College collapse shows why TAFE must be properly funded

The dire situation of students caught up in the collapse of another private training college shows why public funding of vocational training must be directed to TAFE rather than shared among unreliable private operators.

“The 800 students who had signed up to Australasian College should have had the opportunity and security of admission to TAFE courses that deliver guaranteed programs based on quality teaching that delivers qualifications respected by industry,” acting Federation President Denis Fitzgerald said.

Australasian College went into liquidation over the Christmas break after taking more than $10.4 million in taxpayer-funded student loans last year.

Three months ago, one of the country’s largest VET colleges, the Australian Institute of professional Education, which had 16,000 students on its books, folded just days after the federal government scrapped the rorts-ridden VET student loans scheme that has wasted $8 billion in public funds.

TAFE budgets and courses have been curtailed, and TAFE teachers made redundant, to fund the expansion of the troubled private VET sector.