Neighbourhood houses account for two-thirds of all Learn Local providers and 49 are Registered Training Organisations (RTOs). They receive funding by the State Government to deliver subsidised training for Victoria’s most vulnerable learners to set them on the path to further education and employment opportunities.

Our advocacy in this space is incredibly important to ensure the ongoing viability for current providers, as well as making it easier for more neighbourhood houses to provide this vital community service. 

In 2018 we partnered other peak bodies ACEVic, Adult Learning Australia and Community Colleges Australia to develop a sector statement which addressed our concerns regarding the current and future state of the Adult Community Education (ACE) sector. We were very concerned at the number of closures of RTOs and a signficant drop in the number of Learn Local organisations providing pre-accredited training. Read the statement.

The statement was submitted to the Minister of Training and Skills Gayle Tierney MP. As a result, the Minister announced her intention to host an ACE Ministerial Summitt. 

On Wednesday 7 August 2019, our CEO Nicole Battle presented at the ACE Ministerial Summit. The summit was opened by the Minister of Training and Skills Gayle Tierney and brought together government and policy makers, industry peaks and providers, to discuss the issues impacting community education in Victoria.

We put forward a series of recommendations, developed in partnership with ACEVic, Adult Learning Australia and Community Colleges Australia, and informed by a consultation process across the Learn Local sector (with responses from 143 providers, representing an impressive response rate of 79 percent). Read the recommendations.

Leading up to the summit, Nicole went on her own community education roadshow to get a first hand, on-the-ground perspective of the issues impacting providers. Some of these visits were shared to social media:

In November 2019, Minister Tierney launched a Ministerial Statement - the first of its kind in 15 years, outlining her priorities to elevate adult community education in Victoria.