Representing quality private education
providers in Australia

Celebrating the small wins

Monday, May 22 2017

Today I intend keeping my update short.

Yes, I understand there are many concerns across the sector and examples of a real lack of respect for all that many of you do. We will continue to work on righting those wrongs and I will reflect on that more in future editions.

This week though I would like to touch on some good news.

First the context – managing the significant number of students displaced as a result of decisions by government has been challenging to say the least.

However, I acknowledge that many of the providers who are trying to help with placing these students are becoming increasingly frustrated.

Let’s look at why.

When a provider is forced to close at short notice, it is fair to say that administrative arrangements are less than perfect. That is, data is far from complete, assessments are not up to date and therefore students often have little to show for their studies, as their statements of attainment are also not up to date.

To add to this, it is proving very difficult to identify the actual quantum of a student’s debt, particularly as it relates to academic achievement. This is, administrators and liquidators struggle with advising the level of a student’s debt and the amount of progress through their studies.

We can sometimes obtain the information from students, but it is fair to say this means often providers take students without any of these details and this creates significant confusion. It also causes considerable distress to students and providers.

These problems will only be addressed through the collaborative efforts of regulators, government and the industry.

However, today does mark the day that will over time significantly improve the protection of student results.

Today sees the ‘launch’ of the Unique Student Identifier (USI) Transcript Service.

This means that from today student results will not only be ‘captured’ (as they already are), students will be able to apply for a copy of their own academic transcript. This transcript will include training outcomes completed or commenced on 1 January 2015. This means that training commenced in 2014 but completed or continued in 2015 will be included if the RTO submitted it as part of their 2015 submission with a USI.

In other words, the data will be as that reported to NCVER in the 2015 and 2016 collection.

Now it won’t be perfect, as obviously, many students will have commenced and completed their studies prior to this date. However, it is a start and is a milestone. A congrats goes to the Department of Education and Training’s USI team and NCVER.

We all need to work at improving the system and fixing every problem we identify.

That is one down and there are many more to go……

Rod Camm


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