A few weeks ago my hopes were raised that we might be headed for a voucher system in higher education.
Yesterday my hopes were raised again. The Victorian government confirmed that it was introducing a voucher scheme into vocational education, and Julia Gillard confirmed that income-contingent loans would be available to finance the partially deregulated fees accompanying the voucher scheme.
This makes it more difficult for her to reject a voucher scheme for higher education.
There have been the predictable voices against the Victorian innovation, though focused on the cost angle:
Australian Education Union TAFE president Mary Bluett accused the Government of cost-shifting and warned that higher fees, together with the new HECS-style loan scheme, would deter people from taking on training courses.