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What are the Quality Reforms?
A strong and well-supported training system will enable Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) to strive for excellence and enhance the quality of training. This will benefit both learners and employers.
Skills Ministers have committed to raising the quality of training delivered within the vocational education and training (VET) sector through:
- revising the Standards for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) 2015 (the Standards)
- improving the capability and capacity of RTOs for continuous improvement
- developing a VET Workforce Quality Strategy.
These reforms will complement work currently underway to improve the regulatory approach and practices of the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) by moving to a focus on self-assurance and excellence in training outcomes. See information on ASQA reforms.
Why are the Quality Reforms important?
Quality Reforms aim to improve the quality of training delivery across Australia. The reforms will support a shared understanding across the sector of what high quality training provision looks like. They will help to ensure the quality of training delivery goes beyond compliance with the Standards and achieves excellence in training provision.
They will also complement industry engagement reforms, which are designed to strengthen the role of industry and employers in the VET system. Increased responsiveness of the VET system is essential in meeting industry skills needs and driving economic growth.
Why is reform needed?
These reforms build on findings from recent reviews of the VET sector, which highlighted opportunities to enhance quality. They include:
- All eyes on quality: Review of the National Vocational Education and Training Regulator Act 2011 report, led by Professor Valerie Braithwaite
- Strengthening Skills: Expert review of Australia's Vocational Education and Training system, led by the Hon Steven Joyce
- Rapid review of the Australian Skills Quality Authority's regulatory practices and processes.
What is being done?
A key focus of the reforms will be to strengthen the Standards. This will ensure the Standards remain fit for purpose and support high quality outcomes for both learners and employers.
To further support RTO capability, a framework will be developed to support a common understanding across the sector of what constitutes high quality and excellence in training and delivery, beyond minimum compliance with the Standards.
The development of a VET Workforce Quality Strategy (the Strategy) recognises the important contribution trainers and assessors make to a high-quality VET sector. Trainers and assessors are at the front line of training delivery and play a vital role in passing on industry relevant knowledge to learners to meet Australia's employment and productivity needs. The Strategy will support RTOs and trainers and assessors to deliver high quality, consistent training and assessment and support the diverse workplace roles within the sector.
Under the Heads of Agreement for Skills Reform, Australian, state and territory governments recognised quality as an immediate reform and from December 2020 to March 2021 stakeholders were invited to share their experiences and views via surveys and workshops.
Surveys and workshops have now concluded for the Quality Reforms. The surveys and workshops focused on the quality of RTOs, including the quality of the VET workforce, the effectiveness of the Standards, and sought input from learners on their recent experiences with training.
For news, and further opportunities to be involved in consultation activities, visit skillsreform.gov.au