Bright idea to light-up VET student loans

The voced policy makers and opinion shapers commissioned by Labor to prepare terms of reference for its proposed secondary education inquiry meet in Canberra today. One of them, student loan scheme expert, Mark Warburton, suggests one issue that really needs addressing is how best to monitor student debts and their repayment.
This is not, he says, what we will get, with the government’s VET student loan debt separation bill, which separates training from higher education loans.
The bill is intended to “provide greater transparency on repayment rates and help inform both policymakers and the broader public,” but Mr Warburton points out that intending is not achieving and a Senate committee inquiry into the legislation did not do the obvious thing and recommend expert advice on how loans and repayments under the new system will work.
In fact, the committee chaired by Lucy Gichuhi (Lib-SA) declined to address issues raised in the seven submissions to the inquiry, reporting; “the committee has not received enough evidence to support the changes these submitters advocate.”
To which Mr Warburton replies; “you won’t get a quality post-secondary education system unless you get decent and stable funding arrangements in place and that will require an appropriate and judicious use of student loans. … It will be critical to ensure that sufficient opportunities are available across both higher education and VET to meet economic needs while reducing social disadvantage – also something that both sides of politics appear to support.
So, they had better start paying attention to how income contingent loans work and can be used.”


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