INTRODUCTION OF TUITION FEES FOR DEPENDENTS OF 457 VISA HOLDERS
INFORMATION FOR PARENTS
Why do I have to pay when I did not before?
The Western Australian Government has, to date, provided free public education to dependents of 457 Visa holders although the conditions of this visa give no such entitlement.
From 2015, the Government has decided that all 457 Visa holders will contribute to the cost of educating their children in public schools. The average estimated cost of educating a student in a public primary school in 2014-15 is $14,833 and $19,363 in a public secondary school.
Is the fee for each child or is it a family fee?
The fee is an annual contribution of $4,000 per family.
From 2015 a tuition fee of $4 000 per annum will apply for the first child attending a public school. There will be no fee payable for second or subsequent children from the same family.
What's the fee for?
The fee is a contribution to the cost of educating dependents of 457 Visa holders. It does not cover the total cost of educating a student in a public school.
Will the school collect the fee?
No. The fee will be collected by Education and Training International, the State Government agency that is responsible for overseas fee-paying students attending Western Australian public schools.
Will anything else change about the enrolment of my children?
No. The Government will progress Legislative change to ensure that these students will continue to be allowed to enrol at their local schools and have access to education support and English as an additional language/dialect (EAL/D) support.
When do I have to start paying?
The tuition fee will come into effect for current and new enrolments from January 2015. Your school principal will keep you informed as further details are available.
Can my employer pay the fee?
There are no restrictions on who pays the fee.
What will happen if I am not able to pay this fee?
The fee of $4,000 per annum for the first child only, irrespective of the number of children enrolled in the public school system, is intended to alleviate hardship for large families. Beyond this any family still experiencing financial hardship due to exceptional circumstances will be able to apply for special consideration.
The arrangements for this, to be applied on a case by case basis, are under development. This information will be made publicly available in the near future.
I used to be on a 457 Visa but I am a permanent resident. Do I have to pay the tuition fee?
No, but you need to notify your school that your visa conditions have changed. You will need to provide appropriate documentary evidence.
I used to be on a 457 Visa but I am now on a Bridging Visa. Do I have to pay the tuition fee?
Yes. If you hold a Bridging Visa, you revert to the conditions and entitlements of your previous substantive visa. If your previous substantive visa was a 457, then you need to pay the tuition fee.
If I am no longer eligible to pay the fee but have already done so, do I get a refund?
Yes. This will be arranged through Education and Training International.
Where can I get more information?
Your school principal is the best person to contact as they will have the latest information and be familiar with your particular circumstances.