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Newsletter | 13 February 2012    

In this edition

  • PM says Victorian eligibility issues won’t be repeated nationally
  • Saudi Arabia promotes public private partnerships in TVET
  • Former Labor Attorney General appointed to ASQA
  • Registrations for TDA delegation to World Congress for VET
  • National briefings on Commonwealth Research Centres
  • Workshops on assessing overseas qualifications
  • Feedback sought for Business Services training review
  • Tasmanian review underway
  • Auto skills qualifications reviewed
  • Diary Dates 

Feature story

TEQSA priorities 

A list of priorities and responsibilities for the newly functional Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency is now available here.


PM says Victorian eligibility issues won’t be repeated nationally

Victorian eligibility rules that discriminate against ‘second chance’ and mature-aged apprentices will not be replicated nationally according to the Federal Government.

Despite protests from TAFE Institutes in Victoria, the Victorian eligibility system deems students ineligible for a subsidised place if they study a course below, or at a similar level to, their existing qualifications.

A spokesperson for the Prime Minister told The Australian that the under Federal Government reforms, the entitlement would be available across Certificate I, II and III levels for training places with approved providers.

See the article here.

Saudi Arabia promotes public private partnerships in TVET

Three senior officials from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC) paid a short visit to Sydney last week to discuss a draft request for proposals (RFP) to establish public-private partnerships in the Kingdom.

Representatives from TDA, TAFE NSW and Queensland Education and Training International participated in a general discussion as well as individual briefings. TDA will advise all members when the final RFP is released. 

Former Labor Attorney General appointed to ASQA

The Australian Government has appointed Michael Lavarch as Commissioner – Risk Analysis and Investigation – of the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA).

Mr Lavarch will take up his post as a Commissioner on 16 April, joining Chief Commissioner, Chris Robinson, and Commissioner, Dianne Orr, at ASQA.

Mr Lavarch previously held the role of Attorney General in the Federal Parliament between 1993 and 1996. He has senior positions in the legal profession as an academic, in private practice, and as CEO of the Law Council of Australia.

TDA welcomes Mr Lavarch to the role and looks forward to working with him.

Registrations for TDA delegation to World Congress for VET

TDA invites members to join its delegation to the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics’ World Congress 2012, to be held in Halifax, Canada in May.

TDA is a Board member of the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics, and the TDA 2012 Mission will be led by Stephen Conway, Chair of TAFE Directors.

TDA invites representatives from each state and territory to take part in the event, which will focus on major developments in skills amid tightened funding for public vocational education and training. The

workshops and major sessions will also include business reviews on key issues including sustainability and green skills, and a Presidents’ Academy. 

The World Congress brings together VET leaders who will join the WFCP Board - China, India, and Brazil.

An official invitation and a registration form are available here.  Please register direct with TDA.

National briefings on Commonwealth Research Centres

Coordinators for the Commonwealth Research Centres (CRCs) program are holding nation-wide information sessions on the program’s 15th selection round.

The CRCs are collaborative partnerships between publicly funded researchers and end users. CRCs must comprise at least one Australian end-user (either from the private, public or community sector) and one Australian higher education institution (or research institute affiliated with a university).

The priorities for the 15th selection round are social innovation, sustainable regional communities and clean manufacturing, and applications addressing other national priorities are also welcome.

Briefings commence on 13 February in Melbourne and a full schedule can be found here, as well as detailed information on the application process.

Expand your international networks

TDA recommends the following online networks and blogs to assist members to keep up-to-date with issues and developments in vocational education and training:

  • Skills development in India – click here
  • International Labour Organisation for Asia and the Pacific – click here
  • UNESCO’s TVET network (and particularly its e-forum) – click here

Workshops on assessing overseas qualifications

Australian Education International’s National Office of Overseas Skills Recognition (AEI-NOOSR) is running beginner and advanced professional development workshops on how to use online tools to assess overseas qualifications.

The workshops will be held from March to May in Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney.

Feedback sought for Business Services training review

Business Skills Australia has commissioned a review of the Project Management stream of qualifications and competencies in the BSB07 Business Services Training Package.

A discussion paper is available to download from the IBSA website. Feedback is due 2 March.

If you would like further information on this project please visit the IBSA website.

Tasmanian review underway

A reference group comprising industry, unions, peak bodies and government representatives has been established to assist in the review of Tasmania’s public VET providers.

The reference group met for the first time last week, under the guidance of Virginia Simmons AO, who is commissioned to lead the review. Virginia Simmons is the former CEO of Chisholm Institute of TAFE, and a Board member of TDA.

See a list of members for the reference group here.

Auto skills qualifications reviewed

Auto Skills Australia has recently reviewed the structure of the qualifications in the Automotive Manufacturing Training Package (AUM08).

Following a consolation and feedback period, a final draft has been released which includes a new unit of competency.

The final draft is available for validation, comment and feedback here until 24 February.

For more information contact Neil Hunichen: nhunichen@autoskillsaustralia.com.au or Vince Panozzo: vpanozzo@autoskillsaustralia.com.au.

Diary Dates

Quality in the Making
DATE: 27-28 February, 2012
LOCATION: Sofitel Hotel, Brisbane
DETAILS: Click here for more information

What’s new on the Horizon, incorporating Project Management
DATE: 29-30 March, 2012
LOCATION: Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand
DETAILS: Click here for more information

DATE: 12-13 April, 2012
LOCATION: Canberra
DETAILS: Click here to submit an extract.

TAFE - Leading Skills Enrichment
DATE: 17-18 May, 2012
LOCATION: Hilton on the Park, 196 Wellington Parade, East Melbourne 3002
DETAILS: More information will become available in February.