Minister Opens International Students Forum

Minister Opens International Students Forum

Western Australia Education Minister Elizabeth Constable

State Government Working To Support International Students Living In WA

Victor P Taffa

The Council of International Students Australia (CISA) has congratulated the State Government for its commitment to working with international students to make sure studying in Western Australia was a positive experience.

This morning Education Minister Liz Constable opened the International Students Forum, which monitors issues affecting students living and studying in WA, and encourages collaboration between government agencies, students and international education and training providers.

CISA National President Robert Atcheson said Western Australia was one of only two Australian States to consistently run such events in an effort to keep up to date with the needs of international students.

WA is also one of only two States to offer travel concessions to international students, and to allow post-graduate students to send their children to State schools at no expense.

Dr. Constable said about 50,000 international students studied in WA each year, and a number of achievements had been made by the Government since last year’s meeting.

“A review of the registration of all education and training providers of international education saw a small number of providers fail to be re-registered or voluntarily withdraw from the sector.” Dr. Constable said.

“The Department of Education Services has applied various conditions on the registration of some providers which are being closely monitored to ensure improved quality assurance.”

The Government continues to provide conciliation and mediation services, and is monitoring the issue of the supply of housing for international students.

Research by Carmela Briguglio of Curtin University into the education needs of international students, found they would benefit from more English speaking practice in community settings.

“The Department of Education Services is now considering a program combining communication training and networking opportunities.” the Minister said.

Dr. Constable said the State Government was aware of frustrations being felt by international students, particularly concerns about education costs and living costs, accommodation and community engagement. The State Government would use the feedback from the forum to help address the needs of international students.