Mr NORTHE (Morwell) — I rise today to highlight concerns conveyed to me by local students and staff following the closure of a number of local registered training organisations (RTOs). The closure of these RTOs without prior warning has left a sour taste in the mouths of those impacted. What has also left a sour taste is the fact that the Andrews government has offered little or no information or support to affected students and staff. This is despite the government surely knowing these RTOs would close their doors.
There are still genuine outstanding concerns and questions from the perspective of students and staff including where a course has not been completed, will the students’ completed training modules be recognised with another local provider and will additional costs apply to the students? Where a student has paid upfront fees and has not yet commenced their course, will they be able to train with another local provider without additional cost or be reimbursed? How are staff being supported to ensure they receive their entitlements, and what measures are in place for staff to find alternative employment?
Just last evening I received an email from Michelle and a number of other students who were studying a dual certificate III in aged-care work and home and community care at TBM Training, Morwell. These students were just days away from completing their courses, and the distress in their letter is obvious. I know these students have written to a number of local representatives seeking support and direction as to how and where they can complete their courses, but unfortunately, despite representation to the minister, at this point in time the Andrews government has sat on its hands whilst students and staff wait in absolute limbo.