Colleges’ loss of federal funding creates further uncertainty for VET sector workers
An announcement by the Federal Government that it will strip accreditation and public funding from over 150 private Vocational Education and Training (VET) providers, including Careers Australia and Evocca, has created an even greater climate of uncertainty for employees in these colleges and those across the sector.
IEUA-QNT Branch Secretary Terry Burke said that while sector reform was long overdue given the unscrupulous business practices of some providers, the Federal Government had failed to provide any protection and security for the thousands of educators and administrative staff working for Australian VET providers.
“The current unsettled state of the VET sector is cause for significant alarm and employees really are the meat in the sandwich at present,” Mr Burke said.
“Teachers and other college staff have been doing the best with what they have been given but today’s announcement will create even greater uncertainty for many.
“For employees, many will now be questioning whether they will have a job next month, let alone next year.
“This uncertainty then creates pressure on the quality of course delivery across the sector and ultimately only serves to disadvantage students,” he said.
Mr Burke said training providers, big and small, must take responsibility for the role they have played in the shambles that now characterises the sector.
“Both the Federal Government and VET employers need to show some professional respect to those working in the sector by consulting with employees on the changes to funding and what that means at an operational level for colleges.
“VET employers now more than ever need to be ensuring integrity in their operations in light of the publicised misconduct by some and, in doing so, must respect the important role educators and administration staff play in providing quality education and continuity to students through these changes.
“Without proper consultation and engagement with employees, both the Federal Government and VET sector employers will continue to put quality education and any possibility of a sustainable sector at risk,” Mr Burke said.