TAFE Directors Australia

Supporting our member institutes since 1998

Newsletter 6 October 2010


43rd Parliament has begun – Governor-General outlines a key focus on skills

Skills development has been nominated as a key priority for the Gillard Government, which began its first week in Parliament last week, serving in a minority capacity.

In her speech to open the Parliament, the Governor-General, Her Excellency, Quentin Bryce, outlined the Government’s policy priorities for education and training:

“In the area of skills development, which is so critical to our nation’s future, the Government will continue its reform efforts to create a truly national, high-quality, transparent training system and to lift the skills of the workforce.

The Government will build on the Trade Training Centres program with a new National Trade Cadetship initiative to help young people develop trade skills while they are enrolled at school.

Additional incentives and mentoring will also be provided to ensure that apprentices gain the skills and experience relevant to the industries of today and the future.

The Government will introduce a guaranteed entitlement to a high-quality training place for all Australians under the age of 25, and in the future will develop a broad entitlement for foundation skills training and skills development for older Australians.

During this term of Parliament, legislation will be introduced to establish new quality and standards regulators in higher education and vocational education.”

See more of the Governor-General’s address here.  

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Queensland bids for first dual-sector merger in twelve years

CQUniversity and Central Queensland TAFE are proposing a merger, which would see them become the first dual-sector university in some 12 years.

The two organisations are jointly bidding for $80 million under the Federal Government’s Structural Adjustment Fund.

The Premier of Queensland, the Hon Anna Bligh, has publically supported the move which will benefit the mining-rich areas of Central Queensland. Click here to view an article from The Australian.

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Member input required for VET teaching study

TDA recently invited members to comment on the Study on Quality Teaching in VET, an Australian College of Educators study conducted by Associate Professor Leesa Wheelahan.

The paper is available here.

The Victorian TAFE Association (VTA) undertook a consultation on behalf of TDA, and members are invited to comment on the key messages that resulted. Click here to view the key messages.

Please send feedback to Nita Schultz by 11 October.

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TDA response to review of Quality Indicators

The National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) is currently involved in a review of the AQTF Quality Indicators on behalf of the National Quality Council.

Part of this review will involve consultation with key stakeholders in particular, those who are directly involved with the interpretation and application of the Quality Indicators.

Specifically the key objectives of the project are to:

  1. evaluate the effectiveness of the three AQTF quality indicators, in terms of their usefulness to regulators and registered training organisations;
  2. evaluate the reliability of the data for enhancing an RTOs' training and business performance;
  3. determine what is working well and what is not, and;
  4. identify improvement opportunities and future direction for the indicators.

The Victorian TAFE Association (VTA) and TDA organised a joint consultation on 24 September. The discussion focused on three quality indicators:

  • Employer Satisfaction
  • Learner Engagement
  • Competency Completion.

Click here to view a summary of participants’ comments on the effectiveness of the indicators. TDA members are invited to provide comments/amendments to pcaven@tda.edu.au by 18 October.

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Education exports still dominating

More than half of Australia’s tourism export earnings are education-related according to a new report by the Australian Services Roundtable.

The report says that the proportion of tourism exports that are education-related has tripled over the past twenty years.

It will be launched today in Canberra by the Minister for Trade, the Hon. Craig Emerson. To view the report click here.

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TDA to sponsor Regional Australia Conference – Port Macquarie 29th October 2010

Leadership capacity in regional Australia will be the focus of a Regional Australia conference being held in Port Macquarie, Friday 29th October.

The Strategic Regional Leadership for the Future Conference will feature 24 regional experts discussing the actions required to sustain regional Australian into the 21st Century.  Skills development and tertiary education in the region will be one of the issues to be canvassed.

The conference is being organised by the International Regional Studies Association’s (RSA) Network, Regional Development Australia – Mid North Coast, and The University of Adelaide.

For more information click here.

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Indian mining exhibition opportunity

Austrade is coordinating an Australian pavilion at the Confederation of Indian Industry’s 10th International Mining and Machinery Exhibition, to be held in Kolkata India, 10-13 November.

Along with showcasing Australia’s expertise in mining education and training, it will also be hosting a mission program for participants to engage in various business opportunities.

Applications for this opportunity close 15 October.

Click here for more information.

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Mission to Philippines

Applications are open for Study in Australia’s annual mission to the Philippines for the Higher Education Showcase, which will focus on key student markets for undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

The mission will be held 23-25 November, and applications close 22 October.

For more information click here.

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SOS to TAFE executives -- Centrelink review of full-time study definition

The Centrelink National Student Services Partnership Group will be discussing at its next meeting the information provided on the Centrelink website regarding what constitutes full-time study at TAFE.

Centrelink has provided a draft version of the information, and TDA representative, Jackie Wenner from CIT, has requested feedback from members on this information to take to the meeting.

Please send feedback back to Jackie by 11 October, by clicking here.

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New additions to NCVER editorial board

Three new members have joined the National Centre for Vocational Education Research’s (NCVER’s) editorial board.

The board was established in 2007, and conducts peer reviews for NCVER research reports.  The new members are Professors Paul Miller (Curtin University), Lorraine Dearden (University of London) and David Finegold (Rutgers’ School of Management and Labor Relations).

For more information click here.

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Further international student opportunities available in NSW

Continued international marketing, the establishment of student accommodation, and more tourism initiatives will be critical to help NSW capitalise on opportunities in the international student market, according to the new NSW Government’s Business Sector Growth Plan.

The Plan was launched by Premier, the Hon Kristina Keneally at the Forbes Global CEO conference, and responds to ideas and issues raised by industry at the NSW Business Forum earlier in the year.

For more information click here.

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Policy in the Pub – Sydney event

TVET, in association with the Industry Skills Council CEO’s Forum, is holding another Policy in the Pub event, this time in Sydney with the theme: ‘Streamlining Training Packages: Will it be enough?”

The event will feature the perspectives of three industry leaders comprising:

  • Megan Lilly – Chair, Framework Implementation Action Group, NQC
  • Arthur Blewitt – CEO, AgriFood Skills Australia
  • Paul Byrne – Paul Byrne Consulting

The event will be held at the Harbour View Hotel, The Rocks, Sydney from 4:30pm on 12 October. For more information click here.

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Online video supports students preparing for their English test

Educational Testing Service (ETS) has just released a free online video which provides a guide for students planning to take the TOEFL (English language) test.

The six-minute video walks students through the ‘test day’ experience and previews identification requirements, check-in procedures, security protocols and the testing sequence.

A link to the video, as well as information on other resources which support the TOEFL test, can be found here.

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VET leadership report

The LH Martin Institute and theAustralian Council for Educational Research (ACER) have published a new report, VET Leadership for the Future: Characteristics, Contexts and Capabilities, which draws together reviews, prior research and a national survey of 327 practising VET leaders.

The report includes a profile of effective VET leadership and strategies for developing future leaders.

Report findings will be discussed at the LH Martin Institute’s upcoming conference,Building Australia’s Tertiary Education Sector: Alternative models and their leadership challenges’,
to be held 11-12 November, in Melbourne.

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AUSTAFE Conference – Sydney

AUSTAFE will be holding its 2010 Conference, ‘Leadership, Innovation, Workplace Culture’, at the Citigate Central Hotel in Sydney, 14-15 October.

A welcome reception will be held at the Powerhouse Museum, 13 October. For more information about the conference click here.

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Social equity conference

The 2nd Annual Student Equity in Higher Education National Conference will be held 11-12 October at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

TDA members may be interested in attending the Conference titled ‘Aspiration, Mobility and Voice’. To find out more click here.  

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Diary Dates

Leadership, Innovation and Workplace Culture
DATE: 14-15 October 2010
LOCATION: Citigate Central, Sydney
DETAILS: Click here for more information

DATE: 17-22 October 2010
LOCATION: Peppers Moonah Links Resort, Victoria
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Education and Training for a more productive Australia

DATE: 29 October 2010
LOCATION: Ascot House, Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information 

DATE: 29 October 2010
LOCATION: Port Macquarie, NSW
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Research Forum - Fostering enterprise: The innovational and skills nexus
DATE: 9 November 2010
LOCATION: Australian Technology Park, Sydney
DETAILS: Click here for more information

Has institutional research come of age in Australiasia?
DATE: 10-12 November 2010
LOCATION: Four Points by Sheraton Hotel, Geelong
DETAILS: Click here for more information

DATE: 13-15 November 2010
LOCATION: Birmingham, UK
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Buidling sustainability through marketing
DATE: 10-11 November 2010
LOCATION: Rydges Hotel, Brisbane
DETAILS: Register for conference or enter awards online at www.atmaltd.org.au

2010 Australian Youth Mentoring Conference

DATE: 10-11 November 2010
LOCATION: Radisson Resort, Gold Coast
DETAILS: Click here for more information

World Innovation Summit for Education
DATE: 7-9 December 2010
LOCATION: Sheraton Resort, Doha, Qatar
DETAILS: Click here for more information 

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