Caring for students under 18

Caring for younger students, especially if they are under 18, is a high priority. We need to make sure our students are safe and secure in their new environment. It can require extra patience, commitment and some very clear guidelines.

Your student's guardian

All students under 18 will have a guardian, who is responsible for their welfare. Their guardian will:

  • give you their contact details
  • meet regularly with your student (generally away from the family home)
  • grant permission for any extracurricular activities or overnight stays.

Going out

If your student is going out, ask them about:

  • where they are going
  • a contact number (if possible)
  • what time they will be home (approximately).

Safety at night

Your student shouldn't be staying out late on a regular basis. Agree on a curfew time that's safe and reasonable. If they're coming home later in the evening, offer them a lift back from the station. Sometimes that's not practical, so remind them to take a taxi, rather than walk alone.

Staying overnight

Check that your student has their guardian's approval if they want to stay somewhere overnight. Confirm where they will be staying and how you can contact them.

Inviting people to stay overnight

Your student's girlfriend or boyfriend should not spend the night with them at your house. If you need to, refer the matter to the student's guardian.

Health insurance and hospital

Overseas Student Health Care (OSHC) cover must be held by your student at all times. This is your student's responsibility under the terms of their student visa. They can attend any public hospital by showing their OSHC card. Please notify the student's guardian immediately if your student is about to be, or has been taken to hospital.

Talking through issues

It is best for students and homestay hosts to work through issues directly with each other. Communication is a challenging but important part of being a homestay family. When you need extra help, our homestay staff will try and help you to resolve the issue through mediation. You can also contact your student's guardian for advice.

Providing substantial meals

You must provide your student with three meals per day. For example, a self-serve breakfast, a packed lunch and a cooked evening meal. Snacks could include instant noodles and cup-a-soups, but these are not enough for a full meal.

Moving or changing arrangements

You student must maintain the same accommodation, support and guardianship arrangements that they provided at the time their visa was granted. This is one of the visa conditions for students under 18 years. If your student wants to move, they must first get formal approval from their guardian and their institution.

More information

Find out more information about students under 18, or please contact us with any questions.