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Accommodation and Welfare for Under 18 Student Procedures

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Section 1 - Preamble

(1) Standard 5 of the ESOS National Code 2007 requires that where students under the age of 18 years are not cared for in Australia by a parent or suitable nominated relative registered providers must ensure the arrangements made to protect the personal safety and social well-being of those students are appropriate.

(2) This document details the accommodation, support and general welfare arrangements the University will put in place for the period that the student will be under 18 while studying with the University in Australia. These procedures are to be read in conjunction with, and use the same definitions as used in, the University rules relating to awards.

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Section 2 - Procedures

Students Welfare Options

(3) Students under 18 at the time they commence study with the University must have suitable arrangements in place for their accommodation, support and welfare. The Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) will not approve a visa for a student unless suitable arrangements have been made.

(4) There are three ways in which a student may satisfy this requirement:

  1. A student may reside in Australia with a parent or legal custodian who travels to Australia to provide welfare for the student for the duration of their study. This must be indicated on the student's visa application.
  2. A student may reside in Australia with a relative over 21 years of age who is approved by the student's parents or legal custodians, who must also nominate the relative as the student's guardian to DIAC on the appropriate form accompanying the application for a student visa.
  3. A student may reside in Australia if the parents approve of the University being responsible for the accommodation, support, and general welfare arrangements for the student.

(5) The International Office is responsible for ensuring that the University's promotional material, and the Website, properly inform prospective students about the Government mandated conditions that apply to under 18 students.

Student Welfare Arrangements Provided by the University

(6) The University permits enrolment by international students who will not have reached 18 years of age at course commencement. It is prepared to consider, on a case by case basis, accepting responsibility for the accommodation, support and general welfare arrangements for such students.

(7) Where the University agrees to accept responsibility for approving a student's welfare arrangements it will require the student to stay in University approved homestay accommodation.

(8) The International Office will ensure:

  1. the good character of homestay providers by obtaining working with children checks, personal interviews and verifying references;
  2. a good standard of homestay accommodation, suitable for students, through home inspections undertaken by the International Office Homestay;
  3. an appropriate cross-cultural and student welfare focused orientation provided to homestay providers by the International Office Homestay Officer; and
  4. the maintenance of processes to monitor and respond to students wellbeing in the homestay placements arranged by the University, including regular monitoring visits to homestay providers, newsletters, social functions and training activities for homestay providers.

(9) Students will also be required to meet with a nominated International Office Student Adviser (IOSA) as often as he or she requires of the student, but no less frequently than each fortnight.

(10) The student must not spend a night away from the approved homestay address, or undertake any travel that would require an overnight absence from the homestay address without first obtaining the International Office Student Adviser's permission.

(11) The University will require the student to maintain a high standard of personal and social behaviour throughout, to conduct themselves responsibly, to desist from risk-taking behaviour, and to devote themselves appropriately to their studies.

(12) Refusal to obey an instruction from the homestay provider/s or IOSA to address deficiencies in the aspects of behaviour and personal conduct referred to in the previous paragraph will provide grounds for the University to advise DIAC that it has withdrawn its support for the accommodation/welfare arrangements, which may have implications for the student's visa.

(13) The University may approve requests from students for alternative accommodation/welfare arrangements other than University approved homestay where:

  1. the students parent/s or custodian approve in writing of the alternative arrangements;
  2. the University is satisfied as to the good character of the adult/s who are to be assigned guardianship of the student;
  3. the accommodation has been inspected by the International Office Coordinator International Student Support Services (CISSS) or nominee and found to be suitable;
  4. it is satisfied that the arrangements will provide accommodation and welfare arrangements at least equivalent to what could be obtained through a university approved homestay arrangement; and
  5. the arrangement is secure and likely to last until the student completes their course, or turns 18.

(14) A student is not permitted to change their accommodation or welfare arrangements unless first approved by the CISSS. Failure to comply with this requirement is grounds for notifying DIAC of withdrawal of approval of accommodation and welfare arrangements, which may have implications for the student's visa. DIAC will also be notified when the student changes accommodation and welfare arrangements with the University's approval.

Application for Accommodation and Welfare Arrangements

(15) An applicant for enrolment in a course who will be under 18 at course commencement and will not be staying with parents, custodian or other family member while in Australia must provide the University with a request, in writing and approved by the parents or legal custodian, for the University to accept responsibility for the student's accommodation, support and welfare arrangements until they reach 18 years of age.

(16) Requests to the University to approve accommodation and welfare arrangements will be considered by the CISSS who will respond in writing to the student advising whether the request has been successful or not.

(17) Where it is agreed by the University to accept responsibility for the students accommodation, support and welfare arrangements the CISSS will arrange for the student to be advised in writing, including providing a copy of this document, and giving a general outline of the accommodation and support arrangements to be made, and the University's requirements of the student including compliance with the requirements of this document.

(18) The letter provided will also ask the student and parents to sign and return the letter to acknowledge acceptance of the conditions required by the University in accepting responsibility for the student's welfare.

(19) The CISSS will ensure that when the International Admissions staff raise a CoE on PRISMS, for a student for whom the University has accepted responsibility for accommodation and welfare arrangements, they will also notify DIAC of the University's role by raising a Confirmation of Appropriate Accommodation/Welfare Arrangements (CAAW) letter.

(20) The CAAW must specify start and end dates of the accommodation and welfare arrangements. The student cannot enter Australia on their student visa until the welfare start date has been reached and must be carefully matched to orientation commencement and the time taken to travel from the home country. The end date of the welfare arrangements will normally be advised as 14 days after the end date of the CoE, or when the student has their 18th birthday if that is earlier.