Restructuring International Student Intake

The Albanese Government announced today a series of measures aimed at enhancing integrity within the international education sector and providing increased protection for students. The actions taken are in response to identified integrity concerns within the sector, as highlighted in the Rapid Review into the Exploitation of Australia’s Visa System (Nixon Review).

As part of their response to the Nixon Review, the government plans to establish risk indicators across the international education system. These indicators will serve as the foundation for a monitoring framework designed to promote targeted compliance by education regulators. Additionally, there will be heightened scrutiny of student attendance.

Furthermore, amendments to the Education Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 (ESOS Act) are in the pipeline to bolster the existing fit and proper provider test. These amendments will elevate the standards necessary for provider registration and deter cross-ownership of businesses between education providers and education agents.

Another significant change is the prohibition of agent commissions related to student transfers between providers in Australia. This measure aims to eliminate incentives for unscrupulous agents and providers to engage in student “poaching.” Educational providers will also gain access to agent performance data, including metrics like student completion rates and visa rejection rates, to aid them in selecting high-quality education agents as partners.

These actions build upon prior announcements made in August, addressing a loophole that allowed students with less than six months of residency in the country to switch providers for work instead of study.

The international student population plays a crucial role in Australia’s education system, contributes significantly to the nation’s economy, and is an integral part of its communities and society. The Albanese Government is committed to preventing the manipulation of the international education and student visa systems, as well as the exploitation of international students.

The government will continue to collaborate with the international education sector to ensure a quality education experience for international students and maintain integrity in the international education system. This response is part of a broader government initiative, and further announcements regarding the Vocational Education and Training regulator’s capacity will be forthcoming in the coming days.

migration system. The era of irregularities and loopholes in this system is over; they will be closed down.”

Written by Ross Ahmadzai

2 Oct, 2023

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