Homestay Program

About the Homestay Program

The Homestay Program is an integral part of the South Australian Government Schools International Student Program and Study Tours offered by the Department of Education and Children’s Services (DECD).  Students are hosted for the duration of their program.

International Student Program (ISP) - high school students enrol either in the Study Abroad Program for 1 – 4 terms or the High School Graduate Program for 1 - 5 years. Students between 12 and 18 years old, must live in accredited and appropriately supervised accommodation. This is a requirement of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC). Students in these programs are hosted by caring families across Adelaide and South Australia, which is arranged by International Education Services (IES). Regional schools arrange their own homestay families.

Study Tours – primary and high school students are part of visiting overseas school groups here to experience the language, lifestyle and landscapes of Australia.  Students stay with families within the host school community for a few weeks only. Homestays for Study Tours are arranged directly by the host school.

Why have a student to stay?

Involvement in the Homestay Program offers a range of benefits to homestay families, including:
• encouraging families to do things together
• learning about another culture’s customs and traditions
• encouraging families to explore their own state and country
• learning another language for interest or future travel
• socialising with other families hosting international students
• developing lasting friendships with the student and their overseas family.

The Homestay Program also offers a range of benefits to the school and local community, including:
• economic and curricula benefits for the school
• support for local jobs in education and tourism
• promotion of tourism through visits by the student’s friends and family
• expenditure by international students in local businesses.

Homestay Accreditation

Prospective homestay families must successfully complete the accreditation process before hosting students. IES accommodation officers recruit and accredit families for the International Student Program. School personnel recruit and accredit families for the Regional Program and Study Tours.  Accreditation is valid for 5 years.  

Staff Training

IES conducts periodic training for personnel involved in the recruitment and accreditation of homestay families.  Please contact the Executive Manager, International Student Services at IES if you require training.

Accreditation Process

IES has developed flowcharts to assist in understanding the business process involved in the selection and accreditation of homestay families.

Homestay Application Package for prospective Homestays - ISP

The Homestay Application Package applies only to residents in Adelaide and regional South Australia interested in hosting an international student attending a South Australian Government School. The package includes a letter outlining the steps involved in becoming a homestay. The information provided by the applicant will assist in determining the suitability of the family for hosting.

Homestay Application Package for prospective Homestays - Study Tours

Homestay Visit and Interview

All prospective homestay families are required to have a homestay visit and intervidw. Following a satisfactory completion of the Informed Consent Form (criminal history record check), a home visit and interview will be conducted to ensure suitability. This will be undertaken by trained school staff for the Regional Program and Study Tours.

Homestay Templates

The following documents are listed in the Accreditation Process flowcharts. Where schools use these documents please ensure they are printed on your school letterhead.

Certificate of Homestay Accreditation

Successful homestay families are to receive a Certificate of Homestay Accreditation. Schools issue certificates to families accredited to host Regional Program and/or Study Tour students.  Please complete the certificate with the name of the homestay family and the School Principal's signature.

Advertising for Homestays

Support given by schools in finding suitable homestay families is vital. Schools can promote the Homestay Program in a number of ways.

  • Include in daily student notices
  • Include on Assembly agenda
  • Include on Parents & Friends meetings agenda
  • Send separate notice home to all families
  • Make contact with local Primary schools to access their staff and families
  • Advertising in your school newsletter:

    Please find below sample text and pre -designed advertisements  which can be placed on a regular basis in your school newsletter.

    Publishing information on your school website:

    It is recommended that you have an international section on your school website featuring information about your Homestay program.

    Producing brochures or flyers for distribution:

    Produce your own Homestay brochures and flyers for distribution in your local community. This activity can generate considerable interest.

    Other promotional activities
    Homestay information evening for new parents

    Provide new/Year 8 parents with information about your international program in the school and the homestay opportunities.

    Local community events

    Create a portable display to promote your Homestay program.  Consider using it at a variety of exhibition opportunities such as festivals, cultural events, educational fairs that are held in the local community.

    Homestay Promotion Powerpoint

    A PowerPoint has been developed for principals/ ISP Managers who would like to deliver presentations to the school community, local associations and clubs to raise awareness of the Homestay Program.  Please contact the Marketing staff at International Education Services for more information.

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