About Tuition Assurance
Tuition assurance offers protection support to students in the event of an ACPET member being unable to offer the student’s course, in particular where the organisation ceases to trade, prior to delivering the tuition the student has paid for in advance.
Options for students under ASTAS:
- Other ACPET members offering a comparable course will take on displaced students. Only future fees are paid by the student to the new provider, or
- the student may obtain a re-credit from ACPET for the prepaid but unutilised part of their fees.
By law, all Registered Training Organisations (RTO) who ask their students to pay fees in advance are required to assure that those fees are protected from the possibility that the course cannot continue and that the RTO cannot re-credit the prepaid fees.
To support training providers, the Federal Government has endorsed two “Tuition Assurance” schemes – one by TAFE DIRECTORS AUSTRALIA and the other by the AUSTRALIAN COUNCIL FOR PRIVATE EDUCATION AND TRAINING (ACPET). These obligations arise under the
- HESA Act and its associated VET Guidelines for FEE-HELP and VET FEE-HELP students
- Standards for Registered Training Organisations for non-FEE-HELP students.
ACPET offers its members tuition assurance products called ASTAS for domestic students. The type of assurance that training providers under this scheme need depends on whether the students for which assurance is being sought are using Fee Help or VET FEE-HELP or neither.
A training provider’s fee to the ASTAS protection scheme is based on
- The providers annual gross income (for courses covered under the ASTAS scheme), and
- The risk level of the RTO’s.
ACPET’s scheme assess RTO’s risk level via a comprehensive process based on information provided to us. This includes
- Your membership and ownership,
- Audit history and requirements,
- Courses offered,
- Student achievement and growth,
- Financial performance, and
- Agent’s fees.
Your fees are used by ACPET to insure itself against the ultimate risk of having to provide refunds to students.
Options for providers
A VET provider with tuition assurance obligations can use one or more of these options:
- Membership of a VET tuition assurance scheme which ACPET is an approved operator, or
- A legally binding agreement with one or more second providers, or
- A legally binding agreement provided by a legal entity.
Options for Students
If a provider ceases to provide a course of study, a student may chose
For FEE HELP or VET FEE HELP students:
- To take a place in a similar VET course of study without the need to pay the second provider for any replacement units, or
- A refund of the up-front tuition fees or a re-crediting of any FEE HELP balance.
Other students must take a place in a similar VET course of study (without the need to pay the second provider for any replacement units), or if that is not possible, are given a re-credit of the up-front tuition fees by the tuition assurance provider.
Students enrolled with a college that has closed, please contact ACPET on:
Phone: 1800 875 474