Canning College was the first public high school to accept fee-paying international students. The result was that in 1986, Canning had its first cohort of about 90 students for the Year 12 Program. From that time the international program has grown in terms of services provided for students, courses offered, number of students admitted and range of source countries.
In 2012, Canning admitted about 480 international students across ten major course areas. Students originated from 18 countries. Major courses include: Diploma of Commerce Curtin Stream, Certificate IV (Commerce), WAUFP (January and April Entry), and Curtin Stream WAUFP, Year 12, Year 11 (January and April Entry) and a range of Bridging programs. Many programs were innovations at the time of inception - Bridging courses introduced in 1987, Foundation in 1992, Diploma in 1999, Year 11 in 2001, Curtin Stream Foundation in 2008 and Alternative Year 12 in 2009. Canning College responds to changes in students' educational needs. The major guiding principle is that no course is offered unless there are guaranteed places for successful students, and there is a 'safety net course' for other students.
Aside from growing into Western Australia's major Department of Education international education provider, Canning College has been careful to maintain standards and success rates remain very high - Diploma of Commerce averages about 85% and WAUFP courses average about 81%. Each year, Canning College students lead the WA Universities' Foundation Program results.
Students from Canning College mainly enter WA public universities but also gain admission to universities (including all Group of 8) in other Australian states and overseas - UK, USA, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia.
The quality of Canning College’s graduates is recognised by the awards presented to Canning students eg UWA Diploma of Commerce scholarship, UWA Engineering awards, Curtin awards for engineering and science and University of Melbourne awards. The record of Canning College students is outstanding and well known throughout the major source countries of Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Hong Kong, China, Kenya and Zambia.
Since 1986, Canning College has developed specialised support services for international students including pre-departure kits, airport reception/transfers, residential orientation programs, accommodation service and student village, international student advisors (Canning had the first ISO outside the university system), special care programs for under 18 aged students, intervention programs for 'at risk' students, mail service and so on.
At Canning College, international students are very welcome in an environment which encourages excellence and provides an outstanding transition to university level study.
Principal, Alan Genoni after being present with a 2012 Top Public School Award from
Director General Sharyn O'Neill and Hon Peter Collier Minister of Education.
"It is clear that Canning College has emerged as the preferred (government) international education provider in Perth."
Ms Sharyn O'Neill, Director General, Dept of Education (January, 2012)