TAFE Directors Australia

Supporting our member institutes since 1998



Newsletter: 19 May 2008


NATIONAL CONSULTATION ON $11B EDUCATION INVESTMENT FUND

A national consultation will seek to bring clarity to the operations of the new $11B Education Investment Fund - a central part of the 'education revolution' with three infrastructure funds totaling $40B proposed in last week's Federal Budget.

Australia's TAFE institutes applauded the 2008 Commonwealth Budget with its commitment to create a new $11B Education Investment Fund - aimed to provide capital funding for investment in the VET sector.

TDA Chief Executive Martin Riordan said the Fund would create improved capability for TAFE Institutes to develop technologies, improved infrastructure and industry co-investment for increased online and enterprise training needs. 

"Deputy Prime Minister Gillard should be congratulated for this major initiative on skills, and especially her pledge to proceed to a 'national vision' for TAFE to meet the productivity growth required for Australia," Martin Riordan said. "We will be pleased to now take part in the national consultation."

To see TDA's media statement, click here

To read the TDA Special Bulletin on the Budget, click here.

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REMINDER - FEDERAL SUBMISSIONS

Two major Federal programs require TAFE Institute submissions.

Applications are invited from higher education institutions to apply for funds under the Commonwealth Government's Diversity and Structural Adjustment Fund, which promotes structural reform by eligible providers.

Run by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR), the fund will allow providers to undertake reform to specialise in key growth areas and respond to labour market needs. Some $200 million is earmarked over the four years to 2011. For more information click here.

DEEWR is also accepting invitations from RTO's wishing to undertake training under the Productivity Places Program. For information, click here.

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NORTH AMERICA MISSION - READY FOR LIFT OFF 

TDA, in partnership with Australian Education International and in-country partners in the US and Canada, will embark on an 11-day innovation and benchmarking mission to North America from 20-31 May 2008. The mission will be included in a benchmark report being prepared for the Higher Education Review, led by Emeritus Professor Denise Bradley. 

TDA Board Member, Kevin Harris (Northern Sydney Institute of TAFE) will lead the mission that includes members from NSW, QLD, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia. The program is designed to showcase the Australian TAFE system to the US and Canadian markets and to look at examples of innovation and best practice from both systems. 

Key events during the mission include -

- Bilateral Training Forums in Los Angeles and Vancouver
- Participation at the Association of Canadian Community Colleges Annual Conference and 
- Attendance at the NAFSA International Education Conference in Washington. 

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WA TRAINING SYSTEM SET FOR SHAKE-UP

Western Australia's training laws are set for the biggest change in more than 30 years, said Education and Training Minister, the Hon Mark McGowan MP, while introducing new legislation into State Parliament last week.

Minister McGowan pledged to expand training opportunities, and better able to respond to skill shortages still being experienced in WA, he said.

The Minister also announced new arrangements to consolidate the current 14 industry training advisory bodies into 10 new Training Councils.

To see the Minister's statement on the new training laws, click here.

To see the statement on the Training Councils, click here

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HORTICULTURE INDUSTRY WELCOMES RE-THINK ON INCENTIVES PROGRAM 

Horticulture Australia Council, the peak industry body, has welcomed the Federal Government's re-think on the removal of the Agriculture and Horticulture Apprenticeship Incentives Program.

The program allows apprentices undertaking a Cert II, III and IV in agriculture - or if in a rural area, horticulture - to apply for an $800 tool kit and up to $1,000 to cover course fees.

HAC Chair, Stuart Swaddling said that after finally achieving a level playing field with other industries, it had appeared the program would be axed as part of Budget cuts. 

To see the HAC media release, click here.

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FUNDING FOR 'FAST-TRACK' APPRENTICESHIPS

The Commonwealth Government is seeking applications from RTOs to develop and implement its program of 'fast-track' apprenticeships. Funding of up to $50k is available to RTOs.

The objective is to increase the number of skilled tradespeople and address the skills shortage. Applicants will be required to reduce the completion time of an apprenticeship (not just off-the-job components) and still meet the needs of industry, employers and apprentices.

For more information, click here

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RESEARCH FUNDING FOR E-LEARNING

The national training system's e-learning strategy, known as the Australian Flexible Learning Framework, has opened tenders for up to $50k for a research project into the impact of e-learning on employment skills.

The project will examine e-learning practices in public, private and industry RTOs.

For more information, click here

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LAUNCH OF SCREEN AND MEDIA TRAINING PACKAGE

Innovation and Business Skills Australia is inviting stakeholders to the launch of the updated, nationally endorsed Screen and Media Training Package.

The CUF07 package contains 18 qualifications from Cert I to Advanced Diploma and is aimed at creative management, administration and technical production roles in the screen and media industries.

Foxtel CEO, Kim Williams will unveil the new package at Foxtel Studios, Sydney on 27 May.

For more information on the CUF07 package click here.

To see the invitation to the launch, click here.

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NEW $8.4M TRAINING FACILITY FOR PRINT AND JEWELLERY OPENS IN PERTH

A new $8.4million training centre for the creative industries of printing and jewellery making has been launched in the heart of Perth, by the Hon Julia Gillard MP Deputy Prime Minister and the Hon Mark McGowan MLA, WA Minister for Education and Training. 

To see the Ministers' media release, click here.

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DIARY DATES

NSW DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION AND TRAINING
New Directions in Skills Policy and Practice
DATE: 26 May 2008
LOCATION: Powerhouse Museum, Sydney
DETAILS: For further information visit: http://www.skillecosystem.net


AUSTRALIAN INFORMATION INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION
iAwards: Australia's ICT Industry Awards
DATE: 28 May 2008
LOCATION: The Palladium, Crown casino, Melbourne
DETAILS: For further information visit: www.aiia.com.au/pages/iawards.aspx


SKILLS TASMANIA
Skills Tasmania Conference
DATE: 26-27 May 2008
LOCATION: Wrest Point Conference Centre, Hobart
DETAILS: For more information contact Jacqui Maclaine, 03 6233 3194 or email jacqui.maclaine@skills.tas.gov.au


AUSTRALIAN COUNCIL OF INDEPENDENT COLLEGES
Annual Conference
DATE: 27 June 2008
LOCATION: The Mercure, Sydney
DETAILS: For more information click here.


NCVER & TAFE TASMANIA
17th National Vocational Education and Training Research 'No Frills' Conference
DATE: 9-11 July 2008
LOCATION: University of Tasmania, Newham Campus, Launceston
DETAILS: For more information click here.


MANUFACTURING SKILLS AUSTRALIA
Workplace Assessment workshops for NSW, Vic, SA, Tas, NT 
LOCATION: For dates click here.
DETAILS: For more information click here.


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