Hi Everyone

Hope you are all well.

OK,,,, I would firstly like to open this newsletter by acknowledging that I was wrong about QLD becoming a non-referring State! At one point it was a certainty and then QLD was pulled back from the brink by the Federal Government. Who would have thought! Anyway, I am pleased that we have some consistency in regulation for multi-State providers based in QLD. Some have sent me emails calling on me to run naked around the QLD Parliament building for my error of judgement (sorry about the mental image!). I am still thinking about that as a marketing opportunity and will let you all know!

Now down to some serious stuff. There is (as always) lots in this edition of VET News and I would like to thank my team for all their effort in sorting through the information clutter to present the most relevant news for the month. There are two items that I draw your attention to:

  • ASQA Update, Item: New compliance requirement for retaining student assessments. The way I read this is that an RTO will need to retain all assessment evidence on all students for the duration of the students enrolment and for the following six months. Of course there may be other licencing and contractual requirements to keep it longer but this is the minimum retention requirement for all student assessment records. Let me know what you think.
  • NSSC launches a review of the VET regulation standards. I would strongly encourage all of you to register your interest and submit your feedback to the NSSC. In my submission I am highlighting that the standards need to be more specific about the expectations on the RTO and minimise the areas in the standards which require the auditor to “interpret” the requirement. RTOs want clearly defined standards that they can understand and comply with without worrying what the auditor will think! Keep in mind it’s not the auditors fault either. They are stuck with a highly stated, generalised collection of qualitative statements which they are expected to audit. An accompanying evidence guide would be nice as well. This is a call to arms! You have until Friday 13 July 2012 to register and provide your feedback. Do not miss this opportunity!

As always we invite new subscribers at: Subscribe to VET News

If you have some news, send it to us at: news@newberyconsulting.com.au

Kind regards,

Joe Newbery


Compliance and Regulatory News


Queensland legislation is passed

On 21 June 2012, the Queensland Parliament passed the Vocational Education and Training (Commonwealth Powers) Bill 2012 (QLD) to transfer powers to the NVR for the regulation of RTOs. The effective date for the transfer is 29 June 2012. Read the Queensland Minister’s media statement at the following link.



The Unique Student Identifier (USI) is coming

As flagged in the Government’s skills reform package in April this year, the USI is set to become a reality for the VET sector, with implementation planned for 1 January 2014. A new page has been added to the Department’s website to promote the initiative and an FAQ page gives some insight into the current thinking of how this change will occur. See the links below.




ASQA update

Here is a snapshot of what the national VET regulator reported in June.

IMPORTANT: New compliance requirement for retaining student assessments. Under a general direction issued by ASQA on 22 June 2012, RTOs regulated by the NVR must now securely retain ‘completed student assessment items’ (this is defined in the general direction) for a specified period. This period is the longer of:

  • the duration of the RTO’s assessment appeal period;
  • a period of six months from the date on which the judgement of competence for the student was made; or
  • the duration of the student’s enrolment.You will need to be able to demonstrate compliance at your next audit. Read the full general direction at the link below.


Information sessions for Queensland. ASQA has scheduled a number of information sessions in Queensland following the passing of the Queensland referral legislation. These will be held in July and August. Click on the link below for dates and registration instructions.


Checking an application status on ASQAnet. If you have submitted an application using ASQAnet, then you can check its progress in real time. You simply need to log into ASQAnet using the same user account that you used to submit the application. You will see the progress of all your submitted applications on the ASQAnet home screen.

Reminder: Are your details up to date? ASQA has posted another reminder for RTO managers to check that the details on the National Register (training.gov.au) are accurate. Click on the link below for instructions if you find your details are not correct.



NSSC launches a review of the VET regulation standards

On 8 June 2012 the NSSC announced that it was commencing a review of the standards for the regulation of VET. The review is broad ranging and encompasses standards for Registered Training Organisations, Data, and VET Regulators. The anticipated outcome of the review is a new set of standards presented to SCOTESE for endorsement in mid to late 2013.

Read the related NSSC Special Bulletin at:


You may also like to review the new dedicated section on the NSSC website, where you can find out how to have your say:



Standards for Training Packages

The NSSC reported in its meeting on 14 June 2012, that the development of new Standards for Training Packages will be the subject of further stakeholder consultation over the coming months, with a focus on identifying implementation and transition issues. The NSSC also reported that it has been working closely with the Commonwealth to identify potential functionality requirements for training.gov.au to accommodate the new streamlined Training Packages. It is anticipated that the draft standards will be considered at the next meeting of the NSSC, scheduled for 5 September 2012. Read the full meeting communique at the following link:



The Office of the AQF Council has moved

As a result of the Commonwealth Government Ministry changes in late 2011, the hosting arrangements of the Office of the AQF Council have changed from the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) to the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education (DIISRTE). If the new location and contact details for the AQF are important to you, then you’ll want to read the AQF Newsletter at the link below.



Training Package News


Recent Training Package endorsements/ updates

AUM12 Automotive Manufacturing, version 1.0 Endorsed 14/06/12

UEP12 Electricity Supply Industry – Generation Sector, version 1.0 Endorsed 14/06/12

ICP10 Printing and Graphic Arts, version 2.0 Endorsed 14/06/12

MTM11 Australian Meat Industry, version 2.0 18/06/12

AHC10 Agriculture, Horticulture and Conservation and Land Management, version 3.0 22/06/12

AVI08 Aviation, version 4.0 Endorsed 14/06/12

MEM05 Metal and Engineering, version 8.0 25/06/12

SIR07 Retail Services, version 3.0 29/05/12

For details of release information go to http://training.gov.au/


Enrolled Nursing qualification now starts at Diploma level

Changes to the minimum qualification for registration as an Enrolled Nursing has led to the removal of the Certificate IV in Nursing from the current version of the Health Training Package. Find out more at:



Events, Resources & Funding News

Important Note: The inclusion of news items about recently released resources does not constitute an endorsement by Newbery Consulting. A full and detailed review of any ‘off-the-shelf’ resource should be undertaken to determine if it is suitable for your organisation and can be customised to meet your needs.


E-portfolios for Learner Pathways

E-portfolios for Learner Pathways is a business activity funded by the National VET E-learning Strategy. Its newly launched website notes: The project aims to support individuals’ lifelong learning goals by providing the basis for learners to progress through vocational education and training (VET) and gain recognition of their prior learning and experiences, and by enabling the national portability of learning evidence and verifiability of qualifications. Find out more at:



Updated resources from WA

The Western Australian Department of Training and Workforce Development has recently updated its VET publications to 2012 versions. These are available for download at the following link:



Free Learning Resource from CS&HISC: Disability Behaviour Support Skill Set

A free learning resource is now available to assist in delivery of the Disability Work – Behaviour Support Skill Set. This skill set is made up of four units and provides workers with the skills and knowledge to manage a service delivery program which supports people with a disability who have behaviours of concern. Access the resource at the following link:



Australian apprenticeship & traineeship updates

Click on the links below to view the Australian Apprenticeship Updates for June, showing qualifications recently implemented in QLD, SA, WA, TAS and VIC:




Other News of Interest


Single TAFE for Tasmania

As reported in The Australian on 5 June 2012, the Tasmanian Government announced plans to merge the Tasmanian Polytechnic and Tasmanian Skills Institute into a single entity in July next year. The new entity will be known as TasTAFE. To view the full article, click on the link below. (NB. May require subscription)



VET research for industry

VET research for industry was the title of a paper delivered by Tom Karmel at the at the AVETRA conference in April 2012. Karmel notes that industry is arguably the key stakeholder in the Australian VET sector and discusses six areas of research which raise questions about VET and industry, either in terms of how public training funds are allocated or the educational principles on which VET is based. Access the conference paper on the NCVER website at the link below (login required):



Investing in experience

The Australian Government will invest $20 million over two years in the Investing in Experience (Skills Recognition and Training) program, to assist mature age workers aged 50 years and over to gain formal recognition of their current competencies and receive training to fill any knowledge or skills gaps so that they can obtain a nationally recognised qualification at the Certificate III to Advanced Diploma level. Read more about the initiative at the following g link:



Training packages an ‘expensive edifice’

As reported in The Australian on 14 June 2012, according to University of Melbourne academic, Leesa Wheelahan, training packages should be scrapped in favour of the model used in private higher education where providers develop their own qualifications. In a study conducted by Dr Wheelahan, she found that about 13 per cent of training package qualifications had no students, and 56 per cent had fewer than 50. Just 14 per cent had more than 500 equivalent full-time students. Millions are spent creating qualifications delivered by thousands of small providers that teach few students, according to Dr Wheelahan.

Critics said Dr Wheelahan’s analysis relied on incomplete data and out-dated assumptions. Service Skills Australia said it ignored the training that businesses gave their staff in the workplace.

To view the full article, click on the link below. (NB. May require subscription):



Aged Care Workforce Compact

On 18 June 2012, the Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Mark Butler, announced the appointment of Commissioner Anne Gooley as the Chair of the Aged Care Strategic Workforce Advisory Group. The Compact will result in a commitment between government, unions and aged care providers to tackle the workforce problems confronting the sector. Read the Minister’s media release at the link below.



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