Representing quality private education
providers in Australia

A change of tack

Monday, October 5 2015

The AFL and NRL grand finals have been played and won.

It was an enormous pleasure to MC our grand final breakfast at the MCG last week. The discussion with some legends of the game, Robert DiPierdomenico, Ken Hunter, Chris Johnson, Chris Naish and Rod Austin was a real highlight.

However, it was the nature of the discussion that was most surprising. Yes they were all entertainers and we talked football and Premierships. However, much of the discussion was about community, education and the need to develop the ‘whole’ of individuals, not just their talents (eg football).

These legends are all involved and are committed to quality education and mentoring.
Chris Naish’s work with AFL SportsReady is truly impressive. Chris leads the education and employment programs across the AFL, Corporate and Community Development sectors.

The support, mentoring and training SportsReady provides indigenous people was inspiring. It is these members we can build a future on. Chris Johnson, Dippa and the Carlton duo are also all involved in some fantastic education and mentoring programs.

We have committed to learning more about them and providing support wherever we can.

On the higher education front, the new Minister for Education and Training has continued to articulate a process for how to he proposes to develop a proposal for the future reform of the industry.

While the ‘deregulation’ notion appears to be in the rear view mirror, his recent speech to the World Economic Summit begins to chart a way forward, certainly in terms of consultation.

The Minister announced that the government would not seek to enact any reforms to the sector until 2017 at the earliest and called for a high quality, innovative higher education system. The key issues of funding sustainability, quality and access are also on the mark.

In the Minister’s own words “I would say Australia needs to find a sustainable basis for funding a world class education system, with fair access to students.”

The Minister also identified that a system where students from non-University Higher Education Providers paid higher course fees through lack of government support and a 25% administration fee was unfair.

Of course, these are the right principles.

The key now is how we can participate in the discussion to find a solution.

On a final note, this week will see the inaugural meeting of the National Training and Assessment Working Group, which will be responsible for consulting with industry and providing advice to Government on options to further improve training and assessment outcomes.

An important task indeed.


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