Studies of another 450 overseas pupils, mainly Indians, in Adelaide may get derailed after their college has been found breaching education standards and could possibly face closure.
According to ABC report, Adelaide Pacific International College in Currie Street was served with a notice that its registration as a training provider will be cancelled after an audit was performed in March this year. The Department of Further Education alleges the college has failed to comply with 12 of 14 standards under a national framework.
South Australia's Further Education Minister Jack Snelling said the college has until the end of the day (May 11) to respond to the Federal Government about the audit findings. "At the moment I'm concentrating on the welfare of the students who are studying at the college and I'm concentrating on protecting South Australia's reputation," he said.
"We will ensure that all 450 students are given an opportunity to continue their studies elsewhere should a decision be made to cancel the college's registration and I stress that that decision is still pending, hasn't be made yet. A student who is placed at other training providers will not have to repay or pay a second time for their training," he said.
The college has asked for an extension in the deadline to respond and said it was working, as a matter of priority, to deal with the issues raised. Meanwhile, an apex body Motor Trade Association (MTA) said it was pleased with the clampdown on the college.
"MTA expressed its concerns to the state government last year that a number of operators, including APIC, were offering training in automotive trades without any consultation with the industry," MTA executive director John Chapman said.
Chapman added, "We were concerned that overseas students were being asked to pay tens of thousands of dollars in fees to be trained in a manner which the automotive industry does not support." MTA said it was worried there was a focus on providing a migration route to Australia.