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Acquire tumbles towards insolvency

ABC News     |    12 May 2017 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Acquire Learning, which has been teetering on the edge of the abyss for some time, has tumbled into voluntary administration.  The appointed administrator says recent regulatory changes appear to have had a significant impact on Acquire's business model. …………………………………………………………………………………….......…… Acquire Learning was an education broker and recruitment service that marketed on behalf of certain RTOs who were responsible for accepting and finalising the enrolments, although it did eventually acquire its own two training providers. Acquire’s website and social media accounts have been suspended for months, the … [Read more...]

The Scan # 178 12 April 2016

TAFE does heavy lifting - TDA 12 April 2016   |    A TAFE Directors Australia (TDA)-commissioned analysis of official data reveals ‘for profit’ private training colleges have gained a massive 75% share of the $3 billion Commonwealth VET FEE-HELP funding, while the public TAFE sector continues to do the “heavy lifting”.  The performance of Australia’s 57 TAFE Institutes emerges strongly, dominating all major state and territory VET-funded ‘fields of education’ and trade apprenticeships. While TAFE delivered 63% of enrolments across the majority of fields of education, Commonwealth allocation of student loans to TAFE fell to just 20% in 2014, and the government’s own emergency legislation to … [Read more...]

Exponential growth of VET-FEE HELP as sector opened to private colleges

The looting of VET FEE-HELP 7 April 2016 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… A report presented on ABC Radio National provides an insight into the thinking of the providers who have virtually looted VET FEE-HELP: it was all within the rules, apparently, so that made it all right.  As this extract shows, the greater part of the loot flowed to a handful of providers, all of which were relatively recently established, with no track record of provision, let alone quality provision.  In the space of a couple of years, for example, Ivan Brown,  turned a $500 start-up investment into a stake in a listed company worth $180 million (Australian Careers Network), all built on the back of … [Read more...]

Australian Careers Network collapses

15,000 students in limbo Fairfax Media   |    22 March 2016 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Australian Careers Network (ACN) has been placed into administration, marking the end of the company's troubled time on the Australian Securities Exchange and almost certainly the prelude to its liquidation. …………………………………………………………………………………….......…… This follows the Federal Court dismissing action brought by ACN subsidiary Phoenix Institute against the Department of Education for cutting $40 million federal funding to the scandal plagued college.  Justice Mark Moshinsky found while the Commonwealth was technically obliged to make the funding payments to Phoenix, the "decision by the … [Read more...]

Evocca sacks staff & closes campuses

Crack down on  VET FEE-HELP having an effect ABC News     |    17 March 2016 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Training giant Evocca College has sacked 220 staff  (out of 770) and will close more than a third of its campuses around the country. It comes after about 200 staff were let go in October, 2015. …………………………………………………………………………………….......…… In a statement, the college said 17 "smaller" campuses are to be closed, affecting about 900 of its 11,000 students. Affected students have been told they can transfer to nearby campuses or study online, or a mixture of both. There have been a number of college closures around the country after the Commonwealth government cracked … [Read more...]

The Scan # 177 17 March 2016

News ______________________________________________________ Fed takeover of VET unlikely 14 March 2016   |   The newly-minted Commonwealth minister for skills, Scott Ryan,  has poured cold water on a proposed Commonwealth takeover of vocational education and training set out in a draft of a paper to go to the next meeting of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG).  Under the proposal, TAFE fees would be deregulated and TAFEs would receive the same funding.  While education Simon Birmingham has strongly advocated a Commonwealth takeover,  Ryan says there are strong arguments to maintain the current system. Ryan said redesigning the troubled VET FEE-HELP scheme - which has blown … [Read more...]

The year to date

11 March 2016 There’s a lot to catch up with but, as they say, plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose (which is, according to the estimable Wiktionary, an epigram by Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr in the January 1849 issue of his journal Les Guêpes (“The Wasps”), meaning “the more it changes, the more it’s the same thing.”)  VET FEE-HELP   As previously reported, changes to the VET FEE-HELP (VFH)  scheme legislated late last year provides some better protection of students from the carpetbaggers who have looted the scheme and dudded the students.  The government proposes to spend this year look at ways to rort-proof it from the likes of Phoenix.  But as so many people have asked: how … [Read more...]

The Scan’s year

Summer edition 2016 __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ The Scan in 2015 This year’s top ten reads were heavily skewed towards the “VET crisis” and attempts by authorities (rather belatedly in our view) to stamp out the obvious rorting, particularly in VET FEE-HELP funding, which has been truly scandalous. In fact, the number one post this year on The Scan is also the number one post of all time and by quite a bit. If you enter “rorting” in the … [Read more...]

The Scan in 2015

 26 December 2015 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… On account of other pressing matters in 2015 published editions of The Scan, with a completely refreshed front page heralded to subscribers by an e-newsletter, were down quite a bit – just 21 in 2015 compared to 40 in in 2014. Nevertheless, some 350 items were posted, which is about 8 a week in The Scan’s year, a little down on the 10 items posted a week last year. Traffic to the Scan website remained strong, down about 20% on last year’s figures. The Scan’s now extensive archive of nearly 3000 posts creates “organic” traffic: over one third of all Scan traffic now flows from search engines and referrals. Regular readers will have … [Read more...]

The Scan #176 16 December 2015

News __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Rebalancing Victorian VET 16 December 2015     |     The Victorian government has released the Final Report of The VET Funding Review (Mackenzie Report).  It’s a weighty document, both literally and figuratively, running to 173 pages and 109 recommendations. Skills minister Steve Herbert says the government accepts the “general thrust” of the report and its recommendations.  It will take the next year to work through design and implementation issues and to consult with stakeholders ahead of the introduction of a new funding model in 2017.  Certain … [Read more...]