TAFE Directors Australia

Supporting our member institutes since 1998

Newsletter 6 April 2010


Victorian report urges greater university-TAFE collaboration

Victorian TAFE Institutes will be the key to supporting greater demand for higher education according to a new report on the state’s tertiary education system.

The report headed by former University of Melbourne Vice-Chancellor, Professor Kwong Lee Dow, says that Victoria should rely on existing TAFE infrastructure rather than building or expanding universities. It says that regional TAFE Institutes should follow their city counterparts and develop their capacity to engage in higher education.

To view the report click here.

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TAFE to teach degree courses for Sydney-based university

Sydney’s Macquarie University is negotiating for a number of its degree courses to be taught at TAFE in an effort to increase access for poor and disadvantaged students.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Macquarie’s Vice-Chancellor, Steven Schwartz, said the plan would include courses in accounting, IT software engineering and commerce. The courses would be franchised to TAFE Institutes that would teach them on behalf of universities.

The move follows the government’s aim to increase the number of low socio-economic status enrolments by financially rewarding universities for each enrolment.

In the report, Deputy Director-General of the NSW Department of Education and Training, Pam Christie, said the Department was looking at TAFE Institutes delivering part or whole of a bachelor degree on behalf of the university and that the move would improve the ‘poor cousin’ reputation of TAFE. She said the Department is also exploring how a Higher Education Contribution scheme place could be shared across the two sectors.

Click here to read the full report.

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Report says confusion continues for skilled migration

The government’s changes to the skilled migration list continue to cause confusion in the vocational education industry according to the VET industry.

A report in The Australian says the changes are particularly disruptive for business studies where more than half of all overseas student enrolments are in the field of management, but key business occupations had been excluded from the list.

In the report, Chair of TDA, Bruce Mackenzie said the level of confusion is damaging Australia’s reputation. To view the full article click here.

The impacts of failing private colleges and changes to immigration seem to have hit the Victorian international education sector most dramatically, with new figures showing that there has been a strong fall in student numbers across universities and VET providers.

The figures from the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, show a national fall of 3% year-to-date for commencements, and a fall of 12% in Victoria.

The decline in the number of Indian students has fallen 40% across all sectors in Victoria and 33% for VET in Victoria. To view the Monthly International Student Data click here. View an article from The Age here.

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DPM announces extension to business training program

The Deputy Prime Minister has announced an extension of the Enterprise Based Productivity Places Program, committing an extra $40 million in partnership with industry to co-fund approximately 11,000 extra training places.

A second round of funding consisting of $10 million will be available before July.

Under the new funding, the Government will provide up to 90% of the cost of training from Certificate III to Advanced Diploma level in accordance with the size of the business.

For more information click here.

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Update on the Job Ready Program

Skills assessment authority, Trades Recognition Australia, has released new information on its website to clarify the requirements for the Provisional Skills Assessment component of the Job Ready Program.

The Job Ready Program began this year and provides the skills assessment service for recently trade qualified graduates applying from within Australia for permanent residency.

View the new information about the service here

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TAFE students should get HECS says expert

Education expert, Dr Bruce Chapman, has spoken out on the inequities associated with a subsidised fees loan scheme for universities, but not for TAFE.

In an article about emerging skills shortages in The Australian, Dr Chapman said that Australia needed to increase the overall level of training, and central to this was allowing TAFE students to access the Higher Education Contribution Scheme (HECS).

He said the current FEE-HELP scheme was inadequate and that a better fee system was critical to the future resources of TAFE.

The article also included comment from CEO of Polytechnic West, and Deputy Chair of TDA, Wayne Collyer, who said that skills needs will be better met by offering more relevant and flexible training. He said that enrolments at Polytechnic West have flourished after the introduction of flexible, on-the-job training packages.

Read the full article here.

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New guides navigate university and TAFE options for students

The Australian Scholarships Group (ASG) has released updated guides for parents and students about their study options within university and TAFE.

The guides outline the costs of study, how to access student support and entitlements, scholarship opportunities and information relating to new government regulations and criteria.

For more information click here

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TDA represented on Community Services and Health Committee

TAFE NSW - Western Sydney Institute’s Foonghar Chong will represent TDA on the Health Services Training Package Committee being run by the Community Services and Health Industry Skills Council.

Ms Chong is currently R/Director Education, Employment Preparation, Pathways and Equity at TAFE NSW- Western Sydney Institute and has extensive industry experience and knowledge of the Training Package under review.

TDA thanks Foonghar for representing members on this Committee.

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TAFE Institutes awarded E-learning funds

TAFE Institutes are among the recipients of a shared $5.3 million awarded to Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) for the development of e-learning training solutions in 2010.

The funding is being delivered by the Australian Flexible Learning Framework and a list of the recipients in each state can be found here.

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Tourism, hospitality and events most popular for school VET programs

Tourism, hospitality and events is the most popular course chosen by teenagers who are undertaking a VET in Schools program while in secondary school according to a new report from the National Centre of Vocational Education Research (NCVER).

According to the report, in 2008 there were 220,000 VET in Schools students representing 41% of school students undertaking a senior secondary certificate.

Click here to review the report.

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Education for sustainability – Victorian professional development program

The TAFE Development Centre in Melbourne has been funded by Skills Victoria to provide an ‘Introduction to Sustainability’ professional development program.

The program will be offered to TAFE Institutes in Victoria with a target to reach a minimum of 450 teaching staff by June.

The program will be conducted by the National Centre for Sustainability (Swinburne University) and is designed to develop knowledge and skills to successfully implement sustainability principles in Training Package qualifications and to meet requirements for a fully integrated model of delivery, assessment and reporting.

The program will meet the policy initiatives contained in theNational VET Sector Sustainability Policy and Action Plan (2009 -2012). Contact the TAFE Development Centre on (03) 9250 6000 to register for the program.

The Centre also runs a suite of professional development programs for TAFE and the wider VET sector, for details click here.

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Diary Dates

2010 Conference
DATE: 8-9 April 2010
LOCATION: Holiday Inn, Surfers Paradise
DETAILS: Click here for more information

2010 'Skills2Work' Conference
DATE: 15-16 April 2010
LOCATION: Hilton, Adelaide
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Victorian TAFE in the Tertiary Landscape
DATE: 6-7 May 2010
LOCATION: Novotel Forest Resort, Creswick
DETAILS: Click here for more information

2010 National Conference
DATE: 13-14 September 2010
DETAILS: Details will be available soon

Work Integrated Learning (WIL): Responding to Challenges
DATE: 30 September - 1 October 2010
LOCATION: Curtin University of Technology, Perth
DETAILS: Click here for more information


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