Hope you are all well. Welcome to all our new subscribers!
Well,, what a tumultuous month it has been in the media for our friend, ASQA. If you didn’t catch this through the month we have provided links to watch both stories. In regards to security training in QLD, to be fair to ASQA, they only assumed a regulatory function over QLD RTOs in July. The media should have been directing their questions to DETE who were happy to remain out of the media spotlight. I think both stories highlight the need for strong and consistent regulation.
My concern is the consistent bad press that private providers are getting in the media in recent times. We all know that there are very bad RTOs out there that need the regulators attention. But,, the vast majority of private RTOs are delivering quality training and assessment services to their students. Private RTOs provide the sector with unique flexible delivery options, highly customised training and often specialising in specific industry requirements. We need a healthy private RTO sector in Australia. The trouble is the private sector need a united voice to respond to media stories like these and provide prospective about the good work being done by many private RTOs. I think ACPET do a good job at this and certainly should be supported by the private RTO sector to represent their interests. The private RTO sector needs to get organised in order to compete and be a strong voice in the Australian VET sector.
On other matters, many of you will know the issues around the collection and reporting of learner and employer satisfaction rates. In short, in 2011 the NSSC has mandated that the learner and employer questionnaires released by ACER must be used to collect survey responses from students. ASQA reinforced this compliance requirement on its website click here. SMART is no longer supported or available (rightly so!) and as a consequence many current and new RTOs are looking for a solution to collate and use the feedback data these survey tools produce. We decided to address this issue and have developed a nice simple database which we are supplying to the VET Sector for free. It’s called Satisfaction Data and will allow you to progressively enter your survey results and produce reports over any date range. It will produce a summary report and a detailed report for both the learner and employer satisfaction trends. There is also a dashboard that gives you a snapshot of your performance. It uses the traffic light system to guide management decisions about how to respond when your satisfaction levels are low. This is just the first addition and we will continue to enhance this over time based on user feedback. You can request a free licenced copy of Satisfaction Data on our website at: Satisfaction Data – It’s free!.
Retention of completed student assessment items
I know we have touched on this before but,, I feel that from a compliance perspective this is a big issue and potentially not on many RTOs radar. If you haven’t previously read (carefully) the ASQA General direction: Retention requirements for completed student assessment items here it is: Click Here. I am going to issue a detailed blog on this in a couple of weeks but here are the main point:
- All assessment items must be kept for each student.
- Notwithstanding other retention requirements such as funding contracts, the retention period for most RTOs will be six months after the students enrolment has completed.
- Assessment items include the actual piece(s) of work completed by a student or evidence of that work.
- The retained evidence must have enough detail to demonstrate the assessor’s judgement of the student’s performance against the standard required.
Every RTO is going to need to carefully look at this and review what assessment evidence is being gathered and recorded. There will be a need for far greater detail to be recorded in assessment instruments that demonstrates the assessor’s judgement. Observation tools will need to provide suitable space for the assessor to record their observations that benchmark what the student was observed doing and their judgement about their performance. This is certainly what I have been reinforcing to my clients for many years so I have confidence in them. I think the wider sector needs to carefully look at this. More to follow.
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Compliance and Regulatory News
ASQA says claims of a ‘crisis’ in the VET sector are overstated. In response to the ABC’s 7.30 Report coverage, ASQA published a media release on 7 September 2012. Click on the link below to access the media release.
If you missed the original report, here it is:
ASQA confirms regulatory action against Pow Wow Training Pty Ltd. This was one of the RTOs at the centre of the ABC’s 7.30 Report and its application for renewal of registration has been rejected by ASQA. In its media release on 7 September (see above), ASQA indicated that regulatory action was already underway against Pow Wow prior to the airing of the 7.30 Report story. In a further media release dated 18 September, ASQA has confirmed plans to deregister Pow Wow Training with effect from 31 October 2012. Click on the link below to find out more.
ASQA suspends security courses from RTO’s scope. In a media release on 26 September 2012, ASQA confirmed that it has suspended part of a Queensland RTO’s registration that relates to providing security training courses. This follows a 7.30 Report story on 24 September that made serious allegations about the conduct of the RTO. Click on the link below to access the media release.
If you missed the original report, here it is:
Amended general direction for assessment records retention. An updated version of the general direction ‘Retention requirements for completed student assessment items’, is now available on the ASQA website. The intent of the general direction has not changed but some clarification has been added. It confirms that records may be kept in hard copy or electronic format and records must be available at audit “for each student”. The previous version noted “for a student”. Click on the link below to go to the General directions page of the ASQA website.
New ‘Notification of change of provider details’ form. ASQA has amended this form to better reflect the data on training.gov.au. It now caters for the nomination of different contact details for ‘registration’ and ‘public enquiries’. If you’re an RTO registered with ASQA and would like to amend your contact details on the national register then this is the form you need. Click on the link below to go to the Forms page on the ASQA website.
FAQs. All quiet on the FAQ front. We suspect the ASQA communications team has been a little busy this month!
Update on the review of standards for the regulation of the VET sector. 114 submissions were received in response to the NSSC’s Consultation Paper, which, according to the NSSC, “affirmed strong support for change and the need to have user-friendly standards, in a streamlined structure, and with a clear purpose.” An initial analysis and synthesis of the submissions has been published on the NSSC’s website, along with an outline of the anticipated next steps for the review. Also, on the Submissions page, there is a list of the respondents who consented to have their submission made public. An email link is provided if you wish to view a particular submission. Click on the link below to go to the Standards Review page of the NSSC website.
Update on the review of training package standards. At its meeting on 5 September 2012, the NSSC agreed to recommend draft Standards for Training Packages to SCOTESE for endorsement consideration later in 2012. No information has yet been published on the new framework but is expected shortly. Watch this space.
Fees for 2013. The VRQA has released for public comment, a Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) on its fees from 2013. A public consultation process is planned and written submissions from affected parties and/or members of the public are also invited by 23 October 2012. Click on the link below for more details.
New invoicing and payment system. On 3 September 2012 a new invoicing and payment system for all VRQA fees was introduced. Click on the link below to access further information.
Statistics on VET providers in Victoria. The VRQA has published an Information Sheet with key statistics on Victorian VET providers. View the publication at the following link:
Vocational Graduate qualifications to be removed from the AQF. After extensive consultation and consideration, the Australian Qualification Framework (AQF) Council, has determined that the Vocational Graduate Certificate and Vocational Graduate Diploma qualifications will be removed from the AQF. Graduate Certificates and Graduate Diplomas will be retained and will be available for accreditation, regulation and issuance in both the higher education and VET sectors. Click on the link below to read the AQF Communiqué
NB. We acknowledge this link is provided by TDA as the link on the AQF website was not operational at the time of publication. Thanks TDA!
Training Package News
Recent Training Package endorsements/ updates
MEM05 Metal and Engineering, version 8.1, release date 29/08/12
FNS10 Financial Services, version 3.1, release date 06/09/12
FDF10 Food Processing, version 4.0, release date 06/09/12
LGA04 Local Government, version 3.0, release date 11/09/12
CPP07 Property Services, version 11.0, release date TBA
AHC10 Agriculture, Horticulture and Conservation and Land Management, version 4.0, release date TBA
For details of release information go to http://training.gov.au/
Events, Resources & Funding News
Registrations open for EYEQ2012: VET ideas worth sharing
This 1-day event will focus on innovative approaches to e-learning and capability building for quality teaching, learning and assessment practices. It is hosted by the Queensland VET Development Centre and will be held on 19 October 2012 at Southbank Institute of Technology. Click on the link below for further information.
Free Workforce Development workshops with CS&HISC
CS&HISC is running free, two-hour breakfast workshops for health and community services organisations to explore the concepts of workforce development and planning. The workshops are appropriate for service providers, with particular focus on small-medium enterprises and will run in each state throughout November and December. To register your interest, email your details to email@example.com
Australian apprenticeship & traineeship updates
Click on the links below to view the latest Australian Apprenticeship Updates, providing dates for upcoming Information Sessions and showing qualifications recently implemented in WA, Qld, NSW, NT, ACT, Vic and Tas.
Other News of Interest
By 2050, more than 1 in 20 Australians will be an aged care worker
This statistic was quoted by the Federal Minister for Ageing Mark Butler in a media statement announcing funding for 16 universities and aged care facilities to set up integrated teaching environments similar to teaching hospitals. Click the link below to read the media release:
The Queensland Skills and Training Taskforce releases interim report
On 31 August 2012, the Taskforce presented its interim report to the Minister for Education, Training and Employment, John-Paul Langbroek, and to the Assistant Minister for Technical and Further Education, Saxon Rice, including recommendations for significant reform of the Queensland TAFE system. A final report will be delivered by the end of November 2012, with a Government response to follow. Click the link below to read the interim report and there is also a link to TAFE Directors Australia’s Media Releases page where you’ll find its response to the report.
More news on the TAFE crisis in Victoria
A big thanks to one of our subscribers for sending through the link below to a Scoop.it site dedicated to aggregating media articles on Victorian TAFEs. It makes this editor’s life a whole lot easier!
New chair for FLAG
Simon Walker, Executive Director of Policy, Planning and Innovation for the Western Australian Department of Training and Workforce Development has been appointed as the new Chair of the Flexible Learning Advisory Group (FLAG). Read more about Simon and his plans for FLAG at the link below.
For all those of you still resisting flexible learning, read on…
According to an article in The Australian on 26 September 2012, there were one trillion downloads on YouTube’s dedicated education site last year. The article notes: “The portal, which carries 900 channels and hundreds of thousands of video lessons, is part of a massive wave of free, high-quality offerings forcing a rethink of traditional education.” To view the full article, click on the link below. (NB. May require subscription):
This news letter was researched and prepared by Anne Maree Newbery.