The table below provides some detail as to the level diversity of the interviewed parents. It is important to note that the focus of the study was to explore and understand the decision architecture of how parents choose a school for their children. Consequently, a degree of priority was given to finding parents who had switched schools from public to private (independent/Catholic) or from private to public in the transition from primary to secondary schooling.
Non-Catholic private schools in Australia are called ‘independent schools’ because these schools (particularly the elite schools) govern, manage, resource and finance themselves independently of any broader religious or philanthropic affiliation.
In contrast, Catholic schools are managed, financed and resourced centrally in a manner broadly similar to government run public schools but with higher levels of community involvement and direct fee payment associated with the choice of school. While there has been a trend for Independent secondary schools to move from single sex to co-educational, Catholic secondary schools in the metropolitan cities by and large are single sex schools.