June 2nd 2004
Maggie 2nd in Oz for schoolies
A nation-wide review of schoolies' destinations by 2003 schoolies, has rated Magnetic Island No 2 in Australia as the place to go.
The ratings were determined from information supplied by former schoolies from across Australia and support services working with young people on the ground at the various schoolies' destinations around the country.
First was the Sunshine Coast with Magnetic Island and the Whitsundays equal second. Victor Harbour (SA) ranked third while the Gold Coast ranked equal fourth with Byron Bay and Coffs Harbor.
Total scores by destination were:
9 - Sunshine Coast (Qld)
7 - Magnetic Island, Whitsundays (Qld)
6 - Victor Harbor (SA)
4 - Gold Coast (Qld), Byron Bay (NSW), Coffs Harbor (NSW)
3 - Lorne (VIC) / Busselton (WA) / Rottnest Island (WA)
The ratings were finalized by a focus group of 8 former Schoolies in conjunction with the Director of Rebeccas Community www.homeless.org.au (Dominic Mapstone) for the National Schoolies Website www.schoolies.org.au
Each destination was marked across seven criteria including:
Local Welcome: We felt that the locals were positive or at least neutral about having schoolies there.
Police Impact: There were enough Police to feel safe, but not too many that we were over-policed or unable to enjoy Schoolies because of the police presence.
Support Services: There were relevant and effective support services available, especially for schoolies who are in crisis.
Tourist Destination: The range of things to do, natural beauty, we would holiday there again.
Schoolies Entertainment / Activities: Good activities or entertainment either exclusive to schoolies or are occurring because it's Schoolies Week.
Presence of Predators: The concern that we may be violently or sexually assaulted by non-Schoolies who were specifically targeting Schoolies.
Number of other schoolies: There were enough other schoolies at the destination to 'make the party,' versus there really needed to be more schoolies.
Destinations were marked against the criteria using the following scores:
2 - very positive
1 - positive
0 - neutral
-1 - negative
-2 - very negative
Schoolies' ratings of Australian destinations
According to the survey Magnetic Island and the Whitsundays ranked well as, "Maggie Island and the Whitsundays are the most receptive to Schoolies; Maggie and the Whitsundays were the destinations where schoolies felt most safe from predators; Maggie Island is still very much an emerging destination, with a small group of schoolies (400 in 2003), yet double the 200 schoolies in 2002; The laid back, relaxed feeling is a draw-card that could easily see 2,000 Schoolies on Maggie for Schoolies 2005".
The report comments that, "These destinations (Magnetic and Whitsundays) will continue to grow in popularity as young people are increasingly asking 'Where will we go for Schoolies?' instead of 'What hotel at the Gold Coast will we book at?'