Latest information on Novel coronavirus

14 February 2020

The novel coronavirus presents a dynamic and rapidly evolving situation, and our thoughts are with all those who have been impacted. The NSW Government, through Study NSW, will continue to work with the Australian Government and all our education stakeholders to ensure students have access to the latest information and receive the necessary support they require at this challenging time.

Study NSW acknowledges this is challenging time for many of our students and our community.

Our International Student Welcome Desk at Sydney Airport remains open as we continue to welcome commencing and returning international students to Sydney and NSW.

The Study NSW funded Guide to Best Practice in International Student Mental Health produced by English Australia provides useful resources and advice for students and providers. Our NSW International Student Legal Service has published advice for international students affected by the travel ban and offers free legal support.

We welcome suggestions from the international education community, including students, on how we can work together to support the sector during this time. We will continue to keep you updated as this situation develops.

Australian Government announcement

On 1 February 2020, the Australian Government announced changes that impact travel to and from China. Yesterday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced to extend the entry restrictions on foreign nationals who have recently been in mainland China for a further week from 15 February 2020 to protect Australians from the risk of coronavirus.

Until further notice international students who are seeking to leave, or have transited through, mainland China will not be able to enter Australia.

The Australian Departments of Health, Home Affairs, Education and Foreign Affairs are working closely, along with regulatory agencies to ensure clear information for students and providers.

Read more

Advice for impacted international students

We recommend international students regularly check your education provider's website, or contact them directly, for information on how this situation may impact your studies.

International students (in Australia) can contact the international student hotline on 1300 981 621 (8am to 8pm AEDST Monday to Friday).

International students outside of Australia should use the email address with questions or concerns.

Mental health support is available to international students who are impacted by the coronavirus and its effect on families, study plans and travel.

International students in Australia can access support through Lifeline Australia (13 11 14), Youth Beyond Blue (1300 224 636), eheadspace (1800 650 890) and Kids Helpline (1800 55 1800), for those under 25 years of age.

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Connect with Study in Australia

Study Australia partners including Study NSW are here to support our Chinese community.

Visit the Australian Government's Study in Australia website and social media channels to stay connected and receive the latest information.

Australian Government resources and advice for students, parents and education providers

The Australian Government Department of Health is working across agencies and with states and territories to implement measures to manage the risk of novel coronavirus.

Factsheets in English for schools and early childhood education and care services, parents, students, universities and providers are available below:
The Department of Education, Skills and Employment has also developed a fact sheet providing advice for international students travelling to Australia:

Further information can be found on the Australian Government Department of Health and Department of Education websites.

Global Reputation Taskforce

On 21 January 2020, the Minister for Education, the Hon Dan Tehan MP, announced the formation of the Global Reputation Taskforce (Taskforce), under the leadership of the Council for International Education. The Taskforce was formed to shape Australia’s response in times of reputational damage or significant external risk to the sector, and to accelerate efforts to build a strong cohesive national brand for international education. The taskforce held its first meeting on Monday 3 February 2020 and the Communique from the meeting can be found here​.

Resources and advice from NSW Health

NSW Health is responding to an outbreak of a novel coronavirus, first diagnosed in China in December 2019. Information about this new disease is on the NSW Health fact sheet. NSW Health is updating information regularly via its website.

With students returning to school, parents of children who have had contact with a confirmed case of novel coronavirus are being urged to keep them at home and monitor for symptoms. Read the full media release.

NSW Health have also compiled resources suitable for education providers to share with their students and staff including fact sheets, frequently asked questions, video health advice from Dr Anthony Zheng and digital resources including web and social media tiles.

These resources can also be shared on social media from the NSW Health Facebook and NSW Health Twitter.

Multicultural NSW and Multicultural Health NSW are working with NSW Health to increase the number of languages covered in translated health information. NSW Health has also released a statement correcting some of the myths associated with this virus which you can read here.

Novel coronavirus updates from NSW education providers