Minister Hipkins’ RoVE update

Minister Hipkins’ RoVE update

Last updated 28 August 2019
Last updated 28 August 2019

This week was a highly significant one for the future of vocational education and training and the future of work in New Zealand, as the Government introduced the Vocational Education Reform Bill in Parliament.

Minister Hipkins

The Bill is the culmination of all the work done by many people. Your feedback during the consultation process also helped shape what will be a defining piece of legislation when it becomes law in April 2020.

To create a unified and cohesive vocational education and training system and help New Zealanders prepare for the future of work, it will take all of us working together – industry, industry training organisations, business, institutes of technology and polytechnics.

The Bill paves the way for a successful future by:

  • enabling workforce development councils to be established to give industry greater leadership across vocational education and training
  • establishing the New Zealand Institute of Skills & Technology to provide, arrange and support a range of vocational education and training, including on-the-job, face-to-face and distance delivery
  • providing for a smooth transition of functions and responsibilities from the current to the new system
  • establishing a new regulatory framework for vocational education and training.

The Bill includes a charter that will ensure the institute will be responsive to the needs of learners, industries, employers and communities in all regions of New Zealand. It must offer a mix of education and training in each region, including on-the-job, face-to-face and distance delivery.

The institute must also develop meaningful partnerships with industry, including Māori and Pacific employers, and with communities including hapū, iwi and Pacific.

While the changes are significant, learners, staff and employers should be assured that the implementation and transition will be well managed and that we will continue to work with them through this process.

The changes will come into force on 1 April 2020. There will be a transition period until 31 December 2022 to ensure continuity for learners and employers and to allow time to build new capacity.

I encourage learners to enrol as they normally would in 2019 and 2020, including in apprenticeships and other multi-year programmes, and I encourage people in the workplace to keep training and employers to encourage more workers to sign up.

The select committee process will be a good opportunity to consider potential refinements to the legislation and the charter.

Hon Chris Hipkins

Minister of Education