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Australian University to admit students in 2021 even if they don’t get a ATAR score

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australian university to admit students in 2021 even if they dont get a atar score

Another Australian university has announced it will accept year 12 students impacted by the coronavirus lockdown even if they don’t obtain an ATAR score.

Swinburne University will offer an ATAR-free pathway to its most popular courses for all students that finish high school in 2020.

Students will be able to enrol in bachelor degrees such as business, science, design, arts, engineering and media, with just a recommendation letter from their high school confirming they meet the minimum English requirements. 

Swinburne University (pictured) will offer an ATAR-free pathway to its most popular courses for all students that finish high school in 2020

Swinburne University (pictured) will offer an ATAR-free pathway to its most popular courses for all students that finish high school in 2020

Swinburne University (pictured) will offer an ATAR-free pathway to its most popular courses for all students that finish high school in 2020

In normal circumstances there are a limited number of places for each university course and students’ ATAR scores determine whether they will secure an offer of enrolment in their chosen field of study.

The Melbourne-based institution joins the Australian National University, University of Western Australia, Macquarie University, University of Tasmania, and the University of Adelaide, in scrapping secondary school results as a qualification marker.

Pro Vice Chancellor Professor Chris Pilgrim said although the transition from high school to university is always challenging, year 12 students have ‘faced a year like no other’ and deserve a shot at university even without an ATAR.

‘We know that students in 2020 continue to rise to the occasion and achieve exceptional results, and that completion of VCE remains of utmost importance, Professor Pilgrim said.

‘But we also understand it has been a unique year of study for many and we want to support students to continue their studies into 2021.’

Universities across Australia are experiencing a massive decline in profitability as the number of international students plummets due to COVID-19 border closures.

Foreign students make up about one third of Swinburne’s total revenue and their absence this year means the university expects to see a deficit of $51million.

In 2021 and 2022, they’ve flagged losses totalling $101million.

Year 12 students can enrol in bachelor degrees at Swinburne University (pictured) with just a recommendation letter from their high school confirming they meet the minimum English requirements

Year 12 students can enrol in bachelor degrees at Swinburne University (pictured) with just a recommendation letter from their high school confirming they meet the minimum English requirements

Year 12 students can enrol in bachelor degrees at Swinburne University (pictured) with just a recommendation letter from their high school confirming they meet the minimum English requirements

Overall, the Australian university sector is bracing for a $16billion retraction over the next four years.

‘We guaranteed them over $18 billion worth of funding as part of our COVID-19 package, and we’ll continue to talk with the sector about increases in demand and how we best can meet those,’ education minister Dan Tehan told ABC Radio National.

‘We’ll continue to work with the sector to make sure that this demand can be met … Understanding, of course, that there are, huge, huge demands on the Budget at the moment, and we’ve got to make sure that everything we do is done in a very sustainable way.’

Pilot programs to allow some international students into the country early is one option the federal government is currently looking at to ease the financial burden.

The Australian university sector is bracing for a $16billion retraction over the next four years

The Australian university sector is bracing for a $16billion retraction over the next four years

The Australian university sector is bracing for a $16billion retraction over the next four years

South Australia and the ACT have already been identified as the first locations to take part in the trial. 

‘We’re still going through the planning on that. Everything has to be done according to the health guidelines, according to the medical expert panel. And, they’re looking at that, and fine tuning those guidelines,’ Mr Tehan said.

‘There would be, at a minimum, two weeks’ quarantine involved here in Australia.’

The cost of quarantining students is expected to picked by participating universities.

If the program is successful, the scheme is expected to be rolled out across the rest of Australia. 

‘We have to remember, that the international education sector provides 250,000 jobs to this nation, and we want those jobs back as we grow our economy, as we come out of the coronavirus pandemic,’ Mr Tehan said.

Swinburne will begin offering university places for 2021 as early as August.

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Dan Andrews’ top man Chris Eccles didn’t advise Victorian Premier on covid-19 quarantine

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dan andrews top man chris eccles didnt advise victorian premier on covid 19 quarantine

A countdown to the deadly decision that saw Victoria choose private security over Australian Defence Force personnel to run hotel quarantine has been revealed.

An inquiry into the bungled decision heard Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews announced private security guards would guard returning travellers – without advice from his top bureaucrat.  

On Monday, Department of Premier and Cabinet secretary Chris Eccles told the inquiry he did not advise the premier to use private security. 

Mr Andrews went public with the scheme during a 3.20 pm press conference on March 27 – just hours after Victoria Police’s chief commissioner had been advised by someone from within the Department of Premier and Cabinet that police would play second fiddle to private security guards. 

Department of Premier and Cabinet secretary Chris Eccles has faced the hotel inquiry in Melbourne

Department of Premier and Cabinet secretary Chris Eccles has faced the hotel inquiry in Melbourne

Department of Premier and Cabinet secretary Chris Eccles has faced the hotel inquiry in Melbourne

Private security has been accused of bungling the hotel quarantine operation and causing Victoria's deadly second wave of COVID-19

Private security has been accused of bungling the hotel quarantine operation and causing Victoria's deadly second wave of COVID-19

Private security has been accused of bungling the hotel quarantine operation and causing Victoria’s deadly second wave of COVID-19

Meeting notes from March 27 where Chris Eccles appear to assume a decision has been made to employ private security at hotels. He cannot remember the meeting

Meeting notes from March 27 where Chris Eccles appear to assume a decision has been made to employ private security at hotels. He cannot remember the meeting

Meeting notes from March 27 where Chris Eccles appear to assume a decision has been made to employ private security at hotels. He cannot remember the meeting

It comes as the inquiry revealed Victoria’s Police Minister Lisa Neville questioned the use of Australian Defence Force personnel at Victorian hotels. 

‘The use of the army in hotels? That was not agreed at CCc (crisis cabinet) yesterday but is that what we will be doing? And what will they be doing,’ she asked the state’s Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp on June 25.

In a day of drama, Mr Eccles, who was appointed secretary of the DPC in December 2014 and leads the Victorian public service in advising the premier and the entire government of Victoria, told the inquiry he had ‘no recollection’ of advising Mr Andrews to use private security at the hotels. 

Nor did he believe anyone else from within the DPC had provided any such advice.  

Quarantine breaches involving private security guards seeded 99 per cent of Victoria’s deadly second wave of COVID infections, which in turn has led to more than 700 deaths of the elderly. 

More than 30 security guards ended up catching coronavirus from quarantined returned travellers while working in the hotels. 

After more than three weeks of sitting, the inquiry has heard not a single person can identify who made the decision to hire the private security guards, including Mr Eccles, who claimed on Monday he still doesn’t know.

Mr Eccles came under fire from counsel assisting the inquiry Rachel Ellyard. 

‘You are probably aware in a more general sense of evidence that’s been given before the board from a number of other people who were also not aware of where the decision was made and when and by whom,’ she said. 

‘The decision to engage private security ended up employing thousands of people and costing tens of millions of dollars. Shouldn’t we be able to say who made it, as a matter of proper governance?’

Mr Eccles suggested the decision was likely made by a ‘collective’ of government officials. 

Former Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton takes on oath on the bible to tell the truth at Thursday's inquiry into Victoria's disastrous hotel quarantine program last week

Former Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton takes on oath on the bible to tell the truth at Thursday's inquiry into Victoria's disastrous hotel quarantine program last week

Former Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton takes on oath on the bible to tell the truth at Thursday’s inquiry into Victoria’s disastrous hotel quarantine program last week

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33419192 8754187 image m 14 1600659971664

Former Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton text messages his federal colleague advising that the order to use private security came from the premier's office

Former Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton text messages his federal colleague advising that the order to use private security came from the premier's office

Former Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton text messages his federal colleague advising that the order to use private security came from the premier’s office

At the press conference, Mr Andrews said that police, private security and the government’s health team would be working together at the hotels.

‘We’ve been working on this for quite some time,’ Mr Andrews said. 

He further revealed 500 police working on coronavirus enforcement would be freed up by the private security guard plan.

Mr Eccles claimed he had no knowledge of the plan and could not speculate on what the premier meant during the press conference.

‘It’s really interesting and important question because … it seizes at the issue of individual and collective decision-making,’ Mr Eccles said.

The inquiry heard that a meeting of the National Cabinet was held just hours before Mr Andrews announced the plan to use private security. 

The meeting, which included Prime Minister Scott Morrison and the nation’s premiers, was held to discuss the COVID-19 crisis. 

It concluded about about 1pm where a briefing was held with various department heads within Victoria. 

Victoria Police chief commissioner Graham Ashton texted Mr Eccles about 16 minutes later. 

‘Chris I am getting word from Canberra for a plan whereby arrivals from overseas are to be subjected to enforced isolation from tomorrow,’ Mr Ashton wrote.

‘The suggestion is Victorian arrivals are conveyed to a hotel Somewhere where they are guarded by police for 14 days. Are you aware of anything in this regard?? Graham.’

Mr Eccles said although it was his practice to respond to the chief directly, he could not remember doing so. 

Six minutes after contacting Mr Eccles, Mr Ashton texted Australian Federal Police Reece Kershaw telling him the DPC had advised police would not be running security at Melbourne hotels. 

Mr Ashton told the inquiry last week he can’t recall who it was who told him. 

Under cross examination by a barrister representing Victoria Police, Mr Eccles said it was possible he had delegated an underling to respond to Mr Ashton, but could not be sure. 

Both Mr Ashton and Mr Eccles’ phone records fail to show the pair spoke or texted after Mr Ashton’s initial text message. 

However, Mr Eccles confirmed he had failed to ask if he did in fact ask someone else to pass on information to Mr Ashton.  

The inquiry heard at a meeting held after Mr Andrews’ press conference that day, the decision to use private security firms over police and Australian Defence Force personnel appeared to be well a truly decided. 

In notes of the meeting, which Mr Eccles cannot remember attending, Mr Eccles is noted as stating that he assumes private security had got the job. 

At the same meeting, Mr Ashton is noted asking what role Victoria Police would have. 

‘ADF will be assisting in spot-checking processes from what the PM and the Premier confirmed … we’re trying to keep the ADF presence back of house – to prevent the ADF presence obvious to the community etc,’ he is noted as asking. 

‘Police wont [sic] guard but will be doing the checks?’.

An email from Secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet Phil Gaetjens offering ADF personnel to Victorian DPC secretary Chris Eccles in April

An email from Secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet Phil Gaetjens offering ADF personnel to Victorian DPC secretary Chris Eccles in April

An email from Secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet Phil Gaetjens offering ADF personnel to Victorian DPC secretary Chris Eccles in April

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews will front the hotel inquiry on Wednesday

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews will front the hotel inquiry on Wednesday

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews will front the hotel inquiry on Wednesday

The inquiry has heard repeatedly that ADF personnel would be available to guard Victorian quarantine hotels if required. 

On Monday, the inquiry heard that Mr Eccles was directly offered ADF support, but he cannot recall whether he acted upon the offer or forwarded it up the chain of command. 

Instead, the Victorian Government appeared more interested in obtaining cash from the Commonwealth to support it’s army of bungling rent-a-cops. 

‘In about early April 2020, I contacted (Secretary of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet Phil Gaetjens) and asked him whether the Commonwealth could provide any financial assistance to Victoria for security in the Hotel Quarantine Program,’ Mr Eccles told the inquiry.

‘Mr Gaetjens responded by email on 8 April 2020 saying, in effect, that the Commonwealth would only provide in-kind assistance of ADF personnel.’

Last week, Mr Andrews continued to stand by his earlier claims that Victoria was not offered ADF assistance with hotel quarantine. 

He is set to be grilled at the inquiry on Wednesday.  

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Council candidate’s racist Facebook posts against Indigenous revealed ahead of election

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council candidates racist facebook posts against indigenous revealed ahead of election

An aspiring councillor has been forced to issue a grovelling apology after for sharing racist memes mocking Indigenous Australians.  

Jane Agirtan, who is a candidate for Kingson Council in Melbourne‘s south-east, said she made the Facebook posts when she was going through a ‘deeply personal time’. 

The old Facebook posts resurfaced after she launched her campaign for the local council election in October. 

Aspiring councillor for Kingston in Melbourne's south-east, Jane Agirtan, was forced to issue an apology after the offensive Facebook posts were made public

Aspiring councillor for Kingston in Melbourne's south-east, Jane Agirtan, was forced to issue an apology after the offensive Facebook posts were made public

Aspiring councillor for Kingston in Melbourne’s south-east, Jane Agirtan, was forced to issue an apology after the offensive Facebook posts were made public

Ms Agirtan shared memes targeting Indigenous Australians, same-sex parents and international students on her personal page between 2014 and 2018

Ms Agirtan shared memes targeting Indigenous Australians, same-sex parents and international students on her personal page between 2014 and 2018

Ms Agirtan shared memes targeting Indigenous Australians, same-sex parents and international students on her personal page between 2014 and 2018

Ms Agirtan shared memes targeting Indigenous Australians, same-sex parents and international students on her personal page between 2014 and 2018. 

In one meme there was a picture of an Indigenous elder with the caption: ‘Spends all his money on petrol, doesn’t own a car’.

Ms Agirtan posted another comment in Russian saying in her ‘ideal world, Aborigines would live the same way minus housing, gasoline, VB and benefits and doctors flying in helicopter reservation’.

She also said same-sex parents were depriving children of their right to know their biological parents.

The would-be councillor issued a desperate apology to the Herald Sun and confirmed that the content had been taken down.

‘I apologise unreservedly for the Facebook posts and memes in question, which I believe have been removed,’ she said. 

Ms Agirtan said the posts are not consistent with her current views and says she was going through a ‘difficult personal situation’ at the time.

The would-be councillor issued a desperate apology and confirmed that the content had been taken down

The would-be councillor issued a desperate apology and confirmed that the content had been taken down

The would-be councillor issued a desperate apology and confirmed that the content had been taken down

The posts resurfaced after she launched her campaign for the local council election in October

The posts resurfaced after she launched her campaign for the local council election in October

The posts resurfaced after she launched her campaign for the local council election in October

‘I deeply apologise to anyone who may have been offended,’ she said.

Kingston Mayor Georgina Oxley said members of the local community had been ‘deeply hurt’ after seeing the posts.

Ms Oxley said the remarks were ‘divisive and upsetting’ and ‘insight hate towards the groups’, with behaviour like that having ‘no place in the Kingston community’.

‘I want to assure those members in our community who may be deeply hurt by these remarks that these are not the views of our community,’ she said.

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McDonald’s worker turned property mogul, 28, reveals he has bought one house a month during COVID-19

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mcdonalds worker turned property mogul 28 reveals he has bought one house a month during covid 19

A property mogul who came from humble beginnings has snapped up a home almost every month since COVID-19 hit – boosting his portfolio to $8million. 

Eddie Dilleen, 28, from western Sydney, was working at McDonalds and living in a ‘rough’ neighbourhood when he bought his first property aged 18. 

With property prices plunging amid the pandemic, the real estate guru seized the opportunity to expand his collection – which now stands at 25 investments. 

‘I’ve bought seven properties in total since COVID started. Six properties in Brisbane and one in Sydney,’ he told realestate.com.au.  

Eddie Dilleen, 28, from western Sydney, has bought a home almost every month since COVID-19 hit- bringing his 25-strong investment portfolio to a whooping $8million

Eddie Dilleen, 28, from western Sydney, has bought a home almost every month since COVID-19 hit- bringing his 25-strong investment portfolio to a whooping $8million

Eddie Dilleen, 28, from western Sydney, has bought a home almost every month since COVID-19 hit- bringing his 25-strong investment portfolio to a whooping $8million

Mr Dilleen said his six new properties in Queensland were a mix of houses, duplexes and townhouses as well as one commercial listing.  

‘So, since COVID-19 started I’ve added almost $2.5m to my property portfolio bringing the total value close to $8m in property I own,’ he added.

His latest buys include a $135,000 Logan townhouse bought in March and two Ipswich duplexes for $410,000 in April. 

In May, he paid $133,000 for a two bedroom Ipswich villa, before splashing out $200,000 for a commercial property in Logan in August.  

This month he added a two bedroom unit in Surfers Paradise to his portfolio, on an unconditional contract of $210,000. 

While COVID-19 wrecks havoc on the property market, Mr Dilleen said he was not concerned it would impact his portfolio as he invests using a strategic formula, which ensures his income is always higher than expenses. 

Around $300,000 of his almost $500,000 a year rental earnings are always kept aside for emergencies, while $200,000 are spent on mortgage expenses. 

The real estate guru paid $410,000 for Ipswich duplexes in April (pictured)

The real estate guru paid $410,000 for Ipswich duplexes in April (pictured)

The real estate guru paid $410,000 for Ipswich duplexes in April (pictured)

Mr Dilleen bought an Ipswich two-bedroom villa (pictured)  for $133,000 in May

Mr Dilleen bought an Ipswich two-bedroom villa (pictured)  for $133,000 in May

Mr Dilleen bought an Ipswich two-bedroom villa (pictured)  for $133,000 in May

Mr Dilleen said the three features he looks for in an investment are  ‘good cashflow or high yields, capital growth and buying at a discount price below market value’.

The self-made millionaire became ‘passionate’ about buying property during his teens, to ensure he had a secure future. 

‘I grew up in western Sydney and came from a family where no one actually owned property at all,’ he previously told Daily Mail Australia.

‘From very humble beginnings, a pretty rough neighbourhood, that was my driving factor. I didn’t want to have to struggle and grow up how I did.’ 

Living at home in Mt Druitt, he bought a two-bedroom apartment over an hour away in the Central Coast, north of Sydney. 

He rented out the $130,000 apartment for about $220 a week and made roughly a seven per cent rental return.  

Mr Dilleen’s next investment property was in Adelaide, followed by Brisbane and then the Gold Coast. 

Pictured is the Logan townhouse  (pictured) Mr Dilleen purchased in March for $135,000

Pictured is the Logan townhouse  (pictured) Mr Dilleen purchased in March for $135,000

Pictured is the Logan townhouse  (pictured) Mr Dilleen purchased in March for $135,000

Mr Dilleen added a commercial space (pictured) in Logan to his portfolio in August for $200,000

Mr Dilleen added a commercial space (pictured) in Logan to his portfolio in August for $200,000

Mr Dilleen added a commercial space (pictured) in Logan to his portfolio in August for $200,000

The investor recommends purchasing within metro areas as properties are cheaper.  

His tips for building a portfolio are to start off small, by purchasing something to get a foot in the market and to try not to be emotional about where you buy.

He said to focus on rental return of properties and buy property below market value by looking for those who want to sell fast. 

His fifth tip is to read property investment books and do research to create a strategic buying plan. 

‘I worked out a formula and strategy, it came down to a lot of research and I read a lot of different property investment books even though I hated reading it at the time, I forced myself to learn a lot,’ he said.

‘I built up to it, I started off small, with the small properties and gradually the equity increased. 

‘It’s better to be in the market than on the sidelines waiting or to say it’s too hard and not try at all, that’s not the best attitude to have in life.’ 

MR DILLEEN’S FIVE TIPS

1. Start off small

2. Try not to get emotional about where you buy 

3. Focus on rental return 

4. Buy property below market value

5. Read property investment books  

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