September 2014 Newsletter

In June the Student Identifiers Act 2014 was passed and its implementation of the Unique Student Identifier (USI) becomes effective 1 January 2015.

What this means to students is that they will now have a unique student identifier (USI) that they will be able to track all the vocational training that they do regardless of which training provider they use be it TAFE or a private training organisation into a single transcript. This also means that their training records will not be lost as the USI will stay with them for life.

The benefits for training providers is that it will enable students to provide them with access to an online authenticated record of training that the student has attained. It will also enable the streamlining of processes in terms of enrolment, assessment of course prerequisite if required, credit transfer and assist in determining the eligibility for funding assistance.

As a registered training organisation we are able to seek the USI on behalf of our students once we have their permission. We will be contacting our students over the coming weeks to assist them in this process by obtaining permission from each person to apply for their unique student identifier (USI).

Once the USI has been provided this information will be given to the student for their records and entered into our student management system.

More information on the USI can be found at The Australian Government Department of Industry

Australian Government Reforms for Vocational Education Training (VET)

At the recent National VET conference held 11 September 2014 the Minister for Industry, The Hon Ian MacFarlane MP announced some sweeping changes to the Vocational Education Training (VET) sector.

The Australian Government is introducing a package of reforms to elevate trades and vocational education to the centre of Australia’s economy and put the focus squarely on ensuring Australian workers are highly skilled and job-ready.

These reforms include:

  • Introducing a new Australian Apprenticeship Support Network to replace the existing apprenticeship centre model. An investment of around $200 million per annum will be made to this network to ensure that it will be a smarter and outcome-driven way of apprenticeship training with a focus on providing the skills industry needs. The new apprenticeship network will be announced in early 2015 after a competitive tender process has been completed.
  • The new apprenticeship network will be announced in early 2015 after a competitive tender process has been completed.

Changes to how ASQA will operate as follows:

  • Will get rid of the excessive red tape for high-performing training providers and let them get on with what it is that they do best – delivering the highest caliber training that meets industry and the economy’s needs.
  • ASQA will be able to take regulatory action against an RTO using a broker, if the broker is breaching the standards that RTO’s operate under.
  • ASQA is now automatically updating training providers’ scope of registration to include any new, equivalent version of a training product they are already registered to deliver.
  • ASQA has also removed the requirement for a financial viability assessment to be undertaken as part of the re-registration process for existing providers.
  • Under the reforms ASQA will be more proactive and provide better information to providers about what they need to do to be compliant.

 

Changes will be made to the development of training packages to ensure that the skills and training system are industry focused and industry led. At the end of the current contract period with the 12 Industry Skills Councils, the government is moving to a more contestable model for the development and maintenance of training packages and will offer the current ICS to tender under this new model along with new groups. The Minister for Industry will release a discussion paper shortly in regards to this issue.
Introduction of new standards for training providers from January will see providers required not only to engage with industry, but to demonstrate how industry has informed their training and assessment.

For more information regarding this announcement please see this speech from the Hon Ian Mcfarlane MP

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