TAFE Directors Australia

Supporting our member institutes since 1998

Newsletter 12 September 2011

Minister Evans affirms TAFE as central to Australian education, but pushes for reform

The Federal Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Jobs and Workplace Relations, Senator the Hon Chris Evans has indicated that TAFE would remain central to Australia’s VET system, but flagged that reform was required, when speaking at the 2011 TDA National Conference in Sydney.

Both Federal and State Parliaments were represented at the conference with keynote addresses from:

  • the Federal Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Jobs and Workplace Relations, Senator the Hon Chris Evans – click here to view the address
  • Federal Shadow Minister for Employment Participation, the Hon Sussan Ley MP – click here to view the address
  • NSW Minister for Education, the Hon Adrian Piccoli MP

Speaker presentations and papers, as well as photos from the Conference will be available here soon. An occasional paper, bringing together contributions from speakers, will be distributed in October.

Early delegate responses were extremely positive, with high satisfaction levels for content across the plenary and workshop sessions. Some of the initial comments include:

“The best conference ever.”
“The conference was stimulating with great networking opportunities and connections made.”
“Superbly organised and very interesting, engaging discussion.”

The Conference was hosted by TAFE NSW, in Sydney.

The conference stimulated interest from the media including the following articles:

  • Tertiary Education Minister Chris Evans walks away from ‘education revolution’ for VET, AFR – click here
  • Downturn in overseas students to cost sector, Sydney Morning Heraldclick here
  • Impact of Victorian funding model on TAFE, The Australianclick here


TDA Chair, Stephen Conway

Minister for Tertiary Education, Jobs, Skills, and Workplace Relations, Senator the Hon Chris Evans

TDA CEO, Martin Riordan, Shadow Minister for Employment Participation, the Hon Sussan Ley MP, and TDA Chair, Stephen Conway

NSW Minister for Education, the Hon Adrian Piccoli MP

Campus President, Broward College, Florida, Dr Barbara Bryan

Managing Director, Ingeus, Ms Therese Rein

Chilean Ambassador, HE Pedro Pablo Diaz

Chair of the National Skills Standards Council, and Chair of the Australian Qualifications Framework Council, the Hon John Dawkins AO

Chair Mongolian TVET Agency, Mr Byambasuren, Minister Evans, and Chief Executive of Holmesglen Institute, Bruce Mackenzie.

United States guests speaking on a green skills panel


Gala Dinner at the Opera House



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Box Hill Institute joins with Centre for Adult Education 

Victoria’s Box Hill Institute has announced Ministerial approval for a new partnership with the Centre for Adult Education (CAE), which will cover senior secondary certificates, short courses, pre-accredited training, vocational education and training (VET), and higher education. 

The two organisations will become one entity in an unprecedented partnership which will begin in January 2012. The Victorian Government has endorsed the partnership, which was announced by the Minister for Higher Education and Skills and the Minister Responsible for the Teaching Profession, the Hon. Peter Hall MLC.

Box Hill Institute’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr John Maddock, said:

“This exciting new model sets the standard for the future of vocational and higher education both in Victoria and nationally. Our resulting partnership confirms and complements our common goals to provide quality vocational education and provide an enhanced learning experience.”

Click here for a media release from Box Hill Institute and the CAE.

Click here for a media release from the Hon Peter Hall MLC.  

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Australian education assistance for Japan

The Minister for Tertiary Education, Senator the Hon Chris Evans, has officially opened applications for the Prime Minister’s Education Assistance Program for Japan, encouraging tertiary students, academics and professionals from both countries to apply.

The education package includes a new, ongoing program of 10 Endeavour Award scholarships each year for Japan, with a focus in 2012 on assisting the disaster-affected areas of eastern Japan.

It also includes a one-off assistance program, the Prime Minister’s Education Assistance Program for Japan, aimed at assisting the recovery of Japan’s education system through short-term, two-way education exchange between Australia and affected areas of Japan (including Tokyo).

The Program is designed to provide opportunities for students, academics, researchers and professionals in Australia to travel to the affected areas to study or to continue or enhance their collaboration in education with their partner institutions and vice versa.

This information is also available here.

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NSW Budget - $2.2 billion for vocational education and training

A total of $2.2 billion of the NSW Budget has been directed to vocational education, largely through TAFE NSW, to improve skills and qualification levels across the state.

The Budget will see a $718 million deficit for 2011-12, and is forecast to return to the black in 2012-13, with a forecast surplus of $200 million.

A total of $98 million is dedicated to capital works funding for TAFE NSW, which will go towards nine major new building developments at Albury, Enmore, Kingscliff, Lidcombe, Maitland, Nirimba, North Sydney, Orange and Tamworth, and the continuation of 21 major projects.

Click here for more information.

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TAFE Institute leader representing Australia at APEC

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (TAFE) of Swinburne University, Linda Brown has been chosen to represent Australia at the APEC Women and the Economy Summit, to be held in San Francisco from 13-16 September.

The Summit has been convened by the United States Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton.

Ms Brown was chosen by the Department of Foreign Affair as one of five women to attend the Summit, and was chosen for her expertise in the fields of education, diversity and sustainability.

TDA congratulates Linda on this achievement.

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Australian Pacific Technical College – Prime Minister’s announcement

The Prime Minister, Hon Julia Gillard, has announced the extension of funding for the Australian Pacific Technical College.

Speaking at the 42nd Pacific Islands Forum in Auckland, New Zealand, on 8 September, Prime Minister Gillard announced that Australia will provide $152 million over four years to continue to support the college.  

This builds on the $149.5 million Australia has already provided over four years for the operation of the college to 30 June 2011. This assistance has helped 3,172 students graduate.

Campuses in Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Samoa and Vanuatu offer courses in eight industry sectors including the health, automotive, manufacturing, construction, engineering, tourism, hospitality and community services sectors. The college also encourages women into non-traditional roles, giving them an opportunity to pursue careers in the Pacific.

TDA congratulates Barry Peddle PSM, appointed Chief Executive Officer of the phase II project (www.aptc.edu.au ), which follows a successful career heading TAFE NSW Institutes, and as a past Chair of TDA.

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Draft Qualification Standards

The Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) has released the draft Qualification Standards for public consultation.

The Qualification Standards will be applied by TEQSA under the new quality assurance and regulatory arrangements for the higher education sector.

A public consultation draft of the Standards and feedback form are now available here.

Stakeholders are invited to submit comments on the draft Qualification Standards by 5pm, 15 September 2011. The feedback received will be considered by the Minister for Tertiary Education in developing the first set of Threshold Standards.

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PPP still in the spotlight

The Minister for Tertiary Education, Jobs, Skills and Workplace Relations, Senator the Hon Chris Evans, says the government has learned from the mistakes made through the Productivity Places Program, and is trying to improve funding transparency and focus on higher education qualifications for future policy initiatives.

The Australian says although the program has been effectively wiped out in recent Budgets, industry says the PPP still matters because it helped to drive the change to competitive funding.

Click here to view the article.

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State Training Awards winners

States and Territories across Australia have recognised their top apprentices, trainees, training institutions and employers, in the various training awards that have been held over the past month, and continue around the country.

To see the winners and nominees from the awards, click on the relevant states and territories below:

New South Wales and South Australia will hold their awards ceremonies in the coming week.

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Scholarship participants share their education journeys with MPs

The Mick Young Scholarship Trust recently took 26 scholarship recipients and TAFE support staff to Parliament House in Canberra to share with MP’s and Ministers how the scholarships have changed their lives.

The group was flown to Canberra from across Australia by Virgin Australia to attend the inaugural ‘Mick Young’s Legacy Comes to Canberra’ event. 

Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer, Wayne Swan, spoke to the group of his time working for Mick Young during the 1980s, while Virgin Australia CEO John Borghetti welcomed guests and celebrated the impressive achievements of each MYST scholarship recipient.

Click here to view an article from the in-flight Virgin magazine.

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TAFE Queensland’s new workplace health and safety resources

New resources have been produced by TAFE Queensland to enhance good workplace health and safety practice amongst apprentices.

The resources comprise an Australian-first teachers’ guide and a pocket-sized ‘TAFE Take 5’ booklet for apprentices to identify and rectify workplace safety issues.

The teachers' guide will assist TAFE Queensland teachers in implementing and maintaining a systematic approach to workplace health and safety in a teaching, learning and assessment environment.

To complement the teachers’ guide, every TAFE Queensland apprentice will receive the ‘TAFE Take 5’ booklet, to assist them in assessing potential hazards on the job. 

The resources will be dispatched to all TAFE Queensland institutes in the coming weeks. For more information, contact SkillsTech Australia on telephone (07) 3244 0778.

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Diary Dates

Annual Industry Development Conference - Productivity & Competitiveness
DATE: 13-15 September, 2011
LOCATION: Hyatt Hotel and Parliament House, Canberra
DETAILS: More information here

Presentation Event
DATE: 15 September, 2011 – 6pm
LOCATION: The Ballroom, Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre, Darling Harbour
DETAILS: Tickets available here

EyeQ 2011
‘eyecons of e-learning’ conference
DATE: 16 September, 2011
LOCATION: Brisbane
DETAILS: Click here for more information

2011 National Conference
DATE: 22 September, 2011
LOCATION: Brisbane
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

2011 Conference
DATE: 3 October, 2011
LOCATION: Royal Society of Arts, Covent Garden, London
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

2011 Conference
DATE: 11-14 October, 2011
LOCATION: Adelaide Convention Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information

AUSTAFE National Conference
2020 Vision
DATE: 12-14 October, 2011
LOCATION: Canberra
DETAILS: Click here for more information

ePortfolios Australia Conference 2011
DATE: 17-18 October, 2011
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Making a Difference... 2011: Breaking Through the Barriers
DATE: 19-20 October, 2011
LOCATION: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Looking ahead - Group Training National Conference
DATE: 19-21 October, 2011
LOCATION: Grand Hyatt, Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information

DATE: 9-10 November, 2011
LOCATION: William Angliss Conference Centre, Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Australasian Association for Institutional Research Forum “Let the sunshine in”
DATE: 9-11 November, 2011
LOCATION: Sea World Resort, Gold Coast
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Grounds for Learning Workshop
DATE: 14-16 November, 2011
LOCATION: Monash University, Clayton Campus, VICTORIA
DETAILS: Click here for more information

‘For innovation’
DATE: 18 November, 2011
LOCATION: The Glasshouse, Port Macquarie
DETAILS: Click here for more information

DATE: 25 November, 2011
LOCATION: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, South Bank
DETAILS: Click here for more information

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