Sneaky Backroom Deals Have No Place In Deciding Future Of TAFE

The Liberals need to come clean immediately on their secret plans for TAFE. 

Leaked details of a $1.65 million contract between McKinsey and the New South Wales Government to “ ‘comprehensively restructure’ before an expected 2018 national takeover of vocational training” were revealed by the Sydney Morning Herald today. 

“The McKinsey contract states the consulting firm will work with TAFE NSW as it ‘undertakes the comprehensive restructure of its business and operating model over the period to 18 August 2018’.”

 

Leaked details of McKinsey contract with NSW Government, Fairfax, 29 May 2016

While the Minister is known for his backroom deals to oust prime ministers, our vocational education system is far too important to be subject to these types of secretive deals. 

The Minister must let our students and our communities know what his plans are. 

Does he plan to move down the road of full competition, as has been flagged in the article today and in the leaked documents earlier this year? 

Throughout this year it has been smoke and mirrors, with Minister Birmingham as recently as Friday last week pushing for a takeover and Minister Ryan refusing to rule out a federal takeover.

 

“… have a process under way through COAG to try and get states and territories to work toward a more coordinated approach across vocational education.” 

Minister Simon Birmingham, ABC South East, 27 May 2016

 

"By placing control of all of the funding levers — the setting of fees, payment of subsidies, and lending of income-contingent loans — with one level of government, we would promote accountability in the system and could create a more effective market, driven by students rather than providers, than we've seen to date," he told a TAFE Directors Australia conference. 

Minister Simon Birmingham, Sydney Morning Herald, 11 September 2015 

"… my personal inclination has not usually been that a federal takeover ensures better outcomes."  

"My prediction would be we won't be heading down that path." 

Minister Scott Ryan, The Age, 11 March 2016

 

The amateur games in this portfolio have got to stop. 

The Minister must come clean – what is his plan for TAFE? 

SUNDAY, 29 MAY 2016