400 Chinese students stranded in Australia as four schools close down

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Melbourne, Nov 9(ANI): At least 400 Chinese students are stranded in Australia after the closure of four schools, prompting the Chinese consulate in Sydney to warn students and their parents to be careful while choosing their schools in the country.

According to China's Consulate General, approximately 400 Chinese students were studying at the Meridian International School, one of four schools under the Global Campus Management Group in Sydney and Melbourne, which was forced out of operation on November 5 after it failed to repay its 20 million Australian dollars in debts.

The consulate did not say how many Chinese students were studying in the other three schools, but unconfirmed reports suggest an estimate of nearly 1,000.

The Consulate General also called on authorities in the country to take action.

"Chinese diplomats in Australia have urged that local authorities to properly handle the issue and meet with some of the Chinese students enrolled in the collapsed college group," The China Daily quoted a consulate statement, as saying.

Chinese students account for 24 percent of international students in Australia.

Meanwhile, the Australian Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations has scheduled meetings on Monday in Melbourne and later in the week in Sydney to brief students affected by the closure.

According to a press release by the department, international students at the colleges will be offered a place in a similar course at another institution or a refund of their outstanding fees. (ANI)

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