TAFE Directors Australia

Supporting our member institutes since 1998

Newsletter 5 September 2011

Minister Piccoli launches 2011 TDA National Conference

The NSW Education Minister, the Hon Adrian Piccoli MP, today launched the 2011 TAFE Directors Australia National Conference in Sydney.

The Minister said the incoming NSW Government was committed to lifting productivity and workforce participation, and he intended to consult stakeholders with any VET reform proposed by COAG and the Ministerial Council (MCTEE).

Following his address to delegates, the Minister launched the National TAFE Alumni Gallery – a ‘wall of talent’ featuring 40 successful TAFE graduates from across Australia.

The Minster also met with former Hornsby College arts student and two-time Archibald Prize finalist, Apple Yin, who is exhibiting her artworks throughout the duration of the conference.

Last night, the almost 350 conference delegates were welcomed at a reception at the Sheraton on the Park hotel, and were entertained by singer-songwriter, Tim Freedman.

TDA looks forward to hosting special guest, Therese Rein tonight at the Gala Dinner to be held at the Sydney Opera House.

Click here to view the Conference website.


Artist, Apple Yin, TDA Deputy Chair, Di Murray, Minister Piccoli, and TDA Chair Stephen Conway, at the TAFE National Alumni Gallery.

Artist, Apple Yin with Minister Piccoli at the Apple Yin Exhibition at the 2011 TAFE Directors Australia National Conference


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Ministers agree to improve tertiary responsiveness

A focus on quality, improved information, and the responsiveness of the tertiary system as a whole, were the key elements of the second 2011 meeting of Ministerial Council for Tertiary Education and Employment (MCTEE).

The State, Territory and Federal Ministers also agreed that apprenticeship reform should focus on a competency-based system to improve responsiveness to industry needs, as well as greater support services and improvements in completion rates.

Click here to view the communiqué.

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Federal Government supports Libyan students in limbo

The Federal Government has announced it will assist around 650 Libyan students who have been disrupted by the ongoing upheaval in Libya.

The students – in Australian on scholarships funded by the diposed Libyan Government – were unsure if they could continue their studies. The Government announced a $1.5 million loan to the Libyan embassy  to support the students and their families in the coming months.

Click here to view a media release.

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Disparities hindering tertiary sector

The gap between TAFEs and universities has widened, not closed, effectively going against the recommendations of the Bradley Review for a connected tertiary sector, according to Martin Riordan.

In an address to the University and Tertiary Education Symposium at University of Sydney last week, Mr Riordan the inability of TAFE Institutes offering higher-education qualifications to access Commonwealth Supported Places has diminished the Bradley vision of a strong, unified tertiary sector.

He also argued that disparities between TEQSA and AQSQ regulations should have been addressed, and that changes to visa rules – giving universities more opportunity in the international student market, and lumping TAFE with private providers – has further widened the gap between the sectors.

View Mr Riordan’s speech here.

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Review of COAG reform agenda underway

The Productivity Commission has invited contributions to a report into the impacts and benefits of the COAG reform agenda, with a particular emphasis on VET.

See a circular here.

The Productivity Commission has been asked by the Government to conduct an inquiry into the reforms every two to three years.

The focus of this first inquiry is in two areas:                                    

  1. deregulation priorities of the ‘seamless national economy’, and
  2. vocational education and training (VET) reforms and initiatives that support successful transitions from school.

The Commission’s final report is due March 2010.

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Bradley reforms to deliver better productivity

Implementation of the Bradley reforms can do more for GDP and living standards growth than any other single publicly identified cost reform according to new modeling undertaken for Universities Australia.

The report says the Bradley reforms would add 6.4% to Australia’s GDP by 2040, and deliver a budget surplus of more than $325 billion more than no-response over the period of 2011-2040.

Click here for more.

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Intellectual property system winding-up

The AEShareNet Licensing system, which manages and licenses intellectual property in the VET sector, will be suspended from 16 September.

The system is closing in conjunction with the wind-up of TVET.  Those Institutes using the system are encouraged to source other available options, and contact Madiha Elmolla, AEShareNet Officer (03 9832 8129, or madiha.elmolla@tvetaustralia.com.au) for more information.

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Competency-based training doesn’t always support innovation

To remain competitive, innovative industries need a training system that emphasises ‘learning to learn’ rather than just specific technical skills, according to research published by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER).

The report which is based around the mining, solar energy and computer games sectors, finds the present model of competency-based training and training delivered via training packages doesn’t always support innovation. It says that to develop innovation, students need to be taught how to learn, not just the skills needed for the job.

Read more here.

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Diary Dates

2011 National Conference
DATE: 5-6 September, 2011
LOCATION: Sheraton on the Park Hotel, Sydney
DETAILS: More information here

Annual Industry Development Conference - Productivity & Competitiveness
DATE: 13-15 September, 2011
LOCATION: Hyatt Hotel and Parliament House, Canberra
DETAILS: More information here

Presentation Event
DATE: 15 September, 2011 – 6pm
LOCATION: The Ballroom, Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre, Darling Harbour
DETAILS: Tickets available here

EyeQ 2011
‘eyecons of e-learning’ conference
DATE: 16 September, 2011
LOCATION: Brisbane
DETAILS: Click here for more information

2011 National Conference
DATE: 22 September, 2011
LOCATION: Brisbane
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

2011 Conference
DATE: 11-14 October, 2011
LOCATION: Adelaide Convention Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information

AUSTAFE National Conference
2020 Vision
DATE: 12-14 October, 2011
LOCATION: Canberra
DETAILS: Click here for more information

ePortfolios Australia Conference 2011
DATE: 17-18 October, 2011
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Making a Difference... 2011: Breaking Through the Barriers
DATE: 19-20 October, 2011
LOCATION: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Looking ahead - Group Training National Conference
DATE: 19-21 October, 2011
LOCATION: Grand Hyatt, Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information

DATE: 9-10 November, 2011
LOCATION: William Angliss Conference Centre, Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Australasian Association for Institutional Research Forum “Let the sunshine in”
DATE: 9-11 November, 2011
LOCATION: Sea World Resort, Gold Coast
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Grounds for Learning Workshop
DATE: 14-16 November, 2011
LOCATION: Monash University, Clayton Campus, VICTORIA
DETAILS: Click here for more information

‘For innovation’
DATE: 18 November, 2011
LOCATION: The Glasshouse, Port Macquarie
DETAILS: Click here for more information

DATE: 25 November, 2011
LOCATION: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, South Bank
DETAILS: Click here for more information

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