On 28 November 2018 the Australian Government announced the establishment of the National Skills Commission (NSC) which will provide national leadership for the vocational education and training (VET) system as part of the $525 million Skills Package. The Skills Package lays the building blocks for improvements to the VET sector.
The NCS will provide national leadership for the VET system and its role and functions will be refined through a co-design process as determined by an independent review led by Honourable Steven Joyce, former New Zealand Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment delivered in March 2019 and known as the Joyce Review.
To guide this process, the Nous Group was engaged to facilitate the co-design workshops with all available VET stakeholders from across Australia. The co-design workshops aim was to encourage participants to suggest what the roles and functions of the new commission are to be. Including but not limited to, leadership, reporting responsibilities and to whom they report.
Some of the key points from the workshop held in Brisbane;
- The Commission is to focus on skill needs as opposed to full qualification delivery, (micro credentialing and continuous learning were two commonly used phases).
- Work towards a common VET funding and course availability option across states and territories, where every possible. Reducing duplication between State Governments and issues that this can create for industries and communities located adjacent to and across state and territory borders.
- Look to a federal funding model that creates an equitable foundation to level out state funding variations, especially in areas where industries and businesses operate in more than one state or territory.
- There is a strong interest to have this new NSC independent of government and thus avoid the political cycle and focus on long term goals for VET. The Fair Work Commission’s structure was suggested as an example.
The National Skills Commission (NSC) will replace the Australian Workforce and Productivity Agency which was established in 2008. The Federal Governments timeline is for the National Skills Commission be fully functioning by July 2020.
For more information about the NSC, visit: www.employment.gov.au/NSC.