TDA Newsletter 11 August 2014


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Report shows financial pressure on Victorian TAFEs

Victoria’s 14 TAFE Institutes generated a net deficit of $16.2 million in 2013, representing a $74.8 million deterioration from 2012, according to the Victorian Auditor-General’s office (VAGO).

“These results suggest that many TAFEs have yet to respond effectively to changes to the funding model and contestability arrangements,” the VAGO report says.

“While a majority of TAFEs reduced their expenditure during the year, the cost reductions and increases in student fee revenue were not sufficient to offset the reduction in funds from government of $116.3 million.”

The Minister for Higher Education and Skills Nick Wakeling blamed the former Labor Government, saying it had bungled VET reform by exposing TAFEs to an open market without properly preparing them for the process of structural adjustment.

“While some institutions have managed to innovate and re-focus training courses, others have found this new environment more difficult and we have seen TAFEs’ overall market share of VET enrolments drop from 47 per cent in 2008 to 32 per cent in 2013,” Mr Wakeling said.

See the VAGO report.

See Minister Wakeling’s media release.

In the AFR Weekend, Peter Noonan, Fellow at the Harold Mitchell Institute at Victoria University, and who has advised the Business Council of Australia, spoke of the worsening state of VET funding, at the expense of schools and universities.

Peter Noonan said VET funding “… was in a worse state now than it was 20 years ago when governments and industry committed to build a quality national system.”

VET completion rates edge higher

National completion rates are slowly rising, with the percentage of people likely to complete publicly funded training rising from 32.1% for those who enrolled in 2009, to 35.8% in 2012, according to the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER).

A key finding is that the higher the level of VET qualification, the higher the likelihood of it being completed.

For students undertaking diploma and above level qualifications, 44.3% are likely to complete, with 44.3% likely to complete certificate IV, and 40% likely to complete certificate III.

Young students in full-time study with no prior post-school qualification enrolled in certificate III (58.4%) are most likely to finish their training.

The field of study is also relevant, with qualifications in education (62.4%), natural and physical sciences (52.8%), and society and culture (46.9%) having the highest completion rates.

Lowest rates are in general education courses, such as literacy, numeracy and employment skills (19.2%), architecture and building (25.9%) and food, hospitality and personal services (27.2%).

See more.

Microsoft joins the TDA National Conference as exclusive Welcome Reception sponsor

TDA is delighted that Microsoft Australia is supporting the 2014 TDA National Conference as the exclusive Welcome Reception sponsor.

The Welcome Reception will be held at Harbour 220 with spectacular views of Sydney Harbour on Sunday 31 August from 5.30-7.00pm.

To find out more about how you can interact with TAFE senior leaders face-to-face, please contact Jane Yeaman by email: or phone 02 4984 2554.

For further information about the conference, including the full program, please

Queensland announces training award finalists

A total of 56 Queenslanders have been announced as finalists in the Queensland Training Awards, to be awarded on 19 September.

Eleven award category winners will be announced at the state final, with categories encompassing apprentices, trainees, students, teachers, employers, and training providers.

The categories include the eight contested at the regional level as well as the additional categories of Premier’s Industry Collaboration, Small Training Provider, and Large Training Provider of the Year.

See the finalists.

Global perspectives on tertiary education innovation

LH Martin Institute for Tertiary Education Leadership and Management is hosting two interactive symposia featuring leading international and Australian speakers, during their visit to Australia for the TDA 2014 National Conference.

Harnessing the power of entrepreneurial action in tertiary education institutions

Guest speaker: Fintan Donohue, CEO, Gazelle Group, United Kingdom

29 August 2014, Sydney

Fintan Donohue, of the UK based Gazelle Group will discuss how a collaborative cluster of further education colleges are transforming their organisations to foster a new generation of social and commercial entrepreneurs. He will also lead a practical, interactive workshop on the theme of ‘Entrepreneurial learning, innovation and creativity’.

The symposia will also feature presentations and facilitated discussions by Bruce Mackenzie, former CEO, Holmesglen and Senior Fellow, LH Martin Institute, and David Riordan, Institute Director, TAFE NSW – Sydney Institute, on the theme of entrepreneurship in the Australian context.

Find out more and view full program

The economics of education: the pursuit of prestige and reputation to drive strategy and system performance

Guest speaker: Dr Charles Goldman, Senior Economist, RAND Corporation and Professor of Economics, Pardee RAND Graduate School (PRGS)

26 August 2014, Melbourne

Dr Goldman will discuss the continued economic success of higher education in America and provide insights into international university benchmarking systems, through his role with the Shanghai Academic Rankings of World Universities, and the practical application of his work across the Middle East and Asia in developing systems to optimise performance and prestige. Dr Goldman will also lead a practical, interactive workshop on the theme of applying system drivers within institutional frameworks.

The symposia will feature presentations and discussions by Professor Peter Noonan, Fellow, Mitchell Institute for Health and Education Policy, Victoria University and Senior Fellow, LH Martin Institute, and Dr Geoff Sharrock, Program Director, LH Martin Institute on the theme of the economics of education in the Australian context.

Find out more and view full program

Diary Dates

Vision 2020 – TDA National Conference 2014
TAFE Directors Australia

DATE: 1-2 September 2014
LOCATION: Sheraton on the Park, Sydney, NSW
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Teaching & Learning Conference 2014
VET Development Centre

DATE: 4-5 September 2014
LOCATION: RACV Club Torquay, Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

ACE National Conference
DATE: 11-12 September 2014
LOCATION: Adelaide
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Velg Training
National VET Conference

DATE: 11-12 September 2014
LOCATION: Brisbane
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

VETnetwork Australia 2014
Biennial National Conference

DATE: 17-19 September 2014
LOCATION: Darwin Convention Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

2014 WorldSkills Australia National Competition
DATE: 18, 19 & 20 September 2014
LOCATION: Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Australian International Education Conference
Inventing the Future

DATE: 7-10 October 2014
LOCATION: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

AUSTAFE 2014 Annual Conference
DATE: 8-10 October 2014
LOCATION: Australian National Maritime Museum, Sydney
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Australasian Genomic Technologies Association (AGTA)
2014 Conference

DATE: 12-15 October 2014
LOCATION: Crown Promenade Melbourne
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Group Training Australia
2014 National Conference

DATE: 12-14 November 2014
LOCATION: Grand Chancellor Hotel, Hobart
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

Government Skills Australia
2014 National Conference

DATE: 17-18 November 2014
LOCATION: Adelaide Oval
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

2014 B/HERT Awards
Business Higher Education Round Table

DATE: 20 November 2014
LOCATION: Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre
DETAILS: Click here for more information.



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