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Newsletter | 21 August 2017

In this edition


ASQA's new fee schedule open for consultation

The Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) has released details of new fees and charges that will apply to registered training organisations (RTOs) from January 2018.

ASQA is inviting public consultation on the schedule of fees, which are based on cost recovery, as well as a new risk-based framework for regulation of the VET sector.

Many of the proposed fees vary according a provider's scope of activities and compliance history.

ASQA will be receiving submissions on its 2017 Cost Recovery Implementation Statement—Consultation Draft (CRIS). until 12 September.

See more

Student numbers slide following VET student loan crackdown

The number of students accessing loans under the former VET FEE-HELP (VFH) scheme fell by 30% in 2016, following the federal government crackdown on unscrupulous training  providers, according to official figures.

The 2016 VET FEE-HELP Statistical Report, released by the Department of Education and Training shows:

  • A total of 235,236 VFH eligible students enrolled in 2016, down 24% from 2015
  • A total of 193,868 students received VFH assistance, down 29%
  • Students borrowed $1.47 billion in VFH loans in 2016, down 50%

The Assistant Minister for Vocational Education and Skills, Karen Andrews said the figures showed that steps taken in 2015 and 2016 to rein in the scheme had worked.

In an interview with ABC Triple J Hack, Ms Andrews said a decline in numbers of Indigenous and low socioeconomic students, as well as those with a disability reflected the fact that vulnerable students were no longer being targeted by dodgy operators.

“Those people not being in the system would go part way towards the decline we’re seeing,” she said.

TAFE Directors Australia CEO Craig Robertson told the program, "What we’re effectively seeing now is that bubble being removed and we’re probably back to regular rates of participation of those cohorts."

TDA Convention registration still open, final program announced

TDA is delighted to announce that the final program for this year’s convention is now available. The convention will be held at the Hilton Adelaide from 7-8 September with a Welcome Reception on Wednesday 6 September at the Adelaide Oval.

Registration is still open and some rooms are still available at the Hilton Adelaide at the special negotiated rates.

Find out more | View Program | Register your place

The convention will explore a wide range of topics through the keynote presentations, plenary panels, concurrent sessions and market place activities, including; industry partnerships, community development and engagement, how to capitalise on future trends, international collaboration, positioning Australian services in China’s rebalancing, leadership development, regional development activities, industry skills centres, training product development, higher education articulation programs, digital learning, how VET is emerging as a key consideration in economic and social diplomacy, applied research and design activities and higher level apprenticeships. These topics are but a part of “Networked TAFE”.

Key Information:

  • Be engaged by keynote addresses, including;
    • A journey through leadership from Dame Asha Khemka DBE DL, Principal and CEO, West Nottinghamshire College, UK
    • Preparing for jobs of the future: How emerging markets are resetting the Australian workforce agenda from Bernard Salt AM, Social commentator/Demographer, KPMG Demographics
    • Skilling the SA Defence workforce for the future from Andy Keough CSC, Chief Executive, Defence SA 
    • The workforce of tomorrow demands a new mindset from Bronwyn Lee, Deputy CEO, Australian Foundation for Young Australians
  • Hear from federal and state Ministers and Senators:
    • The Hon Karen Andrews MP, Assistant Minister for Vocational Education and Skills
    • Senator the Hon. Doug Cameron, Shadow Minister for Skills and Apprenticeships 
    • The Hon Susan Close MP, Minister for Higher Education and Skills, SA
  • Pose questions for engaging panel discussions led by industry experts, with topics covered including;
    • What skills and capabilities enhance future work prospects?
    • Regional TAFE: Networked with learners, industry and the community
    • Reform of vocational education and training – what could it look like?
    • and a closing panel on Strategic reflection.
  • Participate in the Market Place Session discussions and debates
  • Networking events include the Welcome Reception at Adelaide Oval, seated lunches, a NETWORKED TAFE Delegate Lounge, the Convention Dinner at the Hilton Adelaide and closing drinks with a TAFE SA cheese tasting on Friday afternoon.

So join the TDA Convention in the amazing city of Adelaide from 6 to 8 September and be part of the biggest annual gathering of TAFE institute staff.

Members of TAFE governing Boards, CEOs/managing directors, emerging leaders, program coordinators, international experts, business development managers, international education practitioners, teaching staff, federal and state government officers, researchers, policy makers and representatives of industry from across Asia-Pacific have already registered to attend, make your decision now to secure your place.

Please don't delay, register today.

Sydney school of entrepreneurship opens its doors

The NSW Deputy Premier and Minister for Small Business John Barilaro, last week, opened the Sydney School of Entrepreneurship (SSE), a partnership between all 11 NSW universities and TAFE NSW.

Sydney school of entrepreneurship opens its doors When fully operational, some 1,000 students each year will participate in SSE courses and activities during their degree or TAFE program.

TAFE NSW Managing Director  on Black said, "Innovation ignites jobs growth in NSW and we are partnering with SSE so that our skilled students and upcoming entrepreneurs can access great education, information and networks to deliver great things."

The SSE will be run by Australian Nick Kaye, a global entrepreneurship leader who returns to Australia following a ten year stint as the head of the Stockholm School of Entrepreneurship. Nick will be a speaker at the TDA Convention in Adelaide next month. 

VET must include entrepreneurial skills, new report says

More needs to be done to develop entrepreneurial skills in the VET sector, according to two new papers from the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER).

One of the papers, 'The role of VET in the entrepreneurial ecosystem', looks at the international experience of VET-based  entrepreneurialism, as well as specific case studies from start-ups in the Australian Capital Territory.

"The survey of start-ups in the ACT over the past 25 years found that, in about one in five of the ACT start-ups, the founder or a member of the founding team had a VET qualification, although these VET graduates considered that their experience of education and training through VET played little role in preparing them for entrepreneurship," the report said.

A second paper, 'VET and entrepreneurship: research overview', says that other countries have progressed further than Australia in the area of skills for entrepreneurship, with many examples of programs aimed at VET students.

Among a number of recommendations, it says that enterprise skills should be a key component of most VET courses, and entrepreneurship skills and knowledge should be included in at least some courses.

Policy heavyweights to discuss TAFE future

The Australian Education Union (AEU) is holding a national TAFE conference in Sydney on Friday 20 October.

The purpose is to initiate discussion and debate around the future of TAFE and the importance of developing new public policy in the sector.

Speakers include Professor Leesa Wheelahan (University of Toronto); Dr Jim Stanford (Centre for Future Work); Professor John Buchanan (University of Sydney Business School); Professor Valerie Braithwaite (ANU); Professor Anne Jones (Victoria University) and John Pardy (Monash University).

The conference will bring together academics, researchers, policy makers, teachers and unions and will be a contribution to the development of new social policy in this crucial sector of Australian education.  Tickets, registration and further details are available here.

See a flyer

New Australian apprenticeships pathways website

The Australian Apprenticeships and Traineeships Information Service (AATIS) has a new AAPathways website.

Free interactive face-to-face sessions are now scheduled to demonstrate the improvements and functionality of the website, launching on 31 August. Areas of the website that will be reviewed are:

  • Site search
  • Job and Training Descriptions
  • Field Officer Brief
  • Industry information pages

The sessions will be in:

  • Melbourne, Monday, 4 September
  • Adelaide, Wednesday, 6 September
  • Canberra, Thursday, 7 September
  • Brisbane, Monday, 11 September
  • Sydney, Wednesday, 13 September
  • Perth, Tuesday, 19 September
  • Geelong, Tuesday, 19 September
  • Hobart, Thursday, 21 September

To register your attendance at these free events, visit the AATIS Eventbrite page.

Diary Dates

TDA Convention 2017 - Networked TAFE
7 - 8 September 2017 (Welcome Reception 6 September at Adelaide Oval)
Adelaide Hilton, South Australia
More information

2017 VDC Teaching & Learning Conference
7 - 8 September 2017
RACV Torquay Resort, Victoria
More information

National Skills Week 2017
28 August – 3 September 2017
Nation wide
More information

National VET Conference
13 - 15 September 2017
International Convention Centre, Sydney
More information

Australian International Education Conference (AIEC)
10 - 13 October 2017
Hotel Grand Chancellor, Hobart, Tasmania
More information

AUSTAFE National Conference
Turning Together for Success
11 - 13 October 2017
TAFE Queensland, Brisbane
More information

Chinese Education Association for International Exchange (CEAIE)
Annual Conference
19 - 22 October 2017
Beijing, China
More information

International Australasian Campuses Towards Sustainability (ACTS) Conference
THINK BIG for Global Goals
1 - 3 November 2017
RMIT University, Victoria
More information

National Apprentice Employment Network
National Conference
1 - 3 November 2017
Radisson Blu Hotel, Sydney
More information

Australian Training Awards
23 November 2017
National Convention Centre, Canberra
More information

Australian Council of Deans of Education Vocational Education Group (ACDEVEG)
VET Teaching and VET Teacher Education Conference
7 & 8 December 2017
TAFE Queensland, Southbank Campus
More information

Corporate Affiliates