Thousands of international students will be relieved to hear the news that NSW has pulled together a plan to get them back on campus.
There's a glimmer of hope for foreign students enrolled at Canberra's universities with suggestions that they too might be able to access the charter flights and quarantine places in NSW in coming months.
At this point, a plan is desperately needed to both do the right thing by these full-fee-paying students and halt the declining reputation of the Australian higher education sector.
Off-shore students are not getting the education they signed up for. Zoom classes depending on unreliable internet connections are a poor substitute for robust debate in tutorials. Group work becomes even more tedious when half of the team are working from their apartments in China.
Instead of being able to have a meeting with their lecturers or ask the person next to them, overseas students are muddling through on their own.
All the while they're paying a premium for the privilege of working from their bedrooms instead of an immersive experience in an English-speaking country.
There have been many false starts with attempts to bring enrolled students back to Australian campuses.
The ACT had a pilot plan ready to go but the second wave in Victoria put it on hold indefinitely.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison also made it very clear that Australians citizens were the priority for international arrivals.
The NSW plan hasn't been approved by the Commonwealth yet but it does have the tick of approval from NSW Health, NSW Police and the universities.
It won't be taking quarantine places from other returning Australians, avoiding the perception that they are jumping the queue.
Australia benefits enormously when future leaders choose to study at our institutions, building friendships and connections as well as knowledge which they take back with them to their home country.
Others choose to settle in Australia and contribute to our communities and economy.
International education was the ACT's first billion-dollar export industry and it's taken many years to build up the good reputation that Australian universities enjoy today.
This could all come tumbling down if prospective students turn to other countries such as Canada, the United States or the UK.
Bringing back students won't be a money-making exercise but it will allow them access to the world-class education they are expecting and that they deserve.
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