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This article contains information that is for general information only and should not be used for the basis of making any decisions regarding education or anything else. It is solely the writer’s opinion of the writer’s experience of one open day at the school and the writer’s interactions with the people present on that day. The writer’s article is purely subjective. Facts and information may or may not be complete, accurate, reliable or valid reflection of the school in question.

I encourage you to personally tour the school and meet the educators and students, form your own opinion and leave a comment here.

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Name: Richmond High School

Sector: Public | Bilingual Education (Chinese)

Gender: Co-educational

Religion: N/A

Fee: N/A

Location: 4 Griffiths Street, Richmond, VIC 3121

Phone number: (03) 8396 6399

Tour Details

The Acting principal Andrea led the tour of the school.

The tour had three people including a high school-aged student.

The tour had two students and there was opportunity to speak to them.

The tour took place on 15th March 2024 from 9.00am – 9:40am.

The Acting Principal, Andrea, led the school tour. She was accompanied by two female students who are in Year 10 and Year 11 respectively. She just joined the school in January 2024 when the previous principal left after seeing through the school’s first VCE cohort at the end of 2023. She came from Fitzroy High School where she was also the Acting principal. The school is in the midst of interviewing for a principal.

Vibe at Richmond High School

It was Year 9 Naplan when the tour was conducted so there were not a lot of students in the hallway. The Year 8s were outdoors getting ready for sports, Year 7s at three-day camp and scheduled to be back in the afternoon. Junior school consisting of Year 7 to 9 starts school at 8.40am and ends at 2.40pm. Senior school consisting of Year 10 – Year 12 starts at 9.30am and ends at 3.30pm as the school understands they require more sleep.

I started to see more students in the school halfway through the tour when the senior students started coming in for class. It felt rather calm but it could be because the senior students were more matured. The school building looked fairly new spanning three storeys; there were some art work on the walls and some shelves with more art work displayed in them. This was consistent with the two storeys where most students have their classes. Around the school, the streets were quiet and bright and did not have any obvious dodgy spots.

The school has about 640 students, consisting of mostly boys. The ratio of girls to boys is about 30:70. Andrea attributed this to most girls in the area preferring Melbourne Girls College and the boys not having a second option. However, she felt that there is value in co-educational schools as society is made up of both biological genders. The female students on the tour with us also did not feel out of place or left out being the minority gender in the school and enjoy their education there. The students seemed casual to me as were some of the staff and gave off a friendly and easy-to-approach vibe. There are some open areas where classes are held and are part of the open concept classrooms in conjunction to having traditional closed doors classrooms. They try to have classes held in opposite ends of the open area to minimise noise.


The school is also the only bilingual Chinese high school in Victoria. They have three streams for students to pick once enrolled: Enhanced Chinese Program (ECP), Chinese LOTE and Spanish LOTE. In the ECP, students study humanities subjects in Chinese to develop cultural appreciation and understanding. This stream usually has about 25 students in Year 7, hailing from bilingual Chinese or Chinese LOTE primary schools. About half of the students drop off the program.

For those in the ECP who take VCE Chinese as a second language, results are “good” according to Andrea. She did not elaborate much about the other streams other than they do the core subjects and have less intensive language classes.

Mobile phone policy at Richmond High School

Every student gets a locker each where they can store their belongings and phones due to the strict no-phone policy during school hours.

Academics at Richmond High School

In Year 9, students take on a Projects subject, which are year-long and focus on entrepreneurship with imagination while raising funds for charity. They have extensive community involvement and interaction while doing so to expose them to real-world situations in society and how to navigate them.

This school is also very flexible with students tailoring their own individual VCE journey. There is no limit on the number of VCE subjects they can take in Year 11 unlikely many other high schools. They offer most VCE subjects and will try to form a class if there are enough students having interest in a subject.

See more photos here

One of the students on the tour said that she took three VCE Unit 1/2 subjects in Year 10 and decided that one of the subjects was not suited for her and had the choice to drop it and take something else in Year 11. She also mentioned that some students in Year 10 took up VCE Math Methods Unit 1/2 but had to do a bridging program during the school holidays, which the students were happy to. It takes away a lot of stress involved because she will only be doing three VCE subjects in Year 12.

Richmond High School is also one of the five foundation network of schools participating in the Centre of Higher Education Studies (CHES) and encourage their students taking up subjects there. There is not a strong focus on academics but rather wanting the students to have a passion for the subjects they take.

Music and Art at Richmond High School

The school also has a strong performing, visual arts, and drama emphasis. About 40% of the students take up additional paid music classes on top of their usual classes. Instruments are wide ranged from keyboard, strings, percussions, woodwinds, and brass.

Students will be taken out of their usual classes to be taught the instrument out their choosing without the need to have any prior music background once a week. The school also has multiple performing opportunities for students to involve themselves in play, drama and production team, ensembles, and bands.

Other Facilities at Richmond High School

See more photos here

The school has a school canteen that the students said served amazing food. The library seemed very small for a high school with about 8-10 chest-height shelves with fiction and non-fiction books, although the librarian mentioned there were a total of about 7,000 physical books and more in their digital platform. He also said that students can request for books they cannot find for them to buy access for them.

We were not taken outdoors as there were some ongoing construction to install shade sails so that students can sit outdoors for lunch eventually. Andrea mentioned that they have a multi-purpose hall, two basketball courts, and a soccer oval. I did not have the chance to step in them as she did not bring us there. She mentioned there are about 10 lunchtime clubs and activities but did not elaborate on what they are.

Wellbeing & Camps at Richmond High School

The school also has a wellbeing room called the ‘Hub’ where there are youth workers and counsellors if students require any support. We were not brought there during the tour and did not meet with any of the related staff.

There is a camp every year for students of all Year Levels except Year 12 ranging from 3- 10 days. This includes domestic (Philip Island) and international trips – Year 11 VCE Art students will be going to USA this year, ECP have a trip to Singapore planned for cultural and language immersion. 

Final Thoughts

Richmond High School takes out of zone students and have students all the way from Werribee. The school seems to be culturally diverse as there were many students of various ethnicities there. A strong appeal of the school is its willingness and flexibility in allowing the students to explore different VCE subjects, which is particularly beneficial as students may not have fully figured their own passion and interest.

Unfortunately, it was a shorter than normal tour as Andrea had to attend a meeting and there wasn’t an opportunity for further questions. I feel that there are more positives to this school that perhaps weren’t fully covered in this tour.

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