There seems to be a big user pay system happening in Australia over the past decade. It is getting worse. You have to be in a private health fund (and it pretty much doesn't do much for you anyway) together with a government health fund (which is pretty much the same). More and more parents are opting to send their children to private schools (christian colleges, catholic schools, grammer schools etc) because the current public education system is overcrowded and underfunded. The cost of private education is a heavy burden for most families to accomodate. Making the right choice for your child is hard. When I was growing up we just went to a public school and that was it; but these days you have to weigh up so much more than that.