TAFE funding concern ABC Online (blog) There's been some good news for Gippsland's biggest TAFE provider Federation Training, it looks certain to secure some of the 20 million dollar bailout package from the state government.
On 24 November 2014, the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Education and Employment tabled in Parliament the report that wrapped up its Inquiry into the role of Technical and Further Education system and its operation.TAFE: an...
While I agree that VET in underfunded but there are some errors in this article. The comment that
They are specified too narrowly and tied too specifically to immediate job tasks.
The focus is on preparing graduates for specific jobs, but this doesn’t prepare them for the future. Vocational education should provide graduates with the knowledge and skills they need for a career and for further education, as is required by the Australian Qualifications Framework.
Currently, 4,604 organisations are registered to offer vocational education. Many of these are also approved by state governments to receive subsidies and by the Australian government to offer fee loans to their students.
While governments have started increasing registration conditions, there are still too many providers that are too small, under-resourced or too little committed to vocational education rather than to their profits.
Currently the government not only specifies the standards for vocational qualifications but also specifies the qualifications that providers may offer. This has led to a proliferation of qualifications. Some are never offered, others have minimal enrolments Australia-wide and many are under-used. This is an extraordinary waste of public money.
The government should retain central control over fewer qualification standards but allow providers or groups of providers such as TAFE systems to develop qualifications. This would ensure that only qualifications in demand would be developed and offered.
Training Packages have "Life Skills" embedded in them and do allow for the future.
VET is not there to prepare peoplespecifically for HIgher Ed, in fact statistically more people go from HE to VET not the other way around.
The requirements to become an RTO are onerous and regulated enough. Private providers can and do deliver some excellent courses, particulalry in niche areas that TAFE's due their large infrastructure just cant afford to deliver.
RTO's can develop their own quals if they need. But having TAFE's develop courses defeats the purpose of a National system based on Industry Consultation.
I also ask why a Higher Education person and his partner Prof Leesa Wheelahan who works for the LH Martin Institute are commenting on the VET Sector.