Having trouble viewing this email? Click here to view online.

Newsletter | 12 June 2012    

In this edition

  • SCOTESE to provide more transparency in to VET sector
  • A case for nationally consistent skills reform
  • Tasmania returns to single TAFE system
  • Federal Minister visits TAFE training facility in Queensland
  • Apprentice and trainee numbers on the rise
  • Green Gown Awards acknowledge sustainable campuses
  • Brad Howarth confirmed for TDA Conference
  • Funding opportunities for workforce planning and development
  • Latest student challenge – design a car
  • Canberra TAFE develops online training for firefighters
  • The office of the AQF Council is moving location

Feature story

TAFE spending cut in NSW Budget

Capital expenditure for NSW TAFE has been cut by 13% from $98.1 million to $85.5 million, in the NSW Budget handed down today.

Expenditure on vocational education and training is down 6% to $371 million.

See here for further information.


SCOTESE to provide more transparency in to VET sector

At its first meeting for 2012, the Standing Council on Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment (SCOTESE) promised to provide greater transparency and access to information in Vocational Education and Training.

SCOTESE ministers launched the National Skills Standards Council’s (NSSC) review of the standards for the regulation of VET.

The council pledged to uphold the commitments made by the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) earlier this year, and will oversee the implementation of COAG initiatives, including the National Partnership Agreement on Skills Reform and the My Skills website.

For more information, read the SCOTESE communiqué here.

A consultation paper and details regarding the review are now available on the NSSC website.

A case for nationally consistent skills reform

Executive Director of the Victorian TAFE Association, David Williams, delivered a speech to the TAFE NSW Managers conference, advocating solid and consistent national skills reform.

Mr Williams’ presentation covered the key features of skills reform in Queensland, South Australia and Victoria, and supported the new National Charter for TAFE.

Mr Williams argued that it makes sense to have a nationally consistent approach to:

  • Eligibility criteria for access to government supported places
  • Quality standards for entry into the government supported training market
  • Minimum support requirements for TAFEs operating in a more contestable market
  • Clear recognition and support for TAFEs as public providers delivering  a broad range of training and support services to a wide range of students including those in regional and remote locations
  • Support services for employers and students to allow them to make informed choices.

To view Mr Williams’ presentation, click here.

To view the National Charter for TAFE 2012, click here.

Tasmania returns to single TAFE system

The Tasmanian government has announced it will merge the Skills Institute and Polytechnic into a new single public Vocational Education and Training provider called TasTAFE.

The return to a single VET entity is the result of a review into the sector last year, amid pressure from unions and the State Opposition to restore TAFE, which was split in 2009.

The Minister for Education & Skills, the Hon. Nick McKim, said the use of the brand TAFE was important in creating a clearly recognised organisation.

If the legislation is passed, the TasTAFE will take effect from 1 July 2013.

For more information, click here.

To read an article from the ABC, click here.

Federal Minister visits TAFE training facility in Queensland

SkillsTech Australia welcomed Federal Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Science and Research, Senator the Hon. Chris Evans, to tour the almost complete $25 million Engineering Training Facility at the Acacia Ridge Training Centre in Brisbane last Wednesday.

The 8000-square metre facility is being built by local construction company, Northbuild.

SkillsTech Australia Institute Director, Mary Campbell, says the company has been up-skilling existing workers with funding from the $700 million National Workforce Development Fund.

For more information, click here, or visit the SkillsTech website.

Minister Evans and Mary Campbell with Northbuild staff Graham Perrett, Member for Moreton, Mary Campbell and Minister Evans

Apprentice and trainee numbers on the rise

The number of people undertaking apprenticeships and traineeships increased during 2011, according to the latest figures released by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER).

There were 449,000 apprentices and trainees in-training at the end of December 2011, an increase of 2.5% from the previous year.

The number of people completing apprenticeships and traineeships increased 6.9% from the previous year. People commencing non-trades occupations increased by 4.5%, but people starting trades decreased by 5.9%

To view the NCVER media release, click here.

To read the full report, click here.

Green Gown Awards acknowledging sustainable campuses

Australasian Campuses Towards Sustainability (ACTS) has launched the 2012 Green Gown Awards.

Continuing from the success of the Awards in 2011, this year sees the addition of three new categories, bringing the total to eight categories available for awards.

Also new in 2012 is the introduction of the International Green Gown Awards.

To find out more about the Awards, including sponsorship opportunities, click here.

To view the Green Gown Awards flyer, including entry details, click here.

Brad Howarth confirmed for TDA Conference

TDA is delighted that Brad Howarth, journalist and author of A Faster Future, will be giving a keynote address on Thursday 6 September as part of this year’s conference.

Brad believes we are at the beginning of a revolutionary wave of technological change. His presentation serves to highlight the changes that are possible while providing practical advice on how to negotiate future challenges, while profiting from new opportunities.

As a working journalist, Brad interviewed many of the world's leading thinkers on technology, digital media, innovation and entrepreneurship, including Seth Godin, Vint Cerf and Michael Dell.

Brad’s career began in the mid to late 1990s, reporting on the rapid growth of Australia’s IT industry as it rode the dot com wave. Later, while Information and Technology Editor at BRW magazine, Brad authored his first book, Innovation and Emerging Markets (2004), a study of the process of commercialisation for innovative Australian high-tech companies.

Brad’s keynote address is sponsored by the LH Martin Institute.

To register now or for more information visit the TDA conference website.

For a full list of confirmed speakers, click here.

For information regarding sponsorship and exhibition opportunities for the 2012 National conference, we encourage you to read our Sponsor Invitation.

Confirmed 2012 Sponsors include: Technology One Group, Fuji Xerox, West Coast Institute of Training, Group Training Australia, TDC, UniSuper, Echo360, Ellucian, LH Martin, ETS, MEGT and Victorian TAFE Association.

Funding opportunities for workforce planning and development

A new funding opportunity has been announced to enable workforce development to be strengthened at industry, regional, and business levels in Australia.

If you meet ANY of the following criteria, you should look very carefully at the funding opportunities:

  • Part of the NBN (completed or about to commence)
  • A national industry association
  • An employer representative group
  • A regional cluster which includes:
    • Regional business
    • RTO’s
    • Industry bodies and associations
    • Local chamber of commerce
    • Industry skills councils
    • Industry training advisory boards
    • Regional development Australia committees
    • Local government and associated agencies

The copy of the guidelines can be found here.

Latest student challenge – design a car

Victorian Minister for Higher Education and Skills, the Hon. Peter Hall, is encouraging tertiary students to design a car for the future, as part of the Target 2030 program.

The program is an initiative of the Victorian Automotive Chamber of Commerce designed to promote skills, training and careers in the automotive design industry.

Shortlisted entries will be exhibited to the public at Federation Square in Melbourne from July 9-12.

Entries must be submitted by 22 June.

For more information, click here or visit the Target 2030 website

Canberra TAFE develops online training for firefighters

Firefighters from regional Australia are now able to complete their fire investigation training via online video streaming.

New web capabilities, made possible by the National Broadband Network, enable firefighters to access their training without having to leave their home stations.

The innovative program was developed by the Canberra Institute of Technology, in partnership with Fire and Rescue NSW and with support from the National Vocational Education and Training E-learning Strategy.

For more information, click here.

The Office of the AQF Council is moving location

Due to the Commonwealth Government Ministry changes in late 2011, the hosting arrangements of the Office of the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) Council has changed from the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) to the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education (DIISRTE).

A change of location and new telephone numbers will take effect from Tuesday 12 June.

New telephone numbers:
Office of the AQF Council: 08 8406 4735

Ann Doolette, Executive Director: 08 8406 4736
Sharon Grandison, Executive Officer: 08 8406 4735
Di Booker, Director (Policy): 08 8406 4735
Vic Korobacz, Acting Director (Projects): 08 8406 4738

New postal address:
GPO Box 9839, Adelaide, South Australia 5001

New AQF Council email address:

Diary Dates

CISA – Council of International Students Australia
International Student Conference
DATE: 9-11 July, 2012
LOCATION: Queensland University of Technology, Gardens Point Campus, Brisbane
DETAILS: For more information see the draft program.

DATE: 10-11 July,2012
LOCATION: The Central Institute, Perth
DETAILS: For more information, visit the conference website

21st National Vocational Education and Training Research Conference ‘No Frills’
DATE: 11-13 July 2012
LOCATION: Adelaide
DETAILS: Come celebrate, collaborate and connect at ‘No Frills’

Intelligence Squared Australia (IQ2) – Live Debate
DATE: 11 July 2012
LOCATION: Adelaide Town Hall
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Leadership Development Program for Facilities Management
DATE: 15 - 18 July, 2012
LOCATION: HC Coombs Centre, Kirribilli, Sydney
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Cross Sectoral Partnerships Symposium
DATE: 9 August 2012
LOCATION: Sydney – venue TBA
DETAILS: Click here for more information

DATE: 27 August – 2 September
DETAILS: Click here for more information

DATE: 6 - 7 September 2012
LOCATION: Perth, Western Australia
DETAILS: Click here for more information

AUSTAFE 2012 NATIONAL Conference
DATE: 3-5 October 2012
LOCATION: Alice Springs NT, Kirribilli, Sydney
DETAILS: More information contact Lyle Mellors at lyle.mellors@cdu.edu.au

DATE: 17-19 October 2012
LOCATION: National Convention Centre, Canberra
DETAILS: Click here for more information

DATE: 12 – 14 November 2012
LOCATION: Crowne Plaza Terrigal, NSW
DETAILS:  Click here for more information

DATE: 16 November 2012
LOCATION: Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information.