VET News – 28th July 2016

Hi there,

It is a packed VET News this month. If you have previously missed it, ASQA made an announcement this month about changes to the audit process. It is worth taking a look at that. It seems to be a step back from allowing for procedural fairness. The key change in my view is the option for the regulator to move straight to issuing “Notice of intent to impose administrative sanction” without first allowing the RTO to rectify a non-compliance. It does say that this action may be taken when highly concerning non-compliance are identified. It will be interesting to see how this new power is applied by the regulator. It certainly will require auditors to make accurate findings as the consequences for the RTO are significant. It will likely result in more RTOs taking their appeal to the AAT where they definitely will get procedural fairness.

Before I go, I want to do a big shout out to one of our fantastic clients the Australian Careers Business College (ACBC). Last week on Thursday I attended a great event to celebrate ACBC’s 20th Year Anniversary and to mark the official opening of their new campus in Liverpool NSW. The Minister for Regional Development, Skills, and for Small Business, the Hon. John Barilaro, MP attended and did the honours and gave a great speech. I just want to again congratulate Ann and Nick Elisha on a great achievement. Too often we dwell on the bad apples in our industry. These guys are the good apples. They run a wonderful RTO that produces outstanding results for their students. The staff and trainers at ACBC are passionate and committed to the quality of the training and assessment they provide. These guys really do set the bar for a private college in our industry and Newbery Consulting is very pleased to have shared their journey. Well done guys!

Good training,

Joe Newbery


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Compliance & Regulatory News

ASQA update
A suite of procedural improvements
As part of the move to increasingly risk-based and proportionate regulation, ASQA is introducing a suite of procedural improvements relating to how we conduct audits and make decisions. These include:

  1. Earlier publication of regulatory decisions
  2. Changes to ASQA’s decision-making processes
  3. Changes to the audit process
  4. Development of a new audit model.


ASQA’s annual survey
Chris Robinson is urging stakeholders to participate in ASQA’s upcoming survey which will be emailed to:

  • ASQA-regulated RTOs
  • other training providers
  • accredited course owners, and
  • business, industry and government stakeholders in vocational education and training.

Read the Chief Commissioner’s comments in the latest ASQA UPDATE>>

Amendments to Education Services for Overseas Students Act
Amendments to the Education Services for Overseas Students Act (ESOS Act) took effect on July 2016. These amendments designate ASQA as the ESOS agency for some providers.

The changes will simplify and streamline registration processes for CRICOS providers.

New asqanet available in August
ASQA is currently finalising the development of its new asqanet web portal, which will provide a number of enhanced and new services when it is released in August, with additional services being added later in the year.

All existing users of ASQA’s web portal will need to register to use the new asqanet. This process is to ensure that corporate information remains secure and confidential. RTOs will be notified in advance before the requirement comes into place.

Information for students of Southern Edge Training
ASQA is currently working to secure the records of students enrolled with Southern Edge Training Pty Ltd (RTO Code 4074), which entered voluntary liquidation on 30 June 2016.

Students may have recently received a letter from the Victorian Department of Education and Training containing information about options for continuing their studies and eligibility for government-subsidised training.

NCVER update

Data Support Bulletin June 2016
The latest edition of NCVER’s Data Support Bulletin covers the following:

  • Common AVETMISS queries
  • Tips for preparing 2016 data submission
  • AVETMISS updates to classifications, AVS validation rules and a minor update to the current Standard (Release 7.0)


NCVER portal updates
Next time you visit our Portal you may notice some changes. We’ve been working hard to enhance the site to make it even easier for you to find the latest in research and data. The new Portal now includes:

  • Search functionality, with predictive search
  • Social sharing of our content
  • A new look home page highlighting “What’s new” and “Featured products and services”
  • Mobile responsiveness.


Integrating NCVER and ABS data
NCVER has partnered with the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) to link NCVER’s training data from 2006 with 2011 with Census data allowing us to gain critical insights into the post-school outcomes for students undertaking VET in Schools.

The project demonstrated that students who do VET in Schools and do not go on to higher education have better engagement and employment outcomes. It also showed that male Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students who do VET in Schools are more likely to complete Year 12 and that male VET in Schools students who study a trade gain better employment outcomes.

NCVER webinars

  • 4 August 2016: What’s the secret of organisations with completion rates around 90%
  • 11 August 2016: Vulnerable workers and occupational mobility


Training Package News

TGA updates

Training package changes
There are new releases of the following training packages:

  • MSF Release 3.0: 12 July 2016
  • CPP07 Release 14.2: 8 July 2016
  • AHC Release 1.0: 27 July 2016
  • PMC Release 1.0: 22 July 2016
  • PMB Release 1.0: 22 July 2016
  • MSS Release 1.0: 22 July 2016


AISC Communique June 2016
The latest communique from the Australian Industry and Skills Committee (AISC) covered the following:

  • An address from the Hon Meegan Fitzharris MLA, ACT Minister for Higher Education, Training and Research.
  • Agreement on a significant package of work to be progressed during 2016-17. This will shortly be published in the National Review Schedule will provide a single source of information about work that is underway in the system.
  • Training packages approvals
  • Agreement to a revised draft of the Training Product Development and Endorsement Process Policy as the basis for consultation with key industry stakeholders
  • An update on the review of Industry Reference Committees (IRCs)


Events, Resourcing & Funding News

Australian apprenticeship update
Click on the links below to view the Training Package qualifications recently implemented in States and Territories.
UPDATE 20/07/16>>
UPDATE 6/07/16>>
UPDATE 22/06/16>>

QLD 2016­–17 Annual VET Investment Plan released

Minister for Training and Skills Yvette D’Ath has announced the Queensland Government’s $810.7 million investment in skills and training — up $56 million from last year — with the release of the 2016­–17 Annual VET Investment Plan.

The plan outlines the government’s continued focus on investing in skills that align with real job opportunities, underpinned by a VET investment framework that supports demand-driven funding arrangements.

SA’s Jobs First Subsidised Training List Projects

Applications for South Australia’s Jobs First Subsidised Training List (STL) Projects will open to private training providers on Tuesday 19 July.

The Jobs First STL Projects cover courses in foundation skills such as literacy, numeracy and introductory workplace skills, as well as pre-vocational courses and courses that lead directly into entry level jobs in areas like agriculture, driving operations, hospitality, early childhood, telecommunications, and digital media.

Face to face with the USI

‘Face-to-Face with the USI’ was a series of interactive workshops that were held in all capital cities between May and June 2016, with guest speakers from the ATO and the NCVER.

Due to an overwhelming response to these workshops, many RTOs were unable to attend and so there are plans to make a webinar available. In the meantime, presentations materials have been published.

Recent VET Publications

Research messages 2015
This publication summarises the research into Australia’s vocational education and training (VET) sector published by NCVER during 2015. This body of work can be broadly categorised into two streams: qualifications and participation; and showcases the relevance of VET to the Australian economy and its increasingly important role in the higher education sector.
RESEARCH SUMMARY>>Government-funded students and courses 2015
This publication presents 2015 figures on the number of students, subject enrolments, hours of delivery and full-year training equivalents in Australia’s government-funded vocational education and training (VET) system (broadly defined as all activity delivered by government providers and government-funded activity delivered by community education and other registered providers).
STATISTICAL REPORT>>Increasing survey engagement through gamification and the use of mobile devices
Maree Ackehurst and Rose-Anne Polvere
The quest to fully engage survey respondents, ensuring higher quality data and increased participation has become a priority for survey designers. This is especially in light of the reputation that online surveys are ‘dull’. Exploration of this subject has revealed an emerging trend: the ‘gamification’ of surveys. Gamification is thought to tap into a deeply entrenched human culture involving games and game playing, which therefore increases the engagement of survey respondents. Examining peer-reviewed and published literature, this paper discusses both gamification in web surveys as well as options for designing surveys for mobile devices.


2016-2017 Skills Oz Environmental-Scan
Skills Oz
(formerly CPSISC)
The E-Scan provides essential information that industry, government and training stakeholders can use to plan, forecast, and choose a direction for the skills development of the construction and property services workforce.

Other News of Interest

New Assistant Minister

In Malcolm Turnbull’s Cabinet reshuffle on 18 July 2016, the Hon. Karen Andrews MP was announced as the new Assistant Minister for Vocational Education and Skills, working with Senator the Hon. Simon Birmingham, Minister for Education and Training.

In his media release on 18 July, Simon Birmingham noted “I look forward to playing a leading role in finalising the redesign of Labor’s failed VET FEE-HELP scheme, seeking where possible to ensure consistency of approach across the tertiary education sector. I welcome the appointment of Karen Andrews as my Assistant Minister for Vocational Education and Skills who will bring strong focus to apprenticeships and other aspects of vocational education.”

Major restructure of NSW TAFEs

As reported by TAFE Directors Australia (TDA), the NSW government has embarked on the biggest reform to TAFE in more than 20 years, with a plan to bring ten institutes under a single structure, renegotiate industrial agreements and dispose of assets.

The One TAFE model was announced by the Minister for Skills John Barilaro, who said it would reduce overheads and direct more resources to frontline teaching.

The impact of Pauline Hanson’s One Nation on international education

As reported in The Australian on 6 July 2016, the $19.5 billion international education sector could suffer an immediate and dramatic shock, with the impact of Pauline Hanson and One Nation driving students from overseas to more welcoming markets.

Sharon Bell, an honorary professor at Australian National University, said Ms Hanson had expressed worrying views about Islam that, combined with her past statements, could threaten booming international enrolments.

Phil Honeywood, executive director of the International Education Association of Australia, said Ms Hanson had single-handedly trashed Australia’s reputation as an international study destination in the 1990s.
READ MORE>> (Subscription may be required)

VET FEE-HELP criticised by federal judge

As reported in the Sydney Morning Herald on 14 July 2016, a federal court judge has criticised the Commonwealth’s funding of private vocational education for allowing hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars to flow out of public coffers with minimal oversight. “It is hard to avoid, whoever put this scheme together did not think it through very much,” Justice Nye Perram said in Sydney on Thursday.

Justice Perram is presiding over action taken by the ACCC to recoup $47 million of dollars of public VET FEE-HELP funding from Unique International College.

Careers Australia under scrutiny by the ABC’s 7.30

The ABC’s 7.30 reported allegations that Careers Australia was enrolling vulnerable students into expensive courses over the phone, in breach of undertakings made to the ACCC.

A former employee, Peter Jensen, claimed the college was engaged in dubious sales techniques from operators in a high pressure call centre.

Careers Australia denied the allegations.

The news articles presented in this edition of VET News have been researched and prepared by Anne Maree Newbery.
Copyright © Newbery Consulting 2016, All rights reserved.


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