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Newsletter | 23 November 2015

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In this edition  


TAFE students and teachers shine at Australian Training Awards

One of TAFE’s most highly regarded teachers, Lyn Wilson, pictured, was honoured the Australian Training Awards in Hobart last Thursday.

Her ‘Excellence in Language, Literacy and Numeracy Practice Award’ was in recognition of outstanding work, helping Indigenous people to develop skills and employment.

For over two decades, Lyn has managed the Sydney TAFE Petersham College Foundation Studies section, historically one of the largest adult basic education units within TAFE NSW.

Sharan Berry from TAFE Queensland East Coast was the runner up in ‘VET Teacher/Trainer of the Year Award’ for her leadership in hairdressing training.

TAFE students won major student awards: Apprentice of the Year, Trainee of the Year, School-based Apprentice of the Year, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year. 

The Australian Apprentice of the Year was Jared Stone, studying at Polytechnic West, while Australian Apprentice (Trainee) of the Year was Sandra Van Der Gaag from Challenger Institute of Technology.

Joint winner of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year Award was Philadelphia Hughes, studying at Charles Darwin University.

Australian School-based Apprentice of the Year went to Brenden Williamson, studying through Sydney TAFE.

See the Australian Training Awards winners and finalists.

Regional TAFE survey to examine skill shortages, unemployed and disengaged youth

TDA is seeking input from regional TAFE institute directors into an important project aimed at matching skill shortages and youth unemployment in regional Australia.

TDA’s Regional Advisory Committee provides advice to the Board on matters impacting the regions. Regional TAFE institutes identified a range of projects which are important enablers for communities and business.

In order to gain an overview of this activity, a project has been established with the explicit purpose of:

  • exploring the role of regional TAFEs in overcoming skills shortages and assisting in reducing unemployment; and
  • providing three case studies and data that support proven strategies which could be applied by a regional TAFE.

Advice is being sought from regional TAFE institute directors via a survey seeking input on two issues:

  • whether and how your regional TAFE institute is attempting to address the issue in conjunction with other organisations, the barriers faced, and the role that TAFE institutes play;
  • to identify a high profile example from a TAFE Institute which meets a number of criteria and could be developed as a case study. Three detailed case studies are proposed, while other examples of regional initiatives will be cited.

Responses are both urgent and important. Escalier McLean Consulting is undertaking this work and is seeking responses to the survey by Monday 30 November via this link.

Sydney TAFE opens up to apprentices and trainees

Sydney TAFE held its inaugural apprenticeship and traineeship open days at Sutherland College, Gymea, and Ultimo College in the city during November.

The open days focussed on the wide range of career choices available through apprenticeships and traineeship, and included manufacturing, engineering and electro technology, built environment and transport, tourism, hospitality and services, and community services and health.

High school students from Year 9 and up, careers counsellors, parents and community groups all participated, as well as local high schools and a large group of employers.

Ombudsman records increase in international student complaints

Approximately one third of private training providers were the subject of complaints by international students to the Overseas Students Ombudsman (OSO).

In its November 2015 report covering the first four years of operation, the OSO received 2,150 complaints and external appeals from overseas students originating from over 68 countries about more than a third of the 911 private registered providers.

“Complaint numbers have been increasing steadily in the past two years, with a 30% increase in our fourth year ending on 8 April 2015. We anticipate a continued increase in complaints and external appeals to the OSO, as the international education sector continues to grow,” the report says.

See the OSO report.

Landmark VET research conference to return

A landmark event in the VET sector is set to return, with the revival of the national VET teacher- education conference, the first in 19 years.

The conference, Refocusing on teaching and training in Vocational Education and Training’ will take place Monday 14 December in Melbourne.

It is hosted by the Australian Council of Deans of Education Vocational Education Group (ACDEVEG) in cooperation with Higher Education and Skills Group, Department of Education & Training, Victoria; Federation University Australia; Australian Council of Deans of Education (ACDE); and the Australian College of Educators.

Speakers include Professor Roger Harris, University of South Australia, and Craig Robertson, Deputy Secretary, Higher Education and Skills Group, Victorian Department of Education and Training.

There will be contributions from the Victorian TAFE Association, Australian Council of Private Education and Training, the Australian Skills Quality Authority, the VET Development Centre, and Innovation and Business Skills Australia.

One of the organising parties is the research group ‘Researching Adult and Vocational Education’ (RAVE) at Federation University.  See their latest newsletter.

See more about the conference.

Call for abstracts for AVETRA conference

The AVETRA 2016 Conference to be held in Sydney, 20 – 22 April 2016, is seeking research abstracts to be featured at the event.

With the theme, ‘Putting VET research to work: Collaboration, innovation, prosperity”, it will be a focus for policy makers, researchers and practitioners.

Abstracts can be nominated for one of two presentation categories:

  1. Individual Oral Presentation (25 minutes, slides)
  2. Speed Dating Slot (3 minutes, maximum 1 slide)

Full details and presentation themes can be found here.

The closing date for abstracts has been extended to Tuesday 1 December.

National Skills Week 2016 dates announced

The dates for National Skills Week 2016 will be 29 August – 4 September.

National Skills Week is a celebration of achievement across the VET sector.

Established in 2011, it brings together stakeholders to acknowledge VET and the role it plays for individual, industry and the economy.

See more or email: kirstin.casey@skillsone.com.au

Diary Dates

National conference on VET teaching & VET teacher education
‘Refocusing on teaching and training in VET’

DATE: 14 December 2015
LOCATION: Melbourne
DETAILS: More information

AVETRA 19th annual conference
DATE: 20 – 22 April 2016
DETAILS: More information

HERDSA (Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia)
The Shape of Higher Education

DATE: 4-7 July 2016
LOCATION: Fremantle
DETAILS: More information

National Skills Week
DATE: 29 August – 4 September 2016
DETAILS: More information

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