News

News | 17 March 2017

The report presents the findings of research on international approaches to measuring teacher effectiveness and their applicability to Australia. Measures of teacher effectiveness are vital for understanding what impact teachers have on student outcomes and how to build teachers’ capacity to use that information to improve their teaching.

The Australian Government will work with state and territory governments, the teaching profession and the education community to further examine the suitability of teacher effectiveness measures for the Australian context.

The specific aim of this project was to examine and summarise current international policies and practices regarding teacher evaluation, evaluate these systems, and subsequently inform the development of a teacher effectiveness measure for Australia.

News | 10 March 2017

An Admissions Transparency Implementation Working Group, chaired by Professor Kerri-Lee Krause of Victoria University, has been established to give effect to the recommendations of the Higher Education Standards Panel in its 2016 report on improving the transparency of higher education admissions.
The membership and role of the working group is outlined here.

News | 14 February 2017

The Australian Government invites all international education stakeholders and interested parties to comment on a consultation draft of a revised National Code of Practice for Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2007 (National Code). The National Code sets nationally consistent standards for delivery of education to overseas students.

Proposed changes aim to modernise and simplify the National Code so it can be easily applied by providers and regulators, and increase flexibility where appropriate and relevant for international students.

Key areas for reform include:

News | 21 December 2016

Researchers at Australian universities will benefit from a $76 million boost from the Australian Government that will increase collaboration between their work, industry and business.

The increase to the new research block grants includes a new stream of $50 million from the National Innovation and Science Agenda to drive universities to engage more with industry and other innovation systems.

The investment forms part of the Turnbull Government’s $1.9 billion commitment to R&D and training researchers in 2017.

Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham made the announcement and said Australian researchers had no shortage of smart ideas.

The focus now he said was to become better at taking research and applying it in ways that benefit the broader community, by turning our best research ideas into new job-creating commercial realities.

News | 16 December 2016

The Government has accepted the Higher Education Standards Panel’s recommendations on how to improve the transparency of higher education admissions processes and announced its response.

The Department of Education and Training will work with the higher education sector to develop a joint plan to give effect to the Panel’s recommendations. An implementation working group, chaired by a senior representative of the higher education sector, will be established to develop and oversee the joint implementation plan.

The working group will identify the steps necessary to implement the Panel’s recommendations as quickly as possible, either through voluntary adoption across the sector, additional regulation, or requirements linked to funding agreements, where necessary. The aim is to implement as many of the recommendations as possible in time for the 2018 academic year.

News | 14 December 2016

The Comparative Analysis of the Australian Qualifications Framework and the European Qualifications Framework for Lifelong Learning: Joint Technical Report is set to enhance mobility between Australia and Europe by improving mutual understanding of the European and Australian qualifications frameworks. It is a source of information that provides additional context for decisions about the recognition of qualifications that support student and labour mobility.

Supporting graduates with Australian qualifications globally is a key deliverable of the Australian Government’s National Strategy for International Education 2025.

News | 29 November 2016

The 2016 National History Challenge award ceremony took place at Parliament House in Canberra today and was attended by Federal Minister for Education and Training, Simon Birmingham, where he presented New South Wales student Rachel Wang with the prestigious 2016 National Young Historian of the Year Award.

Minister Birmingham said the quality of the work undertaken across such a wide range of topics was testament to the students’ historical curiosity and strong research skills.

The National History Challenge encourages students to use research and inquiry-based learning to discover more about the past, where students are the historians.

They can investigate their community, explore their own and their family’s past and consider ideas throughout history. The challenge encourages the use of primary and secondary sources and offers a variety of presentation styles.

News | 29 November 2016

The Council for International Education held its first meeting on Wednesday 23 November 2016 at Parliament House. Chaired by Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham, Minister for Education and Training, the Council consists of six Australian Government Ministers and Assistant Ministers and eleven expert members.

The Council brings a whole-of-government approach to strengthen and grow Australian international education and will provide advice on priorities for Australian Government action.

News | 24 November 2016

At the 2016-17 Budget the Government released a policy options paper, Driving Innovation, Fairness and Excellence in Australian Higher Education and invited public submissions. The paper sets out options for reform that support the Government’s vision of a stronger, more sustainable system of higher education and submissions will inform the development of a revised reform package.

Submissions received in response to the options paper are now available.

The Department of Education and Training received more than 1200 submissions to this process. All submissions have been made public unless the author stated in writing that their submission is confidential.

News | 16 November 2016

Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham met students from St Francis de Sales College in Mount Barker, South Australia on Thursday 10 November 2017 to mark this million student milestone.

PACER provides financial assistance for students in Years 4 to 12 from schools more than 150 kilometers from Canberra to visit the national capital for civics and citizenship education. The rebate ranges from $20 to $260 per student, depending on distance from Canberra, and is provided as a contribution to assist with travel costs. All PACER-supported schools visit Parliament House, the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House, and/or the National Electoral Education Centre and the Australian War Memorial. 

News | 16 November 2016

The Government has accepted the Higher Education Standards Panel’s report on how to improve the transparency of admissions processes at Australia’s roughly 170 higher education providers. The Government supports the intent of the recommendations from the Panel and will respond in due course.

The Panel, chaired by Professor Peter Shergold AC, received 82 written submissions and met with a wide range of higher education and secondary education stakeholders in formulating its advice.

The Panel made 14 recommendations in its report. The Panel’s key recommendations include that providers use common and consistent language to describe ATAR thresholds and other admissions requirements and publish information on admissions processes in agreed templates to ensure ease of comparison for prospective students and their parents.

News | 26 October 2016

Annual report cover

The Department of Education and Training Annual Report 2015‑16 was tabled in Parliament on 26 October 2016.

An accessibility-optimised PDF and a html version of the Department of Education and Training Annual report 2015‑16 is available.

News | 21 October 2016

The Australian Government has implemented changes to research block grant (RBG) arrangements for universities commencing next year.

As part of the National Innovation and Science Agenda, announced last year, the new arrangements are designed to drive greater research‑industry engagement by substantially boosting incentives for collaboration with business and organisations which use the outcomes of research.

The arrangements establish two new streamlined programs:

News | 18 October 2016

The council will work with education providers, industry, and federal, state and territory governments to ensure the sector continues to play a key role in driving Australia’s future economic growth, global engagement and innovation. 

With Australia’s international education sector contributing more than $19 billion a year to the economy and supporting more than 130,000 jobs, it is one of the country’s key super-growth sectors.

Council members include:

News | 13 October 2016

The Department of Education and Training’s David Fintan gave the opening address today.

Experts and leaders in university and industry are in attendance to determine the most effective reforms in three priority areas:

  • Indigenous student participation and outcomes in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM); 
  • Increasing the number and capacity of the Indigenous academic workforce; and 
  • Whole-of-university approaches to improving Indigenous higher education outcomes.

The roundtable will build upon the latest available evidence, and develop concrete, measurable actions to progress national policy and funding in these three priority areas.


Professor Peter Buckskin, Chair of NATSIHEC and David Fintan, Department of Education and Training...

News | 31 August 2016

On 1 February 2016, the Higher Education Standards Panel was asked by Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham, Minister for Education and Training, to provide him with options to improve the transparency of higher education student admissions policies, without increasing regulation.

Following the release of a consultation paper, the Panel received 82 written submissions.

The Panel is currently considering submissions and will provide its advice to Government in the second half of 2016.

Submissions are available in both word and pdf formats.

News | 27 July 2016

Boosting its support and commitment to national research and innovation, the government has announced funding of $16 million to strengthen 10 existing research infrastructure projects at the leading edge of science and technology.

Minister for Education and Training, Senator Simon Birmingham announced the funding at the University of Adelaide which includes support for upgrades to national high performance computing to support world leading climate modelling, a state-of-the art scanner for large animal research, and upgrades to advanced nano fabrication to support bio-implantables and organic electronics.

Funding has been made available under the government’s National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy (NCRIS) Agility Fund that is helping to drive innovation by supporting leading edge national research infrastructure projects vitally important to Australia’s economic future.

News | 20 May 2016

Six teams of respected and eminent researchers have been announced that will assist in identifying Australian research infrastructure capability by assessing what we have and what the nation might need in the future.

The teams of experts will examine the areas of: health, physics, environment, culture, national security and underpinning research.

This process is integral to the development of a discussion paper for the 2016 National Research Infrastructure Roadmap, which will be released later in the year.

The list of the areas and respective capability experts is below. Their current position and employer have been included to show the range of expertise.

News | 6 May 2016

News | 3 May 2016

The Australian Government delivered the 2016-17 Budget on Tuesday 3 May 2016. To find out what this means for education and training, visit the 2016-17 Budget section of the website.

News | 28 April 2016

Minister for Education and Training Senator Simon Birmingham today launched the Early Childhood Resource Hub—which provides over 150,000 early childhood educators access to over 300 digital resources, including articles, videos, forums, all linked to the National Quality Framework (NQF).

The Hub is great news for child care educators to find quick and easy access to information on the NQF in one simple place.

Educators can use resources on the Hub to support their educational programming and share ideas about professional practice.

The Hub is a valuable tool to assist educators and services developing and implementing quality improvement plans and tackling specific issues, such as the application of learning frameworks, parental engagement and supporting children with specific needs.

News | 28 April 2016

Parents were given from 1 January until 18 March (or a later date if previously notified by the Department of Human Services) to meet the immunisation requirements to keep receiving Child Care Benefit and Child Care Rebate. Those parents who did not take steps to meet the requirements will no longer receive child care payments from 2 May 2016.

Due to the rise in the number of children vaccinated over the past few months, there was a delay in processing vaccination records, with some states and territories needing extra time to update the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register.

As the delay was beyond the parent’s control and may have resulted in their child’s information not being up-to-date, child care payments continued to be paid to allow time for the register to be updated.

News | 6 April 2016

The Higher Education Standards Panel has released a paper calling for public submissions on how to improve transparency in higher education admissions processes.

More information is available on the Higher Education Standards Panel web page.

Interested stakeholders can lodge submissions to HigherEd@education.gov.au by close of business Friday 27 May 2016.

The paper is now available.

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