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Tuesday, 26 November 1985
Page: 2262

Senator RYAN (Minister for Education)(5.04) —Briefly in reply to Senator Vigor, no formal guidelines have been issued but discussions have been carried out between officers of my Department, The Australian Capital Territory Schools Authority, employers, and I think also technical and further education authorities in the Australian Capital Territory. The results of those discussions will be made known early in the new year. The general principle of traineeships in the Australian Capital Territory will be the same as in the honourable senator's State and throughout Australia. There will be a one-year training course with three months full time off-the-job training, probably in a TAFE institution, but it may well be in the Australian Capital Territory that our secondary colleges are able to provide the three months full time training. The content of the on-the-job training will then be worked out by the employer in co-operation with the trainee, the TAFE authority, or whichever education authority is involved, and the unions. I am not sure whether Senator Vigor requested the terms of reference of the Steinle Analysis of Australian Capital Territory School Resources.

Senator Vigor —I was inquiring about the staffing of the Australian Capital Territory Schools Authority. I was interested in the industrial relations aspects.

Senator RYAN —The terms of reference for the Steinle inquiry are:

1. The consultant should examine and report conclusions from an analysis of:

(a) the overall level of recurrent resources per pupil in ACT government schools compared with other Australian government school systems;

(b) special factors operating in the ACT that affect the overall level of resource usage (such as demographic changes, retention rates, the size and nature of the system and devolution of decision-making) and the effectiveness of resource usage.

2. The consultant will consult interested organisations in conducting this analysis and will report to the Minister for Education before the end of 1985. Data presently available should be used in the analysis including the work of the Grants Commission.

Obviously, one of the organisations with which Mr Steinle will consult will be the Australian Capital Territory Teachers Federation and industrial issues that seem to it to be relevant will no doubt be put to him. There will be longer term industrial relations effects of the inquiry once it is completed and once the Government has made a response to it. For example, if the inquiry finds that there is an area of under use of resource usage in the Australian Capital Territory schools system no doubt that Federation will take steps to campaign for that to be overcome. On the other hand, if it finds that the Australian Capital Territory schools system is generously resourced in all of its aspects probably there will be no case for any industrial negotiations. That is the sequence of events that I would envisage.