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Your views: on 'time-wasting' VET courses and more

Reader contributions

Today, readers comment on course cuts, no breastfeeding at Parliament House, Urrbrae gatehouse and planning laws.

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Commenting on the story: Anger as Government bins ‘time-wasting’ VET courses

I am absolutely appalled at what this Marshall Government has done to VET courses in South Australia.

I attended Marden Senior College for three years to achieve a Certificate 3 in Visual Art and Contemporary Design. Since then I have been a convenor of a Textile Art group for 11 years. We have exhibited a number of times in various state galleries and are all established textile artists.

For the Minister to say this is not relevant shows no concept of the value of art and education to society. What he has done is also an insult to the extremely competent teacher who wrote this course 15 years ago. She has been forced into retirement, which saddens me deeply.

I will be forwarding this to our local Member of Parliament. Pam Kelly.

Most private providers raise revenue through course fees. Why should they rely on the public purse to survive?

I’m sure that Marden is a quality training provider and therefore these courses can continue to run, but students will have to pay fees like most other private providers.

I have seen RTO’s suffer by having to compete with government-subsidised courses that TAFE and other providers decided to introduce in competition, and I feel it’s an unfair advantage supported by us as taxpayers. – Kevin Watkins

I am appalled that yet more cuts are proposed to the tertiary education sector and these appear to be based on opinion of politicians and not the experts in education.

When will this Government come out of its do-nothing stupor?

What is education if it is left to the private sector to pick up the pieces – certainly, not education for all. – Bruce Lang

It may seem that, as usual, someone either uninterested or suffering shortsightedness has been tasked with a cost-cutting exercise.

Who knows at an introductory stage of entry to the workforce where one’s talent may lie? This is the time to introduce a broad set of options, by introduction to various ‘gateways’, to a skill; a window of perception may open to a career via more advanced training.

Far too often, it seems someone with little perception or knowledge of where broad option in training may lead decides to stream applicants and thus kill the students’ options, or certainly limit flexible choices. – Jeremy Goodburn

It seems that the Marshall Government is following in the long tradition of funding education programmes on the basis of employment outcomes. 

For anyone completely unaware of any research in the relationship between education and employment, this would seem to be a sound strategy. However, it is not backed up by the research.

The link between employment and education is not based on the courses pursued, but on the disciplines developed. The nature of employment in the 21st century is that people will need to be prepared to reskill on more than one occasion as jobs disappear or become more complex.  The most valuable contribution that VET can make is to provide students with confidence in their ability to learn.

To label some courses as being a waste of taxpayers money and the students’ time indicates that we have yet another minister of education who has little grasp of his portfolio. – John Töns

This sort of error happens when neo-liberal economics allows MBAs and bean-counters to make cost-cutting decisions about education, rather than educators.

No amount of media training and attempts at message management will change that. – Virginia Ward

Commenting on the story: ‘Absolutely laughable’: SA Parliament’s go-slow on breastfeeding request

This is shameful and a disgrace in a modern era.

It shows what an  “old boys” club the parliament is and how totally non-representative it is of the electorate. – Virginia Puddy

This is pathetic! No surprise that the Standing Committee is all male. How about a few MP fathers coming to the party and bottle feeding their offspring in the chamber, to make the point? – Maureen Howland

Commenting on the story: Urrbrae gatehouse to be moved – not demolished

Although not satisfying the heritage purists, this plan for piecemeal deconstruction and reconstruction will salvage the Gatehouse and preserve its history.

It is reassuring that this process will be carried out by first-class heritage architects. The re-located Gatehouse will be accessible to and used by the University and the public alike.

Fourteen months ago both the Government and the University were prepared to consign this State Heritage building to landfill. In this context the Minister’s announcement has to be seen as win. It just took a long time coming, and we must assume that the decision, in response to a major public outcry, was ultimately the result of Cabinet realising that the fate of the Gatehouse would become an election issue. – Warren Jones

Let’s hope the university can rise to make a learning experience for visitors and themselves out of this. Gatehouses were an important part of an estate. Captain Hart’s was sold off from the historic Semaphore property. 

If the gatehouse will now be further into Mitcham Council area, can the Mitcham people also take it under their wing and make something valuable out of it. 

The whole episode needs to be studied by the Department as to its own organisation and culture. – David Donaldson

Great news about the Urrbrae Gatehouse, but why on earth is the Minister so desperate to spend so much money on the upgrade of the intersection at Cross and Fullarton Roads? The loss of trees is equally important as saving the Gatehouse.

What will the department want to acquire at a later date to widen Fullarton Road? But the real question is: what for? The works at Magill/Portrush Roads are bigger than Ben-Hur. Once again, why?

These are not dangerous intersections per se, rather the manner in which drivers abuse the road rules by running yellow/red lights and causing chaos and mayhem.

I would much prefer that the surfaces of our roads are improved before any more upgrades to intersections. Or would Minister Wingard prefer that we all send him bills for wear and tear on our vehicles due to the dangerous road surfaces.

I would be more than happy to supply a list of roads around metro Adelaide and the regional roads that need resurfacing with urgency before winter sets in and makes driving more dangerous. – Paula Furlani

Commenting on the opinion piece: What Adelaide’s new planning laws will mean for you 

The article (and the new planning system one assumes) offered no good news for environment and heritage. Surprise, surprise! 

The facilitation of a developer-friendly simplified administrative system for planners and professionals is completed, the neo-liberal project is moved a step closer. This will hasten developer waste and worsen environmental impacts. 

After so many years of Mr Lennon’s moustache promising so much, what happens?. Psssst … a fizzer for environmental interests.

The damage done. That soufflé will not rise twice. Jeremy Gaynor 

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