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2023 opens with great news for potential students around the country. Enrolments for Free-Fee TAFE are well underway. The Government has made 180,000 places available, the majority through TAFE, to provide opportunities for Australians across the country to “upskill quickly and hit the ground running in an in-demand industry”.
Often lots happens in our skills sector in the week or so before Christmas, and 2022 is running true to form. Yesterday Minister O’Connor announced the ten new Jobs and Skills Councils (previously referred to as Industry Clusters).
During the last month DEWR has consulted extensively on the proposed changes to the Standards for RTOs. One of the very pleasing areas of change is the proposal to strengthen experts who can be part of the learning and assessment of students.
From LinkedIn to traditional media, the last couple of weeks have been dominated by stories highlighting learner success. For the TAFE calendar, November is a very important month as teachers and learners come together at either organisational events or in small groups to celebrate the achievements of learners.
Students will benefit from TAFE and university combined credentials and an even playing field – comment by CEO Jenny Dodd
The coming year, 2023, bodes well for the creation of high quality dual qualifications that are built for students.
Adelaide hosted over 470 delegates to the TDA Convention 2022 last week which was followed by the Australia Training Awards on Friday night. The week was full of examples of individual innovation and stories of trusted partnerships.
It feels like déjà vu. Australia’s vocational education and training sector (VET) is undergoing another reputational issue with the reporting in the media of non-genuine students being induced to Australia and exploited for sex work.
Developing transferable skills is where taxpayers’ money should be spent – comment by CEO Jenny Dodd
One of the good things coming out of the current VET reforms is the focus on transferable skills. The proposed new guidelines for training package developers will lift qualifications so they meet occupational and skills standards. Inherent within that approach will be a focus on what someone needs to do in an occupation.
Lots happened this week. The budget was central to this, outlining direction for vocational education and training in 2023, establishing Jobs and Skills Australia, and providing the budget for the higher education review.
On Friday 28 October, World Teachers Day will be celebrated in many States of Australia.
This month is a big month for Year 12 students. For example, the Higher School Certificate exams in NSW began last week. TDA wishes all Year 12 students the very best as they complete their secondary schooling.
TDA and its members welcome the Government’s refocus on TAFE. TAFEs are the anchors and trusted providers of vocational education and training (VET). Most importantly TAFE’s role is broader than just training students to acquire technical skills for employment. TAFEs have always focused on general education. General education is fundamental if we are to equip Australians to be lifelong learners. As we know with the push to lifelong learning, in 2023 and beyond Australia needs its VET graduates to be able to engage in ongoing and often higher levels of learning.
The Jobs and Skills Australia (JSA) legislation is on its way through the Parliament – it is through the lower house and now onto the Senate. This new oversighting body is universally agreed to be needed in the skills sector. There is much for JSA to do, and one area being considering, as part of the national skills agreement, is whether funding should be committed to lifelong learners.
The Jobs and Skills Summit included a focus on Australia’s goal of moving to clean energy. This is an emerging industry requiring new training and new partnerships to deliver the skills that are needed for the workforce.
Today’s message is directed to TDA members. There is a lot happening in our world of TAFE, from the outcomes at the Jobs and Skills Summit, including the announcement of the ‘training blitz’ and fee-free TAFE places for students, to the work we do every day educating and skilling students and employers. To achieve great outcomes takes an exceptional workforce. Therefore, today I call on people working for TAFE or a dual sector university to recognise your colleagues by nominating them for a TAFE Staff Recognition Award.
A key theme of the Jobs and Skills Summit two weeks ago was equal opportunities and pay for women. An important contribution to improved pay is the link with qualifications. Skills and qualifications generally allow entry to better-paying careers.
It was a privilege to be part of the Jobs and Skills Summit last week in Canberra. However, I was not expecting that before 8.15am on Day One that TAFE would be the main story! In his opening address to the delegates the Prime Minister announced the $1billion ‘blitz for training’ with the announcement of the additional TAFE fee-free places.
Last week I stated that the Jobs and Skills Summit should consider simplification of the national training system. TAFE desperately needs more flexibility to deliver training that employers need, now and for the future. To achieve this flexibility, better funding for vocational education and training is essential.