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Study Group to be deregistered

ASQA      |   16 January 2018 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… The Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) has cancelled the registration of Study Group Australia Pty Limited as a provider of vocational education and training (VET) services, for significant non-compliance with the requirements of the VET Quality Framework. …………………………………………………………………………………….......…… Study Group Australia trades under multiple business names including ACPE Academy, Martin College, Australian Institute of Applied Sciences, Embassy English, Taylors College, ANU College, Flinders International Study Centre, and Taylors Unilink.  At August, Study Group VET providers had about 4,000 … [Read more...]

The Scan 28 June 2016 #181

Apprentice numbers slump 28 June 2016    |     The number of apprentices across Australia has plunged since the Coalition took office, government figures show, with some of the steepest falls occurring in high-unemployment marginal seats still up for grabs at Saturday's election.  Western Sydney has lost 10,642 apprentices and western Melbourne 4782, while the national total fell 28 per cent from 383,562 to 278,583, between December 2013 and December last year, documents obtained under Freedom of Information and NCVER data reveal.  Labor claims the falling take up of apprenticeships is a direct result of the $1 billion stripped from trades support programs since the change of government, … [Read more...]

Apprentice numbers slump

Fairfax Media     |    28 June 2016 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… The number of apprentices across Australia has plunged since the Coalition took office, government figures show, with some of the steepest falls occurring in high-unemployment marginal seats still up for grabs at Saturday's election. …………………………………………………………………………………….......…… Western Sydney has lost 10,642 apprentices and western Melbourne 4782, while the national total fell 28 per cent from 383,562 to 278,583, between December 2013 and December last year, documents obtained under Freedom of Information and NCVER data reveal.   Labor claims the falling take up of apprenticeships is a direct result … [Read more...]

Acquire in the dock

Fairfax Media   |   18 December 2015 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Acquire Learning is the latest training company to land in the Federal Court accused of unconscionable conduct and false or misleading behaviour after it sold tens of thousands of government-funded courses to vulnerable job-seekers.  The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has alleged before the Federal Court that the company bought the details of unsuccessful applicants on job websites, then cold-called them to sell expensive diploma courses. …………………………………………………………………………………….......……   The courses, funded under the federal-government funded VET FEE-HELP loan scheme, cost … [Read more...]

ACPET dismayed, as well

8 December 2015 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… ACPET's Rod Camm expresses dismay over the raft of changes in relation to VET FEE-HELP legislated last week  -and fair enough, too, because the blameless will be collateral damage in cracking down on the utterly blameworthy rorters.  But Camm also poses the question that has occurred to most VET sector participants and observers: how could this have been allowed to happen?  He answers the question thus:  Without....checks and balances this could only mean Government has been approving this phenomenal growth, in a relatively small number of public and private providers, … [Read more...]

Vocation collapses entirely

Fairfax Media    |   1 December 2015 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Less than a week after going into voluntary administration, ASX-listed education and training services company Vocation has been closed down, leaving 150 of its 180 employees without a job and more than 10,000 students in limbo. …………………………………………………………………………………….......…… In a statement released to the Australian Securities Exchange after 5pm on Monday 30 November administrator Peter Gothard of Ferrier Hodgson said the company's operations had ceased immediately. Please be advised that as a result of further customer contract terminations, the lack of available liquidity to fund operations and the lack of … [Read more...]

ACCC hits up Phoenix for $106 m

Fairfax Media    |     25 November 2015 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has accused leading VET provider Phoenix Institute of false, misleading and unconscionable conduct and is seeking recovery of $106 million in Commonwealth funding through VET-FEE HELP. …………………………………………………………………………………….......…… The ACCC launched legal action in the Federal Court on 25 November 2015 alleging: Phoenix represented to prospective students that they would receive a free laptop and that the course(s) were free or were free if the consumer did not earn approximately more than $50,000 per annum.  In fact, the laptop they received was on … [Read more...]

Venting about VET

Disheartened, disillusioned and downright angry ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… 25 November 2015     |    An RTO operator, who wishes to remain anonymous (fair enough),  laments that the reputable "sprats", such as herself, are being caught up in the net intended to catch the "sharks" in the VET ocean. …………………………………………………………………………………….......…… I'm writing this article because I need to vent. The vocational education and training sector is so backwards sometimes and it just doesn’t need to be this way. Everyone’s quite familiar now with the tales of rorting and depredation on the part of some providers but this is a multi-faceted story so let me put it from another side. Now … [Read more...]

ASQA gets the thumbs up – despite an apparent crisis

16 November 2015      ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… A survey commissioned by the national regulator, the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA), reveals an apparent “thumbs up” by stakeholders  for its work on deregulation and slashing redtape.  Meanwhile, in the real world, there’s a sense of crisis in the VET sector, as reported by Fairfax Media (below).  And the Senate has established an inquiry into the Higher Education Support Amendment (VET FEE-HELP Reform) Bill 2015 to examine measures proposed to protect students from unscrupulous training colleges. It follows the government’s blocking of Labor amendments to establish a VET Ombudsman and to create a legislated … [Read more...]

NCVER report reveals lack of scrutiny of VET sector

TDA News    |     10 November 2015 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… Data released by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) show the continuing fundamental role of  TAFE, as the public provider network, but also demonstrate a worrying failure in scrutiny by policy makers, according to TAFE Directors Australia. …………………………………………………………………………………….......…… The NCVER report Total VET students and courses 2014 reveals the huge growth in the VET sector to 3.9 million students – almost three times the number in the higher education sector.  The data also show: TAFE and private providers deliver roughly the same number of training hours nationally (41% by TAFE and 45% … [Read more...]