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PA/30/10 21 April 2010
Further measures to strengthen Australia’s International Students Sector
The Minister for Education Julia Gillard today welcomed the Council of Australian Governments’ agreement today to introduce a range of measures to improve the safety and wellbeing of international students.
The measures will be implemented as part of COAG’s International Students Strategy for Australia (ISSA) and will include:
- A central portal to provide students with up-to-date information on personal safety, student support services, housing, workplace rights and other useful information.
- A national strategy to improve connections between students and the communities they live in.
- An international student committee to give students a forum to put forward their views on their experiences in Australia.
- An independent statutory complaints body which will be mandatory for international providers.
- Taskforces in each state and territory to ensure students are provided with proper support in the event of a provider closure.
Ms Gillard said the strategy would complement the findings of the Baird review to ensure Australia remains a world-leader in the international education sector.
Today’s agreement will benefit over 434,000 students from 190 countries worldwide who are currently living and studying in Australia.
Measures already introduced by the Government include a nationwide audit of providers and a requirement for them to re-register their courses under tighter new criteria in 2010.
Ms Gillard also welcomed a decision by Australian Police Commissioners to share initiatives designed to ensure student safety and improve the dissemination of information to stakeholders.
The final International Students Strategy for Australia will be released by COAG in the coming weeks.
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