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House of Representatives

Higher Education Support Amendment (Vet Fee-Help and Tertiary Admission Centres) Bill 2009

Explanatory Memorandum

Circulated By Authority of the Minister for Employment Participation, the Senator the Honourable Mark Arbib MP


Schedule 1 of the Bill amends the Higher Education Support Act 2003 (HESA) to broaden guidelines-making powers to allow lesser VET FEE-HELP debt amounts to apply for a particular class of student and to allow for matters in relation to VET credit transfer requirements to be dealt with in guidelines.

Schedule 2 of the Bill will amend HESA to provide that Tertiary Admission Centres (TACs) have the same status and duty of care as Officers of a Higher Education Provider (HEP) and VET provider in relation to the processing of students' personal information. VET providers and HEPs must access the personal identifying information of students to process applications for student places and for Commonwealth Scholarships. This amendment will ensure that relevant information may be shared between DEEWR, VET providers, HEPs and TACs as appropriate and in accordance with the HESA privacy requirements. This will ensure that the rights of students are protected by HESA's privacy protection provisions.

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