20 May 2009

Kids of temporary Australian visa holders (subclass 457) need English language support

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The children of temporary Australian visa holders (subclass 457) need more resources to get their English language ability up to speed, a union in Western Australia has said.

The temporary Australian visa program – subclass 457 – is an employer-sponsorship program for overseas workers to work for a sponsor's company and live in Australia for up to four years, provided the employer can prove that no local Australian is fit to take that position.

According to ABC News, the State School Teachers Union (SSTU) has voiced concern that there are many children in the primary schooling system that have migrated to Australia through the 457 program and do not have adequate English language skills.

While the teachers have said they are willing to support these children so that they can benefit from the Australian education system, they are faced with a lack of funding for English tuition and minimal resources. 

The President of the SSTU said that the Government has not responded to pleas for assistance for the children of people emigrating to Australia temporarily.

"In the meantime, schools, principals and teachers are struggling and I think we really need to look closely at the needs of those children who can't engage as effectively as they should be able to in education," she said.

"For many teachers who've got 457 children in their classrooms they're having to create their own resources because there are a lack of resources, a lack of support available to assist them, so effectively it is creating an enormous workload in some circumstances for these teachers."

The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with emigrating to Australia.

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