Commonwealth takeover of VET would hurt TAFE, federal opposition says
The federal government’s proposal for a Commonwealth takeover of vocational education and training would mean cuts to the TAFE sector, the federal opposition has claimed.
Shadow Minister for Vocational Education Sharon Bird said that “TAFE will be a thing of the past if Malcolm Turnbull’s plan for a Liberal takeover is allowed to happen.”
The Minister for Education and Training, Senator Simon Birmingham, presented the federal government’s case for a takeover in his address to the TDA national conference in Hobart earlier this month.
The Victorian and West Australian premiers are working on a proposal for a Commonwealth takeover of VET to be presented to COAG before the end of the year.
However, the Tasmanian Premier, Will Hodgman, has strongly ruled out such a move.
“As the minister said last week and as I say now, we do not support a national takeover of that system,” Mr Hodgman said.
Tasmania to invest in skills for seasonal industries
The Tasmanian government is to spend $1.2 million in a new training program to upskill some 1,300 workers in seasonal industries, including food, tourism and hospitality.
The Skills Fund – Seasonal Industries program provides funding to bodies including registered training organisations (RTOs) to prepare workers and communities for seasonal fluctuations.
The Minister for State Growth, Matthew Groom, said about half of the training will take place in the food production/seasonal agriculture sector, about 35% in hospitality and 17% in tourism.
“This funding demonstrates the Government’s commitment to supporting these vital industries and our regional communities,” he said.
Canberra Institute to deliver technology courses in India
Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT) is to sign a memorandum of understanding with India as part of a push by the ACT government to promote vocational education on the sub-continent.
The ACT Minister for Education and Training Joy Burch has embarked on a tour of India’s education regions to promote the territory’s capability in vocational training and strengthen education ties.
Ms Burch, along with CIT’s Chief Executive Officer Leanne Cover, will meet with major technology company NeST IT, Indian education ministers and training institutions in the Indian education regions of Kerala and Gujarat over a week to discuss training opportunities.
CIT will sign an MOU to develop training into schools and to the adult population in the areas of spatial information and surveying, and forensic science.
“CIT has a wealth of international experience in delivering training in these specialised areas of technology, and these agreements will help meet the training needs of India’s developing economy and be the beginning of a mutually beneficial international partnership,” Ms Burch said.
Students planning class action against Evocca College
One of the largest private training providers Evocca College, is facing a potential class action from hundreds of former students, according to a report by ABC’s consumer affairs unit.
Solicitor Benjamin Kramer said he is preparing to file documents on behalf of former Evocca College students.
He will allege the company breached consumer law by providing sub-standard courses and using unfair marketing tactics to sign up students.
“I’ve been blown away by how many people have been forthcoming with their own experiences and their own claims of how they’ve felt they’ve been wronged by the school,” he told the ABC.
Evocca College chief executive Craig White said the company was surprised to hear of the potential court action and completely rejects the allegations.
“It is not supported by any demand that has been issued to or received by Evocca,” he told the ABC.
The Australian Training Awards presentation dinner will be held at Princes Wharf No. 1, Hobart, Tasmania on Thursday 19 November.
Tickets can be booked by visiting The Event page of the Australian Training Awards website.
Since 1994, the Australian Training Awards have been the peak, national awards for the vocational education and training sector, recognising individuals, businesses and registered training organisations for their contribution to skilling Australia.
TAFE teachers battle out prestigious language, literacy and numeracy award
One of the highlights of the upcoming Australian Training Awards (see article above) will be the ‘Excellence in Language, Literacy and Numeracy Practice Award’ where all the finalists are from TAFE. The finalists are:
Lyn Wilson (NSW) – for over 20 years, Lyn has managed the Sydney TAFE – Petersham College Foundation Studies section, historically one of the largest adult basic education units within TAFE NSW. The section is known for its outstanding links with industry and its successful delivery of foundation skills and pre-employment programs.
Leanne Hanson (Queensland) – a language, literacy and numeracy teacher at TAFE Queensland Gold Coast since 2013.Leanne has taught Skills for Education and Employment to primarily disengaged youth through a uniquely inclusive system of learning that has led to a 300% increase in students completing the program.
Liz Birch (Queensland) – has been a language, literacy and numeracy teacher for over 24 years. In the past 15 years with TAFE Queensland Brisbane, Liz has dedicated her working life to assisting migrants successfully overcome cultural and linguistic barriers to integrate into the workforce. Her successful Work Experience Log Book initiative is now being used as a model resource across TAFE Queensland.
TAFE study tour to Singapore and South Korea
TAFEs are invited to take part in a four-day study tour of Singapore and South Korea that will build links between TAFE and industry.
It follows the inaugural 2015 TAFE Study Tour to Asia, which culminated in the report, ‘Vocational training for the Global Economy’, produced by consultants Dandolo Partners, and released at the TDA national conference.
Due to significant interest, the decision has been taken to conduct a similar, but expanded, study tour in 2016, from April 3 – 4.
TDA has provided its support for the initiative, recognising that it will assist in driving deeper linkages between TAFEs and industry. The tour will again be sponsored by SingTel Optus and Cisco.