04 Feb 2007 10:42 AM
|I totally agree with you about wanting to protect your children, it's an instinct that's inbred in us mothers isn't it? I also understand about wanting to put their needs first, that was our main push into coming here. But let's look at their needs;
1)Education (I am a trainee teacher) is NOT of the same standard as the UK. Yes my kids come out of school happy every day, but I daresay this is due to the fact they have been playing games, colouring and not exactly being mentally challenged for most of it!They go to a good merit select school. I have had words with teachers there, one of whom was from the UK and she basically agreed with me, schooling is not up to scratch here. Many people, with older children, find they move here and their kids are way ahead of their peers in school. So they are left, bored silly, waiting until the others catch them up.I know mums who've had to fight with the school to give their 'advanced' kids extension work. The teachers weren't bothered at all. So, word of warning to all; be prepared to battle it out with your childs teacher if you need to.
2)What about extended family members then? Don't you think these people are an important issue within a family? The closeness and emotional input into a young childs life that a grandparent/uncle/aunt/cousin brings is irreplaceable. We left that behind. Trust me, we have found that the web-cam, phone and e-mail are a very poor substitute for a hug! Yes, they visit and stay a while, but you know what, I sometimes wish they wouldn't because having to do all of the goodbyes again is so heartbreaking. Having to pull your 5 year old from around her uncles neck, whilst she's sobbing 'I don't want you to go' is not a good thing to do. To me, having my children grow up around family, having that love and closeness with them has become a really important issue. One that I took for granted before we came here.
3)Being able to play outside a lot more: yes that's great isn't it. Or is it? The fact that my kids are constantly smothered in chemical suncream all day, every day, and I have to nag them to death to get them to have it put on, and then I have to moan at them to wear a hat. We've already heard from Boot that skin cancer affects one in two people here. Frightening isn't it? Then there's swimming in the ocean. No chance for my two. They were scared whitless after they saw a news report of yet another shark attack! I managed to coax them back into paddling a few weeks ago, only for a women to tell them to get out as there were 'stingers' (small blue stinging jellyfish) in the water!
4) Safety; Trouble is Tracy, kids are mugged and beaten up here too. The train lines are having problems because of gang bashings- a 4 year old girl was abducted from her kindergarten in Dec - a young girl was beaten, raped and murdered in a shopping centre toilet. There's also that charming 'white van man' that is intent on abducting kids without being caught. The list goes frighteningly on and on here too. Did you also know that the Perth youth culture is one of the largest ecstasy users in the world. Then there's the silly amount of surfer dudes whacked out on 'smoke'. One good thing is street drinking is illegal here; but buying it and going down to the beach and getting hammered is a good way out. So please don't think you are going to escape from the horrors of violence against kids, it's here too. The statistics prove that 'per capita' crime rates are the same here as they are in the UK. It's just there are less people here for you to notice it so much.
None of the above is meant to scare or deter folk. It is meant to enlighten you so you have a very clear idea of what you're moving to. This is not paradise, this is not the be all and end all of life.
Right, today is going to be another very hot day, probably too hot to be bothered to go very far; so it's on with the slip, slap, slop and on with the aircon...again! Oh give me a sunny, frosty day...please!!!
05 Feb 2007 11:45 PM
|This sort of thing gets said alot when people criticise Perth and put the other side of the coin across, yes sometimes people who are unhappy here lay it on a bit thick but I think it is important for people to understand that it's not all barbies and sunshine here.
We've been here over 18 months and it is far from paradise, there is plenty of crime, drugs, antisocial behaviour, rascism (although most of the rascism I have experienced here is from Brits who have moved from the UK because of 'all the immigrants') and political corruption.
There are plenty of things in Perth that will get on your nerves and for some people these things will outweigh the benefits - wages are crap, taxes are high, house prices are as high as most areas in the UK, people are insular, cost of living is high but there are plenty of things that are as good and better than the UK.
Education is an interesting conversation point, a friend of ours is a teacher (and taught in England before moving here 2 years ago) and she regularly has English kids with poorer basic skills than the locals. Some of the schools are extremely good, others are crap - the same as you would find in the UK.
Thing is I think it is important to accept everyone's experiences and take from it what you need, for me the work thing has been the biggest drawback - money is tight and the way of doing things here is generally quite primitive, in fact at least 5 years behind the UK in the IT field. Having said that I never had the chance to have such an active life outside of work so despite having less money we have greater quality of life.
Some people will love it here, others will hate it; to find out which side of the line you will fall you need to come and try, with eyes and mind wide open.
06 Feb 2007 3:26 AM
|Fair point steve and im glad its working out for you but isnt the point that fact that you and everyone else has the chance to find out before you go how far behind they are and what the money is?
I really cant understand how people critise the wages and house prices when they get off the plane its beyond me.For me that was the whole point of me joining this forum and to be honest ive spent hours on the net looking into it and have done what i think was critical a rekkie!
The only factor to be honest you cant measure is missing your family but! if thats your only worry then thats got to take a little bit of pressure off
Could be me but people may need to start comparing like for like rather than how much more they can get i think those days are gone.
06 Feb 2007 10:05 AM
|Actually Jim it is not that simple. Tradies here will earn something like $55k a year, professionals if you are lucky will earn a little more but certainly not a fortune. As for 'cutting your cloth according to your means' that is no longer so simple, and I am sure that alot of us are not moving to Perth to just 'make do'.
We moved out here from Bristol with very little in the way of equity and ended up having to borrow 40% more than our UK mortgage to buy a house. Interest rates here are around 7% for most mortgages (we are currently paying 7.25%) so with me earning 30% less than in the UK we are not in such a great financial position.
Most of the people we have spoken to that have found it hard here and have moved back have done so because of finances. Missing family is hard but feeling like you cannot afford to have a life because you have no money left at the end of the month is much harder on a day to day basis. Going to the beach is free, so long as you have money to put into the petrol tank to get there.
I don't mean to put anyone on a downer or put people off moving, because I love our life in Perth and we will find a way of making it work for us, but there is an awful lot of wishfull thinking here and rose colour spectacles.
We did a great deal of research before we moved, Clare lived in Perth for 6 months previously and we also did a reckie. Nothing prepared us for the inflation in cost of living over the last 3 years, at least people moving now can have realistic cost expectations of the comparison between Perth and the UK.
Perth is great, honestly it is, but the first couple of years will be damn hard financially.
06 Feb 2007 1:00 PM
|Not directed at you boot your just last on the list. - D
06 Feb 2007 4:54 PM