Parents from overseas who are permanent residents follow the same procedures for enrolling their children in government schools as Australian citizens and do not pay fees. Some students on temporary visas are also able to enrol without paying fees. Other international students will be required to pay fees.
On arrival in Victoria, students from language backgrounds other than English can access English language courses through the federal government's New Arrivals Programme in the government sector, including intensive English language classes before beginning mainstream classes and English as an Additional Language (EAL) programs at school.
Intensive English language classes are offered at a number of English language schools and centres in the Melbourne metropolitan area, as well as regional English language programs in Geelong, Mildura and Shepparton. English language assistance is also offered to eligible students in isolated or remote areas through the Isolated EAL Student Support Program, which provides funding for EAL teaching in remote areas. Newly arrived children usually stay in these intensive classes for around six months (or up to 12 months if need be) and then transfer to a mainstream school. The mainstream school may be eligible for EAL funding to support the students as they continue to learn English. To find the English language centre or school nearest to you, visit the Department of Education and Training website or phone them on (03) 9637 2135. For more information about the International Student Program in Victorian government schools, see www.study.vic.gov.au.
Many Catholic and independent schools also provide or arrange EAL support. Those looking for suitable places to enrol eligible students should enquire through the Catholic Education Office or Independent Schools Victoria (ISV).
If your child is an international student wishing to study in Australia, the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) lists all government-accredited institutions registered to offer courses to overseas students, including secondary schools. Every institution that seeks to recruit, enrol or teach overseas students must be registered with CRICOS for each course they offer to overseas students. More information can be found on the Studies in Australia website. Here, you will find an overview of the Australian education system, with advice on key topics such as visa requirements and application procedures, along with detailed profiles of educational institutions that offer courses to international students.
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