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Author Archives: john mitchell

Regional practitioner networks

Is a broadband the only type of network needed in regional Australia, asks John Mitchell. The national broadband network is being hailed as a major infrastructure investment in regional Australia, but is it enough? From a VET sector perspective, are ...

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Awarding outstanding practitioners

Do great practitioners in VET receive sufficient national recognition, asks John Mitchell. Which individuals and teams in VET are making an outstanding contribution to student learning? And is it worth recognising them nationally? Both these questions will draw a negative ...

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Small packages for big skills

Why cumbersome training packages need radical surgery not band-aids. By John Mitchell. New ideas are often destabilising and uncomfortable, so we humans tend to find ways to pay them lip service, while quietly continuing on with the old ways. Possibly ...

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Ingredients for partnerships

Are lasting provider-enterprise partnerships based on low prices or mutual respect?   The following story was told at a recent national forum. It is about an award-winning private training provider in the retail industry and how it is effectively delivering ...

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Replacing training packages

Imagine the benefits if training packages were simplified.   The recent OECD report on VET in Australia bluntly called for the replacement of training packages by much briefer statements of skill standards. It was alarming news for those who had ...

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Grandparent role for providers

Training providers who service the needs of enterprises might take a back seat if a model being driven in the Clare Valley gains imitators. The model involves the training provider, River Murray Training (RMT), doing everything it can to hand ...

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Authentic, sustainable leadership

Is there a future for the brilliant, solo, transformative - and mostly male - VET leader?   As the VET sector moves towards an uncertain future, there will be an increased need for effective leadership. But what will be the ...

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Aspirations replace frustrations

There is widespread belief that the Bradley review of higher education will encourage universities to compete in the market for vocational certificates and diplomas. However, the movement of schools towards the trade-level certificate III is potentially a bigger threat to ...

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Creative, confident and coherent VU

How can a dual-sector university access its genius and gems?   When Elizabeth Harman took up the position of vice-chancellor of Victoria University five years ago, she found a large organisation that was creative but lacking in some other ways. ...

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