MS TIERNEY (Western Victoria—Minister for Training and Skills, Minister for Higher Education) (12:23): I am proud to rise to acknowledge the outstanding work of our TAFE teachers and support and administrative staff in seamlessly adapting to online delivery. If last year taught us anything, it is that when a government properly invests in TAFEs they can respond with agility. There are many examples from last year where TAFEs delivered fantastic online training. Face-to-face learning is the priority, but blended delivery sets up opportunities for TAFEs to offer more flexible options for students, and I want to share some examples from 2020.
At Box Hill TAFE fashion students hosted a virtual runway event to showcase the designs created during the 2020 lockdown. TAFE students in hair and beauty, design, virtual merchandising and floristry helped to bring this amazing virtual event together. At the Gordon a new system, Miro, was incorporated into the graphic design courses. It is a collaborative space where students can work with their project teams and share ideas and resources and interact with each other in real time.
I thank TAFEs for stepping up during the latest circuit-breaker lockdown. Chisholm TAFE was able to transition over 10 000 students to online training within 24 hours, and I want to read a quote from Melanie, who is studying a diploma of early childhood education and care:
This COVID era has proven that a classroom is not a place, rather, it is a person that we call ‘teacher’. Therefore, it is to our Chisholm TAFE teachers that we owe the seamless transition of face learning to online classes. Their values of kindness, enthusiasm, and understanding have smoothed the online learning journey while they have continued creating connections, inspirations and guidance in preparation for us, students, to our future career path.
I want to take the opportunity to offer big thanks to everyone at TAFEs and indeed the wider TAFE and VET system.