The Tertiary Education Briefing Paper provides information on the key issues impacting engagement in tertiary education for rural and remote students.
Key Points for Rural and Remote Tertiary Students include:
- The under-representation of rural and remote students in higher education.
- Barriers to accessing higher education including cost, socioeconomic status, distance, school experiences (interest in pursuing higher education), preparedness and aspirations. These are key considerations for students who are considering taking up the option of tertiary education.
ICPA (Aust) believes that the following issues need to be addressed in order to alleviate these barriers for Rural and Remote Tertiary Students:
- Appropriate financial assistance for relocation and ongoing costs
The high cost of relocation and ongoing costs such as securing accommodation, travel to the place of study initially and travel home during the year and living away from home, upfront and ongoing living expenses.
- Access to financial assistance
- Youth Allowance eligibility barriers including parental income limits.
- Centrelink Processes
- It is vital that Staff are appropriately trained to provide accurate information and assistance in relation to allowances particularly Youth Allowance.
- There is a need to address the issue of unacceptably lengthy waiting times when making contact with Centrelink.