UnionsWA has commented on the latest job training data released by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) evidencing a steep decline in job training participation in WA, falling at almost four times the national rate.
Owen Whittle, Assistant Secretary UnionsWA said:
“Between 2015 and 2017 around 10,000 fewer West Australians engaged in vocational training.
“The rate of decline in WA, at -11.7%, is almost three times worse than elsewhere across Australia at -4.0%.
“These were the years during which job training fee increases under the Barnett Government were harshest.
“Today’s figures are a warning to the WA Government and employers that more must be done to stop the decline.
“Measures that should be urgently considered include reducing, not just freezing fees and improved on-the-job and on-campus supports for trainees and apprentices.
“Due to recently changed information management systems, it is not clear how much further enrolments have fallen in 2018, however it seems clear that the decline continues.
“Some changes to TAFE in WA by the McGowan Government are notable.
“Improved job security for TAFE trainers will benefit students once they are enrolled, but the welcome freeze on TAFE fee increases may not be enough.
“The steep decline in job training in WA over recent years is a worry for our young people and the future economic prospects for WA.”
Figures quoted above from Table on page 16, “Government-funded students and courses January to June 2018”, NCVER, October, 2018; available online here.