The skills shortage in New South Wales, Australia could be alleviated if the State Government stopped charging temporary residents $5000 for each child they enrolled in a public school, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.
Mervyn Bryant, the managing director of Lismore Diesel Service, said that after an Australia-wide search for a tradesman he finally found one in South Africa. “It’s nearly impossible finding a diesel fuel-injection fitter,” he said. “We found a tradesman in South Africa…but he is very concerned about the high cost of schooling his three children here.”
Mr Bryant said the cost per child was $4500 plus administration fees, which had to be paid before school started. “The fees are discouraging some prospective employees from coming,” he said.
Australia is facing a shortage of about 240,000 skilled workers in trades such as plumbing and motor mechanics.
Brendon Boyce, the director of the migrant recruitment agency Recruitglobal, said a family with three school-aged children moving to Australia and living in New South Wales could have to pay up to $14,500 in advance in school fees while receiving a wage of $41,850 a year.
A spokeswoman for the Education Minister said 457 visa holders could apply to have school fees waived.