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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...]

Eco champion  gonged

7 June 2015 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Federation University Emeritus Professor Martin Westbrooke has been awarded an OAM (Medal of the Order of Australia) in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours List. …………………………………………………………………………………….......…… The award to Professor Westbrooke is for "service to ecology and to environmental management". “It is an honour to receive this award for my career and work in ecology and environmental management,” Professor Westbrooke said. “I have been fortunate to have the opportunity to combine my two passions, teaching and the environment in what has been a rewarding career, predominantly at Federation University Australia and its … [Read more...]

Uni surpluses don’t reflect “underlying position”

The Australian | 16 April 2015 ………………………………………………………………………………………………………   Victoria’s vice-chancellors have warned that their universities’ surpluses are artificially “inflated” and may bear little relation to reality. ……………………………………………………………………………………………….......…… Among other pressures, the end of the Education Infrastructure Fund means need to generate healthy surpluses to fund future investments. Victorian Vice Chancellor’s Committee chair and La Trobe vice-chancellor John Dewar says: This is the only way a university can fund a capital program given that there are no longer any sources of government funds for capital projects. By and large, universities operate with very low … [Read more...]

The Scan | #163 | 25 September 2014

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Vic’s ACFE joins TAFE “in crisis” 24 September 2014     |     The travails besetting Victoria’s TAFE sector have spread to its Adult, Community and Further Education (ACFE) sector with the ACFE board 2013-14 annual report showing a $1.1 million loss for the ACFE Board after a $11 million cut in state government funding. ACFE returned a $9.4 million surplus in 2012-13. The sector has had a precipitous drop in government income from its peak in 2011-12 – down 80% – and since 2009-10 – down 40%..... [ MORE ].... UWA sets … [Read more...]

Sector submissions to the Senate Inquiry

……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Updated 12 October 2014 . ……………………………………………………………………………………………….......……  25 September 2014 Generally  supportive but with significant amendments ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… The government’s higher education reform package - the Higher Education and Research Reform Amendment Bill 2014 - was referred on 3 September to the Senate Education and Employment Legislation Committee for consideration and report by 28 October. Submissions to the inquiry closed on 22 September. The committee has published 79 submissions on its website. Following are extracts from 27 submissions lodged by higher education organisations (peak bodies) … [Read more...]

Rise in youth unemployment ‘a result of traineeship cuts’

Federation University    |      28 August  2014 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Recent rises in youth unemployment in Victoria and elsewhere in Australia are a result of cuts to traineeships, according to Federation University Australia researcher Professor Erica Smith. ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Traineeships are a similar form of employment arrangement to apprenticeship, in which people are employed at the same time as undertaking a nationally recognised qualification.  Smith says the value of traineeships is that they expanded structured training opportunities to a much wider range of industries than traditional apprenticeships. “Previously the … [Read more...]

Melbourne surges in overseas students

The Australian   |    5 August 2014 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… The University of Melbourne has dramatically increased the number of international students it enrols and now has the largest number of any university in Australia. ………………………………………………………………………………………………………   Australian Education International data shows that in 2013, Melbourne had 14,165 overseas students studying onshore, leapfrogging the University of NSW with 13,123. Monash had 12,271, down from 12,581 in 2012 and 13,192 in 2011. Melbourne now has the third largest proportion of international students of any public university with 27.1%,  behind Federation University with 43.6%, most of which … [Read more...]

Fed Uni appoints Ballarat leader

Fed Uni News       |    26 June 2014 Sam Henson has been announced as Federation University Australia’s Head of Ballarat Campuses.   Formerly Associate Dean for International and Partnerships, Dr Henson will take up the new position on 1 July.   The position will entail broad oversight of the campuses as well as a role in building deep and lasting partnerships with Ballarat community, government and industry stakeholders. … [Read more...]

The Scan in May 2014 – top ten reads

VET in the Budget – the government’s statement 13 May 2014   |    The “tools for your trade payments” for apprentices will cease from 1 July 2014. It will be replaced immediately with a Trade Support Loans Program providing $439m over five years to provide apprentices with financial assistance up to $20K over a four year apprenticeship through a student loan repayment scheme. The Government will also establish an Industry Skills Fund to provide $470m over four years to support the training needs of small to medium enterprises that cannot be met by the national training system. Expenditure is budgeted to decline about 13% in 2014-15 over 2013-14 (from $1.67 billion … [Read more...]

Merger of Gippsland TAFEs to create “Federation Training”

16 April 2014 ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Advance and Gipps TAFE to merge with a view to being "integrated" into Federation University ………………………………………………………………………………………………….................................... The Victorian minister for higher education and skills, Nick Wakeling,  has announced  the formation of Federation Training Institute, which will be a new TAFE Institute in Gippsland, out of the merger of Advance TAFE and GippsTAFE, the two existing TAFEs in the region . It is envisaged that Federation Training would be integrated into Federation University Australia from 1 January 2016. FedU vice-chancellor David Battersby says that the university council … [Read more...]