Skills Training and Apprenticeships Letter to the Editor

Shrinking feeling on training student numbers, funding

03 March 2017


Dear Editor,

Victoria’s training system has endured a revolving door of Ministers under Daniel Andrews’ chaotic command – and the damage bill is adding up.

The sector has shrunk to half the size it was in December 2014, with 45.3 per cent fewer students in training at June 2016, a drop of more than 200,000 students.

Labor also expects training organisations to do more with less.

In just 12 months the Andrews Government ripped $165.3 million from training and cut staff numbers by 6.5 per cent in just 12 months – despite committing to no staff redundancies.

Now, Labor has launched a last-ditch attempt to artificially inflate TAFEs bottom line in time for the Auditor-General’s annual review.

It’s the second year in a row the Andrews Government has handed out cash grants in time for this review and with no expectation students will receive anything in return.

Last year, the Auditor-General found: “this, combined with ongoing spending cuts made by the TAFEs, has produced a net surplus for 2015, and improved the liquidity ratio”.

Youth unemployment is as high as 18 per cent in some areas but Daniel Andrews and Gayle Tierney have no interest in making sure young people can get the skills they need to get a job.

Daniel Andrews’ claims of a TAFE ‘rescue’ are an absolute farce and it’s Victorian students who are paying the price.

Steph Ryan

Shadow Minister for Training, Skills and Apprenticeships

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