Accommodation options

There are three accommodation options available for students enrolled in the International Students Program and Study Abroad program.

  • living with parents or relatives approved by the Department of Home Affairs
  • living with parent-nominated homestay
  • living in homestay arranged by DE International.

Please note:

  • exchange students must be accommodated with host families organised by student exchange organisations
  • study tour accommodation is organised by the host school or tour operator
  • temporary Residents Program students must
  • live with a parent if they are on a dependent visa
  • live with a parent or direct relative on other temporary visas.

Living with parents or relatives approved by Department of Home Affairs

Primary school (Kindergarten to Year 6)

Students enrolling in any year level from Kindergarten to Year 4 must have a parent living with them at all times. Students in Years 5 and 6 can live with a parent or a relative approved by the Department of Home Affairs. This relative must agree to undertake carer responsibilities.

Note: older siblings on student visas will not be approved for primary school.

High school (Years 7 to 12)

Students may live with a parent or relative approved by the Department of Home Affairs. This relative must agree to undertake carer responsibilities. International students enrolling in Year 7 or Year 8 are required to live with a relative approved by the Department of Home Affairs. The relative must:

  • be a resident of NSW
  • be over 21 years of age
  • be able to remain in Australia until the student is 18 years of age
  • provide the Department of Home Affairs with evidence of direct relationship to the student
  • meet police clearance requirements, as set by the Department of Home Affairs.

Living with parent nominated homestay

Parents of students enrolling in Years 9 - 12 may nominate for their child to live with a close family friend or distant relative. As these arrangements must be approved by the NSW Department of Education this nominated carer must meet the same requirements as those required of homestay families arranged by DE International. Procedures for approval are:

  • an accommodation placement fee of $330 applies.
  • accommodation and living arrangements must meet our minimum Homestay Standards.
  • both the parents and nominated carer must complete a Parent Nomination for Homestay form, providing details of the nominated carer and the household, as well as agreeing to carer responsibilities - please allow six weeks for screening and home inspection processes.
  • the nominated carer must have a paid employment Working With Children Check clearance. All other household members aged over 18 years must have a volunteer Working with Children Check clearance. Clearances may take up to six weeks to be completed. Clearances are valid for 5 years and must be renewed prior to expiry.
  • DE International arranges for one of its registered homestay companies to inspect the home to ensure it meets our minimum homestay standards. The home must be inspected on an annual basis to ensure it continues to meet these standards.
  • once the nominated homestay meets all requirements DE International will approve the nominated carer as homestay.
  • DE International issues a Confirmation of Appropriate Accommodation and Welfare (CAAW) form for the student visa.

Living in homestay arranged by DE International

Students enrolling in Years 9 to 12 may request to be placed with an Australian family in homestay accommodation. The homestay parent takes on the role of carer.

DE International works closely with four homestay providers who find suitable families. Homestays must meet minimum standards, including:

  • students have their own bedroom and study desk, and share a bathroom.
  • the homestay family provides 3 meals a day, including food to pack a sandwich for lunch on school days.
  • no more than 3 international students in the home.
  • all adults in the home must have valid Working With Children Check clearances.
  • The home must be inspected at least once a year.
  • The homestay parent acts as carer, in place of the parents.
  • Homestay costs range from A$300 to A$330 per week, and are subject to change at the discretion of the provider
  • Homestay placement fee is A$330.

DE International issues a Confirmation of Appropriate Accommodation and Welfare (CAAW) form for the student visa.

Our homestay standards can be found in the Homestay Information for Parents form.

Download the Homestay Providers list.

Students over 18 years

Students over 18 years of age should remain in homestay accommodation or continue to live with their relatives until they finish high school.

  • we may contact parents to approve any changes to students' living arrangements.
  • students must provide to their school contact details of an adult who can also be present at school interviews and available in case of emergencies.

Annual living costs have been estimated at A$20,290 by the Department of Home Affairs.

Carer responsibilities

The carer is responsible for:

  • maintaining regular contact with the student and liaising with the school, homestay provider (for homestay families and parent nominated homestays) and parents
  • ensuring the student has a minimum of 80% school attendance (in line with student visa regulations)
  • notifying DE International and the school in writing of any intention to change address or living arrangements prior to the change being made. If the student is under 18 and DE International has approved the living arrangements then written approval from DE International must be obtained prior to the change of living arrangements.
  • contacting the parents and school coordinator in case of an accident, serious illness or medical emergency
  • assisting the student to seek necessary medical attention and obtain proper medical certificates in case of absence from classes
  • informing the parents promptly in the event of any problems
  • contacting the school coordinator requesting leave for the student for any appointments, specifying the dates and times of their absence
  • liaising with the school coordinator concerning student behaviour, conduct or any issues that may affect the student's progress
  • attending school meetings deemed necessary by the Principal on behalf of the parents
  • assisting the student to abide by school and visa requirements taking responsibility for the student's welfare and supervision outside of school hours.