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“Sloppy practices” on international students

Fairfax Media    |     11 June 2015 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Sloppy student services and false attendance reporting are systemic problems plaguing overseas students at private education providers, the national Overseas Students Ombudsman has revealed. …………………………………………………………………………………….......…… The Ombudsman released a new issues paper on poor compliance in the private education sector, based on 448 investigations into student complaints since the body's establishment in 2011. It warned some providers were failing to intervene with at-risk students, allowing weak students to continue to study and fail. Student absences were also being miscalculated. Providers were … [Read more...]

Australian Qualifications Framework Council disbanded

19  September 2014 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… The Australian Qualifications Framework Council, which was responsible for governance  of the Australian Qualifications Framework, has been disbanded.   No public announcement was made. ……………………………………………………………………………………………….......……   The council was originally established to deliver a review of the AQF, which culminated in the strengthened AQF.  With this work completed, the government says it was timely to reconsider the role of the council. Stakeholders have been advised that the decision does not diminish the government’s commitment to the AQF, the residual functions of the council will be transferred to the … [Read more...]

Senate inquiry splits on TEQSA bill

The Australian    |    19 June 2014 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… A Senate inquiry into a bill to restructure the higher education regulator has split along party lines. ……………………………………………………………………………………………….......…… The majority report of the Senate Education and Employment Legislation Committee has recommended the Senate to pass the bill to streamline the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA). The bill would take away its broad quality assessment role, spill the commissioners and restructure the commission, and enlarge the minister’s power to give directions to the agency. It would give commissioners more power to delegate decisions, and allow TEQSA to … [Read more...]

Review of Higher Education Standards Framework

The Higher Education Standards Panel has invited comment on proposed revisions to the Higher Education Standards Framework, which govern the approval processes for becoming and remaining a higher education provider. The Panel’s third Call for Comment includes background information on the Panel’s approach and consultation process, as well as instructions for the submission of comments. The closing date for comments is Friday 27 June 2014. … [Read more...]

TEQSA “gardening leave” confirmed

The Australian    |    13 June 2014 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… It has been confirmed at Senate Estimates that chief higher education regulator Carol Nicoll has taken indefinite leave and her future is tied to legislation that would restructure the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency. ……………………………………………………………………………………………….......…… A Bill introduced in late February by education minister Christopher Pyne would spill the positions of TEQSA’s five commissioners, splitting the roles of chief commissioner and chief executive both of which are currently vested in the person of Dr Nicoll. It would also strip away the agency’s broader role in quality … [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...]

V-C slams fee deregulation

27 May 2014 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… In an email to staff, Swinburne vice-chancellor Linda Kristjanson has expressed concern about five aspects of the recent Budget. In particular, she has joined a number of other vice-chancellors in  voicing her opposition to fee deregulation and higher interest charges on HECS loans, which she says will lead to a "higher education system characterised by the haves and the have nots." ……………………………………………………………………………………………….......…… Many staff attended briefings on the Federal Budget and there is a high level of interest in what the changes might mean for Swinburne. Although the package is complex and has many elements, these are the five … [Read more...]

ACPET National Monday Update – edition 554, 19 May 2014

Broadening horizons and opportunities Edition 554, 19 May There was much discussion last week about the measures announced in the Budget – some good and some not so good for private providers and their students. I sent email advice on Tuesday evening to all members and had a further opportunity to discuss the changes with members during Friday’s In Conversation with the CEO webinar. This week’s article moves beyond the Budget, although no doubt we’ll come back to the Budget measures in the weeks ahead and I welcome members’ comments and questions. For those working in the higher education sector, this week’s Symposium presents a crucial opportunity to understand the coming changes and … [Read more...]

ACPET 2014 Higher Education Symposium

The ACPET 2014 Higher Education Symposium will provide a comprehensive analysis of the issues related to policy, regulation, academic governance and learning and teaching practice. Marriot Hotel, Circular Quay Sydney on 22 may 2014  ………………………………………………………………………………………………….................................... The keynote speaker at the Symposium is the Hon Christopher Pyne, Minister for Education.  In addition to Minister Pyne delegates will also hear from TEQSA, the Higher Education Standards Panel and other influential stakeholders in the higher education sector. … [Read more...]

TEQSA leaders on gardening leave?

The Australian    |      10 April 2014 ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… The two founding leaders of the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) have gone on extended leave with no official word on their return. ………………………………………………………………………………………………….................................... TEQSA chief commissioner Carol Nicoll and Brisbane-based commissioner Ian Hawke, who served as interim chief executive of the new national regulator, are on leave as the agency confronts an agenda of radical reform and a federal austerity budget. The commission, identified as a bottleneck for key regulatory decisions, will be down from five to three members at least until … [Read more...]