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South Australia awaits government nod for pilot plan to bring back international students

International student Cindy Du stranded in Shanghai for most of 2020 Source: Supplied

The Australian first pilot program would be used to test whether a return of international students could be managed across states and territories, to restore the higher education sector, which has been damaged due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The South Australian Government proposed the scheme last month but it has since been put on pause by Prime Minister Scott Morrison. South Australia recently declared its hotel quarantine capacity would be increased to 800 people per week, which includes 600 places for international students.  

Some South Australians are concerned the pilot could break the state’s COVID-19-free record. But students like Cindi Du say they are ready and willing to comply with all the state's health guidelines, so they can get back to studying in Australia.

"We really want to come back and we will do everything that government tells us because it’s not only for our own good health but also for the public health so if we get a chance to get back that would be great, to continue our face to face studies and enjoy the Australian life in the meantime."

A similar plan to bring students to the Australian Capital Territory was scrapped in July after the second coronavirus wave took hold in Victoria.

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People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 metres away from others. Find out what restrictions are in place for your state or territory.

Testing for coronavirus is now widely available across Australia. If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080.
The federal government's coronavirus tracing app COVIDSafe is available for download from your phone's app store.

SBS is committed to informing Australia’s diverse communities about the latest COVID-19 developments. News and information is available in 63 languages at http://www.sbs.com.au/coronavirus

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