TAFE Directors Australia

Supporting our member institutes since 1998

Newsletter 10 January 2011


Welcome to 2011 – Year of the Rabbit

TDA would like to wish members and stakeholders all the best for 2011.

It is the Year of the Rabbit, and with the Chinese Spring Festival kicking-off in early February, a hectic year ahead awaits.

The VET policy horizon looks busy: new policy ideas from the Federal Government; the new National VET Regulator and the establishment of the Standards Council; TEQSA legislation and role of TAFE accessing Commonwealth Supported Places; the response to the Hon. Bruce Baird review of international student regulation; the advent of wider international engagement; and a new TDA Strategic Plan. We look forward to a productive and exciting year ahead for the vocational education and training sector. 

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TAFE institutes impacted by devastating floods

TDA would like to send its support to all member institutes, their staff, students and communities affected by the devastating floods in Queensland.

Hardest hit was the Emerald Campus of Central Queensland Institute of TAFE (see picture of Emerald below). Deb Daly, Chief Operating Officer of the Department of Education and Training Queensland, and former Chair of TDA, reports that assessments are currently being made to TAFE campuses, with a taskforce established to assist.

Information from the Department of Education and Training is available here.


Devastating Floods


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Government measures strike down international student numbers for 2011  

International student numbers are forecast to continue to fall in 2011, and more than halve by 2014, according to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) ‘Red Book’ briefing.

The Immigration Department forecasts a pool of only 64,500 international students in 2013-2014, down from almost 135,000 in 2010.

The briefing attributes the decline to a new points test, tougher immigration checks, assaults on students, a stronger dollar, quality audits of education providers, and a fresh US campaign for Indian students.

To view an article from The Australian click here

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Update from National VET Regulator

Interim Chair of the National VET Regulator (NVR), Kaye Schofield, has issued an update on the progress of the new regulation agency.

The NVR update says a dedicated Industry Engagement Unit will be established to maintain relationships with industry bodies. It will also work with Industry Skills Councils to identify risks to the quality of VET, and implement measures to increase the confidence of industry in the quality of training and assessment within Registered Training Organisations (RTOs).

It is expected that the National Regulatory Model will be finalised by early March, and pending the passing of the legislation in Federal Parliament, the NVR will begin regulating RTOs in New South Wales, the Northern Territory and the ACT in April. It is expected that Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania will follow in late 2011.

To read the full update click here

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VET research grants announced

The National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) has announced the successful education institutes that will receive three-year grants for research into tertiary education.

The five institutes and their research projects include: 

  • LH Martin Institute – ‘Vocations: the link between post-compulsory education and the labour market’
  • Centre for the Economics of Education and Training – ‘Geographical aspects of the role of training in improving social inclusion’
  • Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research – ‘Promoting social inclusion for disadvantaged groups through education and training’
  • Curtin Health Innovation Research Institute – ‘Social and economic outcomes for apprentices and trainees with a disability’
  • Griffith University – ‘Meeting Australian workers’ needs for continuing education and training’

For more information click here

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New DVD series on indigenous workers in community services and health

The Community Services and Health Industry Skills Council (CS&HISC) has release a ‘Healthy Stories' DVD series which profiles the lives and jobs of five Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people  who have chosen to work in either community services or health in regional or remote communities in Australia. 

Each story explores the day-to-day tasks, the reasons for wanting to work in the role, and the challenges faced by the storyteller on their journey to gain a qualification.

The stories are useful learning resources for students, teachers and career counsellors.  The DVDs, produced by CS&HISC with funding received through the DEEWR Industry Training Strategies Program, are available here.

TDA thanks Di Paton, Director TAFE Services, North Coast TAFE, for representing TAFE on the Reference Group that helped to develop the ‘Healthy Stories’ resources. 

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Applications closing soon for NSW Training Awards

Applications for the 2011 NSW Training Awards will close on 25 March. The awards are conducted each year by the NSW Department of Education and Training and recognise outstanding achievement in VET.

This year there are two new categories; VET Trainer/Teacher of the Year Award, and an Industry Collaboration Award.

For a full list of award categories, as well as eligibility criteria and application details click here

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Industry views on entrepreneurship

The latest newsletter from the Business-Higher Education Round Table features some interesting articles on entrepreneurship from a variety of business and education leaders.  Click here to view the newsletter.

The newsletter also lists the winners of its 2010 awards, including the winner of the Best Vocational Education and Training Collaboration: TAFE NSW – Sydney Institute in partnership with Energy Australia. 

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Government consultations on research program

The Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research is holding information sessions beginning 31 January on the Cooperative Research Centres (CRC) Program.

There are currently 42 CRCs operating across Australia in industries including manufacturing, mining, services, and agriculture, forestry and fishing. CRCs are collaborations between publicly-funded researchers and end-users.

The 14thround of the CRC Program will focus on social innovation, sustainable regional communities, and clean manufacturing. 

For more information on the information sessions click here

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Diary Dates

Research in VET: Janus - Reflecting Back, Projecting Forward

DATE: 28-29 April 2011
LOCATION: Rendezvous Hotel, Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Gaining the Edge - Outcomes, Equity and Innovation

DATE: 3-4 May 2011
LOCATION: Hilton on the Park, Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information 

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