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Newsletter | 4 May 2015

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In this edition  


ACCC says it will plans to prosecute private colleges

The Australian Competition Consumer Commission (ACCC) is expected to shortly lay charges following its investigation into private college training rorts.

ACCC chairman Rod Sims told the ABC that its investigation has been one of its largest ever, with a focus on 10 unnamed private training providers.

"We will end up taking some people to court to really send a signal about what's acceptable and what's not," Mr Sims told the ABC.

"We're really concerned about what looks like, what could be, really appalling behaviour."

He said the investigations concerned misleading and unconscionable conduct affecting vulnerable people being signed up without their knowledge, and being offered cash and other inducements.

“Given the potential rorting of taxpayers' money, given the taking advantage of very vulnerable consumers, we've judged this to be a high-profile matter," he said.

Government announces new apprentice support providers

The federal government has announced the 11 organisations that will provide apprentice support services under the new Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN).

Assistant Minister for Education and Training, Senator Simon Birmingham, said the $200 million a year program will operate across 440 locations starting July 1.

The ASSN program is designed to streamline apprentice recruitment, mentoring and support.

The Group Training Australia (GTA) national network, which was unsuccessful, expressed concern at the outcome, also mentioning earlier cuts to group training programs.

Minister Birmingham told The Australian that while the GTA tender had not been successful, group training organisations would be “well represented”, pointing to four successful groups among the 11 providers.

See the full list of AASN providers.

See the Minister’s media release.

Productivity Commission urges changes to international student recruitment

The Productivity Commission has urged educational institutions to reduce their reliance on agents for student recruitment.

The Commission’s research paper, International Education Services, says the sector is back on a high-growth trajectory following a major downturn from 2009 to 2011.

It notes that while Australia's share of the international student market is only around 6 per cent, it has one of the highest concentrations of international students in total national tertiary enrolments.

It says regulatory settings around student visas and education quality are crucial.

“The lack of a synchronised and coherent strategy for these two interacting policy levers has the potential to undermine the sector's ability to take advantage of the opportunities offered by growth in the global education market.”

It says the reliance on agents is “sub-optimal and is a long-term threat to Australia’s international education exports”.

See the Productivity Commission research paper.

TDA appointed to VET FEE-HELP reform group

The Assistant Minister for Education and Training, Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham, has appointed the Acting CEO of TDA, Malcolm White as a member of the VET FEE-HELP Reform Working Group.

The purpose of the group is to provide advice on approaches and plans for the implementation of the reform measures approved by the Government and to ensure stakeholder concerns are addressed throughout the implementation of the reforms.

TDA national conference sponsorship opportunities going fast

The TDA National Conference is delighted to announce several new key sponsors.

There has been a high level of interest and only 5 of the 16 exhibition booths are available.

Several of the exclusive sponsorships have also been snapped up, but it’s not too late to become a part of the conference. A tailored package can be developed to suit individual needs.

This year’s sponsors to date are:

Gold Sponsors:  TAFE NSW and YourTutor; Silver Sponsor: Tribal; Barista Sponsor: DebitSuccess; Bronze Sponsors: Echo360 and TechnologyOne; Keynote Speaker Sponsor: LH Martin Institute; Satchel Sponsor: YourTutor; Lanyard Sponsor: Tribal;

Exhibitors to date are ACER, Cyon, Echo360, IELTS, Lynda.com, NCVER, smallprint and catapault eLearning, TechnologyOne, Tribal, YourTutor, Department of Education and Training – Unique Student Identifier and MySkills.

TDA’s Corporate Affiliates: Ellucian, TechnologyOne, ProLearn are also an integral part of the conference.

For more information regarding sponsorship and exhibition opportunities, contact Sarah Robinson on email tda@pco.com.au or 02 8880 7608.

The TDA Conference program is now taking shape, and the list of confirmed speakers will be released in the next couple of weeks. Registration will open Wednesday 6 May.

Canada study mission to examine community colleges

TDA and LH Martin Institute are hosting a six-day study mission to Canada, 27 September- 2 October.

The visit to Toronto and Ottawa will examine the Canadian community colleges' applied research model.

There will be the chance to meet institutional leaders in community college to learn from their expertise, as well as with key government agencies that support the funding of applied research in the community colleges, and participate in joint workshops and symposia.

Full details and the program are now here.

Australian Training Awards – applications close 29 May

There is less than one month left to apply for the Australian Training Awards, to be held in Hobart on 19 November.

These peak industry awards comprise 18 categories, with seven of the awards available by direct entry, and 11 through nominations coming from state and territory training awards. 

The direct entry categories include:

For individuals:

For businesses:

For registered training organisations:

See this short video explaining the benefits of applying for an award.

Applications for the Award are made directly to the Australian Training Awards by completing the nomination form on the website. Applications close Friday 29 May 2015.

Diary Dates

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.

Mick Young Oration
TDA National Scholarships Foundation

DATE: 21 May 2015
LOCATION: Kangan Institute Automotive Centre of Excellence, Melbourne
DETAILS: See more.

Global Concepts Symposium
Centre for Excellence & LH Martin Institute

DATE: 27 May 2015
LOCATION: Perth, Western Australia
DETAILS: More information coming soon.

National Congress & Expo

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

Navigating the new world: New challenges = New Opportunities

DATE: 4 June 2015
LOCATION: Sofitel Wentworth Hotel, Sydney
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.

‘No Frills’ conference

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

Victorian TAFE Association
2015 State Conference - Leading Transformational Change

DATE: 16-17 July 2015
LOCATION: RACV Club, Melbourne
DETAILS: More information coming soon.

TAFE Managers Association 2015
DATE: 21 August 2015
LOCATION: Luna Park, Sydney
DETAILS: More information coming soon.

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.

Australian International Education Conference 2015
International education: global, responsible, sustainable

DATE: 6 – 9 October 2015
LOCATION: Adelaide Convention Centre
DETAILS: More information.