Top Schools In Melbourne

By: Claire Halliday, ellaslist

What makes a great school?

For some parents, it’s all about academic results. For others, the quality of the sporting facilities – (anyone for tennis?) – make a huge difference. Then there are those who value a brilliant arts education and look for a commitment to theatre, music and visual art as the benchmark to judge a school by. Community is important - what is the school culture like? How does it feel?

The assessment is personal and getting the decision right for your child should take in a range of factors: everything from location, size of student population, to whether the school is single sex or co-ed.

To help you research Melbourne’s top schools, we’ve put together a list of some of the best schools in Melbourne.

Image Credit: Presbyterian Ladies' College

1. Presbyterian Ladies' College

PLC achieves some of the finest results in Australia with their truly well-rounded education, enhanced by diverse and challenging co-curricular opportunities.

From the sporting field to the stage, from cutting-edge web design to community activities, students benefit from the PLC Experience, enhancing their potential and wellbeing and fostering integrity, resilience, compassion and a desire to make a difference.

PLC offers both the VCE and IB and in 2013, 2 girls achieved the perfect result of 99.95, and 30% placed in the top 2% of Australia. Over 50% placed in the top 5% and over 70% placed in the top 10%.

PLC recently opened a brand new state-of-the-art Boarding School that offers boarders a modern, comfortable environment to live and learn within, as well as a new Library and IT Centre, Science Wing, Year 7 Centre and Sporting grounds facility. 

What You Need To Know

Phone: 03 9808 5811   
Email: [email protected]
Address: 141 Burwood Highway, Burwood  VIC  3125

More information: visit the website.

Image Credit: Doncaster Gardens Primary School

2. Doncaster Gardens Primary School

Doncaster Gardens is a culturally diverse school in Doncaster, with a focus on family community and providing a learning experience that is facilitated by teachers and parents/carers alike.

Within that collaborative approach is an emphasis on teaching in a technology-rich environment for motivated, inquiring, imaginative and independent learners. The newly-redeveloped STEAM Centre comprises a fully equipped Art Room, ICT Centre and Makerspace. The STEAM Centre has all the essentials to stimulate learning and provide students with access to powerful tools including a clay kiln, woodworking equipment, robotics, computers and 3D printers. All classes are given access to the STEAM Centre on a weekly basis.

The Doncaster Gardens Primary School philosophy revolves around the belief that  teaching and learning occurs in a secure, harmonious, stimulating and challenging environment. Their mission is to provide high quality, engaging programs which promote curiosity, creativity and inquiry; and their vision is to facilitate the development of well-adjusted and unique citizens who will succeed in life and actively contribute to the betterment of the global community.

What You Need To Know

Phone: 03 9848 5282 
Email: [email protected]
Address: Sandhurst Avenue, Doncaster East 

More information: visit the website

Image Credit: Haileybury Facebook

3. Haileybury College

The largest school in the country (with more than 4000 enrolments across 6 campuses), Haileybury is acclaimed as a great school. This stems from Haileybury's highly successful parallel education model, outstanding teachers, small class sizes, an unmatched level of individual attention, outstanding academic results, a strong international focus and more than 120 years of history.

Haileybury embodies the philosophy of every student matters every day and that every stage of schooling is equally important. Haileybury strives to develop resilient, independent learners in an environment that is memorable and a joy for each child to attend. We nurture and care about the safety of our students and reward both excellence in outcomes and in effort.

The School’s academic results consistently rank us amongst the top private schools in Melbourne and the country. Haileybury’s Year 3 NAPLAN writing results exceeded Year 5 similar schools and Year 7 National averages. Year 3 grammar and punctuation results also exceed Year 7 National averages, with the remarkable results surpassing Haileybury’s 2017 performance, which contributed to it being named 2018 Australian School of the Year at The Educator awards

In Melbourne, you can find campuses in Berwick, East Brighton, Keysborough, and the CBD, Melbourne's first early learning to Year 12 independent school campus in the city centre - its modern vertical design has definitely turned some heads!

What You Need To Know

Phone: 03 9904 6008  
Email: [email protected]
Address: 383 King Street, West Melbourne

More information: visit the website

Image Credit: Fitzroy Community Primary School

4. Fitzroy Community Primary School

A highly-sought-after independent, alternative school that always places in the top categories of Melbourne and Victorian school rankings, Fitzroy Community is the little school that could.

With a small enrolment size (students often number fewer than 100), it resembles a large extended family. This is deliberate - everybody knows everybody, and the individual feels valued. It's not just another institution.

FCS has its own unique style of operation with a relaxed atmosphere and good academic outcomes at the same time. With the high individual focus, children are keen on learning and keen on coming to school. 

FCS aims for three outcomes in terms of its students and graduates: happiness, viability and academic excellence, as they feel these qualities offer the best chance of a happy, fulfilling and engaging life.

What You Need To Know

Phone: 03 9489 2356  
Email: [email protected]
Address: 597-599 Brunswick Street, North Fitzroy 

More information: visit the website

Image Credit: Burwood East Primary School

5. Burwood East Primary School

This little school of just 175 students is definitely punching above its weight and the results were acknowledged with its consistently top Better Education ranking for number-one primary schools in each year, alongside some of the leading independent schools that cost top dollar.

The language taught? Mandarin.

It’s one of the state’s oldest schools and is a handy 15 kilometres from the CBD. And what the kids will want to know? There are lots of good things about this school community. A commitment to growing fruits and vegetables and getting student gardeners in to look after things is a smart move to get children involved in producing and cooking food that’s good for them and the eggs that are collected from the school’s own chickens and then sold to other members of the local community teach students about business too.

What You Need To Know

Phone: 03 9802 8618 
Email: [email protected]
Address: Corner Blackburn and Highbury Roads, Burwood East

More information: visit the website.

Image Credit: St Joseph's Elsternwick

6. St Joseph's School


This warm, community-focused school provides an inclusive and vibrant learning environment for its students. As a Catholic school, they are guided by and strive to live according to the gospel values religious education, infusing it throughout the school in every aspect.

A reasonably small school (enrolments stand at 350 students), St Joseph's Elsternwick aims to provide a curriculum that supports, challenges and engages the students by delivering a high standard of learning and teaching.

In 2016, the school won Resource Smart Award and has maintained its Resource Smart registration ever since. They were recently awarded a third star by Sustainability Victoria, as a result of reaching all energy targets.

Academically, the students and school continue to achieve above like schools, and educational endeavour and achievement is strong. 

What You Need To know

Phone: 03 9528 1614  
Email: [email protected]
Address: 28 Sandham St, Elsternwick

More information: visit the website