Australian Catholic U to exit VET

Australian Catholic U announces its ACU College will accept no new students next year and will teach-out existing courses over 12 months

The college teaches Certificate Three to diplomas including in nursing, education support, early childhood, leadership, and management, first aid and CPR.

According to Provost Zlatko Skrbis, (who becomes VC next month), the college “faced significant competitive, environmental and legislative challenges in the crowded VET market.”

Closing the college allows ACU the opportunity to, “invest directly” in HE programmes and “access and equity initiatives,” “in order to grow and diversify enrolments.”

Presumably this includes the ACU short-courses, micro-credentials and staff professional development to be delivered by Sydney platform-provider OpenLearning, in which ACU has invested $1m, (CMM June 2).

ACU advises 21 staff will be affected across the teach-out period and resulting savings are included in the already announced $42m reduction in staff costs in the university COVID-19 savings plan (CMM November 26).

To which the campus branch of the National Tertiary Education Union says it will “fully support staff to achieve fair treatment as outlined by the Enterprise Agreement … we also take the opportunity to remind senior management that what is described as a strategic decision has direct and real costs for people – both staff and students.”