China’s education ministry announced on Saturday that it will no longer recognise online courses and instructed its residents to visit foreign universities once more following the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The higher education sector predicts that 40,000 foreign students will return to Australian universities as a result of the restriction, but they have warned of practical difficulties with regard to visa processing and housing.
Home Affairs representatives will meet with the education department on Monday afternoon to discuss student visa, according to Minister of Education Jason Clare.
He stated in Sydney that its good that the Chinese students are returning to Australia. He also wants to ensure that they are taking up all the necessary steps to aid in visa processing. To plan this out the department of education will meet with the Department of Home Affairs.
The Australian Technology Network of Universities urged the federal government to act swiftly to facilitate an orderly return of foreign students from China with less than a month until many university courses are scheduled to begin.
Executive director Luke Sheehy wants to make sure that they are working together to ensure that the system can cope with the expected student visa increase in demand, particularly surrounding visa applications.
Student Visa likely to increase for Australia from China
Chinese students made up more than one-third of the 67,000 onshore foreign students registered in ATN universities like Curtin, Deakin and RMIT University, the University of Newcastle, University of South Australia, and University of Technology Sydney until international borders closed in 2020.
The return of students from China will significantly change campus life, according to Mr. Sheehy, who noted that “international students are a part of our family.”
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