A LEAKED cabinet-in-confidence paper from the state government states Chisholm’s Mornington Peninsula campus in Rosebud is at risk of closing next year.
The paper contradicts assurances from Chisholm chief executive Maria Peters last week that there would be no campus closures.
The paper describes the peninsula, Cranbourne and Bass Coast campuses as ‘‘non-profitable’’ and says Chisholm expects to know within 12 months ‘‘whether or not these campuses will be sustainable’’.
In further bad news for students, the paper confirmed that Chisholm has budgeted to raise total tuition fees by 70 per cent and will lead a feasibility study investigating a merger
between Chisholm, Advance TAFE in East Gippsland and GippsTAFE in central Gippsland.
About 1200 students attend the Rosebud campus, where staff members have been advised by Ms Peters not to speak to the media.
Last Tuesday, Ms Peters broke the news of the loss of 220 fixed-term contract and permanent positions to staff from the college’s south-east campuses.
However, the leaked document discusses ‘‘the reduction of 251 full-time equivalents’’
listed as teaching staff, who, when made redundant, will save Chisholm $16.6 million.
Ms Peters said the job losses were in response to a $30 million cut in Chisholm’s budget since November.
Twenty-seven courses have not received ‘‘resource allocation’’ for next year and
Chisholm staff fear the job cuts announced by Ms Peters are just the beginning, with many more casual staff expected to lose their jobs.
A staff member said he was most concerned about the casual ‘‘sessionals’’.
‘‘They won’t get a package and they’ll be the first to go,’’ he said. ‘‘There will be more cuts. They’re just peeling back the layers.’’
Another staff member told the Weekly about four directors and 10 managers would also lose their jobs.
The Weekly understands that following discussions with Ms Peters and board chair David Willersdorf, director and board secretary David Thorsen left Chisholm last Thursday.
Ms Peters did not respond to the Weekly’s request for comment.