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Newsletter | 23 February 2015

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In this edition  

 

More than 5,000 students at risk in Victorian qualifications recall

The Victorian government has ordered a crackdown on low quality training providers and the misuse of government funds, and revealed that thousands of qualifications are being recalled.

The Minister for Training and Skills, Steve Herbert, said that around 2,500 students have had sub-standard qualifications recalled, and a further 3,000 may be affected after investigations are completed.

He said the government was determined to restore student and employer confidence in the training system after a number of serious abuses.

“These abuses include qualifications being issued to students who have no demonstrable skills, providers claiming government funding for non-existent training delivery and poor oversight of third parties delivering training,” he said.

The Review of Quality Assurance in Victoria’s VET System will report in April and will also be considered by the recently announced VET Funding Review being led by Bruce Mackenzie.

See the Terms of Reference for the Review.


NSW government launches campaign to stop training rip-offs

The NSW government has launched an education campaign to protect consumers from unscrupulous training providers and marketers.

Fair Trading Minister Matthew Mason-Cox said almost 600 consumers contacted NSW Fair Trading last financial year with complaints about being tricked into taking out expensive student loans or issues in relation to refunds, cancellations and cooling off periods.

“The vast majority of training providers already do the right thing. For example, those training providers receiving State Government funding already have to comply with tough standards for ethical marketing.

“This campaign reminds consumers of what they should look out for when signing up to training courses and how to ensure they are studying with a quality training provider.”

See more.


TAFE higher education students attracted by quality teaching, work-ready degrees

A national survey of TAFE higher education students has found that more than three-quarters (79%) believe that a TAFE higher education course is as good as a university course in the same area.

The survey, commissioned by TDA, also found that the quality of teaching and the applied nature of the learning were among the most important factors that attracted students to higher education at TAFE.

The survey found overwhelming 86% support for TAFE higher education students to receive the same Commonwealth funding as those studying at university.

Only two Institutes currently have access to funding for higher education students, with the remainder required to charge full fees – with only FEE HELP instead of HECS loans available for students.

Acting TDA CEO Malcolm White said it was important that students have the choice of either a university or a TAFE Institute in deciding on their careers, and that students be treated equitably when it come to Commonwealth funding assistance.

See the TDA media release.

See the TDA Higher Education Student Survey Report.


TAFE Directors Australia/AVETRA  Innovation Scholarship 2015

Are you interested in research?

Do you want time to undertake your own research?                                            

Do you work for TAFE?                                         

If ‘yes’, fill in a nomination form for a TDA/AVETRA Innovation scholarship.  The scholarship provides funds to support you in your research. 

Nominations presently close on 27 February, but can be extended until 13 March if you notify that you are interested.

Contact Linda Simon at AVETRA: avetra@theassociationspecialists.com.au or  Pam Caven at TDA:  memberservices@tda.edu.au

See here for more information on the scholarship guidelines and application form.


Arrest over international student fraud

A Sydney businessman alleged to have defrauded international students has been arrested.

NSW Fair Trading Minister Matthew Mason-Cox said that Eddie Kang has been arrested for fraud related offences.

“Eddie Kang, through his business Singapore Oil, is an alleged serial swindler who has for a number of years been draining international students of their savings, in some instances up to $45,000, on the promise of providing job placement and a work visa,” Mr Mason-Cox said.

Mr Kang was charged with four breaches of the Australian Consumer Law relating to misleading conduct in connection to employment.


Employers urged to rate the training system

Employers are being urged to have their say on training system as part of a major survey being undertaken by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER).

The Survey of Australian Employers is a biennial survey. NCVER is aiming to contact 9,000 employers across the country over coming weeks.

Dr Craig Fowler, Managing Director, NCVER said the survey provides employers with an opportunity to have their say and help shape future training.

“The survey only takes around 10 minutes to complete. We want to know how organisations employ and train their staff, and how effective this training is at meeting their needs.”

The results will be published later this year.

See the 2013 survey.


Call for papers – teaching and learning conference

The VET Development Centre is calling for presenters for its 2015 Teaching and Learning Conference in Victoria, 3-4 September.

The focus will be the 'changing gears' of the VET sector and look at supporting practitioners in shifting to new ways of doing things. Presentations must align with the conference themes – education design, pedagogy, and developing personal learning networks.

Anyone interested in presenting should download and fill in an application form and return to Susanna Palermo, Event Manager at spalermo@vetcentre.vic.edu.au by 17 April.

See more.




Diary Dates

Victoria University
Financial Sustainability in VET

DATE: 25-26 February 2015
LOCATION: Victoria University City Convention Centre, Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Engineering Excellence Project Information Sessions
Australian Industry Group

DATE: February & March 2015
LOCATION: Various locations around Australia
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

VET Development Centre
Learning Lab

DATE: 5 March 2015
LOCATION: Melbourne Convention Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Australian Workplace Practitioners’ Network
Foundation Skills at Work

DATE: 18-20 March 2015
LOCATION: Melbourne, Victoria
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

AVETRA
18th Annual Conference

DATE: 8-10 April 2015
LOCATION: The Rendezvous Grand, Melbourne
DETAILS: More information.

Group Training Association of NSW & ACT
The future of work: Rethinking employment, training and skills in NSW and ACT

DATE: 7 May 2015
LOCATION: Amora Hotel, Sydney
DETAILS: More information.

EduTECH
National Congress & Expo

DATE: 2 & 3 June 2015
LOCATION: Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Western Sydney Careers Expo
DATE: 18-21 June 2015
LOCATION: Showground, Sydney Olympic Park
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

NCVER
‘No Frills’ conference

DATE: 6-8 July 2015
LOCATION: University of Western Sydney
DETAILS: More information.

VET Development Centre
Teaching and Learning Conference

DATE: 3-4 September 2015
LOCATION: RACV Torquay Resort, Victoria
DETAILS: More information.

National VET Conference
Velg Training

DATE: 17-18 September 2015
LOCATION: Adelaide Convention Centre
DETAILS: More information.