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Information for School Students and their Parents

The Victorian Student Number (VSN) is a student identification number that is assigned by the Department of Education and Training to all students in government and non-government schools, and students in Vocational Education and Training Institutions. The number, which is unique to each student, will be used as a key identifier on a student’s school records, and will remain with the student throughout his or her education, until reaching the age of 25. The VSN is nine digits long, randomly assigned, and tied to identifying information about the student (name, gender, date of birth).

The introduction of the VSN provides the capability to accurately detect patterns of student movement through, and departure from, the Victorian education and training system. It will greatly improve the collection and analysis of timely and accurate data about education in Victoria.

 

Why do students need to have a VSN?

In a large and diverse education system such as Victoria's, a standard, centrally assigned student number is the best way to identify individual students. Using a reference number to collect and store data helps avoid the errors and confusion when names are misspelled, changed, or mistaken for other similar names.

Most Australian states either have, or are intending to introduce a student number, and the practice is common in many other countries, including New Zealand and Canada.

 

Where will the VSN appear?

The VSN will appear:

  • on common student communications, such as enrolment confirmations and report cards, and
  • on applications made for enrolment in new schools or institutions.

 

When will students need their VSN?

Students will need their VSN to enrol at a Victorian School or if they enrol in any government funded or fee-for service accredited course at a VET Provider.  VET Provider is a collective term that refers to TAFEs, government and non-government Registered Training Organisation (RTOs), and Adult and Community Education (ACE) providers.  A question to supply the VSN is part of the standard enrolment forms at schools and VET Providers.

 

Why does the government need information on students?

The Department collects information to track improvements made to the education system, to identify areas that require further improvement, and to analyse trends and identify future needs. The VSN will simply improve the accuracy, reliability and completeness of this information, providing a better basis for assessing needs and developing policies to meet them. The improved quality of information will also result in more accurate reporting to the community on the state’s education system.

 

Will the privacy of personal information be protected?

The Department collects information to track improvements made to the education system, to identify areas that require further improvement, and to analyse trends and identify future needs. The VSN will simply improve the accuracy, reliability and completeness of this information, providing a better basis for assessing needs and developing policies to meet them. The improved quality of information will also result in more accurate reporting to the community on the state’s education system.

 

Are parents and students entitled to see the information stored on the VSN system about the student?

Yes. The system will not change the rules governing access to and disclosure of personal information and protection of privacy.

 

What do schools think of the new system?

Schools, other education organisations and education experts have been regularly consulted during the development and design of the VSN. Care has been taken to minimise the administrative demands that the VSN places on schools. There has been broad support from the education sector in general, for the use of the VSN.

 

What information is available for parents?

A summary description of the VSN is available to parents. This brochure is in English and 10 different languages other than English.

The Information for Parents brochure provides more detailed information on VSN. This is also available in 10 different languages other than English

 

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