South Australia Training Advocate changes

22 January 2020

ASQA has been made aware that the South Australia Training Advocate has ceased providing external dispute resolution services.

These services were used by a small number of RTOs operating in that state to meet their obligations to students dissatisfied with the outcome of a complaint about the services they have received or the outcome of an appeal against an assessment decision.

The Standards for RTOs do not prescribe any specific external appeals mechanism but simply require that such an avenue is available to students and that information about how to access an external appeal is included in the RTO’s published complaints and appeals policy or policies.

There are a range of commercial services available that can meet this need and, while these often incur a cost, it is acceptable for RTOs to rely on such services provided it is clear in the relevant policies that this cost may be incurred.

In this situation, it is not required that the actual cost be advised in advance and this may not be feasible.

ASQA understands that it may take some time for RTOs impacted by the cessation of these services to put in place a suitable alternative.

Where a regulatory activity occurs or is already underway for an organisation impacted, ASQA will take into account the need to source relevant services and amend published information.

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