Vocational training

Victorian skills system should be replicated nationwide, says Gayle Tierney

Addressing the 7.30 Report on the eve of the election, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said Jobs and Skills Australia “would include representatives from the private sector and business as well as different levels of government”.

“[It’s job] is to identify the skills we will need this year, next year, five years, 10 years,” he said. “How do we train Australians for these jobs? How does the migration system fit into that, and make sure we get a better match in the labor market with the skills Australia needs.

It would replace the current system whereby state and federal ministers canceled funding agreements, Ms Tierney said.

The new national scheme was also likely to lead to a complete overhaul of national vocational qualifications, known as training packages, to make them more flexible and adaptable to local needs.

“It’s no secret that we’ve had conversations with federal labor for some time based on our experiences here in Victoria,” Ms Tierney said.

“We have made it a point for the government to provide vocational training that is highly relevant to the economy and industry whilst ensuring that Victorians have better access to enter the training and skills system.”

The new body will include the allocation of 465,000 free places at TAFE, including 45,000 additional places.

An inclusive and collaborative body would hopefully avoid a repeat of the current funding crisis which hit a wall last year after Labor states and territories refused to continue negotiating with the then Skills Minister , Stuart Robert, who they said continued to press with a draft agreement which they had rejected.