By CLAIRE FIELD
I’ve noticed a number of RTOs commenting with pride recently because the Australian Skills Quality Authority has granted them re-registration for the full seven-year period. No doubt that’s because they looked at this advice when the seven-year re-registration period was introduced. It stated that “the granting of a seven-year registration period is not guaranteed. ASQA will continue to exercise its discretion when determining an RTO’s registration period.”
No wonder it’s a cause for celebration then when ASQA grants a provider the full seven years’ re-registration.
In fact, unlike TEQSA and the NZQA which give providers different registration periods based on their confidence in the provider (and publish the reasons for their decisions), ASQA does not follow the same practice.
ASQA staff tell providers that the period of registration “makes no difference”. RTOs are routinely given the full seven-year registration period because ASQA can audit at any time based on risk.
Surely the sector deserves clarity – does seven years’ re-registration mean ASQA has the highest level of confidence in an RTO’s performance? Some statistics would be helpful to clear up the confusion: specifically, of the total number of RTOs which have been re-registered since May 2015, how many were granted a registration period of less than seven years?
Claire Field advises on VET, international education and private higher education