The following provides a step-by-step procedure for setting up Vocational Education and Training (VET) programs for independent schools in Tasmania.
STEP ONE – ASSESSING THE VIABILITY OF A VET PROGRAM
The starting point is to establish that there is a need for a VET program, the type of program preferred, the resources needed and how the training will be delivered.
A VET Self-Assessment Tool can assist this process and is available online at http://www.pssfw.myskills.gov.au/vet-self-assessment-tool-for-schools/ .
The VET Self-Assessment Tool will guide responsible staff through a planning, implementation and delivery cycle. This will allow the core features of a VET program to be addressed including:
- Selecting the most appropriate VET program and how it can be structured
- Identifying resources including facilities and equipment needed
- Establishing the staffing needs particularly specialist VET training staff
- Identifying and engaging with employers who will provide work placements
- Choosing the most appropriate Registered Training Organisation (RTO)
- Costs associated with running the program.
The online assessment tool when applied will lead to a summary statement that will identify priority areas for action, areas where there is room for improvement and likely high-performance areas. By asking key questions along the way it will identify all of the major considerations necessary for a viable VET program.
STEP TWO – REVIEWING RESULTS OF VET ASSESSMENT
Use the results from the VET Assessment to determine whether you should proceed with a VET program.
In particular consider:
- Student demand against regional labour market needs and skills gaps (see https://profile.id.com.au/tasmania for community and economic profiles and social atlas data for regions)
- Student interest, gaps in TASC qualifications,
- Delivery model and VET programs to be delivered
- Staffing needs and qualifications to deliver VET courses
- Who will deliver training – available Registered Training Organisations (RTO)?
- Resource requirements – specialist equipment, structures, including financial costs to deliver
- Available businesses to provide workplacement opportunities including on-site enterprises
- VET Management – how will the VET program be managed? Appointment of a key VET teacher/leader and Professional Learning opportunities to undertake the role.
The Tasmanian Department of Education’s Vocational Learning and Career Education Unit (VLCE) can provide additional advice – contact 03 6165 5759 or Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
STEP THREE – IDENTIFY AN APPROPRIATE RTO
Only RTOs can deliver nationally recognised and accredited training and the issuing of VET qualifications. Choosing the most appropriate RTO to manage the VET program should be guided by:
- Whether the chosen RTO has the qualifications required on their scope
- Whether the chosen RTO has experience and expertise working with school-VET
- The cost of delivery of VET services
- What training and assessment resources the RTO will provide against what the school will provide.
Skills Tasmania provides an Endorsed RTO List at https://www.skills.tas.gov.au/providers/rtos/endorsedrtosystem
These represent an additional level of quality assurance over RTOs to ensure top-level service delivery to the Tasmanian Government.
RTOs in Tasmania with experience in working with school VET programs include TasTAFE, Government Colleges RTO and Guilford Young College RTO. Government Colleges RTO provides services only to the government colleges and extension high schools (confirmed 09/19).
STEP FOUR – SELECT AND NEGOTIATE AN RTO AGREEMENT
An RTO Agreement or Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between a school and an RTO is a formal requirement. This Agreement will specify details of the partnership between the school and RTO including:
- Qualifications to be delivered
- The nature and extent of the training to be provided (qualification, duration, location, delivery)
- The requirements for teachers/trainers to deliver the training
- Employers to be used for VET workplacement
- The assessment and recording requirements to be met
- The costs associated with running the program
- The resources to be provided to trainees through the program
- Promotion and marketing of the VET program
- Induction program for students including creating a Unique Student Identifier (USI).
- Dispute resolution
STEP FIVE – MANAGING THE VET PROGRAM
Continually monitoring the performance of students undertaking VET and the way the partnership with the RTO is proceeding will help identify risks and lead to better management. Ensuring feedback is obtained from key personnel from the RTO (VET program manager, compliance officer, training staff), the school VET coordinator, Principal and VET teachers and trainers) will assist this.
Monitor the following:
- Student participation, performance to date and training outcomes
- Program and course structure and progress
- Reporting student attainment to RTO and TASC
- Reporting on workplacement performance, appropriateness, future needs
- Compliance issues for meeting national Standards for RTOs
- Risk assessment from program process and procedures
STEP SIX – REGULAR VET PROGRAM REVIEW
A formal, documented review should take place at the conclusion of VET courses and/or annually against the full VET program. A set of basic review questions is provided in the final pages of the VET Self-Assessment Tool (at http://www.pssfw.myskills.gov.au/vet-self-assessment-tool-for-schools/ ). The Department of Education’s Vocational Learning and Career Education Unit has developed a trial VET review template.
The critical questions for any review should focus on:
- Whether the VET program has met its objectives particularly around student course completion, achieving appropriate qualifications, skills sets or units of competence
- Whether the standards for quality training have been reached
- The effectiveness of the relationship between the school and RTO in delivering outcomes
- The effectiveness of the relationship between businesses providing work placements, school and RTO.
- Client satisfaction
- Whether the VET program fits comfortably with school operational requirements – school timetable, staffing, curriculum, assessment requirements
- The recruitment of VET trained staff, subsequent training or updating required, maintaining industry currency
- Cost effectiveness – VET compared with conventional year 9-12 programs
- Issues around ensuring training meets compliance standards for the RTO
- Provision of VET assessment results to the RTO and subsequently to data collection bodies (like TASC).
For further information
Contact Mike Frost, VET VL Consultant for IST schools on:
M: 0407 337 846