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A message from Austrade to our international education partners (7 April 2020)

09 Apr 2020

We start this edition of MIP Weekly by acknowledging students in Australia and around the world who are persevering through their studies and working at the front line of these challenging times. We say thank you.

As we all continue to take measures to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, we know that our education providers and regulators are making round the clock changes to support students and business continuity. We will continue to play our role in seeking to provide you specific information and guidance and to showcase good practice.

In news this week:

  • The Australian Government has announced that international students who have been studying in Australia for more than 12 months can access their Australian superannuation if they are in financial hardship. Read here for more information.
  • The China Service Centre for Scholarly Exchange (CSCSE) has stated that Chinese students will not be penalised for any delay, inconsistency or online courses taken during the COVID-19 pandemic prevention and control period. An unofficial translation is available here.
  • We know that some students wish to return home but this may not be possible at the moment, due to restricted flight access or borders closing in other countries. If an international student is seeking more advice on these options or wishes to register their needs, they may also get in touch with their local Consular office.
  • We were pleased to see the Universities Australia statement on 5 April reaffirming their support for international students in Australia; the confirmation from Prime Minister Modi and Prime Minister Scott Morrison on supporting citizens during these challenging times; and Federal Education Minister Dan Tehan also offering his message of support to our student community.
  • Our inspiring story that embodies #InThisTogether comes from Charles Darwin University in the Northern Territory. The university has announced a partnership with local businesses Fresh Point Café and Bamboo Lounge, to offer international students in Darwin a “kindness shake” with free, pre-made meals.

We know that international students may have questions regarding recent announcements on work rights during COVID-19. Insider Guides are hosting a webinar for students to hear directly from the Fair Work Ombudsman on this topic.

We encourage the sector to visit the Australian Government’s Coronavirus website for the latest news, updates and advice from government agencies across Australia.

Please also visit the Resource Hub on the Study Australia website for assets, updates and materials to help your communications to the sector.

And finally, a reminder that the call for submissions to the Climate Action Network for International Educators (CANIE) International Education Climate Action Summit 2020 close tomorrow. The virtual summit aims to increase awareness of the role international education can play in climate action, bringing together leaders and voices from around the globe. Now more than ever it is important that we shape our sector’s response to the climate challenge and reimagine how we work, so we can be part of the solution.