The Red Tape Saga: Department of Education and Training responds
By Hannah Cross
The Department of Education and Training has responded to METIOR’s enquiry, however the answer is vague as to when we will see some concrete legislative change.
A spokesperson for the Department of Education and Training has given a statement to METIOR regarding CRICOS registration:
“Education providers wishing to offer short training courses for international students are required to obtain Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) registration before offering and providing courses to international students,” the statement says.
“The Government understands that some education providers may wish to deliver short courses to international students. The Department of Education and Training is working to identify solutions to enable a broader range of short courses to be delivered to international students.”
But is it enough for the Department to just say it’s being worked on? When are we likely to see change that allows student visa holders to receive these short courses?
George Brown, Director Academic at the International College of Hotel Management in Adelaide, says it is great to see that the Department is looking at this.
“We understand that sometimes systems have to catch up with new demands on the sector and we are most appreciative that this is now a priority for the Department,” he says.
The College’s Chief Executive, Gerald Lipman, however, is not so forgiving.
“A provider should be able to enrol a student in a single unit of competency, not a full course,” says Lipman, “This is simply a system change the Department is aware of – but they are so slow.”
As Lipman points out, we know that legislative change can be notoriously slow, especially if there is little to no campaigning for it.
While we sit and wait for this mistake to be amended, international students Australia-wide are being prevented from undertaking simple training. They can’t work the easy, flexible bar hours that are ideal for university students – because they can’t get their RSAs. They can’t work a construction job on the side – because they can’t get their White Cards. They can’t engage in the basic training that most else can – because the Government neglected to legislate properly.
So if you’re an international student, know an international student, or just care about the issue: take a stand, contact your local MPs and ask for legislative change.