TDA Newsletter 30 March 2015

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Victoria pumps an extra $50m into the TAFE system

The Victorian state government has pumped an additional $50 million into the TAFE system, with a ‘Back to Work’ fund that it says will create at least 100,000 jobs.

The fund will offer one-off grants to TAFEs to develop and expand courses that align with the needs of local employers.

The new fund is in addition to the $320 million TAFE Rescue Fund, which is helping TAFEs in financial difficulty.

The latest Victorian Training Market report shows that government subsidised enrolments in TAFE fell by 33% over the last year from 207,943 to 139,182.

In 2014, 56% of all government subsidised enrolments were with private registered training organisations. The share held by TAFE was down from 32% to 25% over the course of the year.

An editorial in The Age slammed the recent cuts to TAFE and endorsed the government’s funding injection.

“This is what smart, progressive societies do. They invest in education, invest in new skills to match changing technologies and job markets; they build the skills to compete nationally and internationally,” The Age said.

See more on the $50 million TAFE package.

See the 2014 Victorian Training Market Report.

See the editorial in The Age.

Competency based training a focus of international community college conference

TDA’s Director of Policy and Stakeholder Engagement, Pam Caven, has just participated in the 15th annual Community College Baccalaureate Association (CCBA) conference in Boston, Massachusetts, where she presented a workshop on Australia’s experience with competency based training.

The topic was a major theme at the conference, as it is being adopted by some American colleges and universities, most notably by Western Governors University.

The appeal of competency based learning in both Australia and the US rests on its links with the workplace, the promise of more employable graduates, increased productivity, and formalising of existing work skills with the qualification framework.

However, the concept of competence has always been elusive. See Pam’s presentation to the conference.

Pam is a member of the Board of CCBA and was elected as Deputy Chair.

South Australia opens nominations to training awards

Nominations have opened for South Australia’s training awards, which will mark their 20th anniversary this year.

There are six individual awards and five organisation awards, with a $5000 prize for individuals.

Two information sessions will be held in April to provide practical advice on how to prepare applications and maximise the chances of winning.

The awards gala dinner will be at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre on September 11.

Entry to the awards is free and nominations close Friday 15 May. See more.

Meanwhile Queensland’s training awards (now in their 54th year) will close on 10 April.  See more.

TDA national conference sponsorship opportunities

We are delighted that TAFE NSW has taken a Gold Sponsorship and Debit Success has confirmed the Barista sponsorship at the 2015 TDA National Conference, 10-11 September in Hobart.

Other confirmed sponsors and exhibitors include Echo360Technology One, smallprint Australia Pty Ltd, Catapult eLearning Pty LtdDepartment of Education and Training – Unique Student Identifier and MySkills.

While the 3 x 3 metre exhibition booths are already sold out, there are still a range of sponsorship opportunities, including a limited number of 2 x 3 metre booths.

The audience includes TAFE Institute directors and senior staff, industry, government and international delegates. The 2014 conference in Sydney attracted over 400 delegates and widespread media attention.

The 2015 conference will explore topics, including, fostering partnerships with industry; the role of the public provider in a deregulated market; the VET interface with higher education; managing risk in a competitive environment, and Australia’s partnerships abroad.

A highlight will be the Sino-Australian VET Forum, involving a delegation of 80-100 Chinese VET officials from Eastern China.

For more information regarding sponsorship and exhibition opportunities, please contact Sarah at: or call 02 8880 7608.

TDA national conference booking and flight information

Accommodation and registration information regarding the 2015 TDA National Conference will be available in early May.

Qantas currently has a sale to Hobart that is valid at the time of the conference. The sale expires on 31 March.

We suggest arriving in Hobart on Wednesday 9 September before 1pm if you would like to attend one of the pre-conference workshops (2-4pm).

If you plan to attend the welcome reception at MONA on Wednesday evening, please arrive at the airport by 4pm.

The conference will commence at 10am, Thursday 10 September and finish at 5pm, Friday 11 September, followed by a Governor’s Reception at Governor’s House, 6-7pm.

On Saturday 12 September, there will be an optional post conference workshop, and, of course, we highly recommend taking time to do a tour or two while in Hobart!

TDA puts its view on the future of training packages

The Board of TDA has made submissions on who should develop and maintain training packages and how packages could be improved.

It follows the VET Reform Taskforce’s call for submissions on the reform of training packages.

See TDA’s submission on industry engagement in training package development.

See TDA’s submission on the review of training packages and accredited courses.

TDA seeking a policy analyst

There is a position vacant for a Policy Analyst with TDA.

The preferred location for the position is in Sydney.

A candidate information package is available by contacting

Further information about the role can be obtained by contacting the Acting CEO, Malcolm White on (02) 9217 3180

The closing date for applications is Friday 24 April.

Save the date – global and national VET trends symposium, Perth, 27 May

The Centre for Training Excellence and LH Martin Institute are holding the ‘Global and national trends: policy decisions and impacts on vocational and higher education’ symposium in Perth on 27 May. Speakers include:

  • Professor Leo Goedegebuure, Director, LH Martin Institute
  • Professor Peter Noonan, Mitchell Institute for Health and Education Policy, Victoria University
  • Malcolm White, Acting CEO, TAFE Directors Australia
  • Bruce Mackenzie, Chair, VET Funding Review & former TDA Chair & CEO Holmesglen.
  • Simon Walker, Executive Director, Policy, Planning and Innovation, Department for Training and Workforce Development WA.

It is essential professional development for people who set strategy and want to make informed decisions to support the current and future direction of their learning institutions.

More information will be available soon.

Diary Dates

WAVE National Conference
Leaders, teachers, learners, leavers: Women in the Australian VET market

DATE: 8 April 2015
LOCATION: Melbourne, Victoria
DETAILS: Click here for more information.

18th Annual Conference

DATE: 8-10 April 2015
LOCATION: The Rendezvous Grand, Melbourne
DETAILS: More information.

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.

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.

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.



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