Government schools and performing arts programs between Byron and Ballina

There’s no doubt the coastal towns of Byron Bay, Lennox Head and Ballina are desirable locations to live – from the gorgeous scenery to the laidback lifestyle, this is a special place to raise children. And for families who decide to settle here, rest assured there is a great range of schools to choose from.

Every child is unique, and of course you want to select an education provider that will encourage them to enjoy learning. Below we have put together a list of some of the best schools in the area to help you narrow down your choices in Byron Bay and surrounds.

Primary Schools

Byron Community Primary School is situated in the heart of Byron Bay and offers a progressive, holistic and innovative style of schooling for its students – while still teaching the NSW Education Standards Authority curriculum. From a unique two-year kindergarten class, to their renowned visual arts, music, drama and sporting programs, the school is a parent-run, not-for-profit incorporated association.

Another centrally located Byron Bay school is St Finbarr’s Primary School, with around 200 students. Priority of enrolment is given to those children who are baptised Catholics, but they also welcome families who are open to the spiritual possibilities offered by a Catholic school.

Cape Byron Rudolf Steiner School provides schooling from kindergarten through to Year 12, with its education based on the principles and practices of Rudolf Steiner – meaning a focus on experiential learning by making, doing, creating and producing, in line with the student’s own stage of development.


Image source: Ballina Coast High School

High schools

For secondary education Byron Bay High School is centrally located in the coastal town. It provides schooling for years 7 to 12 and has around 850 students. Set in a bush and beach environment, the school is known for its exceptional creative and performing arts programs.

Ballina Coast High School is a co-ed state school, with around 950 students. In 2019, the old Ballina High School merged with Southern Cross School, and reopened in brand-new buildings. The facilities and classrooms are modern and well-equipped, making this a great choice for secondary schooling.

Early learning

Have a busy pre-schooler? Then Byron Busy Kids could be a great option to let them learn and grow in a safe, friendly environment. Offering long daycare and preschool services for families of Byron Shire, they provide early education and care, and also help to prepare children for their transition to school.

Further education

For education after secondary schooling, TAFE NSW Ballina has a range of certificate-level courses for training and gaining qualifications in a number of fields. It has a state-of-the-art maritime section, with simulation equipment and an operational boat for practical lessons, and students can also study nursing, retail, business, information technology and welfare and more. It’s located close to Ballina Fair and Ballina Central shopping district.


Image source: Circus Art Australia

Extra-curricular activities

Outside of school, it’s always great for children to have an interest in an extracurricular activity. It helps to build confidence and resilience, and can also uncover a talent they never knew they had!

The Bang Academy of Performing Arts is an amazing creative institution in Bangalow and Lennox Head, only 10 minutes drive from Byron Bay. Here children and teens are given the opportunity to upskill in drama and acting in a supportive environment, led by experienced and passionate teachers. It’s also a part of Byron Casting – the Byron Shire’s own casting office for local talent.

Circus Arts Australia is all about movement and physical expression through trapeze skills, acrobatics, trampolines and aerials (tricks performed off equipment on the ground). The Circus Arts facility is located in a purpose-built venue in Byron Bay and offers classes for a range of ages and abilities – from kinder exploration through to professional performance

Deciding where to set up a new home base involves weighing up many different options, and for families, education is often top of mind. So check out our suggestions above, and hopefully you will find just what you’re looking for when it comes to securing the right school for your kids.

Interested in learning what other schools and early learning centres are in the area? Check out our business directory.