Some Aussie colleges visa factories: Govt

CANBERA: Some Australian colleges catering to foreigners operated more as visa factories than education providers, the author of a government review of the 15.5 billion US dollar industry said today.

As enrolments from China, India and elsewhere in Asia soared over the past decade, damaging pressures had been placed on the quality and regulation of schools catering to overseas students, the review found.

While the vast majority of students were satisfied with the education they received, unscrupulous operators had entered the market, it said.

“We have permanent residency factories,” review author Bruce Baird said.

“If you ask any of the (education) providers, they’ll quickly name those who they believe are the dodgy operators who are rorting (cheating) the system.” “They probably

represent 20 per cent of the vocational sector. I’m not saying that all of them are driven simply by the permanent residency but there

is 20 per cent that you

would have concerns about,” review author Bruce Baird added.