Why are Police Checks Important for Getting a Student Visa in Australia?
Australia or the Land Down Under is a melting pot of diversity. When it comes to variety – in flora, fauna, geography, and culture, it’s one of the richest places on planet Earth and attracts people from all over the world.
But, apart from tourists, Australia is home (however temporary it may be) to over 7 million international students who study at one of its 1,100 accredited institutes or 40 universities. It has a world-class education system, and there are over 22,000 courses to choose from.
If you are planning to study in Australia, you must have a clear understanding of the process of Police Checks SA and why it is so essential for getting your student visa. Spend the next few minutes reading about why police checks are mandatory for applying to colleges in Australia and how you should go about getting one done for your visa application.
What is the National Police Check?
When it comes to national security and the well-being of its people, Australia, or for that matter, no country leaves any stone unturned. Everyone (student or not) needs to go through extensive scrutiny before entering the country. If you are applying to any school or university, you are required to submit Police Checks SA documents as part of a character assessment certificate.
The document contains sensitive and personal information about any releasable convictions against the applicant. In essence, it states whether or not the applicant has any criminal records.
What kind of checks are included in educational checks?
If you are a potential student at any registered Australian institute or university, your police check letter is prepared after checking for the following:
- Released court orders, if any, on grounds like – traffic rule violations, any conviction or charge against a corporation, sexual harassment allegation/offense, any pending sentences/charges, finding of guilt, etc.
- Spent charges – Spent charges are those offenses that are removed from police records after they meet specified criteria – 10 consecutive ‘good’ years, 5 straight years on good behavior for juveniles, etc.
Suppose you are not found guilty or do not have any criminal records. In that case, the police check report is categorized as a Not-disclosable court outcome (NDCO), and you are eligible to apply for admission to the course. Since this is a very sensitive and tactical procedure, you must seek professional help while getting your Police Checks SA report.
How long is a police check valid?
Just like your student visa comes with an expiry date, so does a police check document. It is not a one-time thing. Think of it as a point-in-time check. Someone might have a clean criminal slate now, but that doesn’t mean that the person cannot commit a crime in the future (let’s hope it doesn’t come to that). The validity of your police verification document depends on the university or institute you are applying to. In most cases, you will not be asked to re-apply for it before 3 months.
How do police check requirements vary in different states?
While the rules laid by the Australian are pretty standard and all educational institutions must follow these, some states may have additional requirements. For instance, if you apply for a teaching position in any college in Adelaide in South Australia (SA), you must be registered with the Teachers Registration Board. You should complete some training programs like Child abuse and neglect. Hence, your Police Checks SA report must include the status of this training.
Please check with individual state websites to learn more about the exact rules.
How can you get the police done?
Getting a proper police check document is the first step in fulfilling your dream of studying in Australia. It is imperative that you get it done right. There are 2 ways in which you can apply for a police check.
- Through trusted agencies via their online portals
This is pretty much the only option for you if you are an international student applying for a police check. Several agencies offer police check services online. All you have to do is submit your details, make payments via secure channels, and voila, they will mail your police check document to you in just a few days. Make sure you verify the credentials of the agency and read reviews before entrusting them with the job.
- Through local police authorities via physical visits
The other, less common way is to visit police offices and get it done yourself physically. This won’t be possible if you apply for a police check for the first time and do not stay in Australia. Like most offline processes, this can take longer and be more tiresome for a lot of people.
Excellent education policies, 6 of the world’s top 100 universities, solid job prospects, affordable living expenses, and warm and beautiful people make Australia a top choice for students. So, if you are looking forward to advancing your career goals by studying in Australia, here’s hoping that this article gave you a clear understanding of how to get your police check done right!