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Newsletter | 8 May 2017

In this edition


TDA warns against university 'skewing' in higher education reform

TAFE Directors Australia (TDA) has cautioned about the federal government's decision to uncap some sub-bachelor programs at public universities from next year, as part of the higher education reforms announced last week.

The government will provide Commonwealth Supported Places (CSP) funding to public universities for approved diploma, advanced diploma and associate degree courses with an industry focus, where there is articulation into a related bachelor program.

The Chief Executive of TDA Craig Robertson said he was concerned that the decision to extend CSP funding to these courses did not take account of the quality courses already delivered at this level by TAFEs and in dual sector institutions.

“We want to work with the government about the basis of approval for these courses,” he said.

TDA encourages the Commonwealth to implement these changes with a view to ensuring tertiary education in Australia is coherent and responds to the needs of all students

See TDA's media release.

TDA attends college world congress in Canada

TDA Chief Executive Craig Robertson last week attended the board meeting of the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics in Ottawa, Canada.

Discussion centred on priorities for the World Congress of Colleges and Polytechnics to be hosted by Australia in October 2018.

The congress presents an opportunity to share best-practice vocational education and training and to hear of leading edge developments from other countries.

More reasons to attend the 2017 TDA Convention

The 2017 TDA Convention, has the theme “Networked TAFE”, and will explore topics including, Changing work in the 21st century, Industry valued learning experiences and outcomes, Matters of Leadership, Energy roadmaps, and What we can learn from other countries.

What were the things that delegates from previous TDA conventions said provided them with value for money?

  • They gained insight into the challenges facing TAFE institutes in training learners for employment in a technologically disrupted work environment
  • They further understood industry’s expectation of skilled graduates
  • They were exposed to different business models
  • They were able to  test ideas with fellow delegates
  • They formed new global and local partnerships

In particular, emerging leaders said the TDA conventions gave them valuable insights into the dynamics of the national TAFE sector.

Don’t forget that the fantastic TDA member group bundle registration discounts close on 31 May. Click here to visit the convention website or click here to download a PDF flyer.

Victorian taskforce to examine barriers to apprenticeships

The Victorian government has established a taskforce to examine barriers to more apprenticeships and traineeships.

The Minister for Training and Skills Gayle Tierney said the taskforce, comprising industry, employers, training organisations and unions, will report to the government in October.

It includes the Apprenticeship Employment Network, the Australian Council for Private Education and Training, Australian Industry Group, the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Victorian TAFE Association, and the Victorian Trades Hall Council.

Extra government-funded courses listed in South Australia

The South Australian government has added new courses to its subsidised training list including 20 courses available from private training providers.

The changes to the the WorkReady Subsidised Training List include six new courses in policing, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health, and water treatment.

Twenty new courses in agriculture, food production, IT and business are available through private providers, and 127 courses have been removed.

See more

TAFE fees frozen in WA

The West Australian government has delivered on its election commitment to freeze TAFE fees.

Premier Mark McGowan said TAFE fees will not increase in the first term after what he said was a 510 per cent increase under the previous government.

Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery said training data from 2013 to 2016 showed a 24 per cent drop in TAFE enrolments.

The cost of the freeze is estimated at $12 million over four years, and will be paid for by a new foreign property buyer surcharge.

Chance to participate in careers guidance research project

PricewaterhouseCoopers is inviting input in to a research project for the federal government examining Australia’s system of careers support.

PwC is working with the Department of Education and Training to explore careers support services offered outside the school system.

Stakeholders are invited to provide their input, either through focus groups in Sydney and Melbourne in mid-May or through an online survey.

Key areas of focus will be on understanding skilling and re-skilling needs and the part that the VET system and apprenticeships can play in the solution.

Recommendations will be presented to the department in June.

Click here to participate in the focus groups or the survey.

See the focus group schedule.

Feedback sought on training package review

The Skills Service Organisation (SSO), Skills Impact, is currently reviewing a number of training packages to improve units of competency and qualifications.

The training packages include Equine Safety, Greyhounds, Forest Harvesting Optimisation, Retail Baking, and Veterinary Nursing.

The projects are at various stages of development and feedback is invited on the draft materials.

Green gown sustainability awards open to TAFEs, universities

The 2017 Green Gown Awards Australasia, which champion sustainability, are open to all Australasian tertiary education institutions including universities, TAFEs, institutes of technology and polytechnics, and registered training organisations.

The winners of Community, Continuous Improvement and Student Engagement categories are automatically entered into the International Green Gown Awards. The Australasian winners will go head to head with the winners from countries including UK, Ireland and Canada in the International Green Gown Award.

Submission to the awards is now a two stage process with the first stage closing 21 June.

Winners will be announces at a gala dinner on 2 November.

See more

Endeavour mobility grants open for application

The 2018 round of the Australia Awards- Endeavour Mobility Grants program is now open for applications.

The grants provide an opportunity for Australian tertiary education institutions to develop mobility programs and encourage students to have an overseas experience as part of their qualification.

It offers grants for both short-term study and semester exchange and includes the VET Outbound grant and the Asia VET grant.

See more

Diary Dates

Latin America Downunder
Australia-Latin America Business Council
17 - 18 May 2017
Pac Pacific, Perth
More information

Latin America Infrastructure Forum
23 May 2017
More information

Group Training Association of NSW & ACT 2017 Skills Conference
Moving Apprenticeships and Traineeships Forward
14 June 2017
Dockside Darling Harbour
More information

Vocational and Professional Education and Training
International Conference 2017
16 - 17 June 2017
Hong Kong
More information

26th National VET Research Conference 'No Frills' 
5 - 7 July 2017
More information.

2017 VTA State Conference
TAFE: Advancing Victorian Prosperity
20 – 21 July 2017
Rydges, Exhibition Street, Melbourne
More information

Queensland Training Awards
Department of Education and Training, Queensland
July 2017
More information

Community Colleges Australia Annual Conference 2017
25 - 27 July 2017
Citadines on Bourke, Melbourne, Victoria
More information
TDA Convention 2017 - Networked TAFE
7 - 8 September 2017 (Welcome Reception 6 September at Adelaide Oval)
Adelaide Hilton, South Australia
More information

2017 VDC Teaching & Learning Conference
7 - 8 September 2017
RACV Torquay Resort, Victoria
More information

National Skills Week 2017
28 August – 3 September 2017
Nation wide
More information

National VET Conference
13 - 15 September 2017
International Convention Centre, Sydney
More information

Australian International Education Conference (AIEC)
10 - 13 October 2017
Hotel Grand Chancellor, Hobart, Tasmania
More information

AUSTAFE National Conference
Turning Together for Success
11 - 13 October 2017
TAFE Queensland, Brisbane
More information

Chinese Education Association for International Exchange (CEAIE)
Annual Conference
19 - 22 October 2017
Beijing, China
More information

National Apprentice Employment Network
National Conference
2 - 3 November 2017
Radisson Hotel, Sydney
More information coming soon

Australian Training Awards
23 November 2017
National Convention Centre, Canberra
More information


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