Residential colleges

Residential colleges

Eight country-based residential colleges and one city-based residential college provide boarding services for country students.

Country boarding provides your child with the opportunity to remain in the country to attend secondary school. They continue enjoying a country lifestyle and stay connected to regional Western Australia. Your child may even choose to return home at weekends, as is the case for many of our boarders.

City boarding is available for students from the country who are enrolled in a Gifted and Talented Secondary Selective Entrance Program at select metropolitan secondary schools. These gifted students have the opportunity to access the finest education while living in a safe, secure and supportive environment close to their schools. If your child gains a place in a Gifted and Talented Program and is from the country, they can apply to board at City Beach Residential College. From 2022, regional Year 7 students accepted into the Albany Senior High School Gifted and Talented Program that reside outside of Albany can board at Albany Residential College.

As a boarder, your child is able to:

  • live and study with other young people from the country
  • complete high quality secondary education at one school
  • attend a secondary school that offers a variety of subjects and a range of experienced teachers
  • participate in local sport, recreation and part-time work
  • access the facilities and amenities of a large country town or the city.


There are eight residential colleges located in regional centres throughout WA:

City Beach Residential College is located in City Beach - a coastal suburb of Perth. From the college, students can easily access four of the secondary schools with Gifted and Talented Programs. These include Perth Modern SchoolShenton College, John Curtin College of the Arts and Churchlands Senior High School. From 2022, Year 7 students accepted into Albany Senior High School Gifted and Talented Program that reside outside of Albany can board at Albany Residential College.

As a boarder, your child lives in a supportive and welcoming ‘home away from home’ with other young people from the country. They enjoy:

  • safe, secure accommodation (with separate living quarters and bathrooms for girls and boys)
  • easy access to school
  • support with their studies
  • high quality recreation and study facilities
  • access to sport and other interests
  • a variety of recreation activities and excursions
  • healthy, balance meals
  • a supportive and social environment in which to live.

Your child is supervised by professional and experienced staff members who are responsible for the well-being of every boarder. They are dedicated to creating a wonderful boarding experience for your child and ensure a healthy balance between study and recreation.

Led by residential college managers, supervisors provide emotional support while boarders are away from home; ensure everyone is well behaved, respectful and considerate of others; facilitate regular study sessions and tutoring; support boarders’ educational and sporting needs; and organise fun activities for the weekends.

They also foster good communication between the residential college, boarders, school and families.

There is a standard accommodation fee of $14 461 at all residential colleges. It covers the bed, meals, facilities and pastoral care of each student. It is payable by the student's parent/s.

The full cost of boarding to the Department of Education is $24 248.

If students are eligible for further allowances/subsidies, the accommodation fee could be reduced:

Recipients Estimated Fee
Assistance for Isolated Children Scheme (AIC) and Boarding Away from Home Allowance (BAHA) recipients $4 427
AIC and BAHA recipients who are also eligible for the additional AIC allowance

$1 973

(subject to an income test)

Youth Allowance recipients Varies (subject to an income test)
ABSTUDY No cost (subject to an income test)
Gifted and Talented Secondary Selective Entrance Boarding Allowance recipients $12 984

In addition to the accommodation fee, amounts are charged to cover individual services provided at each residential college. Individual services may include, but are not limited to, services such as transport, counselling, medical services, medical supplies, camps and outings.

To find out more about your eligibility for these allowances and subsidies, download the Residential college costs factsheet.

Applying for a place is an easy process and residential college managers are more than happy to help.

For country boarding, please enrol in the school you’d like your child to attend and make application for any allowances or subsidies for which you may be eligible. Then fill out an application form and submit it to your preferred residential college. Visit your preferred residential college’s website for more information.

For city boarding, you may apply at City Beach Residential College once your child has been accepted into a Gifted and Talented Program at a select metropolitan secondary school.

LINC committees will provide a vital link between residential colleges and the community. There will be one LINC committee for each of the nine residential colleges. They comprise community members who provide advice and support to the college manager and staff.

The role of the committee

The purpose of a LINC committee is to enable parents and members of the community to:

  • provide advice to the college manager regarding the operation and management of the college
  • promote the college
  • engage in activities that are in the best interests of students.

The LINC committee may:

  • approve advertising and sponsorship arrangements
  • be consulted on the student code of conduct
  • take part in the selection of staff
  • provide advice on disputes or complaints
  • take part in planning, financial matters and college priorities.

The LINC committee cannot:

  • intervene in management
  • direct staff.

Becoming a committee member

A LINC committee consists of four to ten members. Committee members are appointed by the Director General and selected based on their experience, skills, attributes or qualifications to effectively perform the functions required by the committee.

A committee member can be:

  • a parent of a student/s at the residential college
  • a member of the general community
  • an employee of the residential college.

Express your interest in becoming a member of your local LINC committee.

It’s ok to have concerns and complaints about what might be happening at school or at the residential college. If you are not sure who to speak to, you can start with your teacher, school principal or the residential college manager. Find out more about how to make a complaint and our complaints process.

Make a complaint

You can make a complaint in person, by phone, online, or in writing.

T: 1800 011 114 (Monday to Friday, 8am to 5pm)

If your complaint is urgent or is an emergency please call Police, Crisis Care or Kids Helpline.

Kids Helpline 
24 hours a day, seven days a week
T: 1800 55 1800

Crisis Care 
24 hours a day, seven days a week
T: 9223 1111
T: 1800 199 008 (country free call)
T: 9325 1232 (TTY)

24 hours a day, seven days a week
Telephone: 131 444 (000 for emergencies)

Remember, if it’s an emergency, immediately hang up and call 000.