Penrhos College empowers girls to recognise their full potential in all areas of their life, free from the traditional stigmas of co-educational school.

Blending single-sex education with co-curricular sports, music and arts programs, and social events, strikes the ideal balance that helps girls develop at their own pace.

Learn more about the programs and events that help girls transition to high school at Penrhos College.