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2013 Archived News

 19 December 2013: Boost for bushfire preparedness

In 2013 VRQA completed a strategic review of independent schools’ compliance with the Guidelines for Registered Schools on Bushfire Preparedness (Guidelines).

A number of independent schools in high risk bushfire areas around Victoria participated in the review, which included a detailed site assessment by an expert fire safety contractor. The majority of schools were found to be fully compliant with the Guidelines. The review noted that a number of schools had emergency management practices that exceeded the minimum standards.

The other schools included in the review have utilised their detailed assessment report to revise their school’s emergency management plans. These schools now meet the requirements of the Guidelines.

The findings of the strategic review will be considered by the VRQA and the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development Emergency Management Division. VRQA will consult with school sector stakeholders on the outcomes of the review in 2014.

For more information, see: Guidelines for Registered Schools on Bushfire Preparedness.

19 December 2013: VRQA and BUSY At Work meet with stakeholders

On 3 December 2013 a number of stakeholders involved in apprenticeships and traineeships in Victoria attended an afternoon tea jointly hosted by the VRQA and BUSY At Work.

The afternoon tea was attended by BUSY At Work Chief Executive Officer Paul Miles and senior VRQA representatives including Tim Smith, Chair VRQA and Lynn Glover, Director VRQA.

Stakeholders had the opportunity to meet key BUSY At Work personnel and hear more about their role in the provision of regulatory field services for apprenticeships and traineeships in Victoria.

It is expected that further stakeholder events for apprenticeships and traineeships stakeholders will be conducted in 2014.

For more information see: Apprenticeships and Traineeships.

19 December 2013: VET activity reporting requirements apply from 1 January 2014

From 1 January 2014, all Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) must collect and report on training activity to the National Centre for Vocational Education Research.

For RTOs that need additional time to establish procedures and prepare their systems to meet the new reporting requirements, a 12 month grace period is available. Full exemptions from reporting training activities are available for RTOs that provide training related to national security, border protection, policing, vital emergency, fire, first-aid and rescue services.

Applications for the grace period and exemptions must be received by 31 December 2013.

For more information about accessing exemptions, see: New mandatory VET activity reporting requirements.

For more information about the reporting requirements, please see: National Centre for Vocational Education Research.

19 December: Changes to first aid units

Several new first aid units have been released with a number of current units to be superseded by the new units in 2014.

The VRQA has recently written to VET providers with first aid courses on their scope of registration in order to inform them of the changes and to advise them that:

  • RTOs offering first aid as a stand-alone course must transition to the HLTAID version of the first aid units before 30 June 2014
  • RTOs offering the CPR unit as a stand-alone course must transition to the HLTAID version of the first aid units before 31 October 2014.

For more information about applying for a change to scope of registration please see: New first aid units. For any queries about this process, please email qar@edumail.vic.gov.au.

For more information about the new units including frequently asked questions and mapping guide, see: Community Services and Health Industry Skills Council.

26 November 2013: Answers to common questions about apprenticeships and traineeships now online

From September this year BUSY At Work has been responsible for providing regulatory field services for apprenticeships and traineeships in Victoria. The VRQA is working closely with BUSY At Work to implement and consolidate the new arrangements.

Answers to common questions about regulatory field services provided by BUSY At Work are now available on the VRQA website, including questions about the services provided, the aspects of apprenticeships and traineeships  that are regulated and what callers can expect when contacting the VRQA on 1300 722 603.

For more information see: Apprenticeships and Traineeships.

26 November 2013: Changes to fees effective 1 January 2014

The VRQA charges a number of fees in relation to education and training providers, apprenticeships, course accreditation and overseas secondary student exchange organisations.

From 1 January 2014 fees will increase to reflect rises in the Consumer Price Index as specified in Ministerial Order 615 and the Victorian Government’s policy on cost recovery.

Applications and payments submitted to the VRQA by 4 pm 31 December 2013 will be charged at the 2013 fee level.

The VRQA website has been updated to reflect changes to fees for 2014. For further information see: Fees.

6 November 2013: National Skills Standards Council (NSSC) Communique

NSSC communique 14 - October 2013

The National Skills Standards Council (NSSC) is a national council responsible for developing and maintaining the national standards that regulate the Vocational Education and Training (VET) sector.

The council met on 9 October 2013 and discussed a range of matters including VET regulator activity, the review of VET provider standards and regulator standards, implementation of training packages, standards for VET accredited courses and training package cases for endorsement.

The NSSC Communique 14 – October 2013 summarises the outcomes of the meeting. The next meeting of the NSSC is scheduled for 5 December 2013.   

18 October 2013: VET financial health assessments panel Request for Tender (RFT)

The VRQA has released a Request for Tender for provision of these services across both the VET and Schools sectors for the next three years. Details are on the  Tenders VIC website.

The tender closes on 31 October 2013.

10 October 2013: Report on Vocational Education and Training (VET) regulation for the National Skills Standards Council (NSSC)

The VRQA now reports annually to NSSC on VET regulation. The 2012-13  report is available to download.

10 October 2013: Information Sheets No. 3 and No. 4

In order to provide our stakeholders with useful information that will assist them to make informed decisions we have developed the third and forth information sheet for 2013. 

Information Sheet No. 3: Vocational education and training providers in Victoria (pdf - 59.93kb)

Information Sheet No. 4: Registered schools in Victoria (pdf - 65.15kb)

26 September 2013: Timelines for Form B - Application for amending scope of VET registration

There will be limited site audit activity during December 2013 and January 2014 for Form B - Application for amending scope of registration.

Form B - Application for amending scope of registration received by Monday 14 October 2013 and risk assessed as requiring a site audit will be audited in November 2013.

Any applications received after Monday 14 October 2013 and risk assessed as requiring a site audit will most likely be audited after 1 February 2014.

An email  was sent to all Registered Training Organisation (RTO) primary contacts on 25 September 2013 to advise them of these timelines.

For more information see: Amending scope of registration.

2 September 2013: New Standards for Training Packages

The new Standards for the development and endorsement of training packages were endorsed in November 2012.

Work is continuing with stakeholders to support implementation of the Standards.

Details on meeting the Standards including the requirements for codes and titles and complying with the Australian Qualifications Framework for NSSC endorsement can be found on the NSSC website.

23 August 2013: VET quality audit services panel Request for Tender (RFT)

The current VRQA panel arrangements for Vocational Education and Training (VET) quality audits will expire on 31 December 2013. The VRQA has released an RFT for provision of these services for the next three years. Details are on the Tenders VIC website.

The tender closes on 12 September 2013.

6 August 2013: New mandatory VET activity reporting requirements

From 1 January 2014, all Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) must collect and report full Australian Vocational Education and Training Management Information Statistical Standard (AVETMISS) data, in accordance with the National VET Provider Collection Data Requirements Policy.

Amended Australian Quality Training Framework standards (Condition 6) that apply for initial and continuing registration with the VRQA, and policy documentation is now available on the National Skills Standards Council (NSSC) website.

To find out more see:  New mandatory VET activity reporting requirements

25 July 2013: Training package updates – Community Services (CHC) and Health (HLT)

The Community Services and Health Industry Skills Council has advised the VRQA of recent changes to the Community Services and Health training packages that took effect in July 2013. These updates have been published on Training.gov.au

The Community Services - CHC08 v4.0 and Health – HLT07 v5.0 training packages are undergoing a continuous improvement and review process to meet industry needs and the new National Skills Standards Council requirements.

The focus of the first round of revisions is on a range of qualifications, skill sets and units of competency relating to 'Children and Youth Services' and 'Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers (First Aid, Workplace Health and Safety and Telehealth)' released under Community Services - CHC Rel.1 and Health - HLT Rel.1 training packages respectively.

In the new release:

  • only qualifications in 'Children and Youth Services' and 'Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers' from the CHC08 v4.0 and Health - HLT v5.0 training packages have been superseded
  • all other qualifications in the CHC08 v4.0 and Health - HLT v5.0 training packages remain current
  • the updated units of competency in the new releases correspond to the updated qualifications and do not impact on other qualifications in the CHC08 v4.0 and HLT v5.0 training packages. 

As a result, two versions of the Community Services training package and the Health training package will co-exist on Training.gov.au until the Industry Skills Council for Community Services and Health advises the VRQA that content from the CHC08 v4.0 and HLTv5.0 training packages has been superseded completely. 

Further information on these revisions have been summarised in Training package updates – Community Services (CHC) and Health (HLT) (doc - 81kb) and a fact sheet on First Aid units (pdf - 479.84kb) developed by the Community Services and Health Industry Skills Council.

If you require further information email your enquiries to qar@edumail.vic.gov.au

19 July 2013: Changes to the regulation of apprenticeships and traineeships

The VRQA Board approved the market testing of an alternative model for the provision of apprenticeship and traineeship regulatory field services throughout Victoria.

This occurred through a public tender process which has now been finalised. Busy Inc, trading as Busy at Work, has entered into a contract with the VRQA for the provision of apprenticeship and traineeship regulatory field services to commence on 2 September 2013.

Busy at Work is now establishing offices across Victoria. They will be ensuring that their services are targeted to those apprentices and trainees most in need.

The website will continue to be updated with further details as they emerge.

July 2013: NSSC special bulletin regarding new reporting requirements for RTOs

 The National Skills Standards Council (NSSC) special bulletin 06 provides important information regarding new reporting requirements for registered training organisations, agreed by the Standing Council on Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment (SCOTESE) on 7 June 2013. These changes are to come into effect from 1 January 2014.

4 July 2013: Information Sheet No. 2 - Trend update: international students in schools

In order to provide our stakeholders with useful information that will assist them to make informed decisions we have developed the second information sheet for 2013.

The Trend update: international students in schools (pdf - 55.8kb) features trends observed in overseas students studying in Victorian and Australian schools.

24 May 2013: Vacancies on the VRQA Board

The VRQA is seeking expressions of interest for five members on the VRQA Board to commence late in 2013.

People willing to contribute to regulation of education and training in Victoria are invited to express interest. Potential members should have skills and experience relevant to the performance and functions of the VRQA including: school education; vocational education and training; apprenticeships and traineeships; adult, community and further education; higher education; quality assurance; business management; institutional governance; law and finance.

Expressions of interest are encouraged from all members of the community including women, indigenous people, people with a disability and people from culturally diverse backgrounds.

Closing date for applications is Friday 14 June 2013.

To find out more download an information pack (doc - 192kb) that details the application process and expression of interest forms.

2 May 2013: New process to extend VET scope of registration

Effective today, the VRQA has implemented a new application process for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) wishing to extend their scope of registration.

It is important that you read the new VRQA publication Guide to Form B: Amending your scope of registration (doc - 2.72mb) to learn about the new process and requirements for applying to amend your scope of registration.

If you then wish to add training package qualifications, units of competency, or accredited courses to your scope of registration, you need to submit Form B - Application for amending scope of registration (pdf - 1.39mb) and include evidence of readiness to deliver training.

On receipt of an application to extend your scope of registration, the VRQA will send you an invoice.  A summary of VRQA fees and charges is available on the fees and charges web page on this website. The VRQA VET fees calculator can assist you to estimate the relevant fees. Application fees are non-refundable.

Key features of the new process include:

  • a requirement for RTOs to submit evidence of readiness to provide training with the Form B application
  • the automatic withdrawal of applications by the VRQA should an applicant not:
    • pay the relevant invoice by the due date or
    • be ready for a site audit when contacted by a VRQA contracted auditor.
Action Required
From 2 May 2013, RTOs wishing to extend their scope of registration must submit Form B - Application for amending scope of registration and include evidence of readiness to deliver training.

 




Applications for amending scope of registration using a transition notice are not affected by the new process.

If you have any questions, please contact the VRQA by email at qar@edumail.vic.gov.au

5 March 2013: VRQA 2012 education provider and stakeholder survey results

The VRQA conducts an annual survey that focuses on measuring aspects of provider and stakeholder satisfaction; clarity of compliance requirements; ease of accessing information on compliance and adequacy of VRQA support.
 
In 2012 the VRQA engaged Sweeney Research for the second year to conduct the annual survey. All responses were confidential and the VRQA did not have access to actual survey responses other than in a summary report.

The results indicated a 53 per cent response rate demonstrating a high level of engagement with providers. Identical to the 2011 study, satisfaction with the management and operations of the VRQA is positive, with close to two-thirds of education providers being very/fairly satisfied with the VRQA and its services. Further findings can be found in the Summary of the VRQA annual education provider and stakeholder research 2012 (pdf - 258.07kb) provided by Sweeney Research.

28 March 2013: Information Sheet No.1 - Home schooling

In order to provide our stakeholders with useful information that will assist them to make informed decisions we have developed the first information sheet for 2013.

This information sheet features statistics on Home schooling (pdf - 105.22kb).

21 February 2013: New VRQA Board members appointed

On 19 February 2013 two new members were appointed to the VRQA Board. The new Board members are David Windridge and Graham Spencer whose qualifications and expertise will be of great value to the VRQA Board. Their biographies are available on the VRQA Board page.

6 December 2012: New address for VRQA

The VRQA has moved to a new location at Level 4, Casselden Place, 2, Lonsdale Street, Melbourne. For more information see: Contact us.

News archive

For past news articles from 2010, 2011 and 2012, see: VRQA news archive.