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Plans underway for ITO integration and transition

Industry training organisation (ITOs) have been responsible for arranging training for learners in the workplace as well as for setting skill standards. Plans are now underway for ITOs to transition their mandate and the 11 ITOs have recently submitted their proposed transition plans to the TEC.

As part of reforming vocational education, the responsibility for setting standards will move to Workforce Development Councils .  NZIST and other tertiary education providers will be responsible for the arranging training role. A vitally important part of this function will be ensuring learners, apprentices and employers who are currently within the ITO system are put at the very heart of any decision making.

The close connection between providers, ITOs, the RoVE programme, and funder TEC means ongoing close collaboration with partners will be vital as this project progresses. 

Fiona Kingsford, Chief Executive of ITO Competenz , has been seconded to NZIST on a part-time basis to assist with the development of a practical implementation plan that could support the smooth transfer of arranging industry training as well as ensuring learners and employers can continue to receive the support they need.

“I’m really looking forward to the opportunity to work closely with my transitional ITO colleagues to find practical solutions that could work for our learners and employers. While I acknowledge transition can be disruptive and unsettling for the industry training sector, in this new COVID-19 world, we need to pull together. We need to collectively determine the steps required to extend vocational education into an ongoing lifelong learning journey that could be delivered on-campus, on-line or on-the-job and ultimately, build skills for productivity,” says Fiona.

“We are looking to identify interim arrangements that individual ITOs are happy to consider. This is a huge change for the entire sector, and I’m certainly committed to finding solutions that we can test and adjust as we work towards getting it right for everyone. We are charged with reforming the vocational education sector, and that will mean doing things differently.” says Fiona.

Over the next 12-18 months, NZIST will collaborate with transitional ITOs, NZIST subsidiaries, learners, employers and communities to establish an integration plan for vocational education.  The outcome of this work will be incorporated into the detailed design of NZIST’s operating model – the roadmap towards transforming NZIST’s teaching and learning models.

The smooth transition of training arrangements from ITOs is a high priority for NZIST, which has established a working group to support Fiona. Council Chair Murray Strong and Council members Peter Winder and John Brockie will oversee the group, Chief Executive Stephen Town and acting Deputy Chief Executive of Transformation Alex Cabrera will work with Fiona.  The working group expects to have an implementation plan before the end of the year.

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