The Prime Minister, the Hon Scott Morrison, has confirmed his commitment to vocational education and training. In a speech to the Western Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry on 24 June 2019, the Prime Minister said:
“Our vocational education system needs an upgrade to ensure it remains world-class, modern and flexible. That’s what business has told us – you’re not getting enough people walking through your doors with the skills you need.
“The Joyce Review we commissioned prior to the election confirms this and will now guide the changes we will seek to make during this term of parliament as a key component of our economic plan.
“The Review acknowledges the good work undertaken in the sector so far, but says VET needs to adapt so it can support important and emerging industries and become a first choice for students who want to pursue technical careers.
“We believe that learning through a vocational education is just as valuable as a university degree, so we want to transform the way we deliver skills, support employers and fund training
“We’re addressing the findings of the Joyce Review by setting up a National Skills Commission and a new National Careers Institute to give people the information they need to decide their future careers and the best pathways to get them into a job. We’re simplifying and targeting increases in apprenticeship incentives.
“And we’re creating up to 80,000 additional apprentices over five years in priority skill shortage areas through a new apprenticeship incentive.
“The Review’s recommendations are wide ranging and responsibilities for the sector are shared.
“Vocational education sector is one of my key priorities and I intend to make it a primary focus of discussion with states and territories at COAG. This work will also be led two Western Australians, Michaelia Cash in Cabinet and Steve Irons as Assistant Minister, a trade qualified electrician and small businessman.”
Community Colleges Australia Comment
Dr Don Perlgut, CEO of Community Colleges Australia (CCA), said:
“Community Colleges Australia is pleased that the Prime Minister has committed his Government to implementing the valuable recommendations of the Joyce Review. We are particularly pleased that he has identified vocational education as one of his key priorities, making it a primary focus of discussion with states and territories at COAG.
“CCA looks forward to working with the Government, Minister Cash – and new Assistant Minister Irons – to chart a future direction for Australian VET where the not-for-profit community education sector plays an important part.
“CCA’s May 2019 Federal Election Policy Platform provides a good guidepost of the ways Australia’s adult and community education sector can assist.”